Working Party bids to widen disabled access to veterinary careers

Working Party bids to widen disabled access to veterinary careers

The RCVS has set up a new ‘task and finish’ Working Party to increase access to the veterinary professions for disabled people.

The Working Party, which will report to the RCVS Advancement of the Professions Committee, was formed following RCVS Council’s decision to adopt the recommendations of the RCVS Legislative Reform report.

One of the recommendations was to “introduce provisions to allow limited licensure for veterinary surgeons in principle, including for those with a disability”, with the aim being to widen access to  veterinary professions and encourage an inclusive approach to training and hiring.

Dr Niall Connell, Chair of the RCVS Diversity and Inclusion Group said: “The formation of this Working Party is an important step for not only the legislation reform work being carried out by the RCVS, but also for the future of the veterinary professions and the future of those hoping to undertake a veterinary degree or veterinary nursing qualification, but who are at present unable to because of a disability.

“I hope the recommendations of the group will ensure that the professions can foster a supportive and inclusive culture using the best route possible.”

The aim of this Working Party is to compare options for increasing inclusion, source evidence both from the UK and other countries, and to identify any potential unintended consequences of change and as such membership will include those with lived experience and those involved in education.

Olivia Anderson-Nathan, Vice-Chair of British Veterinary Chronic Illness Support (BVCIS) said, “We are delighted that RCVS has committed to a fuller review on plans for any ‘limited’ licensure of disabled graduates.

“As representatives of the affected community, we have long campaigned to improve disabled access to the professions and we are excited to explore other approaches alongside key stakeholders and look forward to working with RCVS to make the veterinary profession genuinely accessible.”

Those who are interested in finding out more about this Working Party can contact Rosie Greaves, Policy and Public Affairs Officer, who will act as secretary on