EMSP at European Day for Persons with Disability: Advocating for employment04.12.2014
EMSP was represented at the European Day of Persons with Disability – a European Disability Forum (EDF) event hosted by the European Commission on 2-3 December in Brussels – by our Project Coordinator and MS advocate Emma Rogan (photo).
In a very personal speech she delivered on 3 December, Emma shared her own experience of living with multiple sclerosis while stressing the importance of access to employment:
“Paid work opens up opportunities and provides sense of purpose, security and dignity.”
Emma Rogan told an audience of more than 100 stakeholders that after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis and going through a “heartbreaking” experience – which included losing career opportunities – she was finally able to re-discover “the joy of working”.
Emma is currently Project Coordinator for EMSP’s Believe and Achieve (B&A) programme – which offers paid internships to young people with multiple sclerosis across Europe.
“Up to 50% of those living with MS retire early. They are losing out on work, on pension contributions and on creativity. In turn, we are losing their contribution to our society. We are losing diversity. But it doesn’t have to be that way”, said Emma Rogan.
Emma also talked about EMSP’s EU-funded Paving the Path to Participation (PPP) project – which aims to develop and promote best practice in employment for people with MS and other neurodegenerative diseases:
“We’re talking about social justice and human rights and we want to showcase the benefit of tapping into talent – the talent of people with MS and other similar conditions.”
The 3rd of December is recognised globally as the International Day of People with Disability. It is sanctioned by the United Nations with the goal to increase public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability and celebrate their achievements and contributions.