Press release: Foreign and Commonwealth Office a leading employer of disabled people, says BDF

20 February 2017

London, UK: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) have been confirmed as a leading organisation for accessibility and inclusion by Business Disability Forum (BDF). 

BDF awarded the FCO a Silver status in their world-renowned Disability Standard, a tool for measuring how well an organisation approaches disability, accessibility, and inclusion.

The organisation scored 83% in the Disability Standard with perfect scores in three of its assessed criteria: Commitment, Adjustments and Retention.

The FCO garnered special praise for the way senior staff took an enthusiastic lead in workplace wellbeing activities and influenced the rest of the organisation.

Management of office-space, meanwhile, was described as “exemplary” by assessors, who also singled out the organisation’s efforts to ensure that moves always considered the requirements of employees.

Jill Gallard, Director of Human Resources, FCO, said: 

“The FCO is fully committed to being a disability confident employer, recognising and utilising the talents of all our staff. I welcome our Silver status – it’s good to see this acknowledgement of the work that we have all put in. Inclusion in the workplace is important and I am personally committed to this agenda. I look forward to the FCO achieving further progress in the future.”

Alex Freegard, Chair of Enable, FCO Staff Disability Network, said:

“I am delighted that the FCO has been recognised as Silver as part of the Disability Standard. The collective approach in the organisation has created a cultural change from inside out. I look forward to continued engagement with the BDF and our other external partners who support us in becoming unconsciously inclusive.”

Angela Matthews, Senior Disability Consultant at BDF, said:

“It is a joy to work with the FCO who have always been strong collaborators with us here at the Forum, within the Civil Service, and the business community more widely.

“Their hard work in the areas of disability and accessibility this year is well represented by impressive scores across the Disability Standard.”




1. Business Disability Forum (BDF) is a world-leading membership body bringing together business and the public sector to build disability-smart organisations. BDF has more than 25 years’ experience of working with public and private sector employers and service providers. For more information about the Forum please visit:  

2. For more information about the Disability Standard and to view the Roll of Honour, please visit  

3. For further information on BDF please contact Samuel Buckley on