NHS seeks Chair for Workforce Disability Equality Standard group

The Workforce Disability Equality Standard (WDES) was introduced in 2019 and through a collection of ten metrics, aims to improve the workplace and career experiences of Disabled staff working in clinical and non-clinical roles in the NHS. Since its inception, the WDES has been supported by advisory groups (technical and strategic), bringing together stakeholders with a range of expertise and views that have supported the development and implementation of the WDES and its metrics. Membership of the previous advisory groups was brought together in 2017 to form the WDES Steering Group (WSG). The WSG continues to meet on a quarterly basis to monitor progress, advise and receive updates.

The Steering Group are looking to recruit a WSG Independent Chair. They are seeking a high profile, dedicated and committed individual with a demonstrable track record in promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion. An individual with lived experience of disability would be particularly welcomed. The Chair would be expected to lead the group effectively, seek assurance on the work of the WDES Implementation Team, provide strategic direction, and help promote the WDES across the health sector.

The successful person will need to be able to give time and commitment to the role, which is estimated at approximately 1-2 days per quarter. The role is unremunerated but travel and subsistence expenses will be paid. The role will be for an initial period of 1 year before review.


  • The ability to enable and empower the group
  • The ability to command respect from senior leaders in the sector
  • The ability to be sensitive and compassionate
  • The ability to be impartial and objective


  • Demonstrable experience of working with the disability agenda
  • Experience of working within, or knowledge of, the health care sector
  • Experience at board or senior level
  • Experience of chairing meetings

If you wish to submit an expression of interest please note the following:

  • Use the form template to submit your expression of interest.
  • Alternatively, you may choose an alternative format to express your interest, for example, by submitting a video recording.

Your expression of interest must be submitted by close on Friday 4 September to england.wdes@nhs.net
Expressions of interest will be forwarded to the WSG, who will hold a secret ballot. To ensure impartiality, the WDES Implementation Team will not have a vote. The nominee with the most votes will be appointed to the post.