European Charter for #FamilyCarers

COFACE Disability, founded by COFACE Families Europe in 1998 to better represent persons with disabilities and their families has just released an updated version of its European Charter for Family Carers (click here).

The European Charter for Family Carers is written in light of the provisions of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and other major international conventions and documents drafted under the auspices of the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the European Union, and the European Disability Forum, as regards to the life, dignity, rights and full citizenship of persons with disabilities and their families.

The Charter is developed as a reference tool to be implemented by various organisations representing persons with disabilities and/or complex needs and their families in the European Union, as well as by the European Union’s institutions.

Articles of the charter:

1. Definition of family carer
2. Choice of family carer
3. Public solidarity
4. Family solidarity
5. The place of the family carer within the health system
6. Official status of the family carer
7. Quality of life
8. Right to respite
9. Information/Training
10. Assessment and monitoring


Support the European Charter for Family Carers by sharing these messages on Social Media:

The European Charter for #FamilyCarers aims to give recognition to family carers and to raise awareness on the disadvantaged situation they often face in their personal and/or work life

The ultimate purpose of the European Charter for #FamilyCarers is to ensure that family carers can enjoy the same rights and opportunities, as anyone else

In most EU countries, there is a lack of adequate community-based services to support persons with care, or support needs #FamilyCarers

Families play a key role to prevent the institutionalisation of their relative with support needs #FamilyCarers

Informal care provided by family members should not replace the duty of Member States’ public authorities to provide support services #FamilyCarers

#FamilyCarers need training, psychological support and respite

Resources and flexible time arrangements at work for family carers would help to avoid poverty of the family #FamilyCarers

Formal recognition of #FamilyCarers would enable work-life balance for both men and women and protect the rights of all family members

COFACE finds it crucial to recognise #FamilyCarers through a certain number of rights

#FamilyCarers are often providing care without being paid, or being entitled to social benefits

A family carer is a woman or man, who is not a professional caregiver, but by default or choice cares for a person with care or support needs in her/his immediate circle #FamilyCarers

In May 2017, COFACE Families Europe conducted a major data collection on the needs and challenges of family carers. We received over 1000 answers from 16 EU Member States, which provide a great overview on their situation and the most concerning challenges they face, including poverty, long-term unemployment and social exclusion. More information about the survey here