Chapter 8: Disability in EU non-discrimination law
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European Union (EU) disability equality and non-discrimination law has developed into a dynamic field of law, particularly in the wake of the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) at EU level. The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has handed down a long line of judgments outlining the manner in which the principal piece of EU secondary legislation in the disability context – the Employment Equality Directive – is to be interpreted from the perspective of disability. The concept of ‘disability’ has been the subject of much academic debate, focusing in particular on the extent to which the CRPD has influenced the interpretation by the CJEU of the definition of disability. This chapter analyzes the relevant Treaty and secondary law provisions pertaining to disability non-discrimination law, before expanding on the disability-related considerations that have emerged from the interpretation of those provisions by the CJEU. The chapter assesses the extent to which the CRPD has informed the interpretation of the relevant legislative provisions to date, and whether it may spur future developments in areas where there are currently gaps, mainly with regard to the material scope of the prohibition of discrimination and in relation to multiple and intersectional discrimination, and genetic discrimination.

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