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Departmental Disabled Staff

Volume 485: debated on Monday 15 December 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what conclusions his Department has reached in fulfilment of its duty under section 3.111 of the statutory code of practice of the disability equality duty. (240981)

The Department for International Development (DFID) published its Disability Equality Scheme on 4 December 2006. The scheme includes an action plan to turn commitments into practice. The scheme and action plan is helping DFID promote equality for disabled people as an employer, a service provider and an organisation that can use its influence within the wider field of international development.

DFID holds the Jobcentre Plus ‘Two Ticks’ disability symbol which promotes the recruitment and retention of people with disabilities. We also have in place a Disability Champion and a strengthened Disability Forum Network. Priority has been given to delivering consistent messages across DFID to raise greater awareness among managers and staff of disability issues. As a result staff are beginning to feel comfortable about declaring their disability, with a 10 per cent. rise in self-declaration over the last 18 months.

Overall DFID has made significant progress in promoting disability equality in the past year. DFID recognises a need to do more. A central diversity team will continue to monitor progress against the action plan and report on progress in DFID’s 2008-09 Annual Diversity Report, to be published in March 2009. DFID will review its Disability Equality Scheme once the Single Equality Bill becomes an Act.

DFID’s Disability Equality Scheme can be found at

www.dfid.gov.uk.