Disabled people urged to provide evidence for UN on government’s record on rights
Disabled people’s organisations (DPOs) have launched a fresh bid to hold the government to account over its implementation of the UN disability convention, four years after their previous efforts helped lead to ministers being accused of causing a “human catastrophe”.
A partnership of DPOs from across England are leading work to collect evidence from disabled people and their organisations on how the UK government has met its obligations under the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (PDF).
That evidence is likely to include repeated and continuing breaches of many of the convention rights, including rights to independent living, to accessibility, to education, to an adequate standard of living, to participation in public and political life, to work, to health, and to life.
The evidence collected will be included in a report that will be sent to the UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities.
This shadow report, alongside other evidence, will eventually play a part in a public examination of the UK government’s progress in implementing the convention.
Full story here https://www.disabilitynewsserv...
Cornish mother's desperate plea for help with her severely disabled son
A Cornish mother who has to keep her 17 year old disabled son strapped in the car for 90 per cent of the day to keep them both safe, has made a desperate plea for help caring for him.
Matthew Harvey has a rare disability called Phelan McDermid Syndrome. He has a severe learning disability that gives him the cognitive ability of a two year old, he has autistic traits and it makes him aggressive.
Matthew loves his mum. It's his complex disability that causes his violent behaviour. But he's 17 and a half, very nearly a man and he's much stronger than his mum. He has beaten her black and blue.
He bites, he pulls hair out. He hits me with the iPad. I'm covered from head to toe in bruises, I've got scratches on my face. Bald patches on my head from the hair being pulled out. And it's soul destroying. It's heartbreaking that your son does that to you, when all you want to do is love and care for him.
Sally Harvey, Matthew's mum
The struggle to look after Matthew has broken up Sally's family. She separated from her husband late last year and moved with Matthew and his sister to Cornwall from Devon, but that's when the struggle intensified.
Crossing the few miles from Devon into Cornwall meant that Sally's care plan for Matthew was reassessed. In Devon, she had 70 hours a week respite including overnight care. In Cornwall she had just ten hours a week and no overnight care.
Every day Sally calls to ask for help. Every day she is told there is nothing available. No residential care, no additional respite.
Full story here https://www.itv.com/news/westc...
Timpson silent over ‘accessibility fails’
The high street retailer Timpson is facing allegations from disabled campaigners that many of its stores are inaccessible to disabled people.
The concerns focus both on its high street stores and on the small “pods” – factory-built kiosks – it has increasingly used in recent years to set up tiny stores in the car-parks of out-of-town supermarkets, but which frequently do not have wheelchair-accessible entrances.
Access campaigner Esther Leighton, co-founder of the disabled-led campaigning organisation Reasonable Access, told the company – which repairs shoes, cuts keys and offers dry-cleaning services – on Twitter this week that she was frustrated with how many of its stores do not have step-free access, or even a portable ramp.
Another disabled access campaigner, Sam Jennings – who secured a high-profile legal victory against rail company Southern in March over its repeated access failings – highlighted how Timpson failed to act when she pointed to a new and inaccessible “pod” in Taunton, Somerset (pictured).
The company’s chief executive, James Timpson, had bragged about the new store in March, saying that he had “high hopes for this beauty”, even though the picture he tweeted showed a clearly inaccessible entrance.
Jennings was told by a Timpson manager at the time: “Most of our pods don’t have ramps due to the limited space inside the pods for wheelchairs, however we’re always more than happy to come outside to you so we can still give you the same great service.”
Full story here https://www.disabilitynewsserv...
Margaret Loughrey: Euromillions winner paid for learning disability centre
A new training centre for adults with learning disabilities, paid for by EuroMillions winner Margaret Loughrey, has officially opened.
The New Horizons Partnership centre in Strabane provides 50 adults with a range of development opportunities in areas like numeracy and literacy, music and drama, and life skills.
As first reported by the Irish News, it has been funded by Ms Loughrey.
Ms Loughrey, who won £27m in 2013, died in September.
"It is particularly sad that she is not here to see the difference her donation has made to the lives of our trainees," centre manager Anne Ramsey told BBC News NI.
"Margaret seemed to have a real affinity with learning disability services. This is a wonderful legacy."
Ms Loughrey's donation, and further funding from the Kathleen Graham Trust, means "we can offer a much more exciting and varied range opportunities in house for our clients", Ms Ramsey said.
"It is brilliant to be in this position to enhance the range of opportunities and availability of our services in the north west."
It is hoped the 6,000 sq ft facility will become a centre of excellence in providing support to adults with a learning disability.
It includes an IT suite, training kitchen, hair and beauty salon, sensory room and music and dance studio.Full story here https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-...
Disability campaigner's mission to make parks accessible so all children can play
A disability rights campaigner is demanding equal access for children at all play parks.
Lorna Fillingham, from Scunthorpe, has been working with North Lincolnshire Council to make parks more accessible for children who live with disabilities.
She is mother to Emily-May, who suffers from global development delay, which impacts her physical development and motor cognitive skills.
Lorna has also played a passionate role in the Changing Places campaign - encouraging public buildings to provide accessible toilet facilities for disabled people.
Full story here https://www.grimsbytelegraph.c...
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