Inclusion Scotland developed the Access to Politics Charter to address barriers preventing disabled people from becoming fully involved in politics. The Charter was launched at the Scottish Parliament on Thursday 14th June 2018 and signed by all five Scottish political party leaders.
In the Charter, political parties affirm that:
- We shall produce and publish a statement outlining how we will support disabled people’s participation in every aspect of our activities.
- We shall support and resource a disabled members’ group within our party.
- We shall commit to positive and proactive provision of disability equality training to elected officers, staff and party members.
- We shall ensure that the language we use about ‘disability’ recognises it as a societal issue with societal solutions.
- We shall investigate alternative means of participation such as remote presence and internal digital voting.
- We shall voluntarily publish data on protected characteristics of our candidates in line with section 106 of the Equality Act 2010 for all elections, including Scottish local authority elections.
- We shall investigate job-sharing for internal elected roles and for elected public office.
- We shall actively support and encourage disabled people to stand for elected office and explore mechanisms that ensure the election of a representative number of disabled candidates.
Inclusion Scotland continues to work with parties and their disabled members to report on how Charter commitments are accomplished and where parties need further development.
The BSL video of the charter is available below.