In November and December 2018, the European Network on Independent Living (ENIL) piloted the Personal Assistance Checklist (PA Checklist) – a new tool for assessing personal assistance schemes from the perspective of independent living.

The PA Checklist was created by ENIL, as part of the project ‘User-Led Personal Assistance in the European Union: A Critical Comparative Analysis’, led by Dr Teodor Mladenov.

The checklist is intended to help advocates around the world to fight for better PA. It allows, for the first time, to rank PA schemes according to independent living principles.

Independent living experts and PA users from eight European countries – Belgium, Bulgaria, Ireland, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom – responded to the invitation to apply the checklist to PA schemes they use and/or know well.

Based on these assessments and an earlier survey conducted by ENIL, each PA scheme achieved an overall score, indicating the degree to which the scheme enables or hinders users’ choice and control. In the sample, the highest score was achieved by the Swedish national PA scheme, while the lowest – by the PA scheme provided by the Sofia Municipality in Bulgaria.

Such comparisons highlight problems and suggest policy interventions which could make PA less restrictive and more conducive to disabled people’s independent living.

The results also reflect a widespread concern of assistance users and independent living advocates with cuts to PA. ENIL urges decision makers to reverse the cuts to PA.

The findings are presented in a new report which can be found here. If you would like to receive the document in Word, please contact An easy read summary is included in the report.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No 747027. This document reflects only the author’s view. The Research Executive Agency of the European Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains.