Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Disabled People (Elected Office)

Oral Answers to Questions — Deputy Prime Minister – in the House of Commons at 11:30 am on 24th May 2011.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Amber Rudd Amber Rudd Conservative, Hastings and Rye 11:30 am, 24th May 2011

What progress he has made on implementing his proposals for additional support for disabled people to achieve elected office.

Photo of Nick Clegg Nick Clegg The Deputy Prime Minister , Lord President of the Council (Privy Council Office), Leader of the Liberal Democrats

We conducted a public consultation exercise, which ran from 16 February to 11 May, to seek views on a range of proposals designed to help to remove barriers faced by disabled people who are seeking elected office. We are currently analysing the responses, and intend to announce the strategy later this year.

Photo of Amber Rudd Amber Rudd Conservative, Hastings and Rye

I thank the Deputy Prime Minister for that answer. In Hastings we have 32 councillors and in East Sussex 49, but not one of them is registered disabled. Can he give any advice to the leaders of my councils about what can be done to encourage more disabled people to get involved in local politics?

Photo of Nick Clegg Nick Clegg The Deputy Prime Minister , Lord President of the Council (Privy Council Office), Leader of the Liberal Democrats

My hon. Friend is right: the issue is applicable not just to this place, but to councils up and down the country. There are clearly barriers impeding the participation of people with disabilities in politics at all levels. I pay tribute to those who were involved in the Speaker’s Conference on Parliamentary Representation, which was started some years ago and identified this as a problem. In our access to elected office strategy, which we will announce, we will address how that might affect local councils as well as this place.