Practices and Policies in the Employment of People with a Disability: What’s now and what’s next?

Online 21st June 2021, (13.30 - 16.15 CET)

Rehabilitation International Finland and EPR hosted the webinar “Practices and Policies in the Employment of People with a Disability: What’s now and what’s next?”. It took place online on June 21st, 13.30-16.00 CET, on Zoom.

The event took place in two sessions and examined the state of play, developments and successes in both practice and policy supporting the employment of people with a disability from Finland and beyond.

The first session

included an overview on employment practices for people with disabilities (PwD) in Europe and the lessons learnt from a recent study, and familiarised the participants with EPR’s perspectives on employment of PwD and developments in EU initiatives in the field:

Strategy for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2021-2030; focus on employment by Susanne Kraatz, Policy Officer, European Commission Disability and Inclusion Unit

Then there was a presentation of a national example “from practice to policy”:

Pauliina Lampinen, Chair of the Commission on Policy and Services Rehabilitation International, Executive Director of VAMLAS, Finland
“Work-capacity assessment and employment of people with disabilities”: Sharing learning from peer-reviewed research into work-capacity assessment and employment of people with disabilities and recent developments.

Laura Jones, Secretary General of European Platform for Rehabilitation (EPR), Belgium
Trends, challenges and solutions for employment from EPR’s members’ perspectives and an overview of key recent initiatives at EU level.

Mika Ala-Kauhaluoma from Kuntoutussäätiö, Finland
“From practice to policy”: Learning from Finland’s co-production approach to employment of people with a disability.

The second session

This session did a “tour d’Europe” and involved speakers from Belgium, Finland, France, Norway and Spain to present inspiring practices and programmes for the employment of PWD and later discussed by the participants.

Paal Haavorsen, Senior Adviser “Work & Inclusion” at the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO), Norway
The “Ripple in the Water” works with companies to obtain a qualified and motivated workforce by supporting people with less opportunities to join the labour market.

Ana Juviño, Technical Adviser in the Directorate of Training and Employment, Operations and Transformation of the Fundación ONCE, Spain
The ONCE Foundation Entrepreneurship Program offers support to people with a disability throughout the whole entrepreneurship process, from the initial idea to start-up and beyond.

Prof. Jean-Michel Mazaux, Hospital Practitioner and Vice-President of Comète France, France.  Comète’s early intervention programme supports hospitalized patients to build their own employment plan compatible with their new condition.

Wannes Marivoet, Human Resource Development Department of GTB, Belgium
“Talentoscoop” is a programme that provides employers with special human  resources and policies to create an inclusive work environment.

Anni Kyröläinen, Finland
Closing reflections. Ms Kyröläinen has a long background in accessibility work and in promoting the employment of people with disabilities in Finnish society. Last year she prepared an extensive report for the Ministry of Employment and the Economy on structural barriers to the employment of people with disabilities. Currently she is working in her own consulting firm on equality and accessibility and is researching the employment of people with disabilities in the Office of the Non-discrimination Ombudsman.

Participants had the opportunity to engage in Q&A and polls throughout the programme. We used Mentimeter to create interactive moments during the webinar.

The programme and report can be found below.

This event receives financial support from the European Union, from the EU Programme for Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI). For further information please consult:


Information details

Programme file Events report

Contact person

Laura Jones