According to General Comment No. 7, a Disabled Persons’ Organisation (DPO) is a civil society organisation of persons with disabilities that is led, directed and governed by persons with disabilities. A clear majority of its membership should be persons with disabilities. The organisation should be rooted in, committed to and fully respect the principles and rights recognised in the UNCRPD. DPOs should be distinguished from organisations “for” persons with disabilities, which provide services and/or advocate on behalf of persons with disabilities. The Committee has also said that while DPOs are a specific type of civil society organisation, there is also a distinction, as the term “civil society organisation” comprises different kinds of organisations, including research institutes, organisations of service providers and other private stakeholders. State-funded disability service providers do not therefore generally meet the criteria of being a DPO.
In relation to the number of staff with disabilities and those without disabilities employed by State-funded disability service providers I have asked the HSE to collate this information and reply directly to you.