One in five Scottish people live with a disability of some sort. Some are obvious and others are hidden but every person with a disabillity knows just how difficult it is to be heard in politics. That's why I co-hosted an event in the Scottish Parliament designed to make all of us more aware of the challenges one in five people are facing.

The One in Five campaign launch saw no political barriers with every party backing it. This is an issue for all of us, not one to play point-scoring with. We want our society to reflect our communities and that includes giving everyone an opportunity to have their voices heard.

I am delighted to be an ambassador for this campaign. I support all its ambitions and I will do everything I can to help make sure that everyone, no matter what disability they have, gets access to the democratic process.

The organisers are exemplars of the campaign itself with Jamie Szymkowiak, who's an SNP member, working alongside Labour member, Pam Duncan-Glancy.

With the campaign focussed on the mantra that politics should be representative of all the communities it serves, Jamie (with me at the launch above) says: "Scotland has witnessed a huge upsurge in political interest in recent years and I want to ensure disabled people are included in all areas of our democracy through a positive campaign, regardless of which political party you support. There are many organisations out there campaigning day in and day out for the rights of disabled people. We want to add our voice to that."

The SNP signed up to the One in Five Charter on 9 March and I'm hoping that every other political party will take our lead.

The Charter is made up of five pledges:

  • All members are asked about individual needs which are actioned to ensure inclusion.
  • Meetings are held in accessible venues.
  • Material is available in a variety of formats.
  • Organisational tasks and responsibilities are clearly defined yet remain flexible enough to empower individual member ability.
  • Your organisation aims to increase the awareness and understanding of issues affecting people with disabilities and strives to include and empower all members.

Find out more at or by following the group on Twitter @oneinfivescot Facebook oneinfivescot.