Linda

Jan 112015
 

http://www.luton-dunstable.co.uk/pictures/GALLERY-8203-100-march-Luton-justice-protest/pictures-25838488-detail/pictures.html

OVER 100 people marched through Luton today (Sunday) in protest against Bedfordshire Police.

Representatives from Justice 4 Leon, Justice 4 Faruk Ali and Justice 4 Mayah, who have united as the group Luton 4 Justice, were joined by campaigners for Slough man Habib ‘Paps’ Ullah, who died in police custody in 2008.

The group marched from Nadeem Plaza to Luton Police Station at 1pm, which was closed during the protest, where speeches were given by campaigners.

The group had dispersed by 3pm.

Dhobir Ali, brother of Faruk Ali, said: “Today is a start of a long journey, with a lot of struggles ahead.

“We have a lot of questions left unanswered, such as the progress of the misconduct hearing and whether they will release the footage.

“We want to work with the police, but we also want there to be transparency.”

When asked what the next step for Luton 4 Justice was, Livery Louise of the Justice 4 Leon campaign said: “The next step after this is the Ferguson USA to UK tour where a Reverend central to the protests of the Michael Brown case is coming down to speak on a panel, which we hope will raise awareness even further and increase community cohesion.”

Read more: http://www.luton-dunstable.co.uk/pictures/GALLERY-8203-100-march-Luton-justice-protest/pictures-25838488-detail/pictures.html#ixzz3OXakZK61

Report back from Mandy a DPAC supporter who attended the event together with Andy Greene who spoke on behalf of DPAC

Strange that I should be in respite care, when the march was due to take place. My life is full of these anomalies. I consider being part of the protest as party of my therapy. It is import for people to feel valued and involved in important things. It doesn’t get much more important than the right to justice and that means justice for all.

I wasn’t aware that the march would be taking place until last Wednesday. However, there was enough time to liaise with Linda and Andy and to have some clue of where the march was to start.

After a few minor blips, I met Andy and Jim at Luton train station and we took a slow pootle to Nazeem Plaza

It was nice to have people to go along with especially all I really knew was that some people had died, either in police custody or due to negligence of other people (and a system that seems to serve itself…make that does serve itself).

When we got to the rendezvous point, I became aware that 2 adults and a child had died and  Faruk Ali a man with autism had been assaulted twice by police outside his home. The families had got no justice for their loved one. I am sure many people are aware of the ‘corruption’ that makes for our justice system but I was horrified, particularly, by the plight of Mayah. A young girl and the abuse her family members received, not just when Mayah was in hospital but since they have been trying to get those accountable to be made accountable. Having said that, all life is precious and the lives of the 3 people, taken too soon, unnecessarily, and the way public servants have lied, covered up the truth and put the families through hell upset and angered me. Gave me more resolve, when I was marching because it felt the only right thing for me to do.
During the march, I became detached from Andy and Jim. These things happen when I get caught up in what is going on. I felt a strong sense of solidarity and pride in being part of the march and having a booming voice came in really handy as we (as a collective) chanted the names of those who had died and yelled “Our Streets” in response to the question “Whose Streets?”.

The names of those we were marching for: Leon Briggs, Papa Mullah, Farouk Ali and Baby Mayah. It is important to remember these people and also to remember that if this is what has happened in Luton, similar miscarriages of justice (deaths in police custody and assaults of disabled people) must be happening all over this country.

The march ended at Luton Police Station, where family members (of the victims), community leaders and DPAC’s Andy gave speeches. Was well impressed by Andy. Blimey, he can give it some and fair play to him. He did DPAC and all disabled people proud.

I was very much touched by Mayah’s uncle. I nearly cried, hearing how Mayah died and how brutally her family members, including Mayah’s mother, were treated by the police. I know this sounds a bit biased but as a mother I can only imagine (and how awful that imagery is) what it would be like if that had been my daughter and I was being manhandled by policemen.

Before some of us, who had marched, went off for free soup at Ruby’s. {The owner, very kindly, made soup for all who took part} somebody (from some news channel or other) thrust a microphone at me, asking me why I attended the march. Bottom line, because the justice system should serve everyone and serve everyone properly.

 

 Posted by at 19:06
Jan 112015
 

as you may have seen Mark Harper may have deliberately misled parliament and said that disabled people’s organisations have told him his government are right to close the independent Living Fund and devolve non-ring fenced funding to Local Authorities. Following DWPs response to an FOI we have now written to those disability charities it seems Mark Harper claims have supported this decision to ask them if they did agree with the government.

The charities concerned are DRUK,  Mencap, MIND, RNIB, Action on Hearing Loss, Leonard Cheshire Disability and SCOPE.

Many thanks to John Pring and his Disability News Service for also working on this issue.

http://disabilitynewsservice.com/2015/01/independent-living-fund-ministers-unbelievable-failure-prove-commons-boast/

Dear CEO,

A published statement in parliament made in December last year has left Mark Harper the minister for disabled people facing accusations that he misled parliament over the level of support for the government’s decision to close the Independent Living Fund (ILF).
Mark Harper told MPs that he had “talked to disability organisations about this matter, and they agree with the
government” that the ILF should be closed and non-ring-fenced funding passed instead to local authorities.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201415/cmhansrd/cm141208/debtext/141208-0001.htm#1412082000005
Having now received a response to a Freedom of Information request about this matter the Minister for Disabled People’s Private Office has confirmed that the Minister does meet regularly with a large number of disability organisations including a regular monthly meeting with the Disability Charities Consortium – an informal coalition of seven disability charities; Action on Hearing Loss, Disability Rights UK, Leonard Cheshire Disability, Mencap, Mind, RNIB and Scope – and attendance at the Fulfilling Potential Forum.

We know that those attending the Fulfilling Potential Forum have not agreed with the government’s plans to close the ILF and refusal to ring-fence the money.

We also feel it is unlikely, but not impossible, that you as one of the CEOs of the Disability Charities Consortium have agreed with this stance but before we pursue this matter further we would like you to confirm to us whether you have in meetings with Mark Harper agreed with the government’s position that the ILF should be closed and non ring-fenced funding devolved to local authorities.

We have posted this on our website and will add your responses to us as and when we receive them.

Linda Burnip

Disabled People Against Cuts

Responses

Linda
Disability Rights UK has never  agreed with government to ILF closure.
We have not agreed with government on closure or transfer.

On ring-fencing we campaigned in 2014 on the lack of ring-fencing by many local authorities, after we did a Freedom of Information request to find out what local authorities were doing – this was on national media.

See our statement and these FoI  findings at: http://www.disabilityrightsuk.org/news/2014/august/most-councils-will-not-ringfence-ilf-resources

We will be doing a further Freedom of Information request shortly to sustain pressure

Best wishes

Liz

Dear Linda

I am currently chair of Disabilities Charities Consortium.

Disabilities Charities Consortium CEOs have met once with Mark Harper, on 14 October 2014. It was an introductory meeting at which we discussed the DCC’s priorities in the run-up to the general election and shared our joint policy platform (see attached document) and invited the Minister to outline his priorities up until May 2015.

There was a brief discussion about independent living at the meeting, which focused on social care funding and legislative reforms. The meeting did not include any discussion of the Independent Living Fund.

The Disabilities Charities Consortium does not have an agreed joint position on the ILF. Our positioning document (attached) calls for Government to reaffirm its commitment to independent living and put in place the mechanisms to deliver this. By the end of the next Parliament, all recipients of state-funded care must have the option to live independently, including being supported in their own home or in a supported living setting.

With regard to Action on Hearing Loss, we have not had any conversation with the Minister for Disabled People about the Independent Living Fund.

With best wishes

Paul

Paul Breckell
Chief Executive
Action on Hearing Loss

Dear Linda,

Thank you for your recent messages to Clare Pelham with regard the Independent Living Fund.

In addition to the clarification that I know has been sent on behalf of the DCC group, I can confirm that we have had two recent meetings with Mark Harper MP, the introductory meeting between the Minister and the CEOs of the Disability Charities Consortium on 14 October, and an individual meeting on 27 November. We did not discuss the ILF at either of these meetings. In addition, over the last year we have specifically called for the ILF to be retained.

Yours,

Andy Cole 

Director of Corporate Affairs
Leonard Cheshire Disability

Dear Linda,

Thank you for your email regarding the comment that the Minister for Disabled People made in Parliament in December 2014 about the Independent Living Fund.

Scope has held two meetings with Mark Harper as the Minister for Disabled People – the first in September 2014 and the second in January 2015.  The agenda of neither of these meetings included a specific item on the Independent Living Fund.

We have always been clear that our position on ILF is as set out below.

As you know, in our response to the Government’s 2012 consultation entitled ‘The Future of the Independent Living Fund’ (available here:https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/the-future-of-the-independent-living-fund-ilf), Scope stated that ‘Whilst it may be reasonable to consider bringing the Independent Living Fund (ILF) into the mainstream care and support system at some point in the future, Scope is strongly opposed to closing the fund to existing users at this present time’ and that “the core issue of funding for all care and support services needs to be addressed before any potential consideration of closure of the ILF to existing users”.

Since then, Scope has been consistent and clear that we are very concerned about the closure of the Independent Living Fund (ILF) because it is likely to lead to fewer disabled people being able to live independently and because those basic conditions for any movement of the fund into the mainstream care system have not been met. Our most recent position statement on the closure of the Fund can be found here: http://www.scope.org.uk/Scope-responds-lawfulness-closure-Independent-Living-Fund.

The Disabilities Charities Consortium has met once with Mark Harper, on 14 October 2014. It was an introductory meeting at which we discussed the DCC’s priorities in the run-up to the general election and shared our joint policy platform and invited the Minister to outline his priorities up until May 2015.   There was a brief discussion about independent living at the meeting, which focused on social care funding and legislative reforms. The meeting did not include any discussion of the Independent Living Fund.

The Disabilities Charities Consortium does not have an agreed joint position on the ILF. Our positioning document calls for Government to reaffirm its commitment to independent living and put in place the mechanisms to deliver this. By the end of the next Parliament, all recipients of state-funded care must have the option to live independently, including being supported in their own home or in a supported living setting.

I hope this answers your query in full, and please do not hesitate to contact me again if you have any other questions.

Best wishes,

Richard Hawkes

SCOPE

Thank you for your email and giving us an opportunity to respond to what the government has said.

As you’ll see from the attached response to the original ILF consultation, which we submitted in October 2012, we called, amongst other things,  for a ring-fenced budget allocation, if the ILF were to be closed. We then set out the different developments we wanted to see across Wales and Northern Ireland, were the ILF to close, to ensure a proper funding settlement for the devolved administrations. We believe that the lack of ringfencing is a very serious issue, which the government has not recognised.

In particular, I would draw your attention to the following from our response:

“Mencap urges the Government to transfer the funding from the ILF to local authorities in the form of a ring fenced specific grant. Otherwise it would be highly likely that local authorities will use the ILF funding to meet other gaps in spending. Furthermore Mencap calls upon the Government to take urgent action to address the funding crisis within adult social care. ”

You may also know that we are a member of the Care and Support Alliance, along with over 70 other organisations, campaigning together for a significant increase in funding for social care.

As a member of the Disabilities Charities Consortium, we have met once with Mark Harper, on 14 October last year- our first meeting with him after he took up the new role. It was an introductory meeting at which we discussed the DCC’s priorities in the run-up to the general election and the Minister’s priorities up until May. There was a brief discussion about independent living at the meeting, which focussed on social care funding and the Care Act. The meeting did not include any discussion of the Independent Living Fund.

The Disabilities Charities Consortium, of which Mencap is a member, does not have an agreed joint position on the ILF. Our joint policy document, which we use to guide our work together, calls for Government to reaffirm its commitment to independent living and put in place the mechanisms to deliver this so that by the end of the next Parliament, all users of state-funded care services have the option to live independently, including being supported in their own home or in a supported living setting.

I hope this is helpful, and welcome you placing responses on your website, so disabled people and their families can see the position that we and other charities have taken.

Jan Tegelles

Mencap

 

 

 

 Posted by at 18:05
Jan 112015
 

Although this case will take place in Scotland we believe that if won it would be carried over into legislation in other parts of the UK and is therefore vitally important so that the situation where people need care and support but are unable to pay for it can be ended once and for all. If you do live in any of the areas where volunteers are being sort please get in touch with us at mail@dpac.uk.net or driectly with Ian at office@ldascotland.org

 

Care charges and the legal case

Scotland Against the Care Tax

8 Jan 2015 — Dear All

As you know, over 20 councils in Scotland discriminate against people under the age of 60 by allowing them to keep less money before charging them for social care. This can mean that young people are up to £50 a week worse off.

We believe that this is illegal and we have secured the help of one of Scotland’s top Human Rights lawyers, Tony Kelly to help take this forward. Tony will seek to prepare cases under the Equality Act 2010 for discrimination on the grounds of age.

With the help of one of Scotland’s foremost advocates, Niall McCluskey who is preparing a legal opinion, we should have a really strong case.

I am looking for some volunteers to come forward to be part of the first stage of a legal aid case to take on this challenge.

The volunteers need to be under 60/65 and pay care charges in one of the listed local authorities. They can be on Employment Support Allowance or have a restricted income in some other way up to a limit of £26,000 per year perhaps through a pension. Volunteers should have less than £13,000 in savings. Volunteers may be subject to some publicity but we would like to have at least half a dozen people so the demands on any one person should not be too onerous. Guardians can do this on behalf of the person they care for.

The local authorities we could pursue this in are below. Ideally we would like to group volunteers for the test case from 1 or 2 of these local authorities but will work with whoever comes forward.

Aberdeen City Angus Clackmannanshire East Ayrshire
East Lothian East Renfrewshire Falkirk Inverclyde
Midlothian Moray Renfrewshire Scottish Borders
Shetland Islands South Ayrshire South Lanarkshire Stirling
West Dunbartonshire Argyll & Bute Dumfries & Galloway

A legal case like this not only will bring justice to thousands of people who are illegally paying more than they have to but will help to undermine the whole system of care charging which relies on these illegal payments to justify itself and will force politicians to act or risk being seen to endorse illegal acts against disabled people.

Please get in touch with me directly to talk about volunteering or encouraging anyone you know to volunteer. Please forward this message on to others who might be able to help.

All the best
Ian
office@ldascotland.org

 Posted by at 15:09
Jan 092015
 

Join The Day Of Action Against Maximus

Maximus Day of Action 2nd March A5 leaflet front and back 06

You can download this A5 leaflet to print, share, tweet and put on facebook here or just the front page here  and you can find more information on the Facebook Event Page


 

A national day of action has been called on March 2nd 2015 against Maximus, the company set to take over from Atos running the despised Work Capability Assessments (WCAs) for sickness and disability benefits.

These crude and callous assessments have been used to strip benefits from hundreds of thousands of sick and disabled people after a quick computer based test ruled them ‘fit for work’.  A growing number of suicides have been directly linked to this stressful regime, whilst charities, medical staff and claimants themselves have warned of the desperate consequences for those left with no money at all by the system.

In a huge embarrassment for the DWP, the previous contractor Atos were chased out of the Work Capability Assessments after a sustained and militant campaign carried out by disabled people, benefit claimants and supporters.  In a panicky effort to save these vicious assessments Iain Duncan Smith hired US private healthcare company Maximus to take over from Atos this coming April.

This is not the only lucrative contract the Tories have awarded this company.  Maximus are also involved in helping to privatise the NHS, running the Fit for Work occupational health service designed to bully and harass people on sick leave into going back to work.  Maximus also run the notorious Work Programme in some parts of the UK, meaning that disabled people found fit for work by Maximus may then find themselves sent on workfare by Maximus.  There is no greater enemy to the lives of sick and disabled people in the UK today than this multi-national poverty profiteer who even are prepared to run welfare-to-work style schemes for the brutal Saudi Arabian government.

Maximus have boasted they will not face protests due to their involvement in the Work Capability Asessments and have even stooped as low as hiring one prominent former disability campaigner on a huge salary in an effort to quell protests against their activities.  We urgently need to show them how wrong they are and call for all disabled people, benefit claimants and supporters to organise against this vicious bunch of profiteering thugs.

Please organise in your local area and spread the word.

Maximus are likely to use the same assessment centres as Atos whilst a list of their premises which provide (privatised) healthcare services can be found below, and a list of Maximus offices where they provide welfare-to-work services can be found below that.

In Central London protesters will gather outside Maximus HQ on  at 1pm or 1.30pm. Level 1 Quuen Anne’s Gate, London SW1H 9BU, just round the corner from the DWP.

Look out for online action to be called on the same day.


 

List of Maximus Health programme Locations

Manchester

12 Edward Court, Altrincham Business Park | Altrincham, WA14 5GL
Tel: 0845 894 1664

Birmingham

2 Home Farm Courtyard, Meriden Road | Berkswell, CV7 7BG
Tel: 0845 504 0230

London (City)

Boston House, 63-64 New Broad Street | London, EC2M 1JJ
Tel: 0845 504 0200

London Bridge

3rd Floor, 115 Southwark Bridge Road | London, SE1 0AX
Tel: 0845 504 0202

HML Transport (Derby)

41 Brunel Parkway, Pride Park | Derby, DE24 8HR
Tel: 0845 504 0280

 

Employment and Works programmes

London Branches

Ilford

1st Floor, Newbury House, 890-900 Eastern Ave | Newbury Park, Illford, Essex, IG2 7HY
Phone: 0203 551 7595 | Fax: 0208 599 5218 | ilford@maximusuk.co.uk

Camden

2nd Floor, Bedford House, 125-133 Camden High St | London, NW1 7JR
Phone: 0203 551 7477 | Fax: 0203 551 7480 | camden@maximusuk.co.uk

Ealing

2nd Floor, 84 Uxbridge Rd | Ealing, London, W13 8RA
Phone: 0203 551 7488 | Fax: 0203 551 7495 | ealing@maximusuk.co.uk

Hammersmith and Kensington

Brook House, 235 -239 Shepherds Bush Rd | Hammersmith, London, W6 7AN
Phone: 0203 551 7499 | Fax: 0203 551 7500| hammersmith@maximusuk.co.uk

Hillingdon (Hayes)

914-918 Uxbridge Rd | Hayes, Middlesex, London, UB4 0RW
Phone: 0203 551 7525 | Fax: 0203 551 7526 | hillingdon@maximusuk.co.uk

Islington

2nd Floor, Unit 7, Blenheim Court, 62 Brewery Rd | Islington, London, N7 9NY
Phone: 0203 551 7535 | Fax: 0203 551 7540 | islington@maximusuk.co.uk

Peckham

Ground Floor, 218-222 Rye Lane | Peckham, London, SE15 4NL
Phone: 0203 5517565 | Fax: 0207 6351794 | peckham@maximusuk.co.uk

Romford

3rd Floor, Lambourne House, 7 Western Rd | Romford, Essex, RM1 3LD
Phone: 01708 629208 | Fax: 01708 629212 | romford@maximusuk.co.uk

Walthamstow

Landmark House, Uplands Business Park, Blackhorse Lane | London, E17 5QJ
Phone: 02035 517575 | Fax: 02085 275301 | walthamstow@maximusuk.co.uk


List of Maximus Work Programme Locations

London Branches

Ilford

1st Floor, Newbury House, 890-900 Eastern Ave | Newbury Park, Illford, Essex, IG2 7HY
Phone: 0203 551 7595 | Fax: 0208 599 5218 | ilford@maximusuk.co.uk

Camden

2nd Floor, Bedford House, 125-133 Camden High St | London, NW1 7JR
Phone: 0203 551 7477 | Fax: 0203 551 7480 | camden@maximusuk.co.uk

Ealing

2nd Floor, 84 Uxbridge Rd | Ealing, London, W13 8RA
Phone: 0203 551 7488 | Fax: 0203 551 7495 | ealing@maximusuk.co.uk

Hammersmith and Kensington

Brook House, 235 -239 Shepherds Bush Rd | Hammersmith, London, W6 7AN
Phone: 0203 551 7499 | Fax: 0203 551 7500| hammersmith@maximusuk.co.uk

Hillingdon (Hayes)

914-918 Uxbridge Rd | Hayes, Middlesex, London, UB4 0RW
Phone: 0203 551 7525 | Fax: 0203 551 7526 | hillingdon@maximusuk.co.uk

Islington

2nd Floor, Unit 7, Blenheim Court, 62 Brewery Rd | Islington, London, N7 9NY
Phone: 0203 551 7535 | Fax: 0203 551 7540 | islington@maximusuk.co.uk

Peckham

Ground Floor, 218-222 Rye Lane | Peckham, London, SE15 4NL
Phone: 0203 5517565 | Fax: 0207 6351794 | peckham@maximusuk.co.uk

Romford

3rd Floor, Lambourne House, 7 Western Rd | Romford, Essex, RM1 3LD
Phone: 01708 629208 | Fax: 01708 629212 | romford@maximusuk.co.uk

Walthamstow

Landmark House, Uplands Business Park, Blackhorse Lane | London, E17 5QJ
Phone: 02035 517575 | Fax: 02085 275301 | walthamstow@maximusuk.co.uk

South East Branches

Aldershot

Suite 1, 3rd Floor, Victoria House, Victoria Road | Aldershot, GU11 1DB
Phone: 01252 352354 | aldershot@maximusuk.co.uk

Aylesbury

Ground Floor, Walker House, George St | Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP20 2HU
Phone: 01296 699870 | Fax: 01296 699871 | aylesbury@maximusuk.co.uk

Banbury

Suite A, Castle Link, 39 North Bar St | Banbury, OX16 0TH
Phone: 01295 675135 | Fax: 01295 675136 | banbury@maximusuk.co.uk

Bracknell

1st Floor, Unit 7, Bracknell Beeches, Old Bracknell Lane West | Bracknell, RG12 7BW
Phone: 01344 859150 | Fax: 01344 304632 | bracknell@maximusuk.co.uk

Burgess Hill

2nd Floor, Greenacre Court, Market Place | Bracknell, RH15 9DS
Phone: 01444 810280 | burgesshill@maximusuk.co.uk

Chichester

1st Floor, Friar’s House, 52A East St | Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1JG
Phone: 01243 850905 | Fax: 01243 785491 | chichester@maximusuk.co.uk

Dartford

Third Floor, West Hill House, West Hill | Dartford, Kent, DA1 2EU
Phone: 01322 352565 | Fax: 01322 293690 | dartford@maximusuk.co.uk

Eastleigh

Suite B, 2nd Floor, Smith Bradbeer House, High St | Eastleigh, Hampshire, SO50 5LG
Phone: 02380 658600 | Fax: 02380 650259 | eastleigh@maximusuk.co.uk

Guildford

4th Floor Dominion House, Woodbridge Rd | Guildford, Surrey, GU1 4PU
Phone: 01483 550 990 | Fax: 01483 457 151 | guildford@maximusuk.co.uk

High Wycombe

2nd Floor, Suite C, The Apollo Centre, Desborough Rd | High Wycombe, HP11 2QW
Phone: 01494 958414 | Fax: 01494 958415 | highwycombe@maximusuk.co.uk

Horsham

2nd Floor, South Suite, Sanford House, Medwin Walk | Sussex, RH12 1AG
Phone: 01403 800160 | Fax: 01403 230408 | horsham@maximusuk.co.uk

Milton Keynes

2nd Floor East, Elder House, 502 Elder Gate | Milton Keynes, MK9 1LR
Phone: 01908 711800 | Fax: 01908 711801 | miltonkeynes@maximusuk.co.uk

Oxford

1st Floor, Suite 3, Threeways House, George St | Oxford, OX1 2BJ
Phone: 01865 364364 | Fax: 01865 364365 | oxford@maximusuk.co.uk

Reading

Ground and 1st Floor, Summit House, 49-51 Greyfriars Rd | Reading, RG1 1PA
Phone: 01189 099189 | Fax: 01189 099191 | reading@maximusuk.co.uk

Slough

1st Floor, South Suite, Wellington House, 20 Queensmere, High Street | Slough, Berkshire, SL1 1DB
Phone: 01753 569500 | Fax: 01392 330195 | slough@maximusuk.co.uk

Southampton

2nd Floor, Podium Unit, Dukes Keep, Marsh Lane | Southampton, SO14 3EX
Phone: 02380 658585 | Fax: 02380 336480 | southampton@maximusuk.co.uk

 Posted by at 14:12
Jan 072015
 

Hannah a research student at LSE is carrying out research which doesn’t seem to be done by anyone else on how people are managing being left without money if they have asked for a Mandatory Reconsideration of an ESA decision. We think having more information about this process is vital but of course the government aren’t bothering to monitor the impact.

If you or anyone you know can help with this research, or if you have avoided asking for a Mandatory reconsideration because you wouldn’t have managed to be left without any form of income please contact Hannah directly.

************************************

Have you applied for ESA? Are you going through the Mandatory Reconsideration process? I am conducting a piece of research about individual’s experiences whilst they wait for their MR decision.

If you are interested in helping please contact Hannah: h.j.chetwynd@lse.ac.uk

 

 Posted by at 16:03
Dec 032014
 

Motability have introduced changes to their grant making conditions discriminate against disabled people with the highest support needs who are unable to work for a minimum of 12hours a week, carry out at least 12 hours voluntary work (which apparently can’t be internet based but has to be outside the home and doesn’t include travelling time), are not in education for at least 12 hours a week and who need specialised adaptations to transfer to drive or drive-from-wheelchair vehicles.

These changes have not been made publicly known or advertised to current customers in any way about who is eligible for a grant and the changes were made without any consultation.

We understand these changes were made from June 1st this year but customers are only being told about them when they enquire about a grant for a replacement vehicle.

The impact of these changes which affects those with the highest and most costly needs are potentially life-changing. It could well prevent people having contact with family (let alone friends) if they live in a rural area with little or no transport, it means anyone who can only travel with equipment like hoists. Oxygen cylinders and other bulky items won’t be able to go anywhere. It also ignores the fact that with other cuts to services people will not be able to ensure they have the physical support from someone else to drive them.

We have sought legal advice to see whether these changes can be challenged as discriminatory and now need to hear from anyone who is or would be affected by these changes in the near future and who would qualify for legal aid.

If you think you might be affected by these changes and are willing to consider taking legal action then please contact us at mail@dpac.uk.net

 

http://linkis.com/disabilitynewsservice.com/fZhn2

 

http://dpac.uk.net/2014/11/motability-and-the-deserving-and-undeserving-charity-not-rights/

 

 

 Posted by at 18:27
Nov 182014
 

New regulations have very recently been laid before Parliament which will cut Disabled Students Allowance. At DPAC we are concerned that these cuts will seriously reduce or even prevent disabled students from taking part in higher education. We are concerned that the Regulations were laid without a public consultation and in breach of the public sector equality duty. If you are worried about the cuts to Disabled Students Allowance because you are (or will be) a university student who would apply for DSA, please get in touch with us at mail@dpac.uk.net

 Posted by at 21:42
Nov 072014
 

Here is a list of Local Authority responses to questions we asked about the closure of the Independent Living Fund. The questions were

1:      Will monies transferred from the closure of the ILF to your  local
authority be ring fenced to ILF recipients in your area? If no decision
has yet been taken, what is the process and timescale for this happening?

2:      Please could you state the process and timescale for meeting  with
current ILF recipients to prepare personal care plans for 1st  July 2015
onwards (bearing in mind the assessments at the Transfer  Review visits
only indicate desired outcomes and do not produce an  actual care
package).

3:      Will you be making any special dispensation for allowing ILF
users to continue to employ their current & in many cases long  standing
carers of many years, bearing in mind some may be paid a  higher rate than
what LA’s may usually advise and be family  members  too?

 

If you can’t find your LA on this list it is because they have failed to answer, although in most cases it may be fair to say those that have might as well not have bothered since few give any useful information. Many thanks to Frank Black for making the FOI submissions.

Barnet

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_2?nocache=incoming-566467#incoming-566467

Barking and Dagenham

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f?nocache=incoming-576952#incoming-576952

Barnsley

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_3?nocache=incoming-559366#incoming-559366

Bath & North East Somerset

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_4?nocache=incoming-568144#incoming-568144

Bedford

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_5?nocache=incoming-569216#incoming-569216

Blackburn with Darwen

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_8?nocache=incoming-566092#incoming-566092

Blackpool

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_9?nocache=incoming-566642#incoming-566642

Bolton

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_10?nocache=incoming-568298#incoming-568298

Bracknell Forrest
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_12?nocache=incoming-569559#incoming-569559

Brent

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_14?nocache=incoming-571157#incoming-571157

Buckinghamshire
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_18?nocache=incoming-570208#incoming-570208

Bury
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_19?post_redirect=1#describe_state_form_1
Calderdale
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_20?nocache=incoming-565972#incoming-565972

Cambridgeshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_21?nocache=incoming-567253#incoming-567253

 

Cheshire West & Chester

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_24?nocache=incoming-570292#incoming-570292

Croydon

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_28?nocache=incoming-568122#incoming-568122

Cornwall

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_26?nocache=incoming-563114#incoming-563114

Cumbria

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_29?nocache=incoming-570449#incoming-570449

Darlington

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_30?nocache=incoming-561744#incoming-561744

Derbyshire
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_32?nocache=incoming-570903#incoming-570903

Dorset
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_35?nocache=incoming-569165#incoming-569165

Dudley
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_36?nocache=incoming-562992#incoming-562992

Durham
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_37?post_redirect=1#describe_state_form_1

Ealing
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_38?nocache=incoming-570029#incoming-570029

Enfield

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_41

Essex

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_42?nocache=incoming-570051#incoming-570051

Gateshead

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_43?nocache=incoming-563097#incoming-563097

Gloucester

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_44?nocache=incoming-567544#incoming-567544

Greenwich

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_45?nocache=incoming-566072#incoming-566072

Hackney

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_46?nocache=incoming-569888#incoming-569888

 

Hammersmith & Fulham

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_48?nocache=incoming-570251#incoming-570251

Havering
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_53?nocache=incoming-563062#incoming-563062

Herefordshire
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/228969/response/566495/attach/html/3/FOI%20IAT%208194%20LA%20Prov%2029.09.14.doc.html

Hertfordshire
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_55?nocache=incoming-560560#incoming-560560

Hertfordshire (Further Clarification of Position)
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_55?nocache=incoming-562918#incoming-562918

Hilligdon
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_56?nocache=incoming-569822#incoming-569822

Hull

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_62?nocache=incoming-567860#incoming-567860

Kent

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_61?nocache=incoming-561528#incoming-561528

Kirklees

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_63?nocache=incoming-569847#incoming-569847

Lancashire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_66?nocache=incoming-569431#incoming-569431

Leicestershire

http://axlr8.leicsfoi.org.uk/documents/5674/FOI%205674%20Response.pdf

Lewisham

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_70

Lincolnshire
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_71?nocache=incoming-562520#incoming-562520

Medway
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/229200/response/570260/attach/html/3/Response%20101000455172.pdf.html

Milton Keynes
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_78?nocache=incoming-570189#incoming-570189

Newham
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_80?nocache=incoming-571092#incoming-571092

 

Norfolk

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_81?nocache=incoming-566589#incoming-566589

North Lincolnshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_83?nocache=incoming-571049#incoming-571049

Northumberland

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_88?nocache=incoming-572194#incoming-572194

Nottingham City

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/229324/response/572195/attach/html/3/4336%20final%20response.pdf.html

Northamptonshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/229322/response/568848/attach/html/4/FR5171%20Reply%20letter.pdf.html

North East Lincolnshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/232898/response/581032/attach/html/4/NEL%20374%20Response%20Letter%205.11.14.pdf.html

North Somerset

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_84?nocache=incoming-561582#incoming-561582

North Yorkshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_86?nocache=incoming-567863#incoming-567863

Nottinghamshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_90?nocache=incoming-561773#incoming-561773

Oldham
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_91?nocache=incoming-569799#incoming-569799

Oxfordshire
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_92?nocache=incoming-569556#incoming-569556

Peterborough
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closurse_of_independent_living_f_93?post_redirect=1#describe_state_form_1
Plymouth
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/229342/response/567207/attach/3/Response%20866649.pdf

Reading
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_2?nocache=incoming-561919#incoming-561919

Richmond upon Thames
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_5?post_redirect=1#describe_state_form_1

Rochdale

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_6?nocache=incoming-570279#incoming-570279

Salford

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_10?nocache=incoming-572937#incoming-572937

Sandwell

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_11?nocache=incoming-570887#incoming-570887

Sefton

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_12?nocache=incoming-570388#incoming-570388

Sheffield

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_13?nocache=incoming-570202#incoming-570202

Shropshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_14?nocache=incoming-569392#incoming-569392

Slough

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_15?nocache=incoming-567246#incoming-567246

South Gloucester
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_18?unfold=1#incoming-565896

Southend
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_21?nocache=incoming-569645#incoming-569645

St Helens

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_9?nocache=incoming-567621#incoming-567621

Sunderland

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_27 – now reassessing ILF recipients from July 2015

Swindon

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_30?nocache=incoming-568379#incoming-568379

Telford & Wrekin

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_32?nocache=incoming-569396#incoming-569396

Thurrrock

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_33?nocache=incoming-566012#incoming-566012

Torbay

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_35?nocache=incoming-567602#incoming-567602

Trafford

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_36?nocache=incoming-566654#incoming-566654

Wakefield

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_37?nocache=incoming-572535#incoming-572535

Walsall

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_38?nocache=incoming-571154#incoming-571154

Waltham Forrest

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/229747/response/572733/attach/html/3/PAUL%20TAYLFORTH%20FOI%20re%20independent%20living%20fund%202014%200634.pdf.html

Wandsworth

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_40?nocache=incoming-569256#incoming-569256

Warrington

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/229750/response/572570/attach/html/3/0318%20Taylforth%20closure%20of%20independent%20living%20fund.pdf.html

Warwickshire
Will Warwickshire ring-fence devolved ILF funding either to individuals or
to Adult Social Care budgets?

No strategic decision has been made in relation to this.

When, before June 2015,  will people who need 24 hour care and support
find out from WCC what level of funding they will continue to receive
after June 2015 when ILF is likely to close?

Warwickshire County Council have a programmed approach over the next 10
months with the transfer, and people will be informed prior to the ILF
closure date.

West Berkshire

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_43?unfold=1#incoming-568198

West Sussex
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_44?nocache=incoming-572780#incoming-572780

Wiltshire
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_47?post_redirect=1#describe_state_form_1

Wirral
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_49?unfold=1#incoming-573085

Wokingham
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_50?nocache=incoming-565748#incoming-565748

Wokingham

Please can you tell me how many people in Wokingham Borough Council area receive 24 x 7 care packages using the Independent Living Fund.
-There are 16 clients in Wokingham currently receiving ILF funding however as they receive funding via Direct Payments we do not have the information regarding their specific care arrangements.

2. How long before June 30th 2015 will these people know what will happen to their funding?
-Wokingham Borough Council’s policy and transition programme are currently being finalised, so we are unable to respond to this question at this point in time.

3. Please can you inform me of the plans being made for migration of people from ILF funded 24 x 7 care to Council funded care before the closure of the ILF.
-Wokingham Borough Council’s policy and transition programme are currently being finalised, so we are unable to respond to this question at this point in time.

Wolverhampton
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/closure_of_independent_living_fu_51?nocache=incoming-565629#incoming-565629

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Posted by at 21:51
Nov 072014
 

Rev Paul Nicolson, of Taxpayers Against Poverty, is publicising his two recent court victories — which we can all use to challenge our Council Tax bills and the court costs added on top. See letter below.

And read the interview with him and Haringey single mum Michelle Moseley: ‘A powerful win’: single mother takes down council in supreme court.


 At the Supreme Court in June 2014 when the case was heard by the five judges.


At the High Court last month.


Key judgments on council benefit cuts

The Guardian, Sunday 2 November 2014

Two judgments given in October will impact on all council-tax payers, magistratescourts, local authorities and governmental consultations of the public. On 29 October the supreme court decided that the London borough of Haringey’s 2012 council-tax consultation was unlawful. On 10 December 2012 I had written to the leader of Haringey council: “I am shocked that no alternative to hitting the fragileincomes of the poorest residents of Haringey [with council tax] … was included in the recent consultation.” Declaring that consultation unlawful, Justice Lord Wilson wrote: “The protest of the Rev Nicolson in his letter … was well directed.”

Alternatives to the council’s preferred options must now be put to the public in a future consultation. In all fairness there must be an alternative to local government taxation of benefits that are being shredded by central government (Cameron accused of getting sums wrong on cuts, 31 October).

On 7 October the high court gave me leave for judicial review of the £125 costs for a summons sought by Haringey council from 28,882 late or non-paying households in 2013-14. The costs are imposed by Tottenham magistrates against benefit incomes on top of inevitable arrears.  I have deliberately allowed my council tax to become a civil debt. I was duly summoned to court, which allowed me the opportunity to ask the magistrates how they arrived at that £125. Haringey council has now withdrawn a summons against me, “as a matter of prudence during this period of on going litigation” and waived the £125.

The council has not replied to my letter inviting them to cease issuing all summons until it has reviewed the rationality and legality of that £125 it asks the magistrates to impose. Maybe all magistrates and councils in England and Wales should take notice.

Rev Paul Nicolson

Taxpayers Against Poverty

 

 Posted by at 19:44
Nov 072014
 

 

 DPAC fully support disabled students taking part in this march even if the NUS disgracefully say they no longer support it. We’d like to ask all disabled people who can to join with disabled students fighting for inclusion and rights to come along and join the march. Access information will be available shortly on the facebook page and we will add it to the website as soon as we have it.https://www.facebook.com/events/775841715811858/permalink/775879035808126/

 

19 November at 12:00

 

Assemble – Senate House, Malet Street, London

 

 

On 19 November, school, college and university students from across the country will be marching in London under the banner “Free Education: No fees. No cuts. No debt.” Disabled students will be there! It’s time to put this issue onto the political agenda and to fight for a public, democratic education system that serves the vast majority in society and is free and accessible to everyone.

Disabled student will be meeting at the front of the march, outside Senate house. For more information on accessibility and anything else please email againstfeesandcuts@gmail.com
Free education is not just about abolishing fees, disabled students demand:

-Full living grants for all, and abolish tuition fees

-Full financial support for all access needs, save DSA but even more. We need to cancel DSA cuts, not just delay them.

-Decently funded support services on campuses for disabled students and university psychological services

-Defend the NHS from privatisation and fund it properly, improve mental health care resources

-Smash high rents, provide good quality accessible student housing. Ensuring Universities invest in accessible accommodation.

-Fund institutions to upgrade for full accessibility

To achieve these, we need a democratic, public education system controlled by communities, students and workers, and we need to fund it using the resources of those who can afford it – by taxing the rich, and by putting the wealth of the banks that we bailed out under democratic control.

****Invite your friends and colleagues!****

The demonstration is being organised by the National Campaign Against Fees & Cuts (http://anticuts.com/), the Student Assembly Against Austerity, and the Young Greens.

******More information on access on the demonstration coming soon********

 Posted by at 17:54
Nov 072014
 

We’ve had some complaints about poor access at Marylebone station and at other points along the Chiltern railway line. We are interested in hearing from anyone else who has experienced problems with access.

 

  • In particular we want to know whether you had problems due to lack of staff being available to support you. Did this mean you missed your train? What problems did this cause?

 

  • Whether you had problems at any of the unmanned stations covered by Chiltern eg. Warwick Parkway, Stratford

 

  • Whether you’ve had problems physically being able to fit onto the trains due to overcrowding. If this has been a problem could you let us know what time you travelled and whether it was after a match day event in London.

 

Please email us at mail@dpac.uk.net

 

 Posted by at 15:41
Nov 042014
 

Join us to support Doug Paulley in his fight against FirstBus discrimination

Meeting Tuesday 11th November, 9.15am outside the Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand, WC2A 2LL (nearest station Blackfriars – stepfree to platform)

Doug Paulley, a campaigner and wheelchair user from Wetherby, takes his battle over wheelchair priority on buses all the way to the Royal Courts of Justice next week.

And we want to have a strong supportive presence outside the court to show FirstBus that disabled people everywhere are standing up for our right to ride.

Back in September 2012, Doug won a case against FirstBus over their ‘first-come, first-served’ policy which denied bus access to wheelchair users when the buggy space was occupied. But FirstBus are now appealing this decision, seeking to overturn the judge’s support for disabled people’s right to travel.

 

If Doug wins, it will set an important precedent and show bus companies across the UK that wheelchair users have a right to the wheelchair bay – a right protected in law.

The case will probably be heard from 10am. Transport for All members will be outside the Royal Courts of Justice with our placards from 9.15am with our voices raised, to show FirstBus that we stand beside Doug and the right of all disabled people to travel with freedom and independence. Join us!

Please email to let me know if you can make it, if you would like to be met at the station, or for any help with journey planning. lianna@transportforall.org.uk

The Royal Courts of Justice are served by buses 11, 23, 26, 76 and 172.

 Posted by at 18:23
Oct 162014
 

 Defend the Right to Protest National Conference 

“WE DO NOT CONSENT”

Sunday 16th November, 11am til late, SOAS

 

Dear DPAC

 

I am writing to invite your organisation to Defend the Right to Protest’s annual conference “We Do Not Consent” – a one day conference to discuss how we tackle the criminalisation of protest, state violence and injustice in a climate of austerity, rising racism and inequality.

 

It takes place in the context of a continued assault on civil liberties, including recent threats by the Tories to withdraw from the ECHR and introduce new “extremism disruption orders.” It follows the stream of revelations about police corruption and under cover policing, repeated attacks on the right to protest and the ongoing scandal of deaths in police custody.

 

We hope the day will provide a forum to address these issues and for groups and organisations campaigning over these questions to make links and  build support. 

 

We are still finalising the timetable but there are already a great range of people and campaigns involved – see:http://www.defendtherighttoprotest.org/we-do-not-consent-defend-the-right-to-protest-conference-2014/

There will be sessions on cover cops and the secret state, protest policing, deaths in custody, racism and the fight for justice; universities, know your rights, international solidarity and more to be announced.

We wish we had more time and space for many more speakers and campaigns – but from 11am – 5.30pm plenaries and forums will provide lots of scope for participation from the floor.

From 6pm to 11pm there will be film, music and refreshments! 

We are also dedicating a room to campaign stalls – if you would like to book a space email info@defendtherighttoprotest.org 

We really hope you can come, and also help us to make this an event a hub of debate, experience sharing and organising. Get in touch if you have ideas or suggestions for the day and spread the word to your friends colleagues and supporters. 

More information and updates can be found on the DtRtP website here: http://www.defendtherighttoprotest.org/we-do-not-consent-defend-the-right-to-protest-conference-2014/

We also have a Facebook page for the conference: https://www.facebook.com/events/284372698418778/  

Text for email circulars and websites is also included below. 

We hope to see you there!

Best wishes

Hannah Dee  & Susan Matthews

Defend the Right to Protest

WE DO NOT CONSENT:  Defend the Right to Protest Conference 2014

Sunday November 16th, 11am till late 

SOAS, Thornhaugh Street, WC1H 0XG London

Get updates on the FB event page

A one day conference to discuss how we tackle state violence and injustice in a climate of austerity, rising racism and inequality.

Speakers include: Helen Steel McLibel defendant & Spies out of Our Lives, Rob Evans author Undercover, Carole DugganMerrick Badger#Campaign Opposing Police Violence, Susan Alexander mother Azelle RodneyOwen Jones author The Establishment, Jules Carey lawyer who represented Ian Tomlinson’s family, Dave Smith Blacklist Support Group, John McDonnell MPJenny Jones GLAFidel Santigi Fully Focused, Hamja Ahsan Free Talha Ahsan Campaign, Nina PowerSheila Coleman Hillsborough Justice Campaign, Stephen Graham Cities Under Siege,  Matt Foot legal aid lawyer of the year 2013, Kevin Blowe NETPOL, Hannah Dee DtRtP Chair, Marcia Rigg sister Sean Rigg, Simon Pook defence lawyer representing fracking protesters, Areeb Ullah KCLSU VP Education, Raj Chada lawyer representing Fortnum Mason, Critical Mass, Dale Farm, Rachel Harger paralegal police actions, Robert Reiner Emeritus Professor of Criminology LSE, Waquas Tufail Northern Police Monitoring Project, Mike Jackson Lesbians & Gays Support the Miners

Workshops and plenaries include under cover cops and the secret state, protest policing, deaths in custody, racism and the fight for justice; austerity and the assault on civil liberties, neoliberalism & the police, know your rights, international solidarity and more to be announced.

Conference 11am-5.30pm – plenaries and workshops 

6pm -7pm Screening of Burn, Ken Fero ’s new film with Q and A

Plus food, drink and music – special guests tba till late.

Tickets £3 unwaged, £5 waged, £10 solidarity (suggested donation)

Book herehttp://www.defendtherighttoprotest.org/national-conference/

Fb eventhttps://www.facebook.com/events/284372698418778/ 

Tickets £3 unwaged, £5 waged, £10 solidarity (suggested donation)

 

 Posted by at 21:25
Oct 162014
 

We say Lord Freud should resign after his disgusting comments that disabled people are not worth the minimum wage.

Freud is the architect of the government’s noxious welfare reform programme that is pushing disabled people off benefits and causing untold distress and misery, in too many cases leading to suicides and avoidable deaths.

The policies Freud designed show utter contempt for disabled people. His latest comments made to a Tory councillor at a party conference fringe meeting confirm this.

What kind of a society are we that the lives of disabled people are left in the hands of someone who thinks disabled people have lesser worth and refers to them as stock.

There are 11 million disabled voters plus their families in the UK. Do the Tories think allowing this type of reprehensible comment to be made by one of their senior ministers will encourage any of us to vote for them? If they wish to retain credibility (if they have any that is)and Freud refuses to resign they must sack him immediately.

Join us to demand  Freud resigns or is sacked. Monday October 20th at DWP head office, Caxton House, Tothill Street, 12.30pm til 2.30pm ….. and if you can’t make the Caxton House Protest – you can join the Twitter Protest

 

 Posted by at 14:47
Oct 162014
 

Can you donate 50p to DPAC’s work?

 

We all know the attacks we’re all facing as disabled people and next year in the run up to the General Election we want to make sure that the 11 million disabled people and their families get their voices heard by politicians. But to do that we need money for a battle bus tour, leaflets, and other publicity costs and events. The grant we hoped to get to cover these costs was turned down on the grounds that our campaigning would be ‘too political’ We want to remain too political and ungagged in spite of the gagging laws introduced to silence campaigners by the Condems and to make sure all of our voices are heard.

We’re now left with no other choice but to ask you, our supporters, if you could donate 50p towards our plans for next year so that we can afford to make sure disabled people’s concerns are heard loudly and clearly.

You can donate to us via paypal on our website www.dpac.uk.net or directly via BACs to Disabled People Against Cuts 08-92-99 account number 65454743.

Brief summary of cuts we face.

A recent Demos report from April 2013  ‘Destination Unknown’ shows that hundreds of thousands of disabled people will be hit simultaneously by up to six different welfare cuts. This does not include cuts to care and support funding in addition.

By 2018 disabled people will have lost £28.3 billion of financial support affecting up to 3.7 million disabled people.

The losses come against a backdrop of flat-lining incomes and spiralling costs of living for disabled people, for whom daily life already costs more. At the same time it’s becoming harder for disabled people to be part of the community.

Councils – facing average budget cuts of more than 28% – have been forced to ration social care support leaving as many as 40% of disabled people without help to get up, get washed, get dressed and go out.                   

 Benefit and other attacks.                            

 

  • Scrapping of Incapacity Benefit and failure of Work Capability Assessments.
  • Loss of right to appeal and Mandatory Reconsiderations during which time disabled people are left with no income for an unspecified length of time.
  • Legal Aid and advice and advocacy centre cuts.
  • 1% cap on benefit rises
  • Time limitation for Contributory ESA of WRAG
  • Freezing child benefit
  • Overall Benefit Cap
  • Scrapping of Disability Living Allowance and introduction of Personal Independent Payment
  • Universal Credit
  • Abolition of Independent Living Fund and cuts to social care funding.
  • Bedroom Tax and Changes to Local Housing Allowance.
  • Discretionary Housing Payments only given to 1 in 3 disabled people.
  • Uprating and cuts to Tax Credits
  • Localisation and at least 10% cut for Council Tax Benefit
  • Cuts to Access to Work funding
  • Loss of access to inclusive education.
  • Loss of free bus travel.
  • Reductions in MH services across the board.
  • Growth in Food Bank usage.
  • Increasing Fuel Poverty.

 

 

 

 Posted by at 14:42
Oct 092014
 

You are invited to an open meeting on 23rd October 6pm to 8pm to find out more about the changes to Access to Work and how Deaf and disabled people and interpreters have been opposing these changes and how you can get involved.  

The meeting will be on:

·       23rd October 2014 – 6pm to 8pm

·       Venue: 336 Brixton Road, London SW9 7AA

·       BSL interpreters available – let us know if you have other access needs

·       Refreshments available.

For further details contact Ellen Clifford – Ellen.clifford@inclusionlondon.co.uk – please let Ellen know if you are coming.

 Posted by at 18:08
Oct 092014
 
Potential legal challenge to PIP delays.Anyone who has/is experiencing delays with regard to their PIP application might be able to mount a legal challenge. If you are in this situation and would be willing to speak to a solicitor with regard to making a legal challenge please email us at mail@dpac.uk.netBBC South Today programmeBBC South Today, regional TV News for Hampshire, Dorset, West Sussex and a bit of Surrey still need to find people willing to appear on TV about PIP. They’re looking into what impact the change to Personal Independent Payments has had on people with disabilities in the South  They need a case study for someone who has unsuccessfully applied for PiP – or has had severe delays with their application. Maybe it’s had a financial impact or just been more stressful than the old system. Anyone able to help should contact you could contact Katy Austin on 02380 374540, 07732 986357 or email katy.austin2@bbc.co.uk.

 

 Posted by at 17:05
Oct 022014
 

DPAC have supported Transport for All in campaigning and carrying out numerous protests to make sure that all Crossrail stations will be accessible when it is built. Originally this was not going to be the case but late yesterday evening Transport for All were informed that all of London’s Crossrail stations will now be fully accessible when it opens in 2019.

 

We would all like to thank everyone who wrote letters, attended protests. lobbied and tweeted for an accessible Crossrail. This shows that when we all work together and are willing to get out on the streets as well as campaigning in other ways we can and do change things.

 

 Posted by at 11:51
Aug 182014
 

We’re currently producing a brochure for campaigning work and wanted to include a few examples of how each cut has affected disabled people. We already have examples for most things but if you have been affected by the bedroom tax, council tax reduction changes, or the overall benefit cap, cuts to social care or increased charges for care could you please send us a short email about what has happened to you and how this has affected you to mail@dpac.uk.net

 

Many thanks for help with this.

Linda

 Posted by at 21:01
Aug 052014
 

Permission has now been granted and the second  ILF Court Case will go ahead.

The papers went to a judge today and he has granted both permission and expedition (which means speeding up the usual timetable for the court case). The hearing should be “as soon as possible”, which could mean anything at the moment, as the judges are on holiday and the court has a very bad backlog, but we would hope we will get a trial date for some time in September/October as planned.

On behalf of all ILF recipients we’d like to say a continuing thank you to those involved in taking the case. We know from experience just how gruelling and stressful taking legal challenges can be and we offer our solidarity with you all.

 

 

 Posted by at 19:09
Jul 082014
 
Here is information on making complaints to IPCC
They have  guidance just read the section and you will see link.
Here is link to MPS complaints
You can make individual complaints and also organisational complaints.
Those directly affected by the restriction of medication , food and drink should individually complain.
It will take time for the complaints to be processed so I suggest people do this asap.
If you need help making a complaint they can approach MP, Citizens Advice and some DPOs may assist too.
The MPS has already launched an inquiry into policing at the Westminster demonstration

 Posted by at 18:10
Jul 012014
 

Urgent – Legal Challenge to PIP 20 metre descriptor to be held in Birmingham Administrative Court, Bull Street next week on July 9th and 10th.

 

The solicitors have asked for a room for observers to the case and are waiting for confirmation of that. They would like anyone who can to attend to show how important this case is to disabled people.

 

There will also be a vigil outside the court from 1- 2pm on July 9th. Bring placards, banners and friends and supporters.

 

To get updates on room availability and to check the case will not be affected by strike action on July 10th please email

birminghambenefitjustice@gmail.com

 

 

 

 Posted by at 21:30
Jun 062014
 
Boycott Workfare is a UK-wide campaign to end forced unpaid work for people who receive welfare. Workfare profits the rich by providing free labour, whilst threatening the poor by taking away welfare rights if people refuse to work without a living wage. We are a grassroots campaign, formed in 2010 by people with experience of workfare and those concerned about its impact. We expose and take action against companies and organisations profiting from workfare; encourage organisations to pledge to boycott it; and actively inform people of their rights.

PCS need to ballot for non-cooperation on workfare and sanctions!

dpac-logo-3-amendment-1-smallblack-trianglebw logoMembers of PCS union work for the DWP and job centres so are involved in the day to day delivery of workfare and sanctions. Members have shown they oppose it by voting for national policy against workfare and sanctions. Now Disabled People Against Cuts, Black Triangle and Boycott Workfare are asking them to use their power to help put a stop to these punitive measures. 

Disabled People Against Cuts, Black Triangle and Boycott Workfare joint statement on PCS Union and non-cooperation:

1. We note that motion A81 that recently passed at the PCS conference makes reference to the PCS Union working with Disabled People Against Cuts and Black Triangle. (1)

2. We note that motions E340-E342 submitted by DWP branches also called for the PCS to work with Boycott Workfare, but that references to Boycott Workfare were dropped by the NEC from motion A81. (1)

3. Black Triangle and Disabled People Against Cuts wish to express their solidarity with Boycott Workfare who we believe have organised a broad based and successful campaign against workfare and sanctions.

4. We note that the legal advice received by the PCS in 2013 accepted that the tactic of non-cooperation could be used as part of a campaign of industrial action consisting of action short of a strike. (2)

5. We note that the PCS currently have a live mandate for industrial action and will be consulting members on 12th June about coordinated strike action. (3)

6. Disabled People Against Cuts, Black Triangle and Boycott Workfare therefore call on the PCS NEC to consult members on adopting a tactic of non-cooperation with workfare and sanctions.

References:

(1) http://www.pcs.org.uk/download.cfm?docid=3FBA9F5E-D8B1-4164-AA1B7CF5C50F3E33
(2) http://www.pcs.org.uk/download.cfm?docid=C20641E2-9DE4-4FFE-8E11590CCB7E0F51 (Motion A533)
(3) http://www.pcs.org.uk/en/news_and_events/pcs_comment/index.cfm/vote-yes-in-pcs-ballot-for-fair-pay

 Posted by at 22:48
Jun 062014
 

PRESS RELEASE – For immediate release

Judicial review launched of repeat DWP decision to close the Independent Living Fund

The Department of Work and Pensions is facing a judicial review challenge by a group of disabled people of the decision of Minister for Disabled People Mike Penning to close the Independent Living Fund (ILF) in June 2015, taken just weeks after the Court of Appeal quashed a previous, almost identical decision as being unlawful.  ILF provides vital support and funding to some 18,000 severely disabled people in the UK to enable them to live independent and fulfilling lives.  To be eligible people must already receive a substantial care package from local authority social services, but ILF funding provides a top-up for those with particularly high support needs. The ILF system was set up in 1988 in recognition of the fact that more severely disabled people are at high risk of social exclusion and face particular barriers to independent living and working, but their needs in this regard were not adequately addressed by council provision with its focus on meeting basic needs.   The claimants, represented by Deighton Pierce Glynn and Scott-Moncrieff & Associates, fear that loss of ILF support would threaten their right to live with dignity, and they may be forced into residential care or lose their ability to participate in work and everyday activities on an equal footing with other people.

The Court of Appeal had ruled in November 2013 that the previous closure decision had breached the public sector equality duty in the Equality Act because the Minister had not been given adequate information to be able to properly assess the practical effect of closure on the particular needs of ILF users and their ability to live independently.

However following the new closure decision announced on 6th March 2014, the DWP admitted that in considering the proposal once again it had not consulted with any organisations or individuals outside of Government. It had not gathered any additional information from local authorities or other sources about what level or type of support former ILF users would receive from social services once the ILF element was removed and how many people would be likely to go into residential care or lose their ability to work or study.

The new legal challenge is on the same basis as the first that once again the Minister had not discharged the public sector equality duty because he did not have adequate information to be able to properly understand what the impact of closure would be on the particular people affected. This made it impossible to properly weigh up the pros and cons of the proposal with the necessary focus on removing disadvantages for disabled people, meeting their needs, increasing participation in public life and advancing equality that the law requires in all decisions by Government.

The Claimants are asking the court to again quash the decision to close the Fund.

Notes

  1. The ILF is a body of the DWP but under the management of independent trustees. Since it was created in 1988 it has helped many thousands of disabled people to live independent lives. It has targeted support at the most severely disabled people in the UK who face the greatest barriers to independent living, and has also played a key role in overseeing social services provision from local authorities for this group of people, to ensure that the combined ILF/local authority support packages meet criteria of promoting independence and inclusion and avoid unnecessary escalation of costs from people being cut off from their communities .  In 2010 the Fund was closed to new applicants because the Government had reduced the amount of money it gave to the Fund.  It is now proposing that the Fund close completely in 2015, leaving users to rely on local authority adult care services.  This is at a time when the funding for local authorities is being dramatically reduced and many authorities are cutting services for disabled people.

 

  1. Further information, including individuals’ stories, on the campaign against the closure of ILF is available at the DPAC website: http://www.dpac.uk.net/.

 

 Posted by at 11:44
Jun 042014
 

DPAC is delighted to extend an open invitation to celebrate Independent Living Day with us on the 4th of July at the ‘Independent Living Tea Party ‘.

The party will begin at 2pm at the DWP, Caxton House in Tothill Street SW1. There will be fun & games, and entertainment; and of course, some civil disobedience.

We have come a long way since the demand for Independent Living was first made nearly 50 years ago. Then, as now, IL was our solution for how society supports disabled people to take our place as equals. For how society addresses inaccessible institutions, structures and process it created, which do more to disable people than their impairments ever could.

There are many strands of Independent Living, and all are under threat. Cuts to:

  • Support funding – such Social Care, the ILF & Disabled Students Allowance;
  • Education – in areas like the wholesale destruction of SEN Statements and the continued segregation of disabled children into ‘special’ schools;
  • Transport – the withdrawal of Taxi-cards, freedom passes and the halting of planned works to make infrastructure more accessible, amongst a host of other cuts combine to make disabled people second-class citizens in society.

But we have fought this fight before – and won. Our Disabled Peoples Organisations, legal gains and the policy victories we have won previously are testament to the power, know how and skills disabled people have to develop solutions to problems created by society.  We must celebrate these achievements and remind ourselves that each of these successes have had to be earned, no-one ever gave them to us without a struggle.

So celebrate with us, or alternatively create your own party. Get together with friends and supporters, and create the kind of vibrant, positive spaces we have always created. Bring the noise – bells, whistles, drums, pots & pans etc. Bring food to share. Bring your enthusiasm.

if you are planning your own party, here are some suggestions:

1) Choose your target –

focus on the important issues locally; support, education, transport etc – its up to you. Identify what you want to celebrate and who represents the biggest threat to that locally. Is it your local council or Uni? Is it a transport provider? Or is it someone else?

2) Tell everyone –

yes, EVERYONE. Media, campaign networks, activists, local people. DONT FORGET TO TELL DPAC so we can list and support your action!

3) Be heard, be seen –

make your event loud and proud. Bring music, choirs, drum, bells, whistles. Remind everyone out there that we won‘t be separated from society, we are society. We won ‘t go quietly.

4) We’re also holding a Twitter Party on the Hashtag
#IL4JULY so that people at the DWP and at other events round the country
can tweet in pictures of their events and we can all join in. Further
details to follow, watch this space.

The famous Boston teaparty led to a revolution against the British government let’s see where our teaparty leads…..

 

 Posted by at 18:56