Opening up communities, closing down institutions: Harnessing the European Structural and Investment Funds
Community Living for Europe: Structural Funds Watch is an independent initiative that tracks how effectively the clear commitment of the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) to support community living of children, persons with disabilities and older persons is being implemented.
Although challenges remain across the 12 Member States identified as having a need to transition to community-based care, the transition process is far from complete across other Member States not included in this list. The process for determining 'applicability' is not transparent, key sources of information about institutional care and community-based living are omitted from official guidance, and civil society is rarely involved in the process. Finally, ex-ante conditionality 9.1 has provided impetus and support for meaningful reform in countries, however it is vital that the principles that underlie it are harmonised with other ESIF thematic areas and EU funding instruments. Evidence highlights that EU funding in areas such as energy efficiency, ICT and transport is being used to support and maintain institutions, which goes against the spirit of the ex-ante conditionality.
This report offers recommendations to: The European Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of the EU, Member States and civil society for harnessing the European Structural and Investment Funds towards supporting community living of children, persons with disabilities and older persons.