Scottish Disability Equality Forum along with thistle logo in purple and green

Personnel

SDEF PATRON, The Right Honourable George Reid George Reid MSP

  • Born Tullibody, Scotland 1939. Married with two daughters.
  • Educated Dollar Academy and University of St Andrews.
  • Producer and Correspondent with ITV and BBC in UK, Europe and Africa.
  • MP (SNP) and Member of the Parliamentary Assemblies of the Council of Europe and Western European Union 1974-79.
  • Director of Public Affairs of the International Red Cross, Adviser to Javier Perez 
    de Cuellar 1984-96. Served in wars and disasters world-wide.
  • Member of the Steering Group for the Scottish Parliament 1998-9.
  • Elected Member of the Scottish Parliament and Deputy Presiding Officer.
  • Elected Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament.
  • Appointed a Privy Councillor.

Management Board

  Peter Ingram-Monk

 

 

Convenor I have been a member of the SDEF Committee and Board for nearly three years, in which time our Forum has made substantial advances to which I have been very pleased to contribute.

In past years I have concentrated my time and effort on organisations involved in Open Space Access, on a number of which I represent SDEF. I serve on the committees of nine bodies which are connected to countryside access matters.

I have, on behalf of SDEF, designed a student graduate course for both the Built Environment and Open Space, in conjunction with Heriot-Watt University. The course, to include people with disability who wish to have a recognised qualification in Access, is of 13 weeks duration, comprising four weeks on campus and nine weeks of distance learning in the home.

A successful application was made to the Scottish Executive for funding towards a bursary to provide assistance with the cost of the course and travel for students with a disability. The first course is  commenced in January 2005.
 
 Jim Bryan

 Vice Convenor

I was diagnosed with MS twenty years ago. Voluntary work, since becoming disabled, consists of Kilmarnock Forum on Disability, where I served as Chairman for three years. I served as a Director of the Personal Assistance Support Scheme and as a Director of SDEF for three years.

In the early days I worked with the late Convenor in negotiating our first core grant. Later I was on the Steering Group for Access Panels, convened at SCVO, which made recommendations and led to the establishment of the Umbrella Body.

I have been a member of the East Ayrshire Access Panel (North District) for four years and am currently Chairman.

 

  Agnes Stewart

Company Secretary My involvement with SDEF preceded the inaugural meeting at Victoria Quay in 1997 when I was a member of the Steering Group.

I was duly elected to the Management Committee where I was appointed Secretary.

My past work experience was in nursing and I served long terms on several committees in Scouting (which continued long after my three sons were no longer Scouts), on Church women’s activities as Secretary and President and since retiring, on several disability organisations.

I have been involved in Close Proximity Parking, Access Group and in the NHS Disability Working Group.

In 1998 I was awarded Aberdeen City Council’s first “Equal Opportunities Award” an honour I shared with Grampian Racial Equality Council.

In SDEF, in addition to being Company Secretary, I am the representative to the Built Environment Reference Group of the Disability Rights Commission and, when it functions, the Parliamentary Cross-Party Group on Disability.
 
  Alan Harley

I am a member of East Ayrshire Access Panel (North District), commonly known as Kilmarnock Access Panel. I was the Chairperson at the inception of this Panel and consequently had a major influence on its development. My legacy as Chairman was to organise a conference where all interested persons in the local area were given the opportunity to express their views on what they considered to be the important aims of the Access Panel.

I have a mobility problem due to having multiple sclerosis.

My previous association with SDEF included: the above conference; the SDEF Annual Conference and; the CIVICUS Conference. At these events the Kilmarnock Access Panel gave a presentation.

 

  Tony Miller

 

I am a person with a disability and a carer for my wife, and therefore I am aware of both sides of many disability issues. I also have a degree in Sociology, and I am participating in the Inclusive Environmental Access and Design course, because I am determined to use my accumulated knowledge for the benefit of the Disabled Community. As Convenor of our local Disabled Persons Housing Service and a member of other local and national disability organisations, I often find that I am helping people with issues beyond housing, frequently at a strategic level. I would like to try to influence decisions and policy making, and to work with the other Directors to advance many of the causes being championed by SDEF. I believe in working from the bottom up so we can work together for the benefit of us all.

 
  Linda Miller

  I am a trained paralegal and have used my skills to look at access issues for approximately seven years, first as an Advocate for the Peterhead and District Disability Forum and now with the Aberdeenshire North Access Panel (which I was instrumental in forming). My interest in access is wide reaching and, to ensure that I was providing accurate information, I became involved with the Disability Rights Commission. I have also attended a three day training course in Edinburgh through SCVO run by JMU.

Other training has included Disability Awareness and Information Provision and Standards.

I  have a physical disability and my husband has a sensory impairment. As a result of these disabilities I use my personal experiences to give a holistic approach to disability issues and to argue for access for all.
 

  Gordon Mungall  

As a person with a disability, I have been a volunteer and Board Member of Disability West Lothian for over ten years and the Chairperson for the past five years. Being the Chair I help to bring together individuals and representatives of organisations who are committed to improving the quality of life of disabled people in West Lothian. 

As the Chairperson of the West Lothian Access Committee I work closely with other disabled members, West Lothian Council and other groups, to improve access for all. 

As a member of both Disability West Lothian and the Access Committee, I have been able to assist, via disability awareness raising, to lower the physical and attitudinal barriers disabled people meet in society today. 

I am also a youth worker, running the Bathgate Phab Club for young people, with or without disabilities, aged fourteen to twenty five. For the past four years I have jointly co-ordinated the club’s Youth Exchanges in Scotland and Germany

 

 

Staff

  Wyn Merrells Manager Before joining SDEF, Wyn was Manager of the Stirling Council on Disability, having previously been with Disability Scotland as Development Manager (Community Care). For part of his career, Wyn worked in the field of mental health, spending over four years with the Scottish Association for Mental Health, latterly as Operations Officer. He was also the National Groups Co-ordinator of Depression Alliance Scotland. Wyn comes from Aberdeen and worked for over six years as a Training Officer with Grampian Region, helping young people from Banff & Buchan enter the care field.
 
Liz Rowlett  Policy, Information and Parliamentary Officer Liz joined SDEF from the Stirling Health and Well-being Alliance, where she was Information Resources Worker. Previous experience includes a stint in the Scottish Parliament Information Centre,  Sessional Internet Tutor for VOCAL, Assistant Editor at Reuters and various positions in a number of small business consultancies.  She has also been involved in voluntary work for the Princess Royal Trust for Carers, PDSA, Shelter, MS Society and in a holiday home for children with special needs.
  Keith Robertson Access Development Officer  
  Elaine Wilson Access Development Administrator For ten years prior to joining SDEF in August 2004, Elaine was employed as an administrator for The ADAPT Trust, a charity which assists organisations associated with arts and heritage to make their buildings accessible for people with disabilities.
 
Maeve Bain Office Administrator Maeve is from Armagh in Northern Ireland and moved to Stirling in June 2004. She spent nineteen years working in administration with the Southern Education and Library Board in Armagh.

 

Copyright Scottish Disability Equality Forum 2003-2006

SDEF address, 12 Enterprise House, Springkerse Business Park, Stirling, FK7 7UF.  Scottish Charity Number SCO31893.  Company Number SC 243392.   Scottish Executive Logo and SDEF gratefully acknowledges the support of the Scottish Executive