The National Disability Authority (NDA) has published the 2011 Report on Compliance with Part 5 of the Disability Act 2005 on Employment of People with disabilities across the public service which shows that the Government has achieved a three percent target of employment of persons with disabilities in the public service as a whole, for the first year since the monitoring of employment targets began.
While there has been a reduction of more than 33,000 public sectors workers since 2007, there has been an increase in the number of people with disabilities working in the public service from 5,879 in 2007 to 6,171 in 2011, up 423 employees on 2010 figures.
Government departments continue to exceed the 3 percent target and 88 percent of local government organisations have reported that they had achieved or exceeded the 3 percent target.
The NDA report also outlines key goals to be pursued in the next year of the monitoring process, including a maintenance of the three percent target and if possible exceed this. The organisation also suggest an intensification of efforts to improve the performance of individual public bodies, with a specific focus on larger bodies and those which are recruiting; communication of specific guidance to public bodies on leadership, effective recruitment, retention, and workforce planning; and a strengthening of the monitoring process through better data collection.
The National Disability Authority will continue to work closely with all public bodies to build on the improvements made and to offer support and advice on how to achieve compliance during 2013.
Minister for Justice and Equality, Alan Shatter TD welcomed the fact that the three percent target was reached. “Ensuring that persons with disabilities have access to public sector employment is important so that the range of skills, educational qualifications and abilities which they possess are more fully utilised for the benefit of the wider community and for their own benefit. It is right that we have a more inclusive working environment which harnesses the potential of all” he added. The Minister also thanked the NDA their extensive work producing the report.