Disability Equality Duty

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2005 National Disabled Members' Conference
24 June 2005
Carried as Amended

Conference warmly welcomes the new disability equality duty that is due to come into force in December 2006, we believe this will provide UNISON with a great new organising tool as well as the opportunity to challenge disability discrimination at work and within public services. It is a strengthened version of the race duty – which for all its flaws, has put race higher up the public sector agenda. We need to see the disability duty not only getting disability equality onto the agenda but making a real difference to disabled members of UNISON’s lives. UNISON has a particularly important role to play in making a success of the new duty. As well as the role of equality officers in delivering training on the duty there needs to be a recognition that the duty and equality schemes must be to a standard devised by disabled people.

There also needs to be a recognition that the duty does not just cover public sector organisations but any organisation that delivers a service to the public, for example private sector organisations delivering contracted services will also be covered.

Conference is concerned that there seems to be very little additional funding or resources to be made available to implement this duty and calls for the National Disabled Members’ Committee to:

1) lobby through the relevant structures within UNISON to ensure that disabled members of UNISON and organisations of disabled people are fully involved in the development of the models for disability equality schemes:

2) produce a briefing guide on the impact of the disability equality duty to disabled members within UNISON.