Reg Ch. No. SC031619
Company No. 243492
IS…………….. Nothing about disabled people
Without disabled people
Edition 24, June 2006
Inclusion Scotland news
IS begins process of updating the
Manifesto For Inclusion
by Bill Campbell
As I’m sure many of you will remember, last year
we launched the Manifesto For Inclusion at the
Gathering in Glasgow (see picture, left). This
unique document , written by disabled people
themselves it covers some 20 issues around: Civil
& Human Rights; Independent Living; Access; Social Policy and Health, and has
been much acclaimed by politicians, policy & decision makers; the public and
private sectors and the disabled peoples’ movement across Scotland, the UK &
Whilst the Manifesto touches on many issues affecting the lives of disabled
people, it was never designed to be in any way party political. Its aim is to inform
the thoughts of decision makers. The Manifesto was also designed to be a ‘living
document’ that could be updated and expanded as Inclusion Scotland expands its
work further into Scottish society. We have now reached the time when this
updating work needs to be done in order to keep the document fresh, thought
provoking and interesting, ahead of the Scottish Parliamentary and local
government elections next year.
The IS May newsletter heralded the first meeting of the CONTACT 100 project on
Thursday 15th June at the Centre for Inclusive Living in Glasgow, which will
start the process of re-writing the Manifesto. It will now also feature attendance by
representatives from the Scottish Executive to discuss with us how they can best
involve and engage with disabled people in the coming months in meeting their
obligations in the Disability Equality Duty. We would be very pleased if people
from your organisation could come along and participate in this most important
event. This is an excellent opportunity to get your, and your organisation’s, voice
heard right at the beginning of this process.
Continued on next page……
Updating their Manifesto For Inclusion continued
We look forward to seeing you all on the 15th of June. For more details and to
book a place, please contact Liz Ross at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone
0141 887 7090. NOTHING ABOUT US, WITHOUT US
Launch of Best Employer Award
The impact of migraine is often unrecognised: yet
there are over 6 million people in the UK with migraine (more than diabetes,
epilepsy and asthma combined) and 90,000 are absent from work or school every
day as a result.
As part of its Working with Migraine campaign, The Migraine Trust has launched
the Best Employer Award. The Award will recognise companies with sickness
policies and workplace environments that do not adversely affect people with
migraine. Employees can nominate their employers and companies can nominate
themselves. Winners will be presented with their awards at The Migraine Trust
International Symposium in London in September 2006.
For more information contact Laurelle Hughes on 020 7436 1336, email
email@example.com or visit the website www.migrainetrust.org/nomination
Looking forward to Independent Futures
Policy Press have just published a new book, 'Independent
Futures: Creating user-led disability services in a disabling
society' by Colin Barnes and Geof Mercer.
Over the past forty years, the number of disability related
support services controlled and run by disabled people
themselves has increased significantly in the UK and
internationally. As a result, greater user involvement in
service provision and delivery is a key priority for many
western Governments. This book provides the first comprehensive review and
analysis of these developments in the UK.
Jane Campbell, former chair of the Social Care Institute for Excellence, has said
of the book, "Independent futures provides a timely and critical evaluation of user
controlled services, identifying principle forces that inhibit their development and
explaining the implications for social policy. It presents essential evidence and
analysis for policy makers working within health, social care, education, housing
and equality. It will also be a vital text for both undergraduate and postgraduate
students in the social sciences and government and politics."
To order a copy tel 01235 465 500 or go to their website www.policypress.org.uk
and type Colin Barnes into the search facility - they are currently offering a 20%
discount on all online orders.
Launch of local research document ‘Empathy not
As part of ICOD’s ongoing programme of research into the
needs of disabled people in Inverclyde, they recently launched ‘Empathy NOT
sympathy II’. The publication was launched after their full council meeting on the
The new book is the outcome of survey information gathered by interviewing
disabled people in the former Social Inclusion Partnership (SIP) areas of
Greenock and follows on from ‘Empathy NOT sympathy’ a survey of those in the
former SIP areas of Port Glasgow.
Disabled people were asked about a variety of topics including: health services
and care, benefits, education and employment, socialising and accessing their
communities. ICOD hopes that the information contained in this new document
will help the decision-makers in their community to plan and provide services for
disabled people in Inverclyde.
ICOD will be distributing a number of free copies to local organisations and also
hopes to sell copies to universities and others with an interest in disability studies.
For more information or to order a copy of the report, which costs £20 + postage
and packaging at £1.50 per copy, tel 01475 732 700
ICOD Takes Dropped Kerbs Campaign to
the Scottish Parliament
Last December and January a group of Shopmobility
users and friends stood guard over a number of town
centre dropped kerb locations. They were doing this
to highlight the fact that these kerbs require to be
kept clear to allow wheelchair users and others
access their town centres safely and easily.
ICOD has taken the matter to the Scottish Parliament’s Petitions Committee
requesting it to ask Parliament to make it a Road Traffic Offence to block dropped
kerbs. Jim MacLeod, who attended the Committee in Dunfermline said, “I am
disappointed at not being given the chance to speak to the petition and am
concerned that the matter may be lost sight of. The Committee has agreed to
write to a number of interested parties, and I hope progress can be made, this is
important for all disabled people in the country.
The matter has been scheduled for reconsideration at the Petitions Committee on
14 June when hopefully it will receive the attention it deserves. ICOD will be
watching closely and would ask motorists to consider the needs of disabled
people and others and don’t block our way by parking across dropped kerbs.
Taken from ICOD’s newsletter Linkability for more information about the
organisation visit the website www.icod.org.uk
Scottish government to tackle parking bay abuse
Campaigners fighting the abuse of disabled parking bays have
welcomed the Scottish government's decision to commission in-
depth research on the issue.
The research, which is being carried out by Transport and Travel
Research Ltd, is looking closely at the problem of non-disabled
motorists parking in disabled bays in Scotland.
The report will list best practice guidelines and make recommendations on how
organisations that provide off-street parking can address the issue.
A Scottish Executive spokeswoman said the report was commissioned because
the issue of parking bay abuse had been debated in the Scottish parliament and
was a prominent issue for many MSPs in their constituencies. She added that it
was too soon to speculate on what would be done with the research findings.
Mary Grace, chairman of The Blue Badge Network, said she was confident that
the Scottish Executive would act on the results.
She said, "[Bay abuse] is a never-ending problem and of course the people who
get hurt the most are the disabled people. Everyone else washes their hands of
it." Taken from Disability Now magazine, May 2006
Victims cash in on creative rulings
Money, it seems, is not everything - at least where the local
government ombudsman is concerned. Recently, the ombudsman's
office, which recommends redress if it finds in favour of individuals'
complaints against councils, said Leeds city council should fund a
two-week holiday for a disabled tenant and his family, after the
Anne Seex council neglected to make appropriate adjustments to his property.
The tenant also received £5,000 in compensation - but the holiday, said the
ombudsman, Anne Seex, would "reflect the strain placed on family life and
relationships as a result of the council's failure".
Seex, who took up her post last Autumn, is developing a reputation for creative
compensation. Earlier this year, she found Blackpool borough council guilty of
maladministration in the case of a vulnerable 79-year-old woman who died while
under the care of a private home care company contracted by the council. As well
as saying that cash compensation should be paid to the family, the ombudsman
recommended that the council produce a memorial to the dead woman.
According to the ombudsman's office, non-financial redress is part and parcel of
what they do. "The whole idea of the remedies is that they are trying to put people
back in the position they were in before something happened," a spokeswoman
says. "So it is not necessarily only about money." The Guardian newspaper, May 06
Anger as First axes easy access bus route
Parents and disabled people are furious that bus giant First has
axed pram and wheelchair access on a key Glasgow route.
Angry passengers in the north of the city say they've been left
stranded by the move.
Customers have been told the No 11, which runs from Parkhall
to Bishopbriggs, is not busy enough to merit the use of newer
low-floor vehicles. But dozens of passengers have contacted the firm to complain
about the service cuts including Penny and Fraser Rigley from Germiston.
Penny, 28, who relies on the service to travel into the city centre with the couple's
14-month-old daughter Molly Jane, said, "I've been getting taxis into town or trying
to fold the pram up but if she's asleep I don't want to disturb her. It's costing me
£5 to get into town now. Of the three buses I can get, none has pram access."
Fraser, 29, who works as a fundraiser, said, "We pay the same fares as anyone
else - we should be entitled to the same service."
Springburn MSP Paul Martin, said, "Mr Rigley has raised a very legitimate
complaint. I've written to the First Group, requesting that the decision to remove
low-floor vehicles from service 11 be revisited."
The change of service has also been criticised by disability rights campaigners
who pointed out that all public transport will be required to be disability compliant
by the year 2020 in line with new disability discrimination laws.
Carol Stewart of the Disability Rights Commission in Scotland said, "The bus
company is not breaking the law but we'd be concerned if they are removing a
service. Accessible public transport is essential to enable disabled people to live
independent lives. We urge shops, restaurants and pubs to be more accessible -
but people need decent public transport to get into town in the first place."
A spokesman for First said, "Our policy for the allocation of low-floor vehicles is to
use them on our very busy high frequency services, thus ensuring the maximum
number of passengers benefit.
"We are taking delivery of around 200 new vehicles over the next two years.
However, it will be some time before the entire fleet is converted." Evening Times,
The Department for Work and Pensions is
creating a tailored ‘easy read’ briefing paper on
the Disability Discrimination Act for people with learning difficulties. For more
information on customised publications call 020 7089 2410
Penny Gray is author of The Madness of Our Lives, a collection
of personal testimonies on mental breakdown. Annie Kelly
interviews her in the Guardian Society supplement.
Why did you write this book?
I've been fascinated by the mind and by mental health ever since
I was young. But the trigger factor was having a breakdown
myself. I wanted to hear about other people's experiences.
How did you collect the stories in the book?
I advertised through Survivors Speak Out, a London-based
mental health organisation; through an advert in the British Medical Journal, to
reach the medical profession; and through personal contacts.
Who should read this book?
It is meant for anyone who has had a breakdown, or who cares for someone who
has, including everyone who works in the mental health services.
What precipitates a mental breakdown?
In general, it's upsetting life events. For four out of the 11 people I interviewed it
was some kind of loss or bereavement. Obviously, childhood abuse and trauma
is a factor - but those with loving families are not immune.
What lessons can be learned from the book?
That we all have distress and anyone can crack up given the right triggers - and
that recovery is possible.
What mental health stereotypes need to be smashed?
That "mad people" are somehow different from the rest of humanity - they're the
same as you and me. We all have distress.
What's your next project?
Isn't it bad luck to say? It's on the supposed biochemical imbalances in the brain
that are said to underlie mental illness.
What was your favourite book of last year?
It's a toss-up between John Peel and Sheila Ravenscroft's Margrave of the
Marshes, and Terry Lynch's Beyond Prozac.
What's your favourite writing spot?
My little office on my boat, from where I can watch the Isis rolling by and all the
Penny Gray is a healthcare writer and editor. To order The Madness of Our
Lives (Jessica Kingsley), RRP £17.99, with free p&p call 0870 836 0875 or
go to guardian.co.uk/bookshop
From the Guardian Society supplement, May 06
Law & Legislation
SAMH welcomes mental health legislation
New rights for patients held at the State Hospital at
Carstairs have been welcomed by Scotland’s largest
mental health charity.
Shona Neil, Chief Executive of the Scottish Mental Health (SAMH) said the
change in the law, which came into effect in May, would give ‘entrapped’ patients
the right of appeal to the Mental Health Tribunal.
They will be able to declare that they are being detained in conditions of
excessive security. If the appeal is granted they will be found suitable
However, before the tribunal makes the order, it must be satisfied that the patient
no longer needs to be detained in the conditions of special security provided at
the State Hospital. Where an order is made, the tribunal can set a time limit of up
to three months for the patient to be transferred to an appropriate hospital.
Some patients have found themselves detained unnecessarily in conditions of
high security at the State Hospital for long periods of time, in some case years.
One of the reasons that this has happened is because of the lack of local secure
facilities to which people can be transferred. A number of these facilities are
currently being developed.
Neil said, “We owe it to people who are detained in hospital to do our best to help
them recover and move on – that includes making sure that hospital
accommodation and facilities are appropriate for people’s needs. This new right
is a big step forward in helping protect the interests of individual patients, and in
helping drive forward much needed service development.” From the TFN, Issue 391
Wheelchair user ‘does a runner’
It was described as a ‘miracle’ by a by-stander. A woman in a
wheelchair, whom police had arrested hours earlier, was waiting to
be examined at hospital when she got up and sprinted away from police.
Laura Lee Medley, 35, who had sued in at least four California cities over injuries
she claimed she sustained while trying to navigate her wheelchair, had been
arrested for fraud when she complained of medical issues.
Medley, who claimed to be paralysed from a drunk driving accident, was taken by
police to a local hospital, Long Beach prosecutor Belinda Mayes said. “While
she’s waiting for an examination, she gets up from the chair and runs,” the
prosecutor said. Somebody remarked, “That’s where the great miracle occurred.”
Medley was quickly caught and is facing charges of filing false documents,
attempted grand theft and insurance fraud. Medley was also being sought on
arrest warrants by the states of Oregon and Washington. Herald newspaper May 06
Seven of the top 10 websites fail access test
Six of the UK’s most popular websites have made a public
commitment to accessibility after research highlighted that they exclude disabled
Accessible technology charity AbilityNet polled over 100 disabled people for their
favourite websites. It then examined the top 10 – Amazon, the BBC, Ebay,
Google, The Guardian, Lastminute, Nationwide, The Premier League, The Times
and Yahoo. Only the BBC, Google and Nationwide were awarded AbilityNet’s
minimum criteria of three stars, signifying a base level of accessibility and
compliance with W3C priority 1 checkpoints.
AbilityNet then invited each site to make a public commitment to accessibility; to
date the BBC, Nationwide, The Guardian, Lastminute, the Premier League and
the Times have obliged. Let’s hope the others follow soon.
Dates for your diary
The National Federation of the Blind [Scottish Central
Branch] is holding a Public Meeting on ‘Computers for Blind
People’ at the Quality Station Hotel in Perth on Saturday 24
June from 2pm. The organisation’s aim is to improve the advice, equipment
provision, training and support for computer use by visually impaired people so
that they can read and write text and also communicate via the internet.
This is an important meeting since it forms part of the Scottish Executive’s
consultation on Digital Inclusion Policy in Scotland. (You are included if you
have ready access to the internet and associated technology.) The meeting will
be chaired by Kate McLean MSP, Convener of the Cross Party Parliamentary
Group on Visual Impairment.
There will be several short talks on aspects of the present situation such as
software, availability of information & training, followed by a discussion open to all.
Come and make it a lively debate by giving your views and your experience! This
is your chance to explain the benefits and difficulties of home computer use for
visually impaired people.
To book a place or book lunch at 12.15pm please call Pauline Topham on 01382
66 8543 or Jean Slane on 01382 730 064 or e-mail
Inclusion Scotland welcomes new members, feedback, news & views. For
more information & back copies see the website
www.inclusionscotland.org to contribute email firstname.lastname@example.org
For membership information email: email@example.com or write to
Joan Taft at 5a Sir James Clark Building, Abbey Mill Business Centre,
Paisley PA1 1TJ or tel: 0141 887 7058 fax: 0141 848 7551
Views expressed in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect those of Inclusion Scotland, who will not necessarily be bound by