Regional Stakeholder Network to give disabled people a stronger voice

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The Disability Unit has set up 9 Regional Stakeholder Networks to help it reach out to disabled people across England.

The Networks are tasked with:

  • amplifying the voices of disabled people and disability organisations in their regions
  • reporting back to the government on a range of issues including transport, housing and employment
  • helping to develop the new National Strategy for Disabled People

Each Network is led by a chair who is independent of government and was selected based on their understanding of disability issues specific to their regions, their expertise in disability policy and its effects at grassroots level.

Many of the chairs are disabled people, while others work in disabled people’s organisations or organisations that support disabled people. Several hold voluntary roles which will help them tap into the issues and concerns of their local networks and reach more disabled people.

The chairs work with the Disability Unit to provide engagement opportunities for Network members to share their views and experiences to help inform and drive future policy.

The Network chairs are:

  • East of England: Naomi Tomkys OBE, CEO, Sky Badger
  • Greater London: Ruth Owen OBE, CEO, Whizz-Kidz
  • North East: Michael Potts, Board Member, Veterans Advisory and Pension Committee
  • North West: Lynne Turnbull, CEO, Cheshire Centre for Independent Living
  • South East: Barry Ginley, Director, Tamstone Consulting Ltd
  • South West: Samantha Everard, CEO, Support and Mentoring Enabling Entrepreneurship (SAMEE)
  • West and East Midlands: Louise Mckiernan, CEO, Birmingham Disability Resource Centre
  • Yorkshire and the Humber: Liz Leach Murphy, Founder/Managing Director, Imagineer CIC

If you would like to know more about the Regional Stakeholder Network, follow the Disability Unit on Twitter.

You can apply to join the network by emailing

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