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Our Patrons

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We are generously supported by fantastic people who publicly support our mission

Patrons of the Disability Law Service have been chosen by the charity because they are prominent, experienced and respected champions of disabled people, highlighting disabled rights and access to justice for disabled people. We are proud to have patrons and ambassadors to support us because they:

  • believe in the Disability Law Services’s aims and objectives
  • raise awareness of our campaigns and policy work
  • help us raise money for our work and keep our services running
  • encouraging and motivating other people to get involved

With your help, you can join our Patrons in keeping the Disability Law Service available to those in need.

Our Patrons

Professor Luke Clements

Luke Clements is the Cerebra Professor of Law and Social Justice at the School of Law, Leeds University. As a practising lawyer, he has brought many cases before the European Commission and Court of Human Rights.

Luke’s academic research and litigation experience is primarily concerned with the rights of people who experience social exclusion, including disabled people and their carers. He is accepted as the country’s leading expert in Community Care Law.

Luke has helped draft and promote a number of Parliamentary Bills aimed at improving the rights of people experiencing social exclusion.  In 2013, he was the Special Adviser to the Parliamentary Committee that scrutinised the draft Bill that resulted in the Care Act 2014.

As a distinguished academic, Luke will bring his insights to inform our policy advocacy work and campaigns.  He is currently supporting our campaigns for reasonable adjustments in the workplace and our campaign to ensure that all local authorities provide appropriate assessments for autistic children.

Commenting on his position, Professor Clements said:

I am delighted to be a patron of Disability Law Service, a charity that provides a vital service to a section of our community so often denied access to justice.  In addition to the excellent work they do for their clients, I am also impressed by their policy initiatives and look forward to continuing to contribute to their efforts to amend the law in order to deliver fairness and equality of opportunity to disabled people and their carers.

Rt. Hon. Sir Ed Davey MP

Sir Ed, whose distinguished parliamentary career began in 1997 and who has served on the cabinet as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, is a keen champion of the rights of disabled people. He was elected leader of the Liberal Democrats in August 2020.

Sir Ed was a young carer for his mum, and now, with his wife Emily, raises his daughter Ellie and disabled son, John. It is his experience of caring that motivates his tireless campaigning for more NHS investment and a better deal for carers.

Commenting on his new position, Sir Ed said: “Given that half of the people living in poverty in the UK are disabled or living with someone who is disabled, a service that provides free legal advice to disabled people and their carers is of huge importance.  For this reason, I am proud to support Disability Law Service and delighted to be one of their patrons.”

Sir Ed, who is very much involved with our policy campaigns, added:

I know that Disability Law Service focus their campaigns on areas that require a deep understanding of the law and in this sense they are able to work on issues that other charities do not cover.  I will be endeavouring to work with them on their campaigns, to help secure support both inside and outside of parliament.

Paralympian Andrew Small

Paralympian 100 metre medallist, Andrew Small, is a proud patron of Disability Law Service. Inspired by the 2012 London Paralympics, Andrew has found success after an incredibly short period of time and we are convinced that his support of our charity will be equally successful.

We are particularly excited by Andrew’s commitment to support and encourage parathletes who wish to compete in events to raise money for us.

When asked about his decision to become a patron, Andrew said:

It is a sad fact that many disabled people experience financial hardship, which makes it difficult to afford legal fees.  However, good legal advice can be so helpful to those facing discrimination at work, or with problems obtaining proper care, or difficulty in receiving all benefits to which they are entitled. This is what attracted me to support a charity that provides free legal advice to disabled people. It really is an exceptionally worthwhile cause and I look forward to working as a patron of Disability Law Service.