On Friday, Donald Trump became the first sitting president to address anti-abortion protesters in town for the annual March For Life event.

During a Rose Garden ceremony, the president attempted to make a point about late-term abortions. But Trump—who once declared himself “very pro-choice”—bungled his prepared remarks and ended up condemning a normal, benign pregnancy instead.

Source: Donald Trump Accidentally Condemns States for Letting Women Give Birth : Splinter

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For the last 18 months 3 Family Carers of relatives with Learning Disabilities and/or Autism (Chris Sterry, Judith Gwynn and Kate Chapman) have been working together with a PHd student (Rachael A Black) at the University of Sheffield (Department of Human Communication Sciences) using the framework of Co-production. This was initially to provide research for Rachael’s thesis required for her PHd, but also to have a meaningful outcome for LD Carers within Sheffield, UK

At the start of this co-production Rachael enquired through Sheffield Mencap & Gateway for carers of persons with Learning Disabilities to work with her on her PHd project. During the last 18 months we have had regular meetings at the University of Sheffield on how we would proceed with this project and what our initial outcomes would be. Initially through general discussions, which Rachael was recording, it became clear that the recurring situations was around carers communications with the range of Service Providers. Within the context of Service Providers it included Sheffield Adult Social Care through Sheffield City Council, various health providers ( being GPs, Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, Community Health, and many other health areas) together with the independent Care Providers including charities, voluntary and private independent providers.

So that we were not restricted around our own views we decided to create 2 surveys, 1 to be completed by LD carers reflecting on their interactions with Service Providers and the other survey to be completed by Service Providers reflecting on their interactions with LD Carers. The surveys were created on Survey Monkey and during their creation we had a number of meeting to discuss how these were to be formed, the number of questions to be included and the specific questions. When we were all satisfied with both surveys they went live on Survey Monkey and electronic links were disseminated through our various range of contacts within Sheffield, UK.

We also discussed how we wished to to use the information from these surveys in addition to the original outcome for Rachael’s thesis. and decided we would wish to do this in a form of a presentation. We looked at possible dates and venues and obtained costings and also viewed each venue and then using co-production decided which venue to book and how we would advertise the event and provide a means for LD Carers and Service Providers to book to attend the event, which we did through Eventbrite and agreed on a format for a flyer and a website (Carer Voice) and the event title being Carer Voice Working Together.

Working Together Event Presentation 2017

 

Carer Voice ‘Working Together’, The Presenters from left to right, Chris Sterry, Judith Gwynn, Rachael A Black and Kate Chapman

Carer Voice ‘Working Together’, Presenter Rachael A Black Stating the Principles of Co-production

Carer Voice ‘Working Together’ Carers and Service Providers working together

Carer Voice ‘Working Together’ Presenter Judith Gwynn answering questions at the end of the Presentation

Carer Voice ‘Working Together’ Presenter Kate Chapman answering questions

Carer Voice Final Notes

Thank you for coming today and now you have seen the presentation and been involved in the workshops in which carers and service providers have worked together. This is how it should be for we are all here for the same reason, to ensure vulnerable persons, be they be our relatives or not, have provision to ensure their needs are met and they can then led their own lives.

Communication is but one key, but an extremely important key and without it all that is there can fail.

With this in mind I facilitate a support group LD Carers Butty Group, also known as Central group or Butty Group, where there is also a website and a mailing/distribution list. There are other support groups and details of these can be obtained from the Carers Centre and from Cathy and Kirsty from Sheffield Mencap & Gateway (Sharing Caring Project).

If you wish to be included in the mailing/distribution list please advise your email address. While this was produced with carers in mind, it does not mean that service providers cannot be included. Information sent will include areas relating to disability both local and national as well as notes for the support meetings.

Lunch is now ready and there are some leaflets from a selection of providers please view and take away and continue to network throughout lunch.

Do not forget to put on a post it the message you are taking away from this event and an evaluation form will be emailed to you, please return with your comments.

Our thanks to

University of Sheffield, Department of Human Communication Sciences for funding the event

Sheffield Central Fire Station for the room

Healthwatch Sheffield for the pens

Carer Voice ‘Working Together’, Chris Sterry giving the closing statement

 

After the Carer Voice : Working Together event we sent the following email with everyone who attended the event and also to those persons who could not attend but did express an interest in the event.

“We just wanted to get in touch to give you an update on the work we are doing following the Working Together Event in October.

 As a group we have met once to go through the feedback and will be meeting again in December. Where we will start drafting some standards and guidelines for communication between family carers and providers of service based on the information you gave us.  

 In early 2018 we will email these to you for your feedback. If you would not like to receive these emails then please do let me know and I will remove your name form the mailing list.

 We are also planning to pull together a small working group in the New Year to ensure the standards are accessible and practical. If you would be interested in being in this group, please do let us know. It will consist of 2 to 3 meetings at the University of Sheffield.

 Please also find attached some information about care workers in the independent and charity sector and the flu vaccine which we hope will be of use to you.

If you would be interested in receiving a copy of the presentation we gave on the day please do get in touch and I will send this to you.

Many thanks

Rachael and Carer Voice”

Flu Vaccine for Care Workers

Supporting People with Learning Disabilities get Flu Injection

 

We have now met in December and have started drafting some standards and guidelines for communication between family carers and providers of services based on the information given to us during the Carer Voice : Working Together event.

Further information on this will be issued within the next few months.

 

 


Insurers have been accused of depriving access to life insurance and other kinds of cover to people with depression and anxiety, even for physical conditions unrelated to their mental health.

People who have suffered even mild mental health conditions or one-off episodes say they have been refused life insurance altogether, aggravating their financial insecurity.

Dozens of complainants have been in touch with the Guardian about the alleged discrimination. Charities and campaigners described the findings as “extremely worrying” and showed that insurers were operating based on an outdated understanding of mental illness.

In some cases, insurers appear to base their refusal on long-distant episodes of depression or anxiety, or when customers admit to having had suicidal thoughts or self-harming noted on their medical records. These customers are then allegedly deemed unsuitable to insure even for circumstances where death is not linked to a mental condition.

 

Source: People with mental illnesses refused access to insurance cover : The Guardian


PIP atrocity again and when it is not PIP it is ESA and in many instances it is PIP and ESA. The only good thing about UC is that it will be one appeal for all combined benefits.

But , what the DWP fail to or unwilling to understand that if the assessments were done correctly in the first place then, appeals would be unnecessary.

We all know that these assessments are primary to remove people from benefits and in doing so save on the welfare budget, another aspect of austerity. But what they are in fact bring forth, is appeals which have a cost and effectively there is not a saving but an increased cost. Get it right first time and then there may be a cost saving as the costs of appeals would not be incurred.

Everywhere you go there is austerity bring severe reductions in life quality for the disabled, sick and elderly.

Why is austerity placed upon those who can least afford it, because they are the most vulnerable and the power Gods in Government feel they are the easiest to make suffer.

Powerful Multi-nationals, who the Government are afraid to upset, are not vulnerable and have an assumed level of power. Should the Government make these pay what they should then the returns would far outstrip the meager returns the Government receive from attacking the most vulnerable in Society.

The UK is so unequal the the gap is forever increasing.

Govt Newspeak

Julie Potter unnecessarily gave up her vehicle in December, after the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) failed to notify her that they had overturned a Personal Independent Payment (PIP) assessment to take it away.

Julie Potter on her empty driveway at North Walsham after having her mobility car taken away, pictured with husband Chris. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY Julie Potter after having her mobility car taken away

Despite the original PIP assessment being rescinded, Mrs Potter has still not been told when she will be given her vehicle back.

The 43-year-old said: “It’s basically left me house bound. I’ve lost what little bit of independence I did have.”

Mrs Potter was left with crippling back pain following a work accident in 2006, and cannot walk further than six metres without crutches. “It’s affected my daughter quite badly, she’s very worried. I had been going into her school to help children with their reading on two afternoons a week, which I can no longer do.”

Tory cuts are seizing 800 vital Motability cars a WEEK…

View original post 606 more words


The Government will not be appealing a High Court ruling that deemed Personal Independence Payment (PIP) regulations to be ‘blatantly discriminatory’.

This is a huge victory for people with mental health problems.

In a case brought by Public Law Project and their client RF, the Judge ruled the regulations were unlawful.

We are delighted that the Government has decided not to appeal the High Court’s ruling. This is the right decision.

More than 160,000 people will now be able to access support they should have been entitled to all along.

Thanks to all of you who have campaigned with us since February, by sharing your story or emailing your MP. This c

Source: PIP PIP HOORAY 🎉 : Mind


Confusion over new rules for disabled taxi passenger fares has led to “discriminatory” price differences, a charity claims.

A test in Nottingham saw a wheelchair user quoted up to five times more than an able-bodied caller.

Muscular Dystrophy UK said the practice was unacceptable.

For an existing ban on charging more to come into force councils must compile a formal list of accessible taxis but many have not done this.

Nirav Shah, who was born with muscular dystrophy, rang four companies in Nottingham and was quoted higher prices by every one.

In one case, a journey from his home to the local hospital, a distance of 2.5 miles (4km), an able-bodied caller was quoted £3-4 while Mr Shah was quoted £15.

Mr Shah said he was “disheartened and disappointed”.

 

Source: Disabled taxi price premium condemned by charity | DisabledGo News and Blog


A school is facing a privacy backlash from parents after removing the front wall of a girls’ toilet block.

Parents of children at St Mary’s College in Wallasey have criticised the re-design, with many concerned about their daughters’ privacy.

The exterior wall of one of the school’s female toilet blocks has been removed to make the toilets open plan with the only doors now being those on individual cubicles.

A video sent to the ECHO shows the toilets, which are set back off a corridoor, facing what are believed to be two classrooms and a CCTV camera.

Parents have claimed their children have been told the wall had been removed in a bid to stop smoking, bullying and pupils skipping class and hiding in the toilets.

 

Source: Parents’ privacy fears as school removes wall from front of girls’ toilet block : Liverpool Echo


LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s vast financial services industry will suffer far fewer job losses from Brexit than first feared, the City of London’s policy chief told Reuters, in remarks that will boost supporters of leaving the EU who say the threat has been exaggerated.

Source: London finance chief sees fewer jobs shifting because of Brexit : Reuters


*Additional funding, aimed to help the NHS get on a financially sustainable footing, has instead been spent on coping with existing pressures.

image of chart and Stethoscope

“The NHS has received extra funding, but this has mostly been used to cope with current pressures and has not provided the stable platform intended from which to transform services. Repeated short-term funding-boosts could turn into the new normal, when the public purse may be better served by a long-term funding set

*Source: Sustainability and transformation in the NHS – National Audit Office (NAO)

*Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.


Govt Newspeak

Margo Laird

In November the Evening Times reported how Margo Laird, from Tollcross, was totally dependent on her son and her sister for food and electricity after being repeatedly sanctioned. She believed as she was sending in sick lines she was not required to attend at Jobcentre interviews but the DWP issued her with sanctions and stopped her cash.

Ms Laird appealed the decision and won with the tribunal deciding the DWP evidence provided for sanction was “inadequate.

She was also at risk of homelessness as her rent was not being paid and her landlord had begun legal proceedings. She was unaware she was running up arrears as she thought her rent was still being paid with housing benefit. Meanwhile arrears of £900 had been accumulated over months when nothing was paid to the housing association on her behalf.

David Linden, Glasgow East SNP MP, took up her case last year and raised…

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