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European employment policies promotes projects and actions which encourage and empower people with disabilities to enter or remain in the open labour market. However, despite of the growth of Supported Employment over the past years, in many countries it is not delivering its full potential. People with disabilities still have higher non-employment rates and lower income as a result of lower labour market participation. Also, sheltered employment and “special and separate employment” is still considered the first choice.

Therefore, the overall objective of this Partnership is to raise the awareness of the concept of Supported Employment, and to promote the values and principles of Supported Employment that are consistent with the concepts of empowerment, social inclusion, dignity and respect for individuals.

In order to reach this objective, the Partnership is

•investigating the state of art in the countries of the Partnership, and indicating to which levels Supported Employment it is being introduced

•identifying the standard and skills levels of Supported Employment professionals

•selecting the best practice examples in the Supported Employment process

•getting an overview on training materials that is being used by those organisations that provide support to people from disadvantaged groups into employment.

•elaborating a concept for successful introduction of Supported Employment and career development

•including people with disabilities in the research and development process in the Partnership

•presenting all findings at the Partnerships‘