Disabled people are significantly under-represented on regulated public body Boards in Scotland. Public bodies are missing a potential pool of talent and experience because of this lack of inclusion.
Our Access to Public Appointments pilot gave six disabled people the opportunity to shadow six regulated public body Boards in Scotland over twelve months, with ongoing mentoring from an experienced Board member. The project was a collaboration between between Inclusion Scotland, the Scottish Government Public Appointments Team, and the Ethical Standards Commissioner.
Public body Boards participating in the pilot were:
- Ayrshire and Arran NHS
- Golden Jubilee Foundation
- Independent Living Fund Scotland
- Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park Authority
- NHS 24 – Edinburgh and Glasgow
- NatureScot (formerly Scottish Natural Heritage)
Through Access to Public Appointments, Boards, Board mentors, and shadows developed productive working relationships with one another. Shadows developed substantial experience of the work undertaken by public bodies and their Boards. Boards and public bodies gained significant insight into disabled people’s lived experiences, and into how disabled people can be active, valuable, and valued contributors to Boards’ work.
Check out our Access to Public Appointments Evaluation Report, which makes several recommendations for making public bodies and their Boards more accessible to and more representative of disabled people. You can also read the Scottish Government’s official response our report.
You can also find out more about public appointments from the Scottish Government’s Public Appointments website.