To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, pursuant to the Answer of 18 February 2019 to Question 220173, on Candidates: Disability, whether it is still her Department’s policy that political parties are responsible for supporting their disabled candidates; and what support is available to support independent deaf and disabled candidates.
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, with reference to the Answer of 18 February 2019 to Question 220173 on Candidates: Disability, what progress has been made on the programme of work to help political parties to put long-term sustainable solutions in place; and if she will make a statement.
The EnAble Fund for Elected Office was designed as an interim measure to allow political parties time to put in place support. Political parties were fully informed that the fund was for a limited period, and strongly encouraged to put support for their candidates in place.
While financial support for candidates in elections is a matter for political parties, the Government is also considering what support it might provide to succeed the current EnAble fund. The Disability Unit is considering options in connection with the National Strategy for Disabled People, which is due to be published in 2020.