UK Government

News Distribution Service: Public Appointments Commissioner - Annual Report

Press Release   •   Oct 28, 2010 12:59 BST

Issued by the News Distribution Service on behalf of The Commissioner for Public Appointments

Dame Janet Gaymer, the independent Commissioner for Public Appointments today published her annual report for 2009-10.

The report contains a range of statistics on 2,239 appointments and reappointments made to the public bodies regulated by the Commissioner, the lowest number since 2001-2. The statistics show:

* an increase in female Chair appointees as a proportion of total appointments and reappointments of Chairs when compared to the previous year;

* fewer women appointed and reappointed to public
bodies when compared to the previous year;

* a slight decrease in the proportion of people from ethnic
minority backgrounds appointed and reappointed to
public bodies when compared to the previous year;

* the proportion of appointees and reappointees who declared a disability,
remaining the same as the previous year; and

* a continuing downward trend in the percentage of appointees and
reappointees declaring political activity on behalf of
the major parties.

Dame Janet said:

"The total number of appointments and reappointments this year is the lowest for many years. Although I was pleased to see that there is some progress in the proportion of female Chairs appointed and reappointed to public bodies, I am disappointed that yet again the figures for other under-represented groups have not made more significant progress.

"Efforts to increase the diversity of the talent pool for public appointments have continued for some time. They have had mixed results but some progress has been made. It is important that this work continues. Otherwise public life will continue to lose available talent, which is not in the public interest.

"Public bodies are responsible for billions of pounds of public money and affect the interests of large numbers of people across the country. To command public confidence appointments to these bodies must be made - and be seen to be made - on merit. There is a great deal of change taking place in public bodies across the UK. Despite these changes - indeed because of them - it is important that we do not lose sight of the principle of selection on merit after a fair, open and transparent appointments process."

The OCPA annual report is available at www.publicappointmentscommissioner.org

Notes to Editors

1. Interview requests and media enquiries about the work of OCPA should go to Maggie O'Boyle
2. Copies of the annual report are downloadable fromwww.publicappointmentscommissioner.org
3. The post of Commissioner for Public Appointments was created in 1995 following a report by the Committee on Standards in Public Life, chaired by Lord Nolan. 
4. Dame Janet Gaymer DBE QC was appointed Commissioner for Public Appointments for England and Wales in January 2006.
5. The Commissioner for Public Appointments regulates and reports on Ministerial appointments to those public bodies that fall within her remit. She also promotes equality of opportunity and diversity in the procedures for the public appointments processes which she regulates. The Commissioner is independent. She is neither part of Government, nor a civil servant and she is appointed by The Queen under an Order in Council. She does not make public appointments herself.

Contacts

NDS Enquiries 
Phone: For enquiries please contact the issuing dept 
ndsenquiries@coi.gsi.gov.uk