Lay Observers at MoJ Public Appointments event, encouraging diversity

The Public Appointment’s team’s ‘Engage, Encourage and Excite’ event took place this week in London, forming part of a wider strategy to increase the diversity of candidates to MoJ public appointee roles.

Representing Lay Observers at this event were Moawia Bin-Sufyan (Lay Observer and also member at IMB Parc) and Rachel Stuart, Head of the Secretariat. Both spoke of the value that a diverse membership brings and also of the many opportunities available to Lay Observers.


Moawia surmised his involvement at the event as follows:

“I was invited to speak at the event about my experience holding public appointments with the IMB Independent Monitoring Board and Lay Observers for Prison Escort Custody Services. Other speakers ranged from the Criminal Cases Review, Youth Justice Board, MAPPA and the Parole Board. The Commissioner for Public Appointments Peter Riddell and the Permanent Secretary Richard Heaton also spoke at the event. I took part in a panel discussion in which I explained a little about my roles with the IMB and Lay Observers and why I chose to become a public appointee. I explained the benefits of both roles and why I felt privileged to be in these roles, why I wanted to use my experience, knowledge, age, language, and cultural skills to make a difference. And why it was important for the public bodies to be representative of the communities they serve.  We had a Q&A after the panel discussion from the 40+ in attendance. After the event, I was approached by many people who heard me speak and wanted further information about the roles. I have now also been invited to speak to a number of organisations about my experience and will be looking forward to coordinating this with the Secretariat.”

Moawia Bin-Sufyan, Lay Observer &  member at IMB Parc