Welcome to the Independent Living newsletter.
06.12.17 Contents:
Barriers to independent living
CASCAIDr - What you need to know
Pet dog to assistance dog
Dysfunctional care homes market
Derek's View – Specialist changing table
Latest - Target for rejecting appeals; IDPD 2017
1. Barriers to Independent Living

"the only way that increasing numbers of disabled people are going to receive any form of state funded care is through being sectioned under the Mental Health Act."

Disabled activist Simone Aspis writes a powerful piece about barriers to independent living for people with autism and learning disabilities.

You can respond directly to her on Twitter, @SFAactive 

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2. CASCAIDr - What you need to know

Following on nicely from Simone's article, news that after a year-long slog to get registered, legal advice charity CASCAIDr has finally been launched.

I spoke to the founder, Belinda Schwehr, about why free Care Act advice is needed, how it will work, and whether it might just break the social care system...

Listen here, and if you can help with a donation, it will be much appreciated – this is the link


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3. Pet dog to assistance dog

Assistance dogs are fantastic helpers for people with disabilities. They are also extremely expensive to train, and in very short supply.

Dog A.I.D. is a charity that helps disabled people to train their own pet to become their assistance dog. Sheila Sadler, her husband and two friends, went on a Scottish road trip with three such assistance dogs between them, essentially to show that, with proper planning, anyone can enjoy the freedom of the open road.

Read her story here


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4. Dysfunctional care homes market

The Competition and Markets Authority has produced a report on the care homes market. It confirms what I suspect we already knew: it can't carry on as it is.

Local Authorities don't pay enough to cover the real costs, and looking to self funders to make up the difference will only take you so far.

Equally importantly, care home residents are uniquely vulnerable to exploitation and flouting of normal consumer rights.

There is more on the report and sector responses, here


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5. Derek's View – Specialist changing table

This new changing table from Astor Bannerman looks rather different – and comes with lots of useful features as standard.

Available for paediatric and adult applications, with a generous adjustable height range, it also has at least one unique feature – what can it be?!

Find out here


If you provide high quality products and services, and you would like to reach our site visitors and newsletter readers, please email derek@independentliving.co.uk


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6. Latest - Target for rejecting appeals; IDPD 2017

If you have been fretting about how the DWP could have a target of 80% of original benefit decisions to be upheld on appeal, while providing anything approaching a fair hearing for claimants, you are not alone. Frank Field has written a letter to the Minister – I wonder what she'll say?


UN International Day for persons with disabilitiesLast Sunday was the UN's International Day for Persons with Disabilities, which is marked every 3rd December. This year's theme was "transformation towards a sustainable and resilient society for all". How does the UN suggest celebrating IDPD?

 You can find out here


Don't forget that you can apply to join the Independent Living Facebook group, if you would like to spend more time discussing these themes with other interested people. 

There are various ways you can get in touch with us: email me; visit our Facebook page and leave a message there; or if it's short and sweet, Tweet!

Previous newsletters are archived here.

If you are reading a copy of the Independent Living newsletter that has been passed on to you by a colleague or friend, why not sign up for your own free subscription – it's quick and easy, and won't lead to your inbox being bombarded with other stuff!

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Until next time, all good wishes,


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Frances Leckie

e: editor @ independentliving.co.uk
t: +44 (0) 208 133 0628
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