Campaign launched to save vital service for adults with learning disabilities

Campaign launched to save vital service for adults with learning disabilities

Campaign
The Learning Disability Alliance Scotland along with carers and service users have today launched a campaign to save an essential service for adults with learning disabilities in the Glasgow area. Independence Options, a support service which supports adults with disabilities to become more confident and fit for work has had its funding withdrawn by Glasgow City Council in January of this year.  By August, this service will be closed.  Its parent organisation, Unity Enterprises has appealed against the cut and now LDAS has met with angry carers and service users and agreed to launch a campaign to save the service. Independence options provides important support to help people become part of their community.  Mark Davidson, who is supported to work at Wickes 2 days a week says, “Without their help,…
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Too Busy?

Too Busy?

Campaign
In the face of public questions over the management of social care in Edinburgh, senior staff and councillors at the City of Edinburgh council have declared themselves too busy to meet with 175 carers and service users in a public meeting. “Who really gets to choose” is a conference to be held on 15th April by 3 Scottish voluntary organisations, ECAS, LDAS and ARC Scotland who are worried about the quality and provision of care services in Edinburgh and the rest of Scotland.  Speaking at the event will be leading politicians such as Johann Lamont and service users like the Reverend Graham Monteith. Recently a University of Glasgow study by Professor Nick Watson found serious weaknesses in the quality of care in Edinburgh.  There was limited support for some people…
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Edinburgh Council Doesn’t Listen

Edinburgh Council Doesn’t Listen

Campaign
In a surprising decision City of Edinburgh Council has refused to hear delegations from disabled organisations on the quality of care in the city.  Delegations from the Learning Disability Alliance Scotland, Powerful Partnerships, CAPS advocacy project, Arc Scotland and In Control Scotland were due to be heard  by the Full Council on Thursday 30th April.  They were due to speak in support of a motion from Cllr Ewan Aitken. Approval for the delegations was given up to a week ago. Many carers and people with disabilities were due to attend in support and had arranged for taxis and personal support to be there in time. At lunchtime on Wednesday 29th April  Lord Provost, George Grubb has used an obscure standing order to stop discussion on the motion tomorrow.  As a…
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East Lothian Council Listens

East Lothian Council Listens

Campaign
On Thursday 30th April, East Lothian Council's petition committee heard a delegation from the community campaign arguing for better involvement of people with learning disabilities in the future of the services that support them. The petition called for a rethink on East Lothian Council’s decision to put housing support services for people with learning disabilities and other support needs out to competitive tender. It asked that East Lothian Council puts this process on hold until those affected have an opportunity to consider alternatives to tendering. The petition was supported by People First, ELCAP Advisory, Smart Talk Ark Housing Participation and the Learning Disability Alliance Scotland. A total of 402 signatures were handed in. Lorna Wynn who supports the Smart Talk group started by saying " Many people say they don’t…
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Take Action on care in Edinburgh

Take Action on care in Edinburgh

Campaign
On Thursday 30th April Edinburgh Council will be discussing the need for more help for those people applying for Direct Payments.  Come help us lobby the council.   Councillor Ewan Aitken has put up a motion to the Full Council. Council notes the conference "Who gets to Choose" held on 15th April in the City Chambers and agrees to receive the report from the day Council further notes the concerns raised by many participants about how services for people with complex needs are to be delivered in the future Council agrees for a cross party group, led by the Convener of Health, Social Care and Housing committee to meet with conference participants to discuss their concerns. With lots of services being tendered right now, many more people are applying for…
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Edinburgh Council Health And Social Care Managers Too Busy To Meet With Carers And Users

Edinburgh Council Health And Social Care Managers Too Busy To Meet With Carers And Users

Campaign
In the face of public questions over the management of social care in Edinburgh, senior staff and councillors at the City of Edinburgh council have declared themselves too busy to meet with 175 carers and service users in a public meeting. “Who really gets to choose” is a conference to be held on 15th April by 3 Scottish voluntary organisations, ECAS, LDAS and ARC Scotland who are worried about the quality and provision of care services in Edinburgh and the rest of Scotland.Speaking at the event will be leading politicians such as Johann Lamont and service users like the Reverend Graham Monteith. Recently a University of Glasgow study by Professor Nick Watson found serious weaknesses in the quality of care in Edinburgh.There was limited support for some people who needed…
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Children with special needs being unfairly excluded from school

Children with special needs being unfairly excluded from school

Campaign
Information showing how many young people have been excluded from school in Scotland were published earlier this year. For children with special needs it paints a worrying picture. The new law on Additional Support for Learning was meant to improve things. Instead it hardly seems to make a difference. Nearly a quarter of young people excluded from school had special needs while they form a tiny part of the school population. Schools can act too fast. We have known children who have been excluded permanently for breaking a single window. This helps to break patterns of education and social skill development. But perhaps worse are the hidden exclusion, when parents wanting to register are told that there are better schools for their children elsewhere. Children never given a chance to…
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We Need To Talk About Buses

We Need To Talk About Buses

Accessible Politics, Campaign, Information
BUSES are a big deal. Especially for people with little by way of alternative options at their disposal, such as the bulk of people with learning disabilities. For years now Scotland’s government, bus companies and other organisations have been working hard to make buses more accessible for vulnerable people. At present, as well as travel accessibility being a core area of the Scottish government’s Fairer Scotland for Disabled People plan, which includes the developing Disability Travel Hub, it is also an aim of the new Transport Bill. So on paper it is fair to say that progress is being made.  So why are people with learning disabilities feeling as though bus travel still does not meet their accessibility needs? Bad Experiences As most people who work with people with learning…
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Forth Valley Stronger Together at Holyrood

Forth Valley Stronger Together at Holyrood

Campaign
On Wednesday 3rd of June, The Forth Valley Stronger Together were shown around the Scottish Parliament by Bruce Crawford MSP. It was a great opportunity to see where the big decisions are made and to hear the latest news and political developments. Here's everyone in the very bright Debating Chamber just in front of the First Minister's desk. Thanks Bruce!  
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Report from City of Edinburgh Council Health, Social Care and Housing Committee, 19th May 2009

Report from City of Edinburgh Council Health, Social Care and Housing Committee, 19th May 2009

Campaign
Three delegations attended the committee and the public gallery was packed out in support. Each delegation was allowed 5 minutes ot make their case and then 10 minutes for questions for all three groups. The Learning Disability Alliance Scotland delegation made points on · Waiting lists for Direct Payments · Lack of investment in supporting people taking up Direct payment · Concerns over the quality of service that people received and the failure to incorporate Care Commission reports in assessing the quality of new services · The importance of staff relationship in good care and the danger of overreliance on TUPE to manage staff transfer in tendering. The Powerful Partnerships delegation made points on · Concerns over cost savings · Lack of involvement of service users in the process ·…
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