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Civil Service (People With Disabilities)

Volume 405: debated on Monday 12 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what progress has been made in meeting targets for the proportion of people with disabilities in senior posts in the Department. [110528]

At 1 April, 1.7 per cent. of staff in the FCO senior management structure identified themselves as having a disability.We have a target of 3 per cent. of senior staff for 2005 and are taking measures to achieve this. We have recently formed a Disability Advisory Group. The group is actively looking at ways to encourage the progression of disabled staff through our career structure, including supporting them on overseas postings. Disability is one of the areas covered by our Ministerial Steering Group on Diversity, which is driving forward the FCOs diversity agenda. We also regularly fund a bursary under the Cabinet Offices Leadership Development programme for Disabled Civil Servants, which is worth £10,000, and supports a disabled member of staff with the potential to progress to senior levels.