Partial view of the meeting room.

Our EDbN seminar on the 20th of May 2000 in Ancona, Italy was on all aspects of equal opportunity for deafblind people. We have started a new area, where policy starts from the point of view of deafblind people themselves. There is the anti discrimination clause in article 13 in the Amsterdam Treaty and in different countries new laws are being prepared to seek equal opportunities for disabled people. Disability is not only a social issue, it became a human rights issue towards full citizenship. 

It was said that we need legislation that recognises deafblindness and legal rights to special services, stronger civil rights in employment, greater awareness of deafblindness and change of attitude towards deafblind people. Deafblind people themselves need to be involved in awareness raising. Sense UK gave the about 60 participants many examples how to do it. Deafblind people, family members and professionals have each a very importaht role in awareness raising campaigns.

It is almost one year ago since EDbN’s visit to Ancona, but I still remember the singing and playing music, the atmosphere of friendship and partnership.
Many thanks to the Lega del Filo D’Oro in Italy and to William Green, who did everything to make this seminar a success.

  1. Welcome and opening of seminar.
  2. Patrizia David, Ancona University. The social Political Situation in Italy concerning Equal opportunities for people with dissabilities.
  3. Diamond Ashiagbor, Florence University. European Union Developments, Legislation towards equal opportunities.
  4. Malcolm Matthews and Caroline Ellis, Sense. Making rights a reality, the UK experience. YES to access campaign, Rights to strengthening civil provisions, employment, access to services. Changing attitudes …

5.Grazia Ugolini, Italian National committee of families. Equal opportunities from a family perspective.

6.Sergei Sorotkine, Russia. Equal opportunities from a deafblind perspective and experience. For better achievement of equal opportunities in non-disabled society for persons sacked by deafblindness it is necessary to promote research of problems and needs of deafblindness …

7.Steve Collins, Gallaudet University. The Deaf mouvement in U.S. towards equal opportunities.