Members of the Tynwald Advisory Council on Disabilities have unanimously agreed that the current structure is outdated and a new way forward is needed.
The Council was established as a result of the introduction of the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act of 1981. Many of the functions and aims of that law will be met by the Equality Act and other more modern legislation.
The proposed repeal of the 1981 Act and the Council has been agreed by the Council Members in discussion with the Minister for Policy and Reform. The standing down of the Council would follow on from that.
As part of work connected with the Equality Act a wide-ranging review will be set up. This will explore the most effective way of engaging with all interested individuals and groups, and ensure that meaningful dialogue with charities and other bodies is strengthened and maintained.
Member of the Council David Gawne said:
‘The Council has played an effective role over the years in addressing and driving forward many issues around disability, but the time is now right to adopt a different approach which will better serve the needs of the disabled community. The new equality legislation gives the opportunity for carrying out such a review and the third sector looks forward to working with Government in developing that new approach.’
Policy and Reform Minister Chris Thomas MHK, said:
‘So many Tynwald Advisory Council members have contributed so much over many years, but the Council has now done the job it was set up to do.’
‘I look forward to working with our Equality Champion, Jane Poole-Wilson MLC, and the recently appointed Equality Advisor, Dawn Kinnish, to make sure that those who need their voice heard about Equality Act implementation and connected issues can get their voice heard.’