Universal Credit

Emergency on Planet Earth #39

I WILL WRITE A NUMBER OF EMERGENCY ON PLANET EARTH BLOGS THROUGHOUT THE TORY SPONSORED CORONAVIRUS CRISIS.

 What follows is a random collection of thoughts from a human being trapped in 21st Century British society.

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With thanks to ROFA and John Pring for the following news articles. Anyone wondering about the progress of the #SaveWILG petition should scroll down as I have included a brief update, including footage of the petition being discussed by Welsh politicians.

I have also included a news report from Skwakbox below as I tried to highlight the relevant news of the day whilst struggling to find the time to formulate writing of my own. It is becoming evermore apparent that I am in dire need of my reassessment by ICS. This is part of the deal we struck with the Welsh Government to ensure that those unhappy with their Local Authority assessments could access an independent assessment.

The delays we have been facing due to the Coronavirus Crisis are unfortunate and can not be helped, but having said that I have written countless times to ICS and have to wait long periods without a reply.

I hope to have my reassessment by the end of the month, but I need time to organise such a meeting and I will be writing to ICS yet again on Monday to try to push things forward. The physical and mental strains of not receiving the support I need is exhausting, but in the meantime I you can enjoy the article below that I have managed to cobble together.

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Unite Community are organising a National Day of Action on 15th July to highlight the injustices of Universal Credit.

Unite Community campaigns for a fairer social security system for all, which works to end poverty, and which allows claimants to live with dignity.

The three immediate demands are:

  • End the five-week wait for payment
  • Make the temporary £20 per week extra permanent and give to ALL existing benefit claimants
  • Stop Benefit Sanctions

For more details click here.

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Government Reintroduces Benefit Sanctions During Pandemic

Disabled campaigners have described the government’s decision to reintroduce benefit sanctions – in the middle of a pandemic – as “barbaric” and “life threatening”.
The decision meant an end to the three-month suspension of benefit sanctions and conditionality* in England, Scotland and Wales, which had been introduced in March as part of the COVID-19 lockdown measures.

Jobcentres will start re-opening this week in England, but not in Scotland and Wales, where claimants will only receive services online and by phone.

This means that some claimants in England will now begin to have face-to-face discussions with work coaches in jobcentres.

For the full story from the Disability News Service click here. 

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The petition that I originally submitted in October 2017 – to reconsider the closure of the Welsh Independent Living Grant and support disabled people to live independently – was considered again by the Senedd Petitions Committee on Tuesday. The relevant section can be seen from the 48 minute mark via this link.

I am delighted that the Committee have agreed to keep the petition open until everything is finalised. There are still issues that need to be resolved and my determination to see disabled people receiving the support they deserve has only been strengthened by the passing of former WILG recipient and friend Tracy Pritchard…

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A few years ago, I was very proud to be a member of the Corbyn-led Labour Party and disappointed with the direction Carwyn Jones was taking Welsh Labour. It is funny how things can change as now the exact opposite is true – Mark Drakeford has my full support as First Minister while Keir Starmer seems to be testing my loyalty to the Labour brand.

Video: Unite’s Beckett slams Tories for dumping austerity fall-out of pandemic on working class – and takes Labour to task for weak response

Coronavirus: Welsh pubs and cafes to reopen indoors on 3 August

Stop and Scrap Universal Credit: What’s Next for the Campaign?

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I have been asked to share the following with all DPAC members and all interested activists:

#StopandScrapUniversalCredit
Where now for the campaign?

Zoom Meeting: Monday 22nd June 2020 6.30-8.30pm

You can join the discussion and watch the meeting from the Facebook link at 6.30pm here:

Or alternatively, from YouTube at 6.30pm and the link is here:

 

Coronavirus COVID-19  Disabled People’s Frequently Asked Questions

I thought it would be useful for my Wales-based disabled readers, to read the following FAQs concerning the Coronavirus outbreak. We need all the help and support we can get, so it is important to be armed with information such as this, which was kindly put together by Disability Wales. 

Stay safe everyone.

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Do we have any answers from Welsh government on protections for disabled people who access social care?   

Visits from care or healthcare workers, who would normally come and help with your daily needs or social care, will be able to carry on as normal. But carers and care workers must stay away if they have any of the symptoms of coronavirus – a high temperature (above 37.8 °C) and/or new and continuous cough. 

You may find this guidance on home care provision useful: COVID-19: guidance on home care provision on GOV.UK 

Will the Coronavirus Bill have any impact on social care in Wales? 

Disability Wales has serious concerns about the implications of the Coronavirus Bill on human rights, especially the rights of specific groups, including disabled people. 

We welcome the UK Government’s amendment to ensure the Corona Virus Bill is to be renewed every six months, given the sweeping nature of the powers. Nevertheless, we remain concerned that the Bill gives Ministers the powers to suspend the key provisions in the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 unless services are needed to protect an adult from abuse or neglect or a risk of abuse or neglect. Unlike the suspension of the Care Act (2014) duties in England, there is no express requirement to avoid breaches of the European Convention on Human Rights included. 

We call on the Assembly to take action to protect the lives of many thousands of disabled people by ensuring that no services are withdrawn without undertaking an assessment to verify whether there would be a breach of human rights.  See link to joint statement issued http://www.disabilitywales.org/coronavirus-bill-statement/   

Will carers/disabled people be provided with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) i.e. gloves, aprons, masks? 

Welsh Government are taking steps to enhance the arrangements in Wales for protecting our front-line health and social care staff who are caring for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients. 

As social care has an essential role along with health care in response to COVID-19, PPE will also be released for use by social care providers.   

You can contact your local Direct Payment Support provider who will be able to signpost you to where you can get hold of PPE.  

How are ‘vulnerable’ people in Wales being identified or can they register themselves? 

Identification of those classed as high risk will be done through GP/hospital medical records. 

If you have been identified as being at high risk, you will receive a letter from the Welsh Government setting out the advice and sources of help and support in your local community. If you are employed, this is also proof that you will not be able to go to work while you are shielding and can be shared with your employer. If you are able to, you can work from home, if your job allows it. You will not need to get a fit note from your GP. 

If you need help from the welfare system visit Universal Credit on GOV.UK website. 

If you believe you fall into one of the categories of extremely vulnerable people listed above and you have not received a letter, you should discuss your concerns with your GP or hospital clinician.  

Will testing be made available to carers / Personal Assistants and those being supported (disabled people)? 

Welsh Government are aiming to roll out testing beyond the NHS to social care.  They are increasing the capacity to do this.  It won’t happen immediately but it will be introduced in the coming weeks, with significant extra testing being introduced for other key workers including social care providers. 

Those providing social care will be tested if they present Corona like symptoms and they can then be returned to the workplace if the test provides the right result. 

We are yet to hear whether testing will be introduced for those being supported. 

I am unable to get a food delivery slot online at any supermarket what can I do? 

There are many local shops (butchers, greengrocers etc) offering a food delivery service or pick up.  You could try contacting local shops in your area to see is this is available.  

If you are online and use social media you can post to local community pages on Facebook for example, to find out what food delivery services are being provided in your area.   

Another option is to contact your local Community Voluntary Service (CVC) they may know of volunteers or services who could help you.  Here is a link to CVCs across Wales: https://www.gvs.wales/about-us/wcva-county-voluntary-councils-cvcs-and-volunteer-centres-vcs 

Or contact our office on 029 20887325 email: info@disabilitywales.org and we will do our best to look into the options for you, if you are unable to. 

My Carers / Personal Assistants have all called in sick due to Corona like symptoms, what shall I do? 

If you receive support through an agency then contact them straight away to inform them of the situation.  They will be able to advise you. 

If you do not receive support through an agency then contact your local social services to seek advice immediately.   

You can find a link to your local council’s website here: https://www.wlga.wales/welsh-local-authority-links 

I need to order and collect my repeat prescription/s.  What do I do as I’m classed as ‘vulnerable’ and I need to self-isolate? 

Many GP surgeries are restricting access to the surgery itself at this time.  You may have to order your repeat prescriptions over the telephone.  Please telephone your surgery to check what their procedure is during this Coronavirus pandemic.   

Ask family, friends or neighbours for assistance during this time, if this is possible.  In many cases prescriptions are being sent to the nearest pharmacy to people and then deliveries are being made to people’s homes where necessary.  Explain that you are self-isolating and will need someone to deliver your medication to you. 

Make sure you order your repeats in plenty of time.  It may take a little longer than usual to obtain your medications due to the high demand.  However, there is no need to stock on your medication as this can lead to medication shortages.   

Contact your GP and pharmacy to check procedures during 26is time as processes may vary across Wales.     

Useful sources for information: 

Public Health Wales: guidance on social distancing for everyone in Wales including disabled people: https://phw.nhs.wales/topics/latest-information-on-novel-coronavirus-covid-19/guidance-on-social-distancing-for-everyone-in-the-uk-and-protecting-older-people-and-vulnerable-adults/#  

Social Care Wales: https://socialcare.wales/news-stories/the-latest-information-on-coronavirus-covid-19 

Dewis Wales: Find local and national organisations that can help you https://www.dewis.wales/ 

All information has been taken from official sources and understood to be correct at time of publishing. 

Government loses Universal Credit appeals against claimants with severe disabilities

The following article was taken from the website of the law firm Leigh Day. The original article can viewed by clicking here. There is precious little good news about for disabled people  at the moment, so victories such as these need to be celebrated and cherished.   

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The Court of Appeal has today dismissed the government’s appeals against two previous court judgments which found that the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions had unlawfully discriminated against thousands of severely disabled people who moved onto Universal Credit.

29 January 2020

The ruling upholds two successful High Court challenges brought by TP and AR, in which the courts found that individuals previously in receipt of the Severe Disability Premium (“SDP”) and Enhanced Disability Premium (“EDP”) are to be protected against a drop in their income when they move onto Universal Credit.

The first challenge brought by TP and AR was won in the High Court in June 2018. The men had been forced to move onto Universal Credit when they moved into a local authority area where the new benefit system had been rolled out. Under Universal Credit they lost out on the SDP and EDP, leaving them suddenly around £180 a month worse off. The judge found that this was unlawful because those that moved to a different local authority area were being treated differently to those who moved within their local authority area.

As a result of the first challenge the government attempted to rectify the situation by making regulations which stopped other severely disabled people from migrating onto Universal Credit and provided that those like TP and AR, (who had already moved onto Universal Credit), would receive retrospective and ongoing recompense. However, the Government chose to recompense TP and AR and those like them at a rate of only £80 per month rather than £180 per month which is what they had actually lost.

TP and AR mounted their second legal challenge along with a third claimant SXC (represented by Central England Law Centre) arguing that short-changing them was unlawful as they were being treated differently to those who remained on legacy benefits. The High Court found in their favour in May 2019.

The government, whilst appealing both judgments, increased the top-up payments but only provided recompense of £120 per month rather than the £180 lost. A third legal challenge regarding that decision is pending.

The Court of Appeal in an  judgment handed down today agreed with the lower courts that the Government had unlawfully discriminated against this cohort of severely disabled claimants. The Court also found that the Government had breached its duty of candour by failing to disclose during the first hearing that it had already made a policy decision to stop more severely disabled people from being moved onto Universal Credit and to provide transitional payments for those that already had.

AR said:

“We hope that the Court of Appeal ruling will finally bring an end to our fight for severely disabled people not to be disadvantaged by Universal Credit. It is still so shocking to us that we have had to fight so long and so hard just to get the government to see that their policy is unfair.”

Tessa Gregory, from law firm Leigh Day added:

“Today’s finding that thousands of severely disabled people have been subject to unlawful discrimination should be a wake-up call for the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions.

“The Government states that Universal Credit is protecting the most vulnerable but that has not been the experience of our clients who faced a dramatic reduction in their monthly income when they moved onto the new benefits system and when that was found to be unlawful were offered a monthly top up which didn’t even cover half of that loss.

“We hope that the Government will waste no more time or resources fighting this legal case  and will instead get on with what it should have been doing in the first place,  protecting this acutely vulnerable cohort of claimants and overhauling Universal Credit to make it fit for purpose.”

Leigh Day is continuing to bring a separate group claim, on behalf of those who previously received SDP and/or EDP and moved to Universal Credit prior to 16 January 2019, for the full amount lost as well as compensation for any pain and distress caused by the move to UC. We are still taking enquiries and more information can be found on our website. 

TP and AR were represented by Tessa Gregory, Carolin Ott and Lucy Cadd from law firm Leigh Day. Jessica Jones and Zoe Leventhal of Matrix Chambers were instructed.

Information was correct at time of publishing. See terms and conditions for further details.

Tweetathon

The following article was taken from the DPAC website.  I would encourage all my readers to join in with this mass tweetathon and remind everyone why the disabled community will not stand by quietly while the disastrous Universal Credit is rolled out.

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Tuesday evening February 4th – please join a mass tweetathon to the BBC and especially BBC Two

@BBCTwo 

They are hosting a programme on Universal Credit which we think is the one we were told had been commissioned by DWP along with the adverts DWP placed in the Metro newspapers.

Here are some possible tweets  you could copy and paste

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants UC is rotten to the core #StopandScrapUC

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants 7m households will be affected, including over one million low paid part-time workers.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants UC has too many flaws to be simply paused and fixed – it must be stopped and scrapped.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants at least £15.8 billion has been wasted UC, yet only £1 billion will be saved by 2020.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants No civilized Government should impose UC on its citizens

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants  No credible opposition party should want to simply pause and fix UC.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants UC is claimed and managed digitally which is impossible for many disabled people.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants Health & Work conversations are mandatory, any failure to attend will lead to claim being closed.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants People in part time work could be forced to give up work that suits their Disability.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants UC has no Severe and Enhanced Disability Premiums- single disabled people lose around £2,000 pa.

@BBCTWO #UniversalCreditCrimesAgainstClaimants UC includes the vile rape clause – violating womens’ rights

 

And lots of newspaper horror stories here https://drive.google.com/file/d/12XXQDqzVm2UVexcO2Gli1DltuN0mzHbp/view

 

Vote Welsh Labour on December 12th

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There are so many reasons why we all need to pull together to ensure that we elect a Labour Government next week.

Welsh Labour is Standing Up for Wales:

  • £3.4bn extra, each year to invest in schools, the NHS and local government.

  • A green industrial revolution, creating thousands of new green jobs.

  • A £10 living wage, for all workers aged 16 and over.

  • A final say on Brexit, where Welsh Labour will campaign unequivocally to remain.

  • A ban on zero hours contracts, giving people the security they need at work.

  • Fairer taxation, with the top 5% of earners and corporations paying their fair share, whilst cracking down on tax avoidance and tax evasion.

  • Extend free social care, supporting more people when it really matters.

  • Strengthened parental rights, by extending statutory maternity leave to 12 months and doubling paternity leave.

  • Scrap tuition fees, building on the best student support package in the UK.

  • An end to the Tories’ disastrous Universal Credit, no ifs, no buts.

  • Four new bank holidays, including a public holiday for St. David’s Day.

The Welsh Labour manifesto can be viewed by clicking here. 

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Below, I have included a tweet from Welsh Labour as I believe the video shows that the First Minister Mark Drakeford has the passion that Wales needs to build a brighter tomorrow.

 

#GE2019: Jeremy Corbyn pledges to end the ‘shameful’ Tory treatment of disabled people #VoteLabour2019

The following article was taken from Welfare Weekly, which can be accessed by clicking here. I have also used the main picture used in Welfare Weekly, which is credited to Knox O (Wasi Daniju) via photopin cc

This article concerns the new Disabled Manifesto released by the Labour Party. They are the only party to have produced such a Manifesto dedicated to those that have suffered greatly as a result of Tory austerity. The actual Manifesto can be read in a multitude of forms by clicking on this link. 

#VoteLabour2019 #JC4PM2019 #ChangeIsComing

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The Labour Party has today (Tuesday) launched its manifesto for disabled people, titled ‘Breaking Down Barriers’, which lists ways the party hopes to tackle the discrimination and cruel treatment faced by disabled people and their families.

The pledge comes after a UN report accused the Tory Government of “systematic violations” of the rights of disabled people, and slammed benefit cuts for driving disabled people and their families “to breaking point”.

According to Labour, poverty in families where someone is disabled has risen by over a million since 2010 and almost half of all working age adults living in poverty live in a family that includes a disabled adult or child.

Labour has pledged to end “the scandal of disabled poverty” through measures designed to alleviate poverty and destitution and allow them to live independent lives.

Labour’s manifesto for disabled people includes pledges to:

  • Make sure a disabled child on Universal Credit (UC) receives the same amount as a disabled child on Child Tax Credits.
    • Currently a disabled child on UC receives less than half the basic addition for disabled children in Child Tax Credits to help parents cover the additional costs of having a disability – £1,513 a year, compared with £3,355 a year under Child Tax. The difference is currently £1,842 a year, or £154 a month, or £35 a week.
  • Introduce a self-care element into UC to support severely disabled people without a formal carer – the equivalent of the Severe Disability Premium. Currently, severely disabled people without a carer are worse off on UC than both those on legacy benefits and those on UC who do have a carer.
  • Increase Employment and Support Allowance by £30 per week for those in the work-related activity group.
  • Increase Carer’s Allowance to the level of the Jobseeker’s Allowance.
  • Abolish the punitive sanctions regime, immediately suspending all sanctions and scrap the dehumanising Work Capability Assessment and Personal Independence Payment assessment which are unfit for purpose.

According to Labour, these reforms will cost around £2.6 billion by 2023-24 and are accounted for in Labour’s Grey Book ‘Funding Real Change’.

Labour has also committed to halving the disability employment gap, invest in specialist education for disabled people, tackle the rising level of disability hate crime and ensure that victims have access to justice, break down barriers to disabled people in transport, give British Sign Language full legal recognition ,and reinstate the Access to Elected Office fund to enable disabled people to run for elected office.

Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Labour Party, said: “The treatment of disabled people by Conservative and Lib Dem governments, from devastating cuts to social security support, to cruel and unnecessary assessments, and a complete failure to address the disability employment gap, should be a source of shame.

“Labour will put right this injustice. We’ll ensure that disabled people get the support they need to lead independent lives and participate fully in society. We are on your side.

“This election is a chance for real change, for a more inclusive, fair and equal society that works for the many, not the few.”

Marsha de Cordova, Labour’s Shadow Minister for Disabled People, said: “I have heard from disabled people all over the country who are angry at how they have been treated by Conservative-led governments and passionate about working with Labour to transform how government approaches disability rights.

“I am proud that Labour is the only party with a manifesto developed by and for disabled people, according to our principle of ‘nothing about you without you’. Labour in government will embody that principle, empowering disabled people and enhancing our voices.

“Breaking Down Barriers takes us beyond what we’ve previously committed, and sets out how we’ll radically shift our approach to ensure the economic, social and structural barriers faced by disabled people are addressed. It’s time for real change.”

#GE2019: Standing Up for Wales

The following email is from Mark Drakeford to Welsh Labour members.  I wanted to share it here to show why I believe in this Party and have faith in them to deliver a brighter tomorrow for everyone in Wales.  They will also be in a stronger position to do this if they are able to work with a Labour Party in Westminster.

#VoteLabour2019 #JC4PM2019 #ChangeIsComing

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On Monday I unveiled our Welsh Labour manifesto. It is a bold plan for how the Welsh Labour Government will work side-by-side with a UK Labour Government, led by Jeremy Corbyn. It’s a plan that will deliver for each and every community across Wales. But we need your help on the doorstep to make sure we can deliver it.

Over the past few weeks, we’ve shown what our people-powered campaign can do. Thousands of Welsh Labour members have been pounding the streets of towns, villages and cities spreading our positive vision for Wales’ prosperous future under a UK Labour Government.

Unlike the Tories who rely on their big donors, our campaign is funded by the generosity of hundreds of thousands of individual people who want to bring about real change.

Our Welsh Labour manifesto works hand in hand with the UK Manifesto in helping us deliver for Wales like never before, including:

  • £3.4bn extra, each year to invest in schools, the NHS and local government.
  • A green industrial revolution, creating thousands of new green jobs.
  • A £10 living wage, for all workers aged 16 and over.
  • A final say on Brexit, where Welsh Labour will campaign unequivocally to remain.
  • A ban on zero hours contracts, giving people the security they need at work.
  • Extend free social care, supporting more people when it really matters.
  • Strengthened parental rights, by extending statutory maternity leave to 12 months and doubling paternity leave.
  • Scrap tuition fees, building on the best student support package in the UK.
  • An end to the Tories’ disastrous Universal Credit, no ifs, no buts.
  • Four new bank holidays, including a public holiday for St. David’s Day.

    I hope you’ll agree that this plan is a blueprint for the Wales that we all want to see.

    And with your help over these crucial final few weeks of the campaign, that’s the future we can have.

    Welsh Labour is the only party that is standing up for Wales.

    Let’s get out there and spread the word – see you on the Labour Doorstep!

    I look forward to seeing you on the campaign trail!

    Best wishes,
    Mark Drakeford AM
    Welsh Labour Leader & First Minister of Wales

Disabled People’s Manifesto 2019

Yesterday I received the following email from Reclaiming Our Futures Alliance, outlining the Disabled People’s Manifesto which has been written in consultation with Disabled People’s Organisations and Disabled people across the UK. It is well worth reading and taking action on to ensure that the next UK Government take Disabled people and their wishes into consideration when introducing new policies.

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Our vision for equality and inclusion

Inclusion London is a member of Reclaiming Our Futures Alliance, which today released its Disabled People’s Manifesto, and demands for the first 100 days of the new government!

This manifesto has been written in consultation with Disabled People’s Organisations and Disabled people across the UK, and is based on the social model of disability and the cultural model of deafness. Now we need your help to campaign on it!

What we are calling for

  • Ending austerity, which disproportionately affected Disabled people
  • A planned programme of national and local investment to address the impact of austerity and progress the equality and inclusion for Disabled people,
  • Setting up a National Independent Living Service to replace our failing social care system
  • Deinstitutionalisation and a radical reform to mental health and mental capacity laws,
  • Scrapping Universal Credit and designing a new benefits system in co-production with Disabled people
  • Removing conditionality and sanctions
  • A fully inclusive education system
  • Measures to remove the barriers we face in employment, access to justice, housing and participation in all aspect of life.

We believe it is more important than ever that the political parties truly commit to co-producing its policies with Disabled people and our organisations, and uphold the principle of ‘nothing about us without us’.

Disabled People’s Manifesto 2019:

Our asks for the new government:

How can you use this manifesto?

We will be sharing this manifesto with political parties and candidates, but we need your help to support our campaign. Here is what you can do:

  • Share this manifesto with your local MP candidates.
  • Interview your MP candidates on some or all of the issues discussed in the manifesto.
  • Hold local hustings!
  • Run a voter registration drive to make sure as many Disabled people local to you have the opportunity to get their voices heard on polling day!
  • Use the local press and social media to publicise your events and our demands!

We have lots of information and ideas on what DDPOs can do on elections and voting, including legal responsibilities under Charity Law and the Lobbying Act, which can be accessed here: Election Resources and Guides.

Election 2019 more information here

 

Pulling Myself Together

I have been a little out of sorts over the past week or so, thanks to a chest infection. Thankfully, I have come out the other side and am feeling stronger with every passing day.

It is always scary to be inflicted with a chest infection, as I am only too aware that such infections usually finish off my brothers and sisters who live with Ataxia. I didn’t want to join those unlucky few at this time. There is an election to win before I go anywhere…

The article I have put together below, just sums up some of my moods and feelings over the past few days, while the madness continues with my valued members of staff also being stricken down by illness.

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FACEBOOK STATUS 1:

I will probably have to stay offline for the next few days as I have just seen the doctor who said I have a chest infection. Bloody hell, this is all I need. I have to take this seriously as living with Ataxia is enough on it’s own without the added complications of a chest infection. I am now on antibiotics so hopefully they will do the trick as I do not fancy a stint in the Maelor. Thankfully, I have some excellent PA’s who will help me get over this and I will be back to full strength in no time.

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FACEBOOK STATUS 2:

I have just had another home visit by a GP who has put me on a stronger set of antibiotics. Hopefully, these will calm me down and stop me from having regular panic attacks. If I can get a good night sleep, I am sure that will help me loads.

I have also had a letter from ICS detailing the protest for them to make a decision. Basically, I think they were just playing for time. I am too exhausted to think of the ramifications of this. That is a battle for another day…

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FACEBOOK STATUS 3:

A third out of hours doctor visited me last night and provided me with the super strength antibiotics that I need to shift this infection off my chest. It seems to be doing the trick and I am regaining my appetite while breathing has become easier.

I am disappointed that I still do not have the strength needed to attend the Nick Whitehead Theatre this evening to vote for Helen Grout as Wrexham’s Labour Party candidate for the forthcoming General Election. I am totally pleased to openly back Helen as the only candidate capable of making a real difference to the community of Wrexham as a whole.

I am also pleased that my good friend, Julie Rogers-Owen, will be attending the Hustings and voting in the only sensible way. If the people of Wrexham, really want to see positive politics in action then it is crucial that Labour Party members vote for Helen Grout tonight.

***

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

All work and no play makes Nathan a dull boy.

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I have two piles of books in my living room. They need shifting if only to quieten the taunting voices in my head. You know it makes sense…

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Please read the following article: Dancing on Thin Ice: Available Now

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There is still much work to be done on the #SaveWILG campaign. It seems as if recipients from several Local Authority areas are still waiting on the results of their assessments. I want to emphasise that this is not because of any failing from ICS Services – the independent assessment company who have been put in charge of carrying out the reassessments – but because we are still waiting on the Local Authorities that let us down in the first place. This appears to be a totally ludicrous situation, as it was because we had no confidence in the Councils in the first place, that we launched the campaign. They are still making us wait by holding up discussions with ICS Services. I want to make sure that this situation is sorted out way before the upcoming festive period, as all WILG recipients deserve this after the torrid time they have been put through.

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Please watch the following video before deciding what to do at the Ballot Box on December 12th: