Click here to read Simon’s blog
The leader of Scotland’s Catholic Church, Cardinal O’Brien has lent his support to the Campaign for a Fair Society.
The Cardinal said “I am very aware of the concern being expressed regarding the proposed changes to the welfare system (Welfare Reform Bill) and the potential impacts on individuals in receipt of benefits.”
If you have signed up to the Campaign but would like to be more actively involved, there is an opportunity to act as a local spokesperson.
We want to tell people through local media about unfair cuts and the Campaign’s response and need local spokespeople.
Local press and radio are interested in local issues so we need a list of people in each area who can be interviewed on radio or give a quote for a press release. You don’t have to have experience – we will provide a briefing pack and support.
For more information and a job description: [email protected]
A report published by Demos, the think tank, shows how well local authorities are coping with cuts.
A map shows the best and worst-performing authorities (and those in between). The best include Oxfordshire, Kingston on Hull and Ceredigion. The worst include Southwark, Sunderland and Conwy.
The survey considered six criteria – for example, changes in the social care budget and the eligibility threshold for services.
Click here to see more detail about criteria and a complete map
>Scottish organisations have written a letter to the Scotsman newspaper highlighting the dangers of a UK Supreme Court decision. The ruling says that Kensington and Chelsea Council is able to remove night-time help for a disabled woman to use the toilet and replace that support with incontinence pads.
The letter points out that a previous decision by the court had ruled that prisoners had been robbed of their human rights by the practice of using the toilet in front of cellmates. The letter suggests that prisoners, therefore, have more rights than disabled people and that ‘bean counters’ in councils will be rubbing their hands at the potential savings at the expense of rights and dignity.
Click here to read the letter
>Major service provider for people with learning difficulties – The Brandon Trust – is encouraging people to get behind the Campaign for a Fair Society.
Service providers support many people and families and employ thousands of support staff. They recognise that the cuts unfairly target disabled people and older people – and this will lead to many people losing their support and many staff losing their jobs. By reaching out to the people they serve, their staff and the wider community, the Brandon Trust is helping to address the injustice of the cuts.
Click here to see the Brandon Trust’s webpage about the Campaign
>West Sussex Adult Services Select Committee has just cancelled its May 19 meeting due to ‘lack of business’.
The Don’t Cut Us Out Campaign reports that the decision was taken the same week as:
- Their campaign delivered a 10,000 strong petition forcing a debate on the whole subject of cuts to social care at the next Full Council meeting on May 13.
- The Council faces the prospect of having 2,000 disabled, elderly and their carers shouting ‘Don’t Cut Us Out’ on its front steps at a protest the same morning.
- The Council is facing a £100,000 Judicial Review into how Adult Services allegedly mismanaged the ‘consultation’ process that preceded these cuts.
>Submission to the Joint Committee on Human Rights
The Campaign for a Fair Society has made its submission to the Joint Committee and its inquiry into the implementation of the right of disabled people to independent living. The Campaign makes the case for a radical reform of the current welfare system and the establishment of a meaningful right to independent living.
Click here to see the submission
Disability groups force Council to back down over plans to set ‘super critical’ eligibility threshold.
Birmingham City Council has come under heavy criticism for its plans to only meet certain critical needs relating to personal care. But the Council still intends to raise its threshold to ‘critical’.
Birmingham City Council had planned to raise its eligibility threshold not just to ‘critical’ but to a ‘super critical’ level meaning that it only intended meeting the personal care needs of people who met the ‘critical’ criteria.
It now acknowledges that the impact on younger adults had not been sufficiently thought through and, under pressure from disability groups, the Council has been forced to back down. However, the raising of thresholds from substantial to critical will still have a serious impact on an estimated 4100 local people.