First, Professor Anne Waldschmidt, University of Cologne, explained the concept of Active Citizenship for persons with disabilities and described the methods applied and the data collected by the DISCIT Consortium. Next, Anemari Karačić and Andreas Sturm from the German team presented the findings of their Work Package on Active Citizenship as political participation. They highlighted that persons with disabilities need support to become active in disability politics; barriers such as lacking financial resources and accessibility are hampering both organisations and individuals.
Ina third part, Professor Roy Sainsbury and Edmund Coleman-Fountain, University of York, presented findings from their Work Package, the employment policies in Europe and lived experiences of persons with disabilities at the workplace. Their analyses indicated that persons with disabilities experience a lack of choice in their employment opportunities. The British scholars also pointed out that new ideas for increasing the employment of persons with disabilities are needed.
The workshop gathered academic scholars, disability rights activists as well as persons representing official disability politics. It resulted in lively discussions on social enterprises, niche jobs and ͚sheltered͛ employment settings. The participants also emphasized the importance of self-representation in disability rights activism.