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Study visit in Finland

November 5th 2014 : Stories from Everyday Life

Finland is in the final stages of ratifying the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Hearing stories from everyday life is a good way to understand how the rights of persons with intellectual disabilities are realized and what could be considered as promising practices.

 

During the study visit we heard stories and experiences from:

 

Sami Korhonen, self-advocate and a member of the self-advocate organisation Me itse ry
Miina Weckroth, family member and an executive manager of the families organization Jaatinen
Tanja Salisma, legal counsel of Inclusion Finland
Tuula Eilittä, senior legal guardian from the city of Helsinki
Self-advocate Sami Korhonen emphasized that being a member of the self-advocate's own organization "Me Itse ry" is very important to him. Sami shared his story to the participants: he used to have a legal guardian, but because he was not satisfied with the service he decided to end the guardianship. He still needs some support, but he can live independently because he gets support from the group home staff near to his home.

 

Miina Weckroth told her family's story. We learned that families need more information about how to support the legal capacity of the family member who is in the transition from childhood to adulthood. Families face many different authorities and it is important to have a common understanding how they can all support the decision-making capacity of the person with intellectual disability.

 

Tanja Salisma pointed out that we can support persons with intellectual disabilities by raising awareness of the requirements of the CRPD (and the CRC) and development of methods to support in decision-making as well as training on these methods and other good practices. Supported decision-making should be an underlying idea or principle in all areas of life when relating to a PwID.

 

Tuula Eilittä shared her views of the work of the guardian in practice like the tasks of the guardian, communication and co-operation.

 

During the study visit we have seen that some organizations in Finland already have practices in line with UNCRPD. During the study visit we learned that the Ministry of Justice, strong ngo´s and self-advocates together with their family members are the parties that can change the practices and laws. Our responsibility together is to give information about UNCRPD, awareness, communication and personalized support. In Finland Self-determination Act and renewed Social Welfare Act and the Reform of disability legislation are they key actions in our field where we can promote practices which are in line with the UNCRPD.

A study visit in Budapest

19 September 2014: The AJuPID project partners will attend to a study visit in Budapest. They will meet and hear legal guardians, associations and persons with intellectual disabilities. Click here to discover the agenda of our study visit.

The report

5 June 2014: EU publishes first report about the implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Click here to have a look at the report.

The research results

17 - 18 September 2014: The AJuPID project partners will meet in Budapest to discuss the first research results. They will also plan ahead and start working on a training for guardians and other supporters of disabled people.