Councillors play a vital role in shaping the future of their communities and improving the quality of life of local people. We need people from all backgrounds and experiences who reflect the communities that they serve. The LGA is delivering a package of support for currently elected disabled councillors, and disabled people who are considering becoming a councillor.
Our support offer for disabled councillors and candidates, which is funded by the UK Government, is designed to increase the representation of disabled people in local politics and accelerate their development to become leaders in local government. It covers the whole life cycle of a councillor: from taking that first step to stand for election, to developing your leadership skills as an experienced councillor.
A campaign to attract more disabled candidates
Our Be a Councillor campaign inspires people who are passionate about their communities to stand for election and become local leaders. As part of this, we have developed a bespoke national campaign to encourage disabled people to find out more about becoming a councillor.
We are taking a holistic approach to inspire a new generation of disabled councillors, but also recognise that there are practical considerations. That is why we have developed a guide for disabled councillors - Improving access to local government elected office for disabled people - and a practical checklist for councils and political groups. These resources aim to increase awareness, accessibility and inclusion at every stage of becoming a councillor.
Disabled Councillors Leadership Programme
We are launching the first leadership programme for disabled councillors, shaped in partnership with the leading charity Disability Rights UK. It has been co-produced with disabled people and councillors, ensuring it responds to the specific needs of disabled leaders. The carefully chosen topics and activities will take disabled councillors through a six-month journey of personal development and will accelerate and develop their leadership skills so they can become resilient and confident local leaders.
The programme is cross-party, free to attend, and will begin at a two-day residential event on Wednesday 19 and Thursday 20 October in Manchester. This will be followed by monthly virtual workshops between November and March. Places are limited, so please express your interest early by emailing email@example.com
One-to-one coaching for disabled councillors
Coaching provides a powerful reflective space to grow and develop as leaders. Our highly effective coaching programme offers a cohort of 20 disabled councillors structured one-to-one conversations to support them to be brilliant leaders of their communities. Each councillor will have an initial ‘chemistry meeting’, where they will get to know their coach and set their personal leadership goals. This is then followed by 3 x 1-hour coaching sessions via Microsoft Teams or Zoom, where a professional coach will support them in achieving these goals. To find out more or book your place, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
July is Disability Pride Month, and you can find out more about the LGA’s work on improving representation for disabled people in local government in this month’s First magazine online.