To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what information she holds on (a) the position of Disability Commissioner, (b) the appointment of a Disability Commissioner and (c) the abolition of the post of Disability Commissioner provided by (i) the Board of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, (ii) the Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, (iii) the Deputy Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, (iv) other members of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, (v) the Chief Executive of the Equality and Human Rights Commission and (vi) the Disability Advisory Committee of the Equality and Human Rights Commission between (A) 1 November 2016 and 9 March 2017 and (B) 9 March and 21 April 2017.
A number of Equality and Human Rights Commissioner appointments, including to the role of Disability Commissioner, were advertised between September and November 2016. The role of Disability Commissioner was not a statutory post but rather, a role created by the Commission. Commissioners filling that role customarily chaired the Commission’s statutory Disability Committee as a key element of their duties. The Equality and Human Rights Commission is an independent body and decisions about the roles and responsibilities of Board members are a matter for the Commission itself. Following an Order - The Equality Act 2006 (dissolution of the Disability Committee) Order 2014 SI No. 406 - which came into force on 01 April 2014, the statutory Disability Committee was dissolved on 31 March 2017, before the appointment of any new Commissioners could be made, and no candidate for the advertised appointments was specifically offered the role of Disability Commissioner.