Inclusive Mobility Alliance puts forth recommendations
for a more inclusive Erasmus programme
The Inclusive Mobility Alliance has been officially launched on the 22nd of January 2019 at the European Parliament. Gathering more than 20 organisations with expertise in Disability, Youth and Higher Education, the Alliance aims at making Erasmus+ more inclusive. Students and young people taking part in Erasmus+ mobilities represent respectively approx. 0.17% and 2.8% of all beneficiaries. These low figures have been stagnating for the past 10 years and are the main reasons behind the creation of the Inclusive Mobility Alliance.
Based on the United Nation Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (UNCRPD), the Alliance has produced 17 policy recommendations on how to make the Erasmus programme – the flagship of the European Union – more inclusive to students and young people with disabilities. The recommendations that are being published in a timely moment, when the next Erasmus programme for the period 2021-2027 is being drafted by the European Commission.
The recommendations call for a needs-based approach and include, among others:
• The necessity for all staff working with Erasmus+ to be trained on working and communicating with
potential beneficiaries in an inclusive way
• Inviting the European Commission to revise the Erasmus Charter for Higher Education including a
clause on disability and inclusion
• Inviting Member States to allow the portability of grants and support services between different countries
“Erasmus + is certainly the most successful program of the Union and more than any other has concretely contributed to the process of European integration. For this reason, we have gladly hosted this event: because we consider a priority for this experience to become truly as accessible as possible for everyone, regardless of the economic and physical conditions, and, therefore, truly inclusive,” said the Members of European Parliament Damiano Zoffoli and Luigi Morgano
“We have the right to experience the lifechanging benefits of mobility. The recommendations released by the Alliance are a roadmap to ensure this right,” said Yannis Vardakastanis, President of the European Disability Forum.
“For decades, the EU has proudly flagged the motto “unity in diversity”. I believe it is time to add more layers to the diversity of nations we proudly celebrate. Talking about inclusion of all needs of all people in Erasmus+ is bringing fairness to a flagship project of an Union we want to be actually diverse,” said João Pinto, President of the Erasmus Student Network.
By signing the Inclusive Mobility Alliance Declaration, MEPs Luigi Morgano and Damiano Zoffoli (S&D) and the 21 partners organisations have expressed their commitment to support the work of the Alliance and fight for more equal and fair access to the Erasmus+ programme for those underrepresented groups.