Parliamentary Reception to Bring Together Farmers, Stakeholders and Politicians to Focus on Dyslexia

NFU Scotland will be hosting a parliamentary reception next month to bring together farmers, stakeholders and politicians to discuss dyslexia in the farming community.
Facilitated by Claudia Beamish MSP and sponsored by NFU Mutual, the evening is an opportunity to promote the abilities of those with dyslexia working within rural industries.

The event will take place on Tuesday 10 March from 6pm to 8pm within the Scottish Parliament and is open to all NFU Scotland members who have an interest in this topic – whether being affected by dyslexia themselves, or through supporting a family member, friend or colleague with dyslexia.

NFU Scotland’s Farming With Dyslexia (FWD) campaign, launched in August last year, is seeking better awareness and practical solutions to make life easier for dyslexic members of the farming community.

Steered by NFU Scotland, the FWD Working Group was borne from the recognition that dyslexia is a real, but often hidden, issue among the farming community. Whilst one in 10 of the general population are dyslexic and some 25 per cent of agriculture students at SRUC receiving support for dyslexia, it is believed this heritable condition is more prevalent within the farming sector than previously thought. However, due to stigma and poor understanding, it can remain undiagnosed and can be problematic for those dealing with communications, regulation and form-filling within the agriculture industry.

The Group brings together organisations working within the rural sector, including the Scottish Government, Scottish Association of Young Farmers Clubs, RSABI, Scotland’s Rural College, Forestry Commission Scotland, Dyslexia Scotland and the Crofting Commission.

Since its launch, the campaign has received cross party support and encouraged dyslexic farmers and crofters to speak out and get support and advice to help in the running of their day-to-day business. There has been vast media coverage of the campaign and the issues that can arise from being dyslexic.

This event will bring together all those who have been involved in the campaign so far, as well as MSPs who have voiced their support. NFU Scotland continues to work with Dyslexia Scotland to further its understanding, and provide support to our members.

Rob Livesey, NFU Scotland Vice President, and chairman of the FWD Working Group commented: “This event will highlight the fantastic work of NFU Scotland’s Farming With Dyslexia campaign, which is working to make life easier for dyslexic farmers and land managers across Scotland.

“NFUS is extremely grateful to our facilitator Claudia Beamish MSP whose support for the campaign has been instrumental from the outset, and to our partners NFU Mutual for providing sponsorship for this event.

“We are also hugely grateful for Dyslexia Scotland’s ongoing support in furthering our own knowledge and understanding of dyslexia and the multifaceted opportunities and challenges it can present by those living with dyslexia in the farming community.

“By bringing together key stakeholders from across Scotland – whether they be farmers, rural businesses, educational institutes, or learning support organisations – this reception will encourage discussion on this important issue and help to achieve the campaign’s primary objectives of tackling stigma and promoting the abilities of dyslexic individuals working in land-based industries.

“We would encourage all members who have an interest in this subject to register their interest in attending. This event will be a relaxed and open forum where dyslexic individuals, and their family, friends and colleagues can share their experiences and hear more about the positive work of the Farming With Dyslexia campaign to date.”

Martin Malone, Regional Manager for Northern Ireland and Scotland at NFU Mutual Insurance commented:

“As Scotland’s leading rural insurer we work hard to support initiatives which benefit farming. This is a fantastic scheme which is attracting attention from a wide range of organisations and can benefit many people so we are delighted to be backing it.”

Note to Editors

  • The Farming With Dyslexia Parliamentary Reception will take place on Tuesday 10 March from 6pm to 8pm in the Burns Room, Scottish Parliament. Refreshments will be served on arrival.
  • For press who would like to attend, please contact or call 0131 472 4108. Places are limited.
  • NFU Scotland members who have an interest in dyslexia, should register their interest with Parliamentary Officer Clare Slipper by March 2 by emailing or calling 0131 472 4182.


Contact Ruth McClean on 0131 472 4108

Date Published:

News Article No.: 33/12

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