The WA Government is calling on local government councillors living with a disability to take part in a roundtable to increase participation on the State’s councils.
Local Government Minister, John Carey says elected members will have an opportunity to share their experiences and ideas on how to support, attract and retain people with disability to stand for and participate on council.
The roundtable, which takes place on 2 November, will focus on the following topics:
- attracting people with disability to run for council;
- barriers that may be experienced by council members with disability;
- how any barriers might be addressed to support greater diversity on WA’s councils.
“Councils in Western Australia do a fantastic job at providing services to our communities, so it is vital that they represent the people we serve,” said Minister Carey.
“We know that people with disability are not represented enough on our councils.
“With just over 4.6% of the population living with a disability in our State, increasing participation on our councils is fundamental to building a more inclusive Western Australia.”
Disability Services Minister, Don Punch said that under WA’s State Disability Strategy the Government was aiming to increase the number of people with disability employed by local government by up to 5% in the next three years.
“The strategy also aims to develop the leadership skills of people with disability, so they can become influential ambassadors for their communities,” he said.
“This initiative is a great step towards these goals.
“People with disability have a lot to offer in leadership roles and I look forward to seeing more people with disability on local councils in the future, where their valuable knowledge and lived experience will help to shape their communities.”
Minister Carey said the roundtable will commence discussion on how to increase participation and representation on WA’s councils.
“I encourage all eligible councillors to consider expressing an interest,” he said.
“I have met with a number of sector representatives and there is recognition that there are barriers for councillors who may be living with a disability or those living with a disability who may wish to run for council.
“I’m on the public record that we’d like to see our councillors represent the diversity across our community,” the Minister said.