Chartered Institute of Building disappointed over lack of representation of access panel

The Chartered Institute of Building has expressed disappointment over the lack of construction industry representation on a new panel covering fair access to professions.

Cabinet office minister Liam Byrne, announced the panel as part of the government's New Opportunities white paper. It aims to allow everyone access to a career within the main professions, regardless of background.

The panel comprises 18 members from which it considers to be the “main professions”, but the CIOB said there was no mention of any construction or engineering disciplines, despite the industry accounting for around 9% of GDP. Architecture, represented by RIBA, is the panel's only link to the industry.

CIOB chief executive Chris Blythe expressed his disappointment that construction industry professionals have not been invited to participate, in a letter to David Knott, head of secretariat to the panel.

“We have worked for many years to provide access to professional (chartered) status through an exciting ladder of opportunity, whether it be through degree, NVQ or work experience,” he said. “In particular, we have a significant number of chartered members who came through the trades route.”

The CIOB is now awaiting a response from Knott on the development of the panel.