Inclusion Scotland is calling on disabled people to get involved in the One in Five campaign, and on everyone interested in increasing disabled people’s engagement with politics to give the campaign their support. The campaign is a grassroots movement seeking the support of political parties for five keys asks which would improve disabled people’s inclusion and representation in politics.
Dr Sally Witcher OBE, Chief Executive Officer at Inclusion Scotland said “Disabled people are significantly under-represented in elected office, where their life experience and knowledge of access barriers could inform public policy and promote greater inclusion. Like the rest of the population some will also have the interests and skills needed to represent a constituency and to become adept politicians. It is unacceptable that they should be disadvantaged in accessing opportunities to develop that potential, and Scottish democracy is the weaker for it. Disabled people have much to offer society, and we see improving access to politics as key to progress in unlocking that potential.”
Recently Inclusion Scotland received confirmation of funding from the Scottish Government to carry out a one year project investigating the potential for improving access to elected office in the future. Building on our recent parliamentary internship pilot, the project will involve recruiting five disabled interns, who will be placed with each of the parties represented in the Scottish Parliament to investigate barriers to participation in party politics. The project will also investigate the case for a Scottish version of the Access to Elected Office Fund which would cover the elections held within Scotland.
For more information on the One in Five campaign: http://www.oneinfive.scot/