Oct 132017
 

National Disabled People’s Summit

Saturday 4 November 2017; 11am – 4.30pm

NUT headquarters, Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, Kings Cross, London WC1H 9BD

Since 2010 Disabled people have been subject to brutal attacks in every area of our lives caused by the disproportionate impact of austerity measures and the dismantling of the welfare system. In August the United Nations disability committee publicly declared that they are now more worried about the UK than any other country in the entire history of the committee and that UK Government “social cuts” have led to “human catastrophe”. This followed publication at the end of last year of the Committee’s investigation into the UK which found evidence of “grave and systematic violations” of Disabled people’s rights due to welfare reform.

Yet the Tory Government continues to deny there is a problem.

This summit will bring together Deaf and Disabled people from the trade union movement, Deaf and Disabled People’s Organisations and grassroots campaigns to explore how we can more effectively co-ordinate our resistance and organise joint campaigning in identified areas.

The event will be largely workshop based with the aim of each workshop to come up with and agree a campaigns plan that participants will go away and work together to put into action. The idea of the Summit is to inspire concrete activity that will lead to real change.

Workshops: (choose one per session)

Session 1 – Campaign priorities

  • Independent Living
  • Social security
  • Accessible transport
  • Inclusive education
  • Mental health
  • Employment

Session 2 – Organising

  • Protest and direct action
  • Legal challenges/ using the law
  • Art and protest
  • Using the media
  • Intersectionality
  • Trade union organising

The venue is wheelchair accessible, BSL interpretation will be provided and there will be a quiet room. Lunch will be provided (with thanks to the National Education Union). Please book via: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/national-disabled-peoples-summit-tickets-38706991654

If you are unable to attend in person, we will be livestreaming the plenary. For more information or if you have any access queries please contact: ellen.morrison@inclusionlondon.org.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Posted by at 17:38
Oct 062017
 

David Gauke the latest in a long line of ministers of state for DWP this week refused to halt the roll out of Universal Credit despite warnings from many credible sources including his own backbenchers that it was a disaster in waiting.

As the roll out of Universal Credit proceeds more and more disabled people are likely to find that they miss out on any transitional protections and in the worst case scenario that their claim is treated as a new one they face the loss of £78.35 a week from their social security payments.

This is because in Universal credit there are no Severe Disability Premiums or Enhanced Disability Premium paid. They simply vanish into thin air.

Research has shown that the additional cost of being disabled is £550 per month extra but the nasty party are stripping claimants of most of the money they need to meet those additional costs.

We’re planning something for International Day of Disabled People with more details about this to follow but in the meantime we’re asking people to contact their MPs and ask them to justify taking £78.35 pw away from those who have the highest support needs/ are most severely disabled.

Maybe they’ll say how they manage to sleep at nights.

Please then send us a copy of your letter and their response to you. mail@dpac.uk.net

You can find your MP’s contact details at https://www.parliament.uk/mps-lords-and-offices/mps/

This recent case might be helpful to  people to challenge any cuts

https://www.leighday.co.uk/News/News-2017/October-2017/Law-firm-call-on-the-Government-to-re-consider-dec

 

 

 

 

 

 Posted by at 18:41
Sep 292017
 

Please send details of your experiences to Work & Pensions Committee by November 10th. You don’t need to address all of the questions just any that are relevant. Please note we do not want you to send this information to us but directly to the Committee.

 Committee launches new inquiry into PIP and ESA assessments 

The Committee is launching a new inquiry on how the assessment processes for Employment Support Allowance (ESA) and Personal Independence Payments (PIP) are handled by DWP contractors ATOS, Capita and Maximus, and how the application, assessment and appeals processes for these two benefits are working.

In the last Parliament the Committee held an urgent one-off evidence session in the wake of the announcement of Government plans to restrict the number of people who qualify for PIP, a move which would limit the cost of PIP by £3.7 billion. Evidence taken then revealed worrying disparities between the applicants’ recall of the assessment process and the final report produced to enable DWP to make a decision. The Committee also heard concerns about the contractor assessors’ ability to understand and properly assess a wide range of physical and mental health conditions, and about the dignity and conduct of the assessment process. The latest data shows that claimants are successful in appealing against their decision in 65% of cases, for both PIP and ESA, and that there has been an 29% increase in such appeals being registered since this time last year.

Given high rates of overturn at appeal, the Committee invites evidence on the effectiveness of assessment processes used to determine eligibility for these benefits, and the experience of applicants going through it. The Committee is interested in receiving recommendations for change both on the assessment process for each benefit individually, and on common lessons that can be learned from the two processes.

Frank Field MP, Chair of the Committee, said: “The truly amazing rate of overturned ESA and PIP decisions seems to point to something being fundamentally wrong with the initial assessment and Mandatory Reconsideration stages. Quite apart from the human cost this represents – the distress and difficulty for applicants trying to get help with daily living or getting into work – it looks to be wasteful, inefficient, and a huge cost to taxpayers.

“We would like to hear from claimants – and assessors – about whether and where the system works, or is failing, and how it might be fixed.”

In particular, the Committee would welcome evidence on the following points, by 10 November 2017:

Assessors and assessments:

  • Do contractor assessors possess sufficient expertise to carry out assessments for people with a wide range of health conditions?
  • Is DWP quality control for contractors sufficient and effective?
  • Should the options for reforming the Work Capability Assessment mooted in the Government’s Improving Lives green paper be taken forward?
  • What examples of best practice in assessing eligibility for benefits are available internationally, and how transferrable are they to ESA and/or PIP?

Mandatory Reconsideration and appeal:

  • Why do claimants seek to overturn initial assessment outcomes for ESA and/or PIP?
  • Why are levels of disputed decisions higher for PIP than for ESA?
  • Is the MR process working well for claimants of ESA and/or PIP?
  • What accounts for the rate of overturned decisions at appeal for PIP and/or ESA?
  • Are there lessons that could be learned from the ESA MR and appeal process for PIP and vice-versa?
  • What changes could be made earlier in the process to ensure fewer claimants feel they need to appeal?

Claimant experiences:

  • Do prospective claimants currently understand the purpose of the assessment?
  • How could claimants be helped to better understand the assessment process?
  • Are some groups of claimants particularly likely to encounter problems with their assessments – and if so, how can this be addressed?
  • Should the assessment processes for PIP and ESA be more closely integrated? How else might the processes be streamlined for claimants?

An easy read version of these terms of reference is available on our website, and we encourage people to join the discussion on our web forum, whether you would like to submit evidence to the inquiry or not.

Committee Membership is as follows:

Frank Field – Chair (Labour), Heidi Allen (Conservative), Andrew Bowie (Conservative), Jack Brereton (Conservative), Alex Burghart (Conservative), Neil Coyle (Labour), Marsha De Cordova (Labour), Ruth George (Labour), Chris Green (Conservative), Steve McCabe (Labour), Chris Stephens (Scottish National Party) 

How to submit evidence is here

http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/work-and-pensions-committee/inquiries/parliament-2017/pip-esa-assessments-17-19/

 

 Posted by at 20:41
Sep 252017
 

Disabled People Against Cuts and Black Triangle Campaign are horrified to find that so-called Labour MP and Chair of the Work and Pensions Select Committee Frank Field has put forward the suggestion that disabled people do not deserve to earn the living wage and argues that they are less productive than non-disabled people. These comments have been published in a set of essays in Learning and Work.

http://www.learningandwork.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/LW-Opp-for-All-FINAL.pdf

 

“One idea that has been mooted is to grant a specific

exemption to the National Living Wage to those whose

disabilities are deemed so severe that they will never

be capable of enough output to warrant payment of

the minimum wage, but who might nevertheless enjoy

significant wellbeing gains from involvement in an

appropriate workplace environment.”

Mr Field goes on to say that some disabled people might benefit from this as it would make them more attractive to employers in spite of the obvious potential for exploitation this would entail. We have news for Frank we do not wish to be paid less than non-disabled people for the same work and we are not happy to be exploited by anyone.

Both disability groups are calling for Frank Field to resign or be sacked from his role as Chair and have approached Jeremy Corbyn to insist that Field immediately withdraws this highly offensive comment. To date we’ve had no reply but will be following this up again after the Labour Party Conference has ended.

If this is allowed to pass unchecked by the Labour leadership people will then be entitled to ask whether the party really has fundamentally moved on since it introduced the catastrophic Work Capability Assessment regime under the last New Labour Government.

A DPAC spokesperson said “ This is more or less exactly what Lord Freud suggested about 3 years ago but to find the same offensive idea being pedalled by a Labour MP supposedly opposed to the abuse of disabled people’s human rights is somehow even more offensive. Frank Field’s comments are nothing short of disgraceful.”

How can Labour hope to be trusted as true champions of disability rights when they are represented on a key committee by someone with such retrogressive, Victorian views?

John McArdle from Black Triangle said “Field must now be publicly censured by the Labour Party. The suggestion that disabled people’s labour is worth less than that of other people and the Tory-set minimum – let alone a ‘living wage’ – is an affront not only  to the human dignity of every disabled person in the U.K. and is a stark betrayal of the values of fairness and equality upon which the party was founded. “

Labour still has a mountain to climb before it can convince the majority of disabled people and their friends, families and colleagues that they have truly changed. If they wish to convince us that they are now firmly set upon reversing all these barbaric, deadly cuts to our support and intend to fully comply with the spirit and the letter of the UNCRPD then they must act now to impose party discipline on Field in keeping with their stated intention. As stated elsewhere, we require Labour to now wage war with the Tory Party in defence of our human rights in order to win the next general election by the landslide it deserves. Tolerating the views of frontline Labour politicians whose views are more in accord with Tory politicians than ordinary Labour members and supporters is no longer acceptable and that uncompromising message needs to go out, loud and clear.

You can read Frank’s even more offensive response here https://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/labour-mp-told-to-quit-influential-post-after-offensive-minimum-wage-call/

And many thanks to John Pring from Disability News Service for alerting us to this.

Please let Frank Field know what you think about this idea

You can email using this contact form http://www.frankfield.co.uk/contact/contact-information.aspx

or tweet to him

@frankfieldteam

 

 

 

 

 Posted by at 15:33
Sep 252017
 

reposted from OCAP and signed up to by DPAC

The Neoliberal Danger of Basic Income

wolfsheep

Statement for endorsement: We have drawn up the following statement on basic income (BI). It makes the case that, progressive hopes to the contrary notwithstanding, BI is being developed as a measure of neoliberal attack that should be opposed. We invite progressive organizations and individuals who hold positions in agencies and academic institutions, who agree with our arguments, to sign onto the statement. We hope that it will raise a voice of opposition and help develop information sharing and forms of co-operation among those, internationally, who reject the notion that basic income represents any kind realistic response to the neoliberal attack.

Endorsements and other responses can be directed to us at ocap@tao.ca.

The Neoliberal Danger of Basic Income

We, the undersigned, are convinced that the emerging model of basic income, reflected in pilot projects and other initiatives in a number of countries and jurisdictions, is one that would intensify the neoliberal agenda. The hope that there is any realistic chance of ensuring a truly adequate, universal payment, that isn’t financed by undermining other vital elements of social provision, is misplaced in our view.

We are far from wanting to suggest that existing systems of income support are anywhere close to adequate.  They provide precarious sub poverty income under conditions that are marked by intrusive regulations and forms of moral policing.  Moreover, decades of neoliberal austerity have made these systems considerably worse.

However wretched and inadequate present systems may be, the assumption that basic income must or even could be an improvement on the status quo has to be tested by considering a number of factors.  Historically, income support has been provided because those in political power concluded that outright abandonment of those not in the workforce would create unacceptably high levels of unrest and social dislocation. In the far from dead tradition of the English Poor Laws, income support has been provided at levels that were low enough to maintain a supply of the worst paid workers, in forms that were as punitive and degrading as possible. Again, the neoliberal years have seen these features intensified in what we must concede has been a highly effective drive to create a climate of desperation and a plentiful supply of low paid and precarious workers.

If austerity driven governments and institutions of global capitalism are today looking favourably at basic income, it’s not because they want to move towards greater equality, reverse the neoliberal impact and enhance workers’ bargaining power. They realize that a regressive model of basic income can be put in place that provides an inadequate, means tested payment to the poorest people outside of the workforce but that is primarily directed to the lowest paid workers. This would be, in effect, a subsidy to employers, paid for out of the tax revenues and it would be financed by cuts to broader public services. Such a model would lend itself to disregarding the particular needs of disabled people and, as a “citizen’s income,” could readily be denied to many immigrants, especially those left undocumented. Under such a system, you would shop through the rubble of the social infrastructure with your meagre basic income. The kind of pilot projects and other initiatives that are emerging offer severe warnings in this regard (we include some links that provide information on several of these)*.

However, some suggest that while regressive models could be developed and may pose a danger, a progressive and even “emancipatory” form of basic income is possible and realistic as a goal. Often, this is linked to the idea of preparing for a “workless future” in which vast numbers of technologically displaced workers can be provided for. The notion is that a universal payment would be provided unconditionally and that it would be adequate enough so that paid work, if it were an option, would be a matter of choice rather than necessity. While there are a few who suggest this could be won through large scale social action, advocates for a progressive basic income more often seem to assume that capitalist support and acceptance by the state can be won by way of a vigorous lobbying effort.

In our view, a truly adequate and redistributive, let aside transformative, basic income is not possible within the confines of the current economic system. Firstly, the present balance of forces in society, after decades of neoliberalism, does not lend itself to the conclusion that a sweeping measure of social reform, that would reverse this whole agenda, is immediately likely. Beyond this, however, an income support system that removed economic coercion in a way that progressive basic income advocates suggest, would be more than turning back the neoliberal tide. It would actually mean that the state was providing the working class with an unlimited strike fund. It would undermine the very basis for the capitalist job market. It would constitute social transformation, a revolutionary change that is, to say the least, beyond the capacity of any possible social policy enactment.

If basic income as emancipation is not possible, it can only too easily take form as neoliberal intensification.  Yet, sadly, progressive advocates end up offering legitimacy to that regressive alternative but placing hopes in musings about basic income by Silicon Valley billionaires or by presenting cynical pilot projects, set up by austerity driven governments, as flawed but important first steps. However much they wish otherwise, the sow’s ear will not become a silk purse.

If faith in a progressive basic income is misplaced, we wish we could offer a shining and readily attainable alternative but this is not possible.  We are largely fighting a defensive struggle against a virulent agenda to undermine social provision and increase the rate of exploitation. We can only offer the hard slog of building stronger inclusive movements of social resistance, rejuvenating unions and building a working class political challenge to neoliberalism. As we do this, we must fight for free, expanded and accessible public services. We must win decent wages and workers’ rights. We must struggle for income support systems that are based on adequacy, full entitlement and that are purged of intrusive rules and moral policing. We must infuse all of these movements and struggles with a sense of a very different kind of society from the capitalist one we are fighting. This doesn’t have the glitter of the dream of a progressive basic income but it does accept that reality that there is no social policy way around neoliberalism or a long and hard fight against it. The progressive welcome mat for basic income is a very big mistake.

*Links:
https://recoveryinthebin.org/2017/06/25/the-neoliberal-writing-on-the-wall-ontarios-basic-income-experiment/

https://www.jacobinmag.com/2017/01/ubi-finland-centre-party-unemployment-jobs/

http://basicincome.org/news/2017/02/16732/

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/universal-basic-income-scotland-week-cash-payment-life-nicola-sturgeon-first-minister-snp-a7934131.html

 

 Posted by at 15:16
Aug 012017
 

 

The Chronic Illness Inclusion Project is a new research project aiming to capture the views, needs and aspirations of people with chronic illness. Sign up to get involved. In the longer term our ambition is to grow into a user-led organisation.

new project aims to give a voice to people with chronic illnesses that get overlooked and misunderstood by the systems that should be supporting us.

The Chronic Illness Inclusion Project is a research project aiming to capture the views, needs and aspirations of people with chronic illness. It is part of the DRILL programme of user-led research and is supported by the Centre for Welfare Reform. You can sign up to find out more and get involved here

As a sufferer of chronic ill health, I fully support the Chronic Illness Inclusion Project. People with chronic ill health are forgotten by governments when designing policies and never mentioned. We are often hidden by the umbrella term of ‘disabled’. The impacts of chronic ill health are wide ranging, from severe fatigue and cognitive problems, to days spent in lots of pain. The effects have a huge impact on the day to day functioning of a person. Many spend long hours unable to sleep or sleeping for long hours out of sheer exhaustion. You really cannot grasp those impacts unless you are affected by chronic illness. It’s not just the physical issues, you have to store that energy up to even have a shower or even go out for the day and plan well in advance, only to spend the next few days paying the price for small bit of enjoyment. It is time our voices were heard too, instead of our voices being alone in the wilderness. It can be very isolating. I urge people to join and support this campaign.”

– Gail Ward, Disability Campaigner DPAC NE/Black Triangle Campaign

We are inviting people to sign up to our mailing list where we can keep you up to date with activities and opportunities to get involved. Currently we’re planning an online discussion forum for people who are interested in having in-depth discussions about the social and political aspects of living with chronic illness. But in the longer term our ambition is to grow into a user-led organisation. How this happens could be up to you!

It will take time because we are two people with chronic illness working very part time hours. But this is a lottery-funded project where numbers count so by joining us you can help to show what a large and overlooked group we are.

Find out more by signing up to the mailing list

Thanks,

Catherine Hale and Jenny Lyus.

Jul 272017
 

INVITATION: from the Office for Disability Issues

 

The UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Periodic examination live streaming.

The Office for Disability Issues would like to invite you to attend this event, where you will be able to watch the live streaming of the face to face dialogue between the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with a Disability (the Committee) and UK delegates.

Dates: 23rd August 2017   12:00-17:00

           24th August 2017     8:45 -12:00

 

Address: Caxton House, Tothill Street, London, SW1H 9NA.

Places are strictly limited and will be on a ‘first come’ basis, and will be limited to one attendee per organisation (plus a support worker if required).

Please note that the UK’s examination is also available to live stream from a place of your convenience via the UN’s website.

Please do RSVP your place as soon as possible by completing the form below and sending it to the email address: UN.CRPDINBOX@DWP.GSI.GOV.UK.

We will let you know with a confirmation email if you have a reserved place on the day of your choice.

 

Lunch and refreshments will be provided. Please note that we are unable to cover the costs of travel, hotels or other related expenditure.

 

(If you do not wish to receive any further communications on the UK UNCRPD periodic examination please let us know.)

 

————————————————————–

Response to invitation

 

UNCRPD periodic live streaming

Caxton House, Tothill Street, London, SW1H 9NA

 

 

Receipt of this form will be taken as confirmation that you wish to attend.

Thank you for taking the time to let us know of any communication, access or dietary requirements.

 

 

Attendee information

 

Name:

 

Organisation:

 

Email:

 

Phone number:

 

Date you would like to attend.

 

………………………………………………………………………………

 

 

Communication or Access requirements

 

Please indicate any communication or access requirements below:

……………………………………………………………………………….

Do you require a support worker? Yes/No

Dietary requirements

 

Food will be provided at breakfast (24th August only) and lunch time (on both dates). Please do indicate if you have any specific dietary requirements below.

Jacqui Wyatt  | Office for Disability Issues | Department for Work & Pensions | Caxton House, Ground Floor, Tothill Street, London, SW1H 9NA, 0207 449 7779 ext 64779

Jacqui.wyatt@dwp.gsi.gov.uk

 Posted by at 18:13
Jul 112017
 

DPAC Norfolk, July 18th 12-2pm St. Mary’s House, Duke Street, Norwich

https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=1930686417206420&id=100007952415161

 

Bromley DPAC

https://www.facebook.com/events/453993204966629/?context=create&previousaction=create&ref=46&source=2&sid_create=2614732195&action_history=[%7B%22surf

Bromley DPAC action on Tuesday 18th July 2017.

details are as follows:

#No2STPs  Stop the Sustainability Development Plans Save the NHS.

Bromley Health Watch are having a public meeting at Bromley Central Library about the sustainability development plans, digitalisation of services and developments to mental health services.

action begins at 12 noon, meeting takes place 1pm until 4pm

Bromley central library, Bromley high street, Bromley, Kent, BR1 1EX.

Kentish Town

Tuesday 18th July 1-2pm

Protest  vs benefit cuts & sanctions, No Camden cuts  to social care

Kentish Town Jobcentre

178 Kentish Town Rd London NW5 2AG

with WinVisible, Unite Community Camden, Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group, Single Mothers’ Self-Defence, Camden Momentum, English Collective of Prostitutes, All African Women’s Group, and others

Waltham Forest jobcentre July 18th 1200-1400 at 7-13 Westbury Rd, Walthamstow, London E17 6RH 

Edinburgh July 21st 1pm

ECAP and ACE are calling the following activity in Edinburgh on Friday
21st july as part of the Disabled People Against the Cuts Britain-wide
week of action
1pm Gather at Argyle House, Lady Lawson St,  site of the Assessment
centres run by ATOS for Personal Independence Payment and by Maximus for
the Work Capability Assesments for ESA
2.30pm owards High Riggs jobcentre (less than 5 mins walk away)
more info to follow but please put this in your diary and come along if
at all possible. DPAC supporters welcome to join in with this with DPAC banners etc

 

 Posted by at 18:40
Jul 032017
 

2017 DPAC Week of Action #SummerofDiscontent #NotOneMoreDay #CutsKill

Friday 14th July – Opening ceremony – from 6pm

As the World Para Athletics kick off in London, join us at Queens Elizabeth Olympics Park for our own 2017 DPAC week of action opening ceremony. While Atos continue to be a partner of the IPC, disabled people’s participation in sport and physical activity is declining as a direct result of cuts. Please come to help leaflet those going in to watch the Athletics about the impact of the cuts and how they can get involved in supporting DPAC to fight back.

Meet Stratford station tube at 6pm.

For information on getting to the Park: http://www.queenelizabetholympicpark.co.uk/the-park/plan-your-visit/getting-here

For more information about the World Para Athletics or to purchase tickets to attend the events go to: http://www.paraathleticschampionships.com/

 

Sunday 16th July – Carnival Against Cuts

Join DPAC on the Fair Funding for All Schools Carnival Against Cuts. Education cuts are taking learning support away from Disabled pupils and undermining the right to inclusive education.

  • Assemble Victoria Embankment at midday
  • Rally at Parliament Square30pm
  • Family fun, picnics, art, songs, kids’ entertainment and speakers.

Please sign and share the petition: https://www.change.org/p/stop-school-funding-cuts-all-our-children-deserve-a-great-education

For more information and campaigns resources go to: http://www.fairfundingforallschools.org/

 

Tuesday 18th July – National Day of Action

This is the day for local DPAC groups and supporters to organise your own actions on local issues that are most important to you. It could be a protest outside a benefit assessment centre, against the closure of a local JobCentre or library or at the Town Hall to oppose cuts to social care – the choice is yours. Don’t forget to tell the local media and please send us details to help publicise your action.

 

Wednesday 19th July – Lobby of Parliament for Independent Living

The crisis in social care keeps hitting the headlines but the focus is often dominated by older people’s care instead of violations to Disabled people’s right to independent living. Theresa May has promised a consultation on social care later in the year but Disabled people battling cuts to essential daily support need concrete action now. At the last Prime Minister’s Questions before the Summer recess, DPAC independent living campaigners will lobby our MPs to defend our rights to dignity and choice.

Assemble outside House of Commons entrance from 11am.

We are also asking Disabled people to write to their MPs about their experiences of social care cuts and the detrimental impact on our lives.

Thursday 20th July – Turn Up and Go protest

Driver Only Operated trains, the removal of guards from trains and rail staff from stations threaten Disabled people’s freedom to travel. On 10th July DPAC campaigners will be joining RMT staff on their picket lines as they take industrial action to defend our right to access public transport.

On 20th July we are inviting Disabled people to travel together en masse to the Department for Transport’s headquarters in London to deliver a petition demanding out right to ride.

Assemble outside the Department for Transport at 2pm. Department for Transport
Great Minster House ,33 Horseferry Road ,London,W1P 4DR

Please sign and share the petition: https://www.change.org/p/department-for-transport-disabled-people-demand-guards-on-trains

Friday 21st July – Anti-Atos protest

For our final day of action, DPAC will be returning to Atos HQ after a long absence. They no longer hold the contract to run the Work Capability Assessment but they continue to ruin the lives of disabled people through their contract to carry our PIP Assessments, notorious for assessment reports riddled with lies and inaccuracies.

Assemble 12.30 pm outside their offices at 4, Triton Square, Regent’s Place, London, NW1 3HG

Bring rugs, food and noise and let’s party.

 Posted by at 16:23
Jun 212017
 

Did you know the DWP had a policy which says they can communicate with Disabled people via email, if a person needs this as an access requirement.  We often hear that in reality you have to fight hard to get them to agree to use an email.  We need to change this.

Inclusion London is working with lawyers to challenge the DWP’s failure to communicate with Disabled people in an accessible way.

You can support this challenge by sharing you experience with us.

If you have asked the DWP to send their letters to you via email instead of post, tell us what happened then.  The more people we hear from, the stronger out challenge will be.

Email Svetlana at Svetlana.kotova@inclusionlondon.org.uk

 Posted by at 19:27
Jun 102017
 

Tory MPs are the only ones in a position to prevent this unholy and possibly illegal (Good Friday Agreement) coalition so please if you are unfortunate enough to have a Tory MP email them and say why you oppose this now.

Here’s a little information if you need it about the DUP

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/dup-hung-parliament-results-policies-manifesto-abortion-gay-marriage-climate-change-who-are-they-a7781656.html

 

You may have to google for a constituency address for your MP if they’re new or parliamentary ones should be fred.blogs.mp@parliament.uk

 

Let’s build on this https://www.buzzfeed.com/jimwaterson/tory-mps-are-really-worried-they-could-be-tarnished-by-the?utm_term=.rlZ8jxnBXV#.xmLrv6L4Wb

 

And remember if Theresa can’t form a government then Jeremy Corbyn may be asked to. Make sure June really is the end of May.

Template letter here

Dear ,

As one of your constituents, I’m writing to you to express my outrage at the suggestion that your party is prepared to cooperate with the DUP in order to remain in government.

Even for the Tories this is reaching an all time low and I am shocked and appalled that the Conservatives are willing to partner with a party that holds such extreme views that are damaging to so many people.

Here is a list of DUP stances, in case you need a reminder:

·  The DUP want to make it legal to discriminate against anyone from the LGBT community

·  The DUP want children to be taught creationism as scientific fact

·  The DUP want no woman to have access to any type of abortion, and furthermore criminalise anyone offering or seeking that service

·  The DUP want to bring back the death penalty

There are many other issues with the DUP, and I am also concerned as to what this alliance would mean for so many Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland citizens (our close allies), especially when entering Brexit negotiations.

Please explain how you intend to oppose such a coalition or alliance, as it is of immediate concern to myself and many of your constituents.

Yours Sincerely,

name and address

 Posted by at 18:31
Jun 092017
 

In spite of all the efforts we’ve made over the past few weeks sadly we haven’t all woken up to a Tory-free Britain but the Tories have sustained considerable damage and if May had any morals she would be resigning.

 

Of course we all know Tories don’t have any morals so she’s not.

 

The only way that the Tories can form a government however is to resort in pure desperation to forming an alliance with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) the Northern Ireland equivalent of the nasty party.

The DUP sound delightful and they are ant-abortion and women’s rights, anti-LBGT rights and like Trump are climate change deniers. Just what any Tory would want as allies.

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/who-are-the-dup-10589910

They also seem to have laundered dirty money for the Saudis and been involved in covering up the Kincora child abuse scandal. Mind as they’re all Christians so I’m sure things will be fine.

 

Key Tory ministers are also going, going, gone and in at least 2 of those instances DPAC supporters have been very active and vocal in campaigning to get rid of them. Ben Gummer, Jen Ellison, Simon Kirby and Gavin Barwell have packed their bags and won’t be returning to parliament any time soon. Amber Rudd’s majority has been slashed to a mere 346. Even better news is that in Pembrokeshire Crabb’s majority fell to a mere 314 votes. In Canterbury too a Tory stronghold for over 90 years the Tories were booted out. Their wobbly attempt to seek a larger majority to reinforce their strong and stable governance lies in tatters and there is no doubt at all that they are the laughing stock of Europe.

 

With your help we targeted 50 of the most marginal seats using facebook adverts which we’ll be analysing the use of more fully when time permits. However a quick glance this morning shows that Labour won in Brighton Kemptown, (our Miriam is also chair of the Labour Party there) Croydon Central, Warwick and Leamington, Ipswich, Keighley, Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, Cardiff North, Wrexham and the Fib Dems in Eastbourne. Just a few of the seats we have targeted with our adverts.

 

We are organising a week of action between July 14th– 23rd with final dates to be confirmed. If anyone wants to help with this or has any ideas they’d like to put forward about what we should do please email us as always at mail@dpac.uk.net

 

The Tory-free Britain we all dreamed of may not have happened just yet but we hope that the mass movement for change is something that will keep on growing and nor fizzle out. DPAC will certainly be hoping to help keep this amazing movement growing and hope locally you can all get involved and help to support that.

 

Solidarity everyone and the fight goes on #WeFightOn

 

 Posted by at 12:36
Jun 072017
 

Stop Camden Council cuts to social care

 

·       NO hiking up care & transport charges to older and disabled people

·       NO closing Netherwood dementia centre & others

·       YES to free homecare as in Hammersmith & Fulham

Camden Council meets about these plans on

Wednesday 14 June 2017

Town Hall, Judd Street, London WC1H 9JE *King’s Cross/Euston tube

Charges Netherwood Camden 8 May.jpg

6pm join Save Netherwood Campaign, People’s Centre for Change, WinVisible & Camden Unison accessible transport (CATS) staff outside

7pm in Council Chamber – please come and support, we plan to have deputations who will speak to councillors. Watch webcast.

Yes to free, quality care — we’ve earned it!

No to charging, rationing, profiteering and neglect

More info: Jane Clinton, Save Netherwood 07818 012618

WinVisible 020 7482 2496 win@winvisible.org

Please share  event

Thanks to all who came to Camden Town Hall on 8 May to support our deputations

to the Health and Adult Social Care Scrutiny Committee.See Camden New Journal

Watch 8 May online:https://camden.public-i.tv/…/por…/webcast_interactive/285252

http://cnj-production-backend.out.re/app/uploads/2017/05/Netherwood-IMG_4607.jpg

 Posted by at 16:41
Jun 052017
 

 

Louise is  a journalist at BuzzFeed UK and they are doing a series of pieces boosting our focus on disability in July.

 

She says “I’m wondering if you could help me with a possible story I’ve comes across.

 

I spoke to a lady who uses a wheelchair, who told me that she feels unable to move in with her partner (who is not disabled) because if she does, she will lose her ESA benefits.

 

She says that if she moved in to live with her partner, her ESA would be removed, because her partner works more than 24 hours a week at minimum wage, meaning she would be completely dependent on her partner to support both of them. She says this is barely possible, so it means she can never live with a partner without seriously depleting both of their quality of life.”

 

If you are in a similar situation or affected by the earnings rule for income based ESA Louise would like to speak to people for an article to raise awareness of this.

Please contact her directly.

louise.ridley@buzzfeed.com

 

Louise Ridley | BuzzFeed UK | News Editor, Longform and Special Projects

@louiseridley | 020 3829 4712 | 40 Argyll Street, 2nd Floor, London, W1F 7EB

 

 

 Posted by at 12:08
Jun 032017
 

UK Disabled People’s Reclaiming Our Futures Alliance

 

As DPAC has concerns about the Green Party manifesto pledge on social care we have not included an analysis of that at the moment. The reply we had with regard to our query relating to this seems incomprehensible to us at the moment.

https://dpac.uk.net/2017/06/dpac-concerns-social-care-proposals-green-party-manifesto/

reply “I understand that someone has been in touch but just to reiterate that we are in no way suggesting voluntary involvement replacing publicly funded services.

 

We are totally committed to improving opportunities and support for disabled people, and the community led support service in the disability manifesto is a way to try and put communities and disabled people at the centre of support services so their voices are heard, including providing additional investment, training and support where it is required.
The proposal means that care should be more responsive to the needs of the community and gives the community, and disabled people, a greater voice, being led by them, and being a person-centred approach.”

 

Manifesto Comparisons: what the parties are saying about Deaf and disability issues

Political party election manifestos differ in size, in format and in the issues they focus on depending on how a party wants to promote itself and to fit with its election campaign.

To make it easier to directly compare the GE2017 manifestos and what they have to say on Deaf and disability specific issues, we have pulled out relevant pledges and collated them under a number of themes below.

At the end of this document you will also find links to the main party political manifestos and to the accessible formats that different parties have made available.

We urge all London Deaf and Disabled People’s Organisations to encourage your members to engage in the 2017 General Election and make sure they have or know how to get information to help them decide how to use their vote.

 

Accessible places and transport

Conservative party

“we will review disabled people’s access and amend regulations if necessary to improve disabled access to licensed premises, parking and housing. We will work with providers of everyday essential services, like energy and telecoms, to reduce the extra costs that disability can incur.”

Green party

“All public transport should be fully accessible and step-free with a phase-in of free local public transport for young people, students, people with disabilities, and older people.”

 

Labour party

“To make sure that autistic people are able to access the whole of their community and to put an end to social isolation, Labour will set the ambition to make our country autism-friendly.”

“On our railways…In public ownership, we will deliver real improvements for passengers… introducing legal duties to improve accessibility for people with disabilities.”

“We will reform the legislation governing taxi and private hire services, introducing national standards to guarantee safety and accessibility.”

“Sporting events must be open and accessible to all. We will push sports authorities to make rapid improvements on access provision for fans with disabilities.”

Liberal Democrat party

“Increase accessibility to public places and transport by making more stations wheelchair accessible, improving the legislative framework governing Blue Badges, setting up a benchmarking standard for accessible cities, and bringing into effect the provisions of the 2010 Equality Act on discrimination by private hire vehicles and taxis.”

 

British Sign Language

Green party

“The Green Party is committed to supporting the BSL (England & Wales) Act to make BSL an officially recognised language.”

Labour party

“Labour will give British Sign Language full recognition as a recognised language.”

 

Disability benefits/social security

Green party

“Redress benefits injustice with a social security system that gives everyone confidence they will get support when they need it, including disabled people.”

Labour party

“Scrap the punitive sanctions regime.”

“The Tories have completely failed on their promise of making work pay and on tackling the barriers to work faced by people with disabilities.”

“Labour will repeal the following cuts in social security support to people with disabilities through a new Social Security Bill published in our first year in office.

We will:

  • increase Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) by £30 per week for those in the work-related activity group, and repeal cuts in the UC limited capacity for work element;
  • increase Carer’s Allowance by £11 to the level of Jobseekers’ Allowance;
  • implement the court decision on Personal Independence Payment (PIP) so that there is real parity of esteem between those with physical and mental-health conditions;
  • scrap the Work Capability and Personal Independence Payment assessments and replace them with a personalised, holistic assessment process that provides each individual with a tailored plan, building on their strengths and addressing barriers.
  • Labour will end the privatisation of assessments;
  • end the pointless stress of reassessments for people with severe long-term conditions.”

“We will change the culture of the social security system, from one that demonises people not in work to one that is supportive and enabling. As well as scrapping the Conservatives’ punitive sanctions regime, we will change how Jobcentre Plus staff are performance-managed.”

 

Employment

Conservative party

“We will get 1 million more people with disabilities into employment over the next ten years. We will harness the opportunities of flexible working and the digital economy to generate jobs for those whose disabilities make traditional work difficult.”

“We will transform how mental health is regarded in the workplace. We will amend health and safety regulations so that employers provide appropriate first aid training and needs assessment for mental health, as they currently do for risks to physical health, and extend Equalities Act protections against discrimination to mental health conditions that are episodic and fluctuating. We will consider the findings of the Stevenson-Farmer Review into workplace mental health support, working with employers to encourage new products and incentives to improve the mental health and wellbeing support available to their employees. And, as we did with Dementia Friends, we will train one million members of the public in basic mental health awareness and first aid to break the stigma of mental illness.”

Labour party

“Commission a report into expanding the Access to Work programme.” “Autism covers a wide range of conditions that reflect neurological differences among people. We will work with employers, trade unions and public services to improve awareness of neurodiversity in the workplace and in society.”

“We will change the culture of the social security system, from one that demonises people not in work to one that is supportive and enabling.”

Housing

Conservative party:

“We will fix the dysfunctional housing market so that housing is more affordable and people have the security they need to plan for the future. The key to this is to build enough homes to meet demand. That will slow the rise in housing costs so more ordinary, working families can afford to buy a home and bring the cost of renting down… We will meet our 2015 commitment to deliver a million homes by the end of 2020 and we will deliver half a million more by the end of 2022… We will enter into new Council Housing Deals with ambitious, pro-development, local authorities to help them build more social housing.”

Green party:

“Abolish the cruel and unfair bedroom tax.” “Significantly improve housing choice for D/deaf, disabled and older people by requiring all councils to appropriately plan for their housing needs and significantly increase the numbers of homes built to lifetime home and mobility standards over the next 5 years.”

Labour party:

“We will remove government restrictions that stop councils building homes and begin the biggest council building programme for at least 30 years. We will ditch the Conservatives’ ban on long-term council tenancies to give council tenants security in their homes. We want more people to have a secure tenancy in a home built to high standards. Labour will scrap the punitive bedroom tax, which has caused many people to be evicted from their home and their community.”

Liberal Democrat party

“Reach a housebuilding target of 300,000 homes a year by 2022, including direct building by government.”

 

Mental Health

Conservative party

“It was Conservatives in government that gave parity of esteem to the treatment of mental health in the National Health Service. We have backed this with a significant increase in funding: since 2010 we have increased spending on mental health each year to a record £11.4 billion in 2016/17, with a further investment of £1 billion by 20/21, so that we can deliver the mental health services people deserve. We will now build on this commitment. First, we will address the need for better treatments across the whole spectrum of mental health conditions. We will make the UK the leading research and technology economy in the world for mental health, bringing together public, private and charitable investment. Improving treatment services will not be sufficient, however. We will also reform outdated laws to ensure that those with mental illness are treated fairly and employers fulfil their responsibilities effectively. The current Mental Health Act does not operate as it should: if you are put on a community treatment order it is very difficult to be discharged; sectioning is too often used to detain rather than treat; families’ information about their loved ones is severely curtailed – parents can be the last to learn that their son or daughter has been sectioned. So we will introduce the first new Mental Health Bill for thirty-five years, putting parity of esteem at the heart of treatment.”

Green party

“Bring mental health care in line with physical health care and ensure people experiencing mental health crises are supported close to their home and support networks. Introduce mental health awareness training within the public sector and encourage a more open dialogue on the issue in wider society.”

Labour party

“In order to protect services, we will ring-fence mental health budgets and ensure funding reaches the frontline. We will end the scandal of children being treated on adult mental health wards and stop people being sent across the country, away from their support networks, to secure the treatment they need by bringing forward the ending of out-of-area placements to 2019. Labour will also bring an end to the neglect of children’s mental health. Half of people with mental health problems as adults present with symptoms by the age of 14. Yet, across England only 8 per cent of mental health funding goes to services for children and young people. In recent years, referrals to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services have increased by two-thirds, and the number of young people presenting to A&E units with psychiatric conditions has doubled. Suicide is now the most common cause of death for boys aged between five and 19. Labour will invest in early intervention by increasing the proportion of mental health budgets spent on support for children and young people.  We will ensure that access to a counselling service is available for all children in secondary schools. Giving mental health the same priority as physical health means not only ensuring access to services, but also making improvements, to those services. Choice is important in a modern NHS, and patients who receive their therapy of choice have better outcomes. Labour will therefore ask the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) to evaluate the potential for increasing the range of evidence based psychological therapies on offer.”

Liberal Democrat party:

“Make waiting times for mental health care match those for physical health care.”

Rights

Conservative party

“We will build on the proud Conservative record in supporting those with disabilities, including the landmark Disability Discrimination Act of 1995. We want to see attitudes to disability shift as they have for race, gender and sexuality in recent years: it should be completely unacceptable for people with disabilities to be treated negatively.”

Green party

“Defend the Human Rights Act and UK membership of the European Convention on Human Rights, and reinstate funding for the Equality and Human Rights Commission.” “Action to tackle racism and discrimination on the basis of faith or disability, real equality for LGBTIQA+ people, equal rights for mixed gender couples to have a Civil Partnership.”

Labour party

“Labour supports a social model of disability. People may have a condition or an impairment but they are disabled by society. We need to remove the barriers in society that restrict opportunities and choices for people with disabilities. We will build on the previous Labour government’s commitment to people with disabilities in 2009 as signatories to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and incorporate it into UK law.”

“Labour will strengthen access to justice for people with disabilities by enhancing the 2010 Equality Act, enabling discrimination at work to be challenged. We will ensure that under the Istanbul Convention, disability hate crime and violence against women with disabilities is reported annually, with national actions plans to address these issues.”

“Labour will retain the Human Rights Act.”

“We will reintroduce funding for the preparation of judicial review cases. Judicial review is an important way of holding government to account. There are sufficient safeguards         to discourage unmeritorious cases. We will review the legal aid means tests, including the capital test for those on income-related benefits. Labour will consider the reinstatement of other legal aid entitlements after receiving the final recommendations of the Access to Justice Commission led by Lord Bach.”

“We will extend the Freedom of Information Act to private companies that run public services.”

“A Labour government will enhance the powers and functions of [the Equality and Human Rights] commission, making it truly independent, to ensure it can support ordinary working people to effectively challenge any discrimination they may face. A Labour government will reinstate the public sector equality duties and seek to extend them to the private sector, ensuring all citizens benefit from  this Labour legislation.”

“Labour will legislate to make terminal illness a protected characteristic under the Equality Act.”

Liberal Democrat party

“Defend human rights by opposing any attempt to leave the European Convention of Human Rights.”

Social care

Conservative party

“our forthcoming green paper will also address system-wide issues to improve the quality of care and reduce variation in practice. This will ensure the care system works better with the NHS to reduce unnecessary and unhealthy hospital stays and delayed transfers of care, and provide better quality assurance within the care sector. We will reduce loneliness and promote technological solutions to prolong independent living, and invest in dementia research.  As the majority of care is informally provided, mainly by families, we will give workers a new statutory entitlement to carer’s leave, as enjoyed in other countries.”

[To note the Conservative manifesto also made a commitment to changing how much people have to pay for social care but since it came out the leader of the Conservatives Theresa May has done a u-turn. The manifesto says: “the value of the family home will be taken into account along with other assets and income, whether care is provided at home, or in a residential or nursing care home. Second, to ensure this is fair, we will introduce a single capital floor, set at £100,000, more than four times the current means test threshold. This will ensure that, no matter how large the cost of care turns out to be, people will always retain at least £100,000 of their savings and assets, including value in the family home. Third, we will extend the current freedom to defer payments for residential care to those receiving care at home, so no-one will have to sell their home in their lifetime to pay for care.” Their position now seems to be that the amount will not be £100,000 but will be set after the election.]

Labour party

“In our first term, Labour will lay the foundations of a National Care Service for England. Our first urgent task will be to address the immediate funding crisis. We will increase the social care budgets by a further £8 billion over the lifetime of the next Parliament, including an additional £1 billion for the first year. This will be enough for providers to pay a real living wage without cutting the quality of care they provide. It will allow implementation of the principles of the Ethical Care Charter, already adopted in 28 council areas, ending 15-minute care visits and providing care workers with paid travel time, access to training and an option to choose regular hours. Labour will also increase the Carer’s Allowance for unpaid full-time carers to align the     benefit with rates of the Jobseeker’s Allowance… Improving the quality of social care is a vital part of providing dignity in older age and independence and support for people who are vulnerable or have a disability or a mental health condition. Labour will build a new National Care Service. We will also set out the funding alternatives clearly and honestly, seeking to implement change through consensus.”

Liberal Democrats

“Save the NHS by putting a penny in the pound on income tax to give the NHS and social care services the cash they need.”

“Our longer-term objective will be to bring together NHS and social care into one seamless service – pooling budgets in every area by 2020 and developing integrated care organisations.”

 

Links to GE2017 political party manifestos

Conservative party: https://www.conservatives.com/manifesto

Green party: https://www.greenparty.org.uk/green-guarantee/all-manifestos-alternative-formats.html

Labour party: http://www.labour.org.uk/index.php/manifesto2017

Liberal Democrat party: http://www.libdems.org.uk/manifesto

 

Manifesto accessible formats

The Conservative party has not produced any accessible formats.

Green party

Audio: https://www.greenparty.org.uk/assets/files/gp2017/Green%20Party%20pleges.mp3

 

British Sign Language: the Green party has produced BSL videos for each section of its manifesto

 

Easy read: https://www.greenparty.org.uk/assets/images/greenguarantee/gg-easyread-summary.pdf

Labour party

Audio: http://www.labour.org.uk/index.php/manifesto2017/accessible-manifesto#manifesto-Summary

Easy read: http://www.labour.org.uk/page/-/Images/manifesto-2017/LabourManifestoEASYREAD.pdf

Key manifesto pledges in Sign Supported English: http://www.labour.org.uk/index.php/manifesto2017/accessible-manifesto

Liberal Democrats

Audio part 1: http://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/themes/5909d4366ad575794c000000/attachments/original/1495189781/Lib_Dem_Manifesto_2017_Part_1.zip?1495189781

Audio part 2: http://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/themes/5909d4366ad575794c000000/attachments/original/1495189820/Lib_Dem_Manifesto_2017_Part_2.zip?1495189820

British Sign Language: http://www.libdems.org.uk/bsl

Easy read: http://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/themes/5909d4366ad575794c000000/attachments/original/1495011810/easy_read_manifesto.pdf?1495011810

 Posted by at 20:41
May 252017
 

At the 2015 election, 49 Conservative candidates won seats in which they polled fewer votes than the combined total of Labour, Liberal Democrats, Greens, Scottish Nationalists, Plaid Cymru, and Mebyon Kernow.

This list shows which came closest (Liberal Democrat 19, Labour 29, and SNP 1):

Aberconwy – Labour;

Bath – LD;

Bedford – Labour;

Berwick upon Tweed – LD;

Bolton West – Labour;

Brecon and Radnorshire – LD;

Brighton Kemptown – Labour;

Bristol North West – Labour;

Bury North – Labour;

Calder Valley – Labour;

 

Camborne and Redruth – Labour;

Canterbury – Labour;

Cardiff North – Labour;

Carmarthen West and Pembrokeshire South – Labour;

Cheadle – LD;

Cheltenham – LD;

Colchester – LD;

Corby – Labour/Labour Co-op;

Croydon Central – Labour;

Derby North – Labour;

 

Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale, and Tweeddale – SNP;

Eastbourne – LD;

Gower – Labour;

Hazel Grove – LD;

Kingston and Surbiton – LD;

Lewes – LD;

Lincoln – Labour;

Morley and Outwood – Labour;

Oxford West and Peterborough – LD;

Peterborough – Labour;

 

Plymouth and Moor View – Labour;

Plymouth Sutton and Devonport – Labour/Labour Co-op;

Portsmouth South – LD;

Reading East – Labour;

St Austell and Newquay – LD;

St Ives – LD;

Southampton Itchen – Labour/Labour Co-op;

Sutton and Cheam – LD;

Telford – Labour;

Thornbury and Yate – LD;

 

Thurrock – Labour;

Torbay – LD;

Twickenham – LD;

Vale of Clwyd – Labour;

Warrington South – Labour;

Watford – Labour;

Waveney – Labour;

Weaver Vale – Labour;

Yeovil – LD.

 

 

 Posted by at 18:43
May 192017
 

this is a press release from the national Pensioners’ Convention which shows just how savage the attacks against pensioners will be if the Tories are re-elected.

Conservatives offer “Frankenstein’s monster” of a plan to solve care crisis

Posted on May 18, 2017

Conservatives offer “Frankenstein’s monster” of a plan to solve care crisis

Britain’s biggest pensioner organisation, the National Pensioners Convention (NPC) has described the Conservative manifesto pledge on social care as a “Frankenstein’s monster of a plan” which bolts together a number of bad policies.

Jan Shortt, NPC general secretary said: “The Conservative’s manifesto pledge on social care offers the worst of all possible worlds for millions of older people and their families. It’s a Frankenstein’s monster of a plan which bolts lots of bad policies together and still fails to tackle the real unfairness in the care system.”

“Every single pensioner needing care at home will now be forced to pay, regardless of their income, because for the first time ever the value of their home will be taken into account, whilst the number of those in care homes that will benefit will be relatively small by comparison. What makes it worse is that to pay for this proposal, around nine million pensioners are going to lose their winter fuel allowance and all pensioners will see the value of their state pension fall once the triple lock is removed.”

“This plan has completely failed to spread the risk and cost of social care across society as a whole, and in effect has left the burden on the shoulders of millions of older people and their families. It’s actually quite unbelievable that the Conservatives, who rely on the support of older voters, would make such a controversial and punitive proposal. They clearly have no intention of solving the social care crisis.”

 Posted by at 12:34
May 142017
 

#TrashTheTories

Maidenhead – Saturday June 3rd  meet for  2pm at rail station forecourt.

Theresa May "Our Blood on Her Hands"Please join us if you can as Maidenhead which is Theresa May’s constituency has been chosen for Disabled People Against Cuts last national demonstration before the General Election.

With the station as the starting point at 2pm DPAC will take its message #TrashTheTories to the heart of Theresa May’s constituency to highlight the horrors that disabled people have faced on a daily basis since they came to power in 2010.

The UN has found the UK government guilty of the grave and systematic violation of disabled people’s human rights and we will be making it clear that enough is enough, to the voters of Maidenhead.

The Tories have heartlessly attacked disabled people with their vicious anti-austerity cuts which have hit disabled people 9 times more than any other group and those with the highest support needs 19 times more.

In all the years we have been campaigning, it has never felt so desperately important to get the public to understand; Tory policies are starving, isolating and ultimately killing us.

Trains to Maidenhead leave from Paddington station about every 15 minutes and take between 30-47 minutes. The train company is Great Western and return fare is £11.80.

Some funding is available to cover travel costs and if you need help with these email us mail@dpac.uk.net

 

 Posted by at 12:35
May 122017
 

Digital Games for Rehabilitation and Recommender Apps with Privacy Management for Disabled People

I am a senior lecturer in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Glasgow and am a member of DPAC Glasgow.  I am  carrying out this survey with an Italian colleague. We are both disabled.

The survey covers two related studies on (i) digital games in the rehabilitation of disabled people and (ii) mobile recommender apps with privacy management for disabled people.  It has ethical approval from the University of Glasgow

Please do consider participating.  Please contact me if you would like further information

Contact details:  Dr Marion Hersh, marion.hersh@glasgow.ac.uk.

Survey link (English version):  http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/3515817/Digital-Games-for-Rehabilitation-and-Recommender-Apps-with-Privacy-Management-for-Disabled-People

Survey link (Italian version):  http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/3552385/Giochi-per-la-riabilitazione-delle-persone-disabili

There are also companion versions for teachers, therapists and other professionals working with disabled people which will be available online soon.  Please contact me for the links. 

Further information: There is increasing interest in the use of games in education and rehabilitation and a large and ever increasing number of mobile apps.  There may therefore be potential for the use of games in the rehabilitation of disabled people and the development of recommender apps to aid disabled people in finding products that meet their needs.  Both rehabilitation games and mobile recommender apps may obtain information about the user and the context.  This raises the issues of privacy management.  However there are few studies which examine these issues from the perspective of disabled people.   This research is aimed to fill these gaps.  We aim to collect information, opinions, suggestions and expectations about the use of (i) digital and interactive games in the rehabilitation of disabled people and (ii) the use of recommendation apps with privacy management for disabled people.  This brief questionnaire is intended for disabled people and the parents of disabled children under 16, who will complete it on their behalf.

 

 Posted by at 12:55
May 082017
 

It is vitally important that every disabled, and young person is registered to vote as both groups are under-represented in elections.

We are therefore asking all DPAC supporters to write urgently ie. this week to their local papers.

 

Here is a template letter you can use

 

Dear Editor,

I’d like to invite any readers who aren’t yet registered to vote to register before May 22nd and to use their vote in the forthcoming General Election.

You can register on-line in minutes at https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

All you need is your National Insurance number or alternatively you can register by phoning Electoral Services at your local council.

Anyone who may not find it easy to get to the polling station can also ask for a postal vote or proxy vote before May 23rd.

Make your vote count in this election.

 

Yours faithfully,

Doris Day

 

You can find contact details for your local paper by googling.

 Posted by at 21:52
May 072017
 

Do you live in or near Pembroskeshire and have been affected by Tory cuts?

If so, we want to hear your story.

We’re putting a newspaper piece together for Pembrokeshire newspapers and desperately need your stories. Our aim to publish a collection of people’s stories to maximize the impact of the piece.

Please write to us if;

You know someone, or have yourself been affected by Tory benefit cuts?
You know someone, or have yourself had to use food banks?
You know someone, or have yourself been made to go on a workfare program?
You know someone, or have yourself had your disability benefits cut even though you (or they) are unfit for work?
You know someone, or have yourself been made homeless as a result of Tory policies.
You know someone, or have yourself fallen into debt due to working family (or working) tax credits cuts?
You know someone, or have yourself fallen into debt due to bedroom tax or other cuts.
You know someone, or have yourself been forced to use payday loans due to benefit cuts.
Have you been sanctioned unfairly? Do you know anyone who has? Do you have any other stories you would be willing to share with us?
You can remain anonymous if you prefer to do so. Anything you tell us will be treated in the strictest of confidence.
PLEASE tell us your story, the local press in Pembrokeshire are waiting to hear. We need your stories to tell the wider public what is really going on! And we have already been told that we will be published so PLEASE send them in to us!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

Yours, Pembrokeshire People’s Assembly Against Austerity.

Email Lynda; pembrokeshirepeoplesassembly@ gmail.com

Or contact us vis the Pembrokeshire People’s Assembly (against austerity) Facebook page here; https://www.facebook.com/ groups/172685536228983/

Many thanks, 
And we look forward to hearing from you  “

 Posted by at 20:52
May 052017
 

DPAC Lock Up Your Wheelchairs Logo Do you want to share and develop your skills around organising with other disabled people in your area?

Do you want to learn new skills?

If you’re interested then come and join DPAC Disabled People Against Cutson the ‘Lock Up Your Wheelchairs Tour’ in Leeds and other venues around the country.

DPAC has been at the fore-front of street resistance to austerity since their formation in 2010.

Disabled people have led the fight against welfare reforms. Remploy closure, closure of the Independent Living Fund, Atos, Maximus and many, many more issues.

Now DPAC are undertaking a visit to places around the country to hear from local people what the issues and campaign priorities are locally; and to work with local disabled people and their allies in sharing and developing campaign skills.

To address these the one-day workshops will cover areas such as:Planning & carrying out Direct Action which is inclusive & accessible for all.

Media Skills – Messaging, Press Releases, Doing Interviews

Legal Advice – Knowing Your Rights

Keeping Safe & Secure

Banner/Prop Making

Other area specific issues identified by local disabled people

  1. i) we need to confirm venues (Think DPO’s, trade unions buildings,

community centres etc). So the questions are:

 

  1. ii) do you have access to an accessible space for around 20-25 people

that we can use for a whole day – for free?

 

iii) do you know where such a venue might be locally (either free or

cheap)?

  1. iv) can you contact them with a view to getting a date and/or ?
  2. v) if not,

but you want to take part and have no capacity to sort venue, let us

know.

If you are a local disabled person, or non disabled ally and you would like

to attend the tour email us at mail@dpac.uk.net

 

Please also let us know if you have any specific access requirements or

questions.

These sessions will also need some volunteer support on the day from

local allies. Local activist groups, i.e. Antifa etc, BSL interpreters, PAs.

A poster with all dates confirmed and venues will be released soon.

Places on all can be booked via mail@dpac.uk.net

 

Greater Manchester 6th may

Chesterfield 20th may

Norwich June 3rd

Leeds 1st July

at 10.30 am

 

Glasgow 29th July

South London – to be confirmed

 Posted by at 20:38
May 052017
 

Fighting Fracking? Get skilled up! – Come to one of the amazing Anti-Fracking Training weekends in Hebden Bridge 14th -15th May and Nottingham 3rd-4th June. London/Southeast to be confirmed.   

As well as getting lots of skills, knowledge and practice these weekends will be important for networking with others who are resisting fracking in your region – a place to share ideas and resources to help build a stronger, more cohesive movement. 

Facilitated by experienced trainers from Seeds for Change and Green and Black Cross, this is a great opportunity to find out about non-violent direct action as an additional, effective tool to combat fracking. We hope that, by reaching people from many communities and groups determined to resist this unnecessary, damaging threat to our environment, our training weekends will help strengthen the movement. 
Topics we will cover include: 

Why direct action? 
Practical direct action techniques 
Being creative, capturing the imagination 
Planning and organising an action – what is involved? 
Buddies and affinity groups 
Media – getting the message out 
Legal training 
As well as learning a lot, we expect to build solidarity and have fun! 

To find out more, get in contact and download the application forms, visit the page on the website:https://reclaimthepowe r.org.uk/fracking/direct- action-training/

 Posted by at 20:33
May 042017
 
How to Survive Disability Benefits
23 May at 19:00–21:00
Trinity Centre
Trinity Road, BS2 0NW Bristol, United Kingdom
Over the past seven years the government has practically declared war on
those with disabilities, long term illnesses or any other conditions
that make life difficult. Support services that enabled us to work or
live normal lives have been stripped away. At the same time the
politicians and their media lackeys label us ‘lazy’ and ‘scroungers’.
Surviving on Employment Support Allowance (ESA) means navigating an
intentionally brutal bureaucracy coupled with a culture of disbelief. It
also means making it through the dreaded Work Capability Assessments,
that have contributed to the deaths of hundreds of people declared ‘fit
to work’.
Making it through all this is often damaging to our health. It can be
stressful, isolating, anxiety inducing, and seems setup to create the
sort of ‘mistakes’ that can leave people penniless. It doesn’t always
have to be this way! We can come together to support each other through
the processes. We’ll be sharing knowledge, tips and tricks to making it
through ESA and look at ways we can join together to confront the system
head on.
This should be of use to anyone who is on ESA and/or related benefits
such as PIP or supporting someone who is. Please be aware this is a
skill share and there won’t be time for folks to offer comprehensive
advice on individual cases (although we can help direct you to places
that offer further support).
Trinity is a very accessible venue, details are here:
https://www.3ca.org.uk/accessibility If you have any accessibility needs
beyond those listed please contact either the venue or ourselves
As always this event is free to attend, but donations to help cover room
hire are appreciated. Hot & Cold drinks & snacks will be available to
keep you going. We’ll also have some anarchist pamphlets, papers,
magazines and stickers some for free/donation and others for a few quid.
Keep an eye out for future events, including our monthly Capitalism: a
Survival Guide workshops!
Please remember that whilst we encourage debate of ideas, we do not
tolerate attacks on individuals; especially in a way that uses
oppressive or threatening behaviour. Whilst we are not at our usual
venue of Hydra Books this month, we’ll still stick to their safer spaces
policy which you can read here : http://www.hydrabooks.org/safer-spaces/
 Posted by at 21:28
May 042017
 

Stop Camden Council cuts to social care

·       NO hiking up care & transport charges to older and disabled people

·       NO closing Netherwood dementia centre & others

·       YES to free homecare as in Hammersmith & Fulham

Camden Adult Social Care scrutiny committee meets about these plans onMonday 8 May 2017

Town Hall, Judd Street, London WC1H 9JE

King’s Cross/Euston tube

6.15pm  join Save Netherwood Campaign, People’s Centre for Change and WinVisible outside the Town Hall

7pm in Council Chamber – our deputations will speak to councillors, please come and support.

Image may contain: 17 people, people smiling, people standing

http://archive.camdennewjournal.com/sites/all/files/nj_camden/imagecache/main_img/images/news/Netherwood.png

Watch on webcast:

https://camden.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcast_interactive/285252

More info: WinVisible 020 7482 2496 win@winvisible.org

Yes to free, quality care —  we’ve earned it!

No to charging, rationing, profiteering and neglect.

 

 Posted by at 17:12
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