DISCIT

DISCIT has published a new working paper on Diversity and Change of the Employment Prospects of Persons with Disabilities. The paper is the first output of Work Package 5 of the DISCIT study which focuses on the employment prospects of disabled persons in nine European countries. Taking article 27 of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) as its focus, WP5 asks whether “the right of persons with disabilities to work, on an equal basis with others” is being made a reality. Whilst the main data, derived from interviews with disabled persons and other stakeholders in nine European countries, will form the basis of later papers, the present paper provides crucial context by bringing together currently available figures on labour market participation with data on the regulatory and redistributive measures that have so far structured that participation. It thus represents the initial phase in an effort to study how the employment prospects of disabled persons have been influenced by policy contexts which the Convention now informs. The countries selected represent different European welfare and policy traditions, allowing for key differences and similarities in provision and outcome to be explored. They include: Ireland, the UK, and Switzerland (Liberal); Norway and Sweden (Nordic); Germany and Italy (Conservative); and the Czech Republic and Serbia (Post-communist). By gathering data on the employment rates of persons with disabilities in each country, alongside information on the provisions available to help persons with disabilities into or to maintain them in work, the paper raises questions about the diverse contexts in which access to work for persons with disabilities has, to date, been sought. The purpose then is to think of the extent to which “equal” participation in the labour market may be achieved in policy contexts which are already well established.