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Multiple Sclerosis Special Report Breaking the Barriers – A European Employment Pact for Multiple Sclerosis Emma Rogan, 1 Elisabeth Kasilingam 2 and Claudiu Berbece 3 1. EMSP Project Coordinator; 2. EMSP Programme Manager; 3. EMSP Communications Coordinator, EMSP aisbl, European Multiple Sclerosis Platform, Brussels, Belgium Abstract In March this year, the European Multiple Sclerosis Platform (EMSP) launched its European Employment Pact for people with multiple sclerosis (MS) and other neurodegenerative conditions. A call to action for the Pact will follow in May. EMSP is inviting all relevant stakeholders, from businesses to decision-makers, to pledge support. People who are highly educated and skilled are edged out of the workplace by inadequate ‘return to work’ policies, lack of understanding and prejudice. EMSP considers this unacceptable. Keywords Employment, work, multiple sclerosis, pact, EMSP Disclosures: The European Employment Pact has been developed in the framework of the Paving the Path to Participation project, which has received cofunding from the European Commission under the DG Justice PROGRESS programme. It reflects only the authors’ view, and the commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information it contains. Claudiu Berbece, Elisabeth Kasilingam and Emma Rogan are employees of EMSP and represent no other organisation or company. Emma Rogan also represents MS Ireland, a members society of EMSP. No funding was received for the publication of this article. Open Access: This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License, which permits any non-commercial use, distribution, adaptation and reproduction provided the original author(s) and source are given appropriate credit. Received: 16 April 2015 Accepted: 24 April 2015 Citation: European Neurological Review, 2015;10(1):12–4 Correspondence: Claudiu Berbece, EMSP aisbl, European Multiple Sclerosis Platform, Rue A Lambiottestraat 144/8, 1030 Brussels, Belgium. E: email@example.com The European Employment Pact for people with multiple sclerosis (MS) offers a way forward in tackling the barriers and challenges faced by people with MS and other neurodegenerative conditions in the workplace. The Pact is mainly addressed to businesses, whether small and medium enterprises (SMEs) or multinational companies, which are prepared to recognise the value of policies that enhance workplace health and promote diversity. It is also meant as a call to action to all relevant stakeholders who share the view that inclusive employment is not only a basic human right, but also good for business and good for society. Why Support the Pact? By supporting this Pact, business leaders will demonstrate their commitment to creating a healthy workplace for all. Health-focused workplace policies improve an individual’s quality of life while promoting increased productivity. By upholding such policies, decision-makers will also show their resolve in tackling important challenges, such as youth unemployment, workplace discrimination and health inequalities. By partnering with the European Multiple Sclerosis Platform (EMSP) in promoting and implementing the Pact, patient organisations and other non-governmental organisations (NGOs) will enable the creation of a cross-border movement dedicated to improving employment for people with disabilities: 12 Tou c h ME d ica l ME d ia