Before starting with the elaboration and adaptation of the counselling programme for long-term unemployed people with disabilities, the partners in the New Horizons project decided to conduct focused desk practice research exploring the needs and the obstacles of the target groups in terms of integration into the labour market. The desk research helped the team gain better understanding of the challenges and difficulties that long-term unemployed people with disabilities face in their daily life and adapting the counselling programme to their specific situation.
Finally, the desk research will enable the partner to better reach the overall goal of the New Horizons project which is to assist people with disabilities to re-integrate back in to the labour market and society. With disabled persons representing one-sixth of the EU’s overall working-age population, and with comparatively low employment rates, European countries are obligated to address the growing number of unemployed persons with disabilities and find ways to reduce prejudice in the workforce and employer discrimination that the desk research has identified as a common problem in all European countries. While many social schemes and forms of assistance are already implemented by European countries and their governments, it is necessary to develop methods and tools that will enable persons with disabilities to fulfill their career goals and aspirations. For more country specific highlights and key figures, as well as best practices please refer to the Executive Summary that can be found under Resources section.