Posts Tagged ‘social care’

URGENT CALL TO ACTION FOR DISABILITY CAMPAIGNERS

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

 

What a weekend! We have done an amazing amount of work over these last few days, and amazing to see all our supporters rally round.
At the beginning of last week, no way could we envisage the events of this weekend just gone.
 
Call for action
 
On the sunniest weekend of the year, we have been sweltering inside, organising blog posts, booking train tickets, desperately trying to arrange seats to watch the debate inside the House, contacting the many MPs who have been sympathetic to us, finding out about pauper’s picnics and now asking every one of you to make one final push for Pat’s Petition.
 
You have rallied around. Supportive MPs have now found seats for Pat and Rosemary so that they can be there on this important day.
 
The debate on Wednesday will be the last chance to get our voices heard in Parliament for some time. MPs will break up for the summer recess and then return, after their Party Conference, in October.
 
We need to make sure they are all briefed to understand the impact of Government Policies on disabled people and carers.
 
They need to know we are watching this debate. They have to be aware that they are under scrutiny on this issue.
 
We need them to vote for a Cumulative Impact Assessment. They have continually said this is impossible and too complicated, and we have answered that they wouldn’t conduct huge experiments with anything else, so why do it on disabled people? We have now heard that “the publication of cumulative impacts is a Coalition initiative” so our hopes are raised that they will now agree that this needs doing for disabled people and carers.
 
take action
ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE
 
 
1. Write to your MPs asking for their attendance and that they back this motion. You can find their details here
 
 
 
That this House believes that the Government should publish a cumulative impact assessment of the changes made by this Government that affect disabled people (to be published by October 2013).
 
2. Use social media to broadcast all messages with the hashtag  #CIADisability
 
 
3. Sign and share the link to WOW Petition  
 
And it is vital that you watch the debate live on the day here
 
We have learnt an incredible amount by watching debates.
 
You can see how full or empty the room is!
 
See if your MP is interested in your issues.
 
Hear who really understands the challenges faced by disabled people and note who mentions the impact that falls on carers and families too.
 
And you can join in the twitter conversation at the same time as watching it all.
 
It will be a historic day for us – we hope you’ll be there too.
 
 
 
 

Letter from Samuel Miller to Liam Byrne

Sunday, July 7th, 2013

Permission has been granted to copy this letter here, that was originally posted on Twitter.

Subject:

July 10th Parliamentary debate: Cumulative Impact Assessment (‘The effect of Government Policies on Disabled People’)

3:36 PM (1 minute ago)

To:

Rt Hon Mr. Liam Byrne, MP
Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
House of Commons
London, England
SW1A 0AA

Dear Mr. Byrne,

I am a 56-year-old Disability Studies specialist from Montreal, Canada who has been reporting frequently and voluntarily, since January 2012, to senior United Nations officials (see attached) on the crisis for the United Kingdom’s sick and disabled. Austerity measures, consisting of draconian welfare reforms and “sham” means-testing (Atos Healthcare U.K. and the Department for Work and Pensions) are ostensibly to blame for their plight—with disability hate crime and inflammatory media attacks factored into this mix.

I am writing you regarding this Wednesday’s Parliamentary debate on the effect of government policies on disabled people (http://carerwatch.com/reform/?p=1697), and in your capacity as Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions.

It is vital that such a cumulative impact assessment include a (more…)

OPPOSITION DAY – EFFECT OF GOVERNMENT POLICY ON DISABLED PEOPLE – How to take action

Saturday, July 6th, 2013

Pat’s Petition welcome this debate on Wednesday 10th July 2013 regarding ‘The effect of Government Policies on Disabled People.’

Over 62,000 people signed Pat’s Petition calling for this debate.  And 48,905 people have now signed the WOW Petition . Please add your name if not already done so and then share asking as many others to do the same. ( 5 months remaining ).

We, along with many others, have continuously asked the government to conduct a Cumulative Impact Study to assess the cumulative effects of the myriad of changes in policy falling on disabled people and carers. The government refuses on the grounds that this is too difficult. It is totally irresponsible to conduct an enormous experiment like this on disabled people without attempting to predict or measure the effects on disabled people and carers. It wouldn’t be allowed in any kind of building project – so why is it possible to experiment on disabled people without checking that it is safe.

With recess 18th July – 2nd Sept,  followed by Party conferences 13th Sept to 8th October , this will be one of the last opportunities to get disabled peoples’ voices heard for some time.

Here at Pat’s Petition we will be sending briefing papers to MPs from all parties, but it is vital you contact them too.

It is personal stories about how these changes to benefits and services are affecting you and your families, that they need hear. This will help them understand why a Cumulative Impact Assessment is a necessity.

 

take action

 

 Actions you can take

 

1. Write to your MP and ask them to back the motion. Contact your MP   via this link

Here’s the motion in full:

 

That this House believes that the Government should publish a cumulative impact assessment of the changes made by this Government that affect disabled people (to be published by October 2013).

Ask them to attend and speak on your behalf

2. Watch the debate live on the day using this link

3. Share the information with all your friends, family, work colleagues, local media.

 

4. Don’t forget to use social media to raise awareness of this Disability debate.

Share the details on Facebook, and if you use Twitter we will be using the hashtag      #CiaDisability

 

Times are hard for everyone, employment, housing, cost of living – are problems for us all. We are all supposed to be in this together. But disabled people are not in this together because they often have far fewer options.

Support disabled people on Wednesday

 

 

OPPOSITION DAY – EFFECT OF GOVERNMENT POLICY ON DISABLED PEOPLE

Friday, July 5th, 2013

Opposition Day (5th allotted day, 1st Part)

WEDNESDAY 10 JULY

EFFECT OF GOVERNMENT POLICY ON DISABLED PEOPLE

Edward Miliband

Mr Liam Byrne

Hilary Benn

Andy Burnham

Mrs Anne McGuire

Ms Rosie Winterton

That this House believes that the Government should publish, by October 2013, a cumulative impact assessment of the changes made by the Government that affect disabled people.

You will be able to watch live on the day here

Pats Banner

Pat’s Petition

Team PP meeting

FURTHER INFORMATION ADDED SOON

 

 

 

Having a serious diagnosis doesn’t cut the mustard any more

Saturday, June 29th, 2013

Taken from the Guardian

“At almost any other moment in the past 60 years, announcements of spending cuts of this scale would have created a storm,” says Institute for Fiscal Studies director, Paul Johnson . “The scale of cuts would have caused social unrest in any other era.”

So why this eerie silence from the public?

But social unrest doesn’t just consist of demonstrations and days of action. The millions of people affected by austerity know what’s happening: they have television and the internet. They know that this country hasn’t got any money and they are each busy fighting for their own security.

Times are very, very hard as the Spending Review  made clear. Every one is struggling – whether it is housing costs or lack of jobs or the rising cost of living. And we are all in this together.

Or are we?

Somehow rich and wealthy people aren’t quite in this with every one else.

And there is another group of people who are not in this together. People who are ill and disabled live in the community and are facing exactly the same difficulties as every one else. But when it comes to changing and adapting and fighting through these hard times disabled people are not in the same position. They have less options.

We know that disabled people can be strong, courageous and fearless – it goes with battling for services, and experience at negotiating life every day with less options. But a lot of ill and disabled people do need support. Those of us who were born fit and became unwell or disabled know the difference. That doesn’t mean we’ve given up the fight to show our abilities. We just want recognition that it’s ok to expect that society will support those members that need support - and that could be any of us at some point. We expect the right to safe state support.

mustard

Freud and Purnell and Iain Duncan Smith have out played us by redefining what a disabled person is – just having a serious diagnosis doesn’t cut the mustard any more – not if you can pick up a piece of paper from the floor.

They have eliminated the concept of disabled people which was a perfectly well understood concept. If we, or ours, get sick we go round to the doctor and ask for a diagnosis, not whether they can pick up a piece of paper. This concept has now disappeared in favour of images of cheats, Stephen Hawkins, Paralympians, and disabled people going off to work. This totally ignores the challenges of finding employers who can be flexible to the needs of disabled people, or that regular employment may itself cause relapses, or that people are unable to pick up that piece of paper from the floor.

Our mission at Pat’s Petition is just the same – we need to get the message out about what they are doing to disabled people and carers – past the image of the cheating football referee or the capable Paralympians.

wow-splash So keep fighting with us for disabled people – sign WOW  petition.

Send us your suggestions for getting this message across to the public.

 

You can read about Pat’s Petition at change.org

 

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This is an unacceptable abuse of power

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013
 

The government are accused of taking money and services from disabled people and carers, without any attempt to measure the cumulative impact of what they are doing. They do not deny that this. Apparently they think their duty of care does not extend to knowing what they are doing to disabled people.

Last night in the House of Lords there was a Motion of Regret moved by Lord Alton of Liverpool, with much discussion  following.

That this House regrets that the Social Security (Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance and Carer’s Allowance) (Amendment) Regulations 2013, laid before the House on 4 March, will result in the loss of Motability provision for many disabled people; and that this House considers that transitional arrangements should be put in place urgently. (SI 2013/389

In his closing remarks Lord Alton stated -

House of Lords : 24 Jun 2013 : Hansard Column 599
 

I repeat what I said in our deliberations earlier this year. It is our duty to understand the impact of the decisions we make. The Minister has just said that we cannot reliably estimate the impact; we do not know. That is not a good position for us to be in. Decisions will affect the mobility and independence of people with disabilities. The noble Baroness, Lady Hollis, put it very well when she said that you turn a person from being independent to being dependent when you take such decisions

The economic crisis shows no sign of coming to an end. The Government and the Opposition remain determined to carry on with Welfare Reform and cut the Welfare Budget.

They haven’t predicted or measured the damage that they are inflicting on disabled people and carers. It is one big unquantified social experiment on vulnerable people who have nowhere else to turn. So we have no choice. We have to carry on fighting and asking the government to measure what it is doing.

The WOW petition is following on from Pat’s Petition and after that – we will do whatever it takes.

 

The government cannot carry on

taking from people

who have so little,

Government are refusing to take responsibility

and record what they are doing.

This is an unacceptable abuse of power

 

 
 
 
 

This is just the end of the beginning – Welfare Reform

Monday, April 1st, 2013

Iain D Smith

The government is bringing in so many cuts that a Cumulative Impact Assessment is far too difficult

April Fool – it’s actually really very simple 

 

At last more and more people are waking up to the realisation of the horrors lying in wait for disabled people, their carers and families. At last there are debates in Parliament with dozens of MPs relating true stories from their constituents. They all tell the same story. How disabled people, those with serious illness, and carers are being hit the hardest.

And this is just the end of the beginning.

Six more drastic cuts come on line today.

It is the perfect storm

That’s why I’m so proud of Pat’s Petition and what we achieved together.Pat’s Petition asked the government to “stop and look at the way all these changes would add up and impact on the lives of disabled people and their carers.” 62,709 people signed in the year that was open to us.

But the government refused. They say it is too difficult. You can read their response on Pat’s Petition here . They are conducting one enormous social experiment and leaving it for history to tell them what they did to us.

How can they get away with this?

Well – they can’t get away with it. We won’t let them. And neither will you.

The government are pretending that it is amazingly complicated when we are asking for something that is really simple. We are asking for an assessment of the impact on individual disabled people. There is no reason why they can’t run example cases through all the benefit changes one by one and show us, and the voters, exactly what they are doing to individual disabled people.

Scope/Demos  have released research on these changes. And it isn’t as impossibly difficult as the government maintain.

We aren’t going anywhere until the government face up to their responsibilities and produce a projection of what their policies are, and will be doing, to disabled people and their carers.

Pat’s team is working with many other campaign groups and we are meeting with government statisticians to discuss how they can carry out a Cumulative Impact Assessment.

The WOW petition is still active and you can sign that here. Their number of supporters is growing daily. Please share this petition as wide as possible asking others to sign and share too.  You will note they have had a preliminary response in which again the government states -

“Cumulative impact analysis is not being withheld – it is very difficult to do accurately and external organisations have not produced this either.”

This is NOT acceptable.

We still receive many emails and requests from people wanting to support this campaign. To this end a space has been created here to add your support, comments can be added too.

This Cumulative Impact Assessment

is going to happen

 

 

 

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Act Now for Autism supporting statement

Monday, February 4th, 2013

 

Received from Carole Rutherford on behalf of Act Now for Autism

The Welfare Reform Bill is impacting in a negative way within the autism community both financially and emotionally.

We fully support the team at Pat’s Petition. There has never been a greater need to pause before continuing with measures that are having a catastrophic impact within our community.

Adults and families living with autism are finding it harder to cope with the changes every day.  We were told that the reforms would ensure that those with the greatest needs would be taken care of, this is not what is happening. We are hearing from adults with autism on a daily basis who are terrified about the prospect of a face to face assessment without anyone to enable them to communicate effectively.

Adults with autism do not have the ‘historic’ evidence or otherwise that we are hearing will be necessary.  The bedroom tax is set to have a massive impact on families who cannot safely allow a child with autism to share a bedroom with their siblings. Families are going to be penalised for having a child with a disability.

It was once said that the moral test of Government is how that Government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the disabled. Our current Government is morally bankrupt. 

We need to be assured that Labour will not show the same lack or care and understanding towards the sick, needy and disabled

 

 

 

Can anyone tell me where the sense is in this

Monday, February 4th, 2013

 

Received from Katie Clark

My daughter has substantial complex needs. She uses an electric wheelchair, is profoundly deaf and uses a communication aid to talk. She has had a package of support that has enabled her to employ her own team of Personal Assistants. This has cost less than if she has gone into a residential home.

The Personal Assistants support her to contribute to society – to do voluntary work, do paid work training social work students, to speak at the Houses of Parliament and represent other disabled young people, and to take part in awareness raising projects.

The Personal Assistant team also support her emotional well being, her personal care, they support her to access leisure activities such as going to cinema, shopping and meeting friends. None of this she can do on her own.

Due to the huge savings our local authority is making on social care her budget is being reduced and we are under stressful “negotiations” with the council. Cuts to her budget will result in her becoming isolated, bored, not contributing or making a difference, her health and well being will be at risk, she may well become frustrated and angry resulting in behaviour which may be challenging. On top of that her Personal Assistants will be out of work, and I will become her carer and will have to stop my full time job. This will impact financially on our whole family and will cause stress to her and impact her mental health.

She is a young woman who does not want to be “looked after” by her mother. She may end up in the institutions we have worked for years to avoid, with far more needs and more at risk to abuse than having her own team of assistants.

Can anyone tell me where the sense is in this and is it not shortsighted and will result in heavier costs to social care within the next 5 years?

Good luck Pat, in your meeting with Liam Byrne.

 

 

I dont want to go in a care home – Nadia

Monday, February 4th, 2013

 

Received from Nadia Clarke

scissors

I worry about the future as I have been told that my funding may not be enough for me to have the right amount of support to enable me to live my life. This will leave a huge impact on my life as I live independently with full time support from my PAs.

It is important to me that I have full time support for in the future, as both of my parents work full time and I am hoping to attend university this year or leave home to live independently.  I don’t want my parents to PA for me as no other 20 year old has their parents looking after them why  should this be different for me??? I want my parents to be parents to me and not my PA’S, I do not want to feel belittled and to be made to feel like a child.

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