Minutes for Feb 17 Disabled People’s Question Time

We now have the minutes for the Disabled People’s Question Time that took place on 23rd February 2017.

For a downloadable file in word of the below, click this link. Disabled People’s Question Time Feb 2017 – Minutes

Kensington and Chelsea Disabled People’s Question Time

Thursday 23rd February 2017

Present: Larry Da Silva, Beverley Wade, Lili Djuric, Sarah Mutesi Kibidi, Janet Forbes, Nick Wimborne, Paul Meade, Maria Pace, Susan Milbourne, Glenda Joseph, Margaret Cairns-Irvin, Roselyne Strebel, Marian O’Donoghue, Dorota Zielinska

Chair: Jenny Hurst


Judith Blakeman (JB) is the councilor for Notting Dale Ward and the Labour group’s spokesperson for Housing and property.

Geoff Taylor Meade (GTM) is Partnership Support Manager with the DWP. His remit is broad in terms of welfare, but unfortunately he is unable to comment about the other aspects that people might raise.

Victoria Borwick is the MP for Kensington.


Training -

Q. The Department of Transport has a programme to support more people to become mechanics (and other technical jobs). Why can’t this be run here?

Panel members were not sure what the scheme was.

Action: ADKC to find out more and feed back.



A recent court case clarified that bus drivers should be doing more to ensure that wheelchair users are given priority for the wheelchair space in the bus. Transport for All is a good organisation that takes up disabled people’s issues.

Actions: 1. Disabled people with issues about accessing public transport can contact their councilor / MP who can help them raise the issue with Transport for All.

2. Members of the mobility forum will keep transport issues in mind.


Health and Social Care:

Q. How we can work together to improve things with Health and Social Care leading up to and following discharge from hospital

A. NHS and Social Care is in crisis but RBKC is not as bad as other areas.Local authorities can increase council tax to pay for Social Care. RBKC has increased council tax but none is being put towards Social Care. We all think that Health and Social Care is important but people who pay council tax might find increases difficult. Discharge services are commissioned by the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). The service seems better in the South (Chelsea and Westminster) because there is a social services team in the hospital (as it is located in RBKC) but also because many richer people in the south choose private health care – so there is less demand on the NHS. The other hospitals are not in the borough and St Charles is a different type of service.

Actions: 1. JB and the Labour group to feedback concerns of those present and recommend that there should be an increase which is ring-fenced to social care.

2. VB can raise delayed discharge / lack of services after discharge issues with the appropriate people.

Q. Why are there are no fibromyalgia services in the borough when other boroughs have them?

A. The decision was that there were too few people who would benefit.

Q. Why are Mental Health services only available for people in crisis / when they have tried to kill themselves – wouldn’t preventing deterioration be better for all?

A. There will be a new service – in Malton Road – but it doesn’t exist yet.

Q. There are two contracted Homecare providers in the borough – MiHomecare in the North and Mears in the South – they have very long contracts and there are big problems with the services that they provide. What is being done about this?

A. Panelists were unable to comment but suggested other people who will better be able to answer questions around social care.

Actions 1. ADKC to follow up with appropriate people and invite them to feed back at the next meeting.

2. Local disabled people are welcome to raise concerns with their local Councillor / MP who will forward on their concerns.

Q. Why does it take so long to get adaptations completed?

(Question unanswered for reason above and will be carried over to next meeting)

Benefits/ Welfare:

Q. Why do we always have to start from scratch when we already have a history with you?

A. Although you always have to do a new form, what you wrote previously is taken into account.

Q. What about if you have difficulty communicating or you have a mental health condition (instead of or as well as a physical health condition).

A. Many people find it difficult to complete benefits forms, so it is vital to get help completing the forms, especially if you need help communicating your difficulties and /or when you have mental health issues too. If you have good and bad days – think of the difficulties you have on the bad days.

Q. Why aren’t people with serious medical conditions and plenty of evidence believed?

A. The benefits system is based on rules and a process – it doesn’t discriminate between people with a severe problem and people with less severe problems. It is important to have good supporting evidence from medical professionals. If you don’t agree with the decision you can ask for the mandatory reconsideration and appeal.

Q. What about people who are too unwell to go through the appeal or who have other things to worry about? There is only a certain length of time you have.

A. You should be able to get help with an appeal. You should also be able to have someone with you.

Action: GTM to provide information about the local services that he has contact with who can help.

Q. The government wants more disabled people to get into work but it seems that they make it very difficult. Why aren’t there systems in place that help, not hinder?

A. There are flaws in the system. Sometimes one department doesn’t talk to the other and often complaints are due to the delays. There have been issues supporting people who transition from benefits to works but Universal Credit should minimize these and make things easier.

Also, a recent consultation event enabled local disabled people and employers to comment on the Work and Health Green Paper, including looking at the Work Capability Assessment which many people successfully appeal. RBKC ran an event to hear from local people to inform reports that have been sent to the government.

Q. How can we persuade employers to take us on when we are having all the worry of battling with the DWP?

A. There is still disparity between working disabled and non-disabled people. At the event, employers too said that they needed more support when employing disabled people too. Disability Confident is set up for this and to be a support network (for employers).

Q. What is the situation regarding people are having to pay the Bedroom Tax?

There are still discretionary housing payments (DHP) that you can contact the council about. They decide whether to pay them or not and they cover some of the cost for a short time (the length of time is also discretionary). Sometimes working with housing associations to find a smaller property from within their own stock works well.

Regeneration / local changes:

Q. In the north of the borough, there has been regeneration resulting in the loss of easy wheelchair / ambulance access to the disabled adapted housing. What can be done?

A.It is important to bring such issues to the correct person – either the local councillor or to the appropriate council officer.

Q. Also what can we do about the missing dropped curbs, or places where they are no longer protected by double yellow lines (to prevent parking)?

Actions: 1. JB to ask Ward councilor to get in contact with member.

2. Disabled people can raise issues of access with the ADKC Access Group.

3. ADKC Access Group can collate information to bring to the appropriate cabinet member or council officer.

Q. What will be happening about ADKC when there is regeneration in the area?

A. This is definitely something you need to raise with Nick Paget-Brown at the next meeting. From the plans that were on display recently, there doesn’t seem to be any provision for ADKC, the Latymer Community Church, the Pig and Whistle, or for parking. Representatives will be available between 1-5 on Friday afternoons at ADKC to discuss plans.

JH thanked Westway Development Trust who have kindly sponsored our two Question Time meetings – the next is the same time next month – 23rd March – when we will hear the updates from this meeting.

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PB user group helps NHS create personalised care plans

“Experts by Experience” from ADKC’s Personal Budget User Group met with key officials developing Personalised Care Plans for use with Personal Health Budgets.

A group of 8 people with a lot of experience about care and support plans (for themselves or for relatives) met with officials from the NHS digital health team to help them explore what people’s experiences were when it came to what should be in a personalised support plan.

We discussed:

  • What are people’s experiences of Personalised Care and Support Plans?
  • What people think should be in a personalised plan?
  • What type of information should be covered?
  • Whose words should be reflected in the plan  and who should write is?
  • Who should have access to all or some of the plan?
  • What type of technology could be used to help people keep their plans up to date?
  • What concerns do people have about using comuterised care plans?

Our meeting is one of 6 – 3, including ours are for people with longterm health conditions and 3 others are for people with learning disabilities or Autism.

Once all meetings are completed the NHS will use the research to make sure that people on Personal Health Budgets can benefit from personalised care and support plans!

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Monday’s PRAG cancelled.

We have had to cancel our upcoming (March 17) PRAG (Positive Rights Action Group) meeting. This is a one off.

Don’t forget though that our Disabled Person’s Question time (part two) is on Thursday 23rd March from 4-6. We want a good turn up!

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Great news – swim vouchers!

We have been told that the free Swim Voucher scheme is going so well that we can continue to offer them for a bit after the official expiry date.. so come along and get yours to enable you to have a free swim at Kensington Leisure Centre!

See our previous post for more information by clicking here .

Come along and collect yours from recieption in ADKC.

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Enquiry into Housing for Disabled people

Our colleagues at the Equality and Human Rights Council want your views…

The call for evidence is now open:

Housing for disabled people: have your say

On 14 December 2016 the Commission launched a formal inquiry on housing for disabled people. It will look at whether the availability of accessible and adaptable housing, and the support services around it, is fulfilling disabled people’s rights to live independently. Our inquiry will cover England, Scotland and Wales.

What is an inquiry?

The Commission has a legal power, under section 16 of the Equality Act 2006, to conduct an inquiry into anything relating to its equality and human rights duties. This helps us to collect evidence to gain a clear picture of a particular sector or issue, where we feel there is a benefit to wider society. We can then use our findings to make recommendations.

What is the problem?

Housing and associated support is an important part of independent living. Without appropriate housing it is much harder to access employment, education, leisure and recreational opportunities and the risk of illness and disability is increased.

According to one housing report, there are 1.8 million disabled people whose housing needs are not met. Another report estimated that there is only enough funding to pay for one in every ten people who want to adapt their homes.

Tenancy support and advice, such as help with budgeting, can help to make sure people are able to stay in their rented home and are not forced to leave. These services are particularly important for some groups, such as people with learning disabilities. There is a worry that less funding may mean these services are taken away. There is also a worry that not enough accessible or adaptable houses are being built to meet the needs of disabled people.

What is the inquiry looking at?

Full details of what the inquiry will cover can be found in the terms of reference, which you can download below.

Or watch the British Sign Language (BSL) video. (click the web link at the bottom of the page to see the original website)

You can now submit your evidence

You can submit your evidence in a range of accessible formats.

Our call for evidence is open until 23:59 on Tuesday 18 April 2017.

We want to hear from disabled people and relevant organisations in England, Scotland and Wales. We want to understand whether the availability of accessible and adaptable housing, and the support services around it, fulfils disabled people’s rights to live independently.

Advice on individual cases

We can only help with individual cases in exceptional circumstances, and not as part of the inquiry. If you need advice or help with your personal situation you should contact an advice agency. For further information see help and advice, below.

When will the inquiry end?

We aim to publish our report and findings towards the end of 2017.

Contact details

For further information about the inquiry please contact EHRCHousingInquiry@equalityhumanrights.com





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London Underground Turn Up and Go Survey

From our friends at London Underground:

London Underground Turn Up and Go assistance – Your help please

On our London Underground services we operate a policy that older and disabled customers can request assistance from station staff on arrival, without needing to book in advance – Turn Up and Go assistance.

We are aware there are times when customers don’t get the assistance they need to travel. We would like to actively gather some feedback to help us understand what is happening, why it is happening and how we might solve the issues that customers are facing.

We would really appreciate your help with this, in the following two ways:

Direct feedback from older and disabled customers

London Underground operates a policy that older and disabled customers can request assistance from station staff on arrival, without needing to book in advance – Turn Up and Go assistance.They are aware there are times when customers don’t get the assistance they need to travel, and are asking older and disabled people to complete a survey about their experiences of Tube staff assistance.  The link to the survey is here: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/lutuag.  If the survey is not accessible to you, you can email lutuagsurvey@tfl.gov.uk and ask for somebody to call you to complete it over telephone / textphone. The survey will be open until 31st March 2017, and you can complete it more than once.


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Accessible performances at Sadler’s Wells.

From colleagues at Sadler’s Wells -

I am getting in touch from Sadler’s Wells in North London as we have a number of Captioned, BSL-Interpreted and Audio –Described performances coming up this season. Please find the details of these below.

Wild Card: Dan Daw Captioned Performance Fri 31 Mar Dance maker and performer Dan Daw performs, alongside other artists, the UK premiere of ON ONE CONDITION,  a stripped back, affecting solo by Graham Adey. Find out more

Breakin’ Convention Co-compered by a BSL-interpreter 29 & 30 Apr The world’s biggest festival of hip hop dance, is back at Sadler’s Wells for its 14th year running. Find out more

Compagnie du Hanneton / James Thierrée Audio Described Performance Sun 7 Mar Step into the beautifully weird world of multi-talented performer and director James Thierrée, Audio Described by Roz Chalmers. Find out more

Northern Ballet Audio Described Performance Sat 13 May Northern Ballet returns with the sensational true story of the notorious lover Casanova, complete with pre show Movement Workshop and Touch Tour. Find out more

Akram Khan Company Audio Described Performance Sat 3 Jun In a much anticipated return, Akram Khan performs in his hugely popular tale of home and heritage including a unique opportunities to go on stage and explore the set as part of a post-show Touch Tour. Find out more

Rambert – Ghost Dances Sign Language Interpreted Perfomance Wed 17 May Christopher Bruce’s masterpiece, one of Rambert’s most celebrated works returns to Sadler’s Wells for the first time in 14 years. Find out more

BSL Interpreted Talks The season we are hosting a post-show BSL Interpreted Talk after James Compagnie du Hanneton / James Thierrée on Thu 4 May, and pre-show BSL Interpreted Talk before Rambert’s performance on Wed 17 May.

I hope you find this information of interest. It would be wonderful to know if you are able to share this information with members of your organisation or if there is any more information you require.


Sadler’s Wells Theatre

Rosebery Avenue

London EC1R 4TN

t – +44 (0)20 7863 8110


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Disability Equality Roadshow (Not ADKC event)

We have been asked to circulate information below about a Disability Equality Roadshow that is organised by Labour.  This is not an ADKC event, but might be of interest to some ADKC members (please note – ADKC is non-political and does not support any particular political party).  As this is not organised by ADKC we cannot book you a place – if  you want to go, you will have to book on using the following link / email:

To book a place please use this link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/labours-disability-equality-roadshow-brixton-tickets-32085553755.

If you have any additional access needs please email Huma on disabilityequality@labour.org.uk

Labour would like to invite members of your organisation to attend an event as part of our Disability Equality Roadshow and meet Shadow Minister for Work and Pensions, Debbie Abrahams.

An easy read version of this invite is attached.

Date: Monday 27 February

Time: 6-8pm (registration from 5.30pm)

Venue: We are 336, 336 Brixton Road, London, SW9 7AA

The aim of the Disability Equality Roadshow is for Labour to hear directly from Deaf and Disabled people which policies Labour should develop to best defend and extend your rights.

The next Labour government will ensure that the UK upholds its obligations under the UN convention on persons with disabilities.

Our commitment to people-powered politics means that we believe that future social security policy should be co-produced with Deaf and disabled people, carers and service providers.

We want to transform our social security system, based on the principles of dignity, independence and support.

This Roadshow is aimed at Deaf and Disabled people, carers and stakeholders. We will listen to your views on improving social security, reducing the disability employment gap, ensuring access to suitable housing and education, and improving the provision of independent living support.

Ian Lavery MP will also be in attendance to hear the views of Deaf and Disabled people on how we can build a more inclusive workplaces part of Labour’s Workplace 2020 consultation.

To book a place please use this link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/labours-disability-equality-roadshow-brixton-tickets-32085553755.

If you have any additional access needs please email Huma on disabilityequality@labour.org.uk

Please pass this invitation on to Deaf and Disabled people and carers in your area who may be interested in attending.


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Today – Thurs 23rd Disabled People’s Question Time

Thursday 23rd February4.00-6pm in the Latymer Community Church

We are running our popular Disabled People’s Question Time again… this time to hold panel members to account for what they have said they would do in previous meetings!

We already have confirmations from:

  • Victoria Borwick – MP
  • Nick Paget Brown – leader of the Council for RBKC
  • Geoff Taylor Meade – from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP)

A second meeting a month later on Thursday 23rd March.

Keep an eye on our events page for details of these and other events.

Disabled People’s Question Time 2017

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February Newsflash now out!

Our bi-monthly Newsflash is now out! Click for the ADKC Newsflash February 2017 and for older versions of the Newsflash and other ADKC publications, please see our publications archive page!

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