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Sesame Access are not only a disabled access lift manufacturer but we are also advocates for an accessible and inclusive society. We create products which change peoples lives and ensure they can access the buildings and places they WANT to go to and not just because it is accessible.

The news stories below demonstrate the struggles and obstacles the disability community face everyday. Raising awareness is essential to combat the issues and make a change.

We do not own these news stories, we are sharing them with our community to spread awareness on the issues disabled people are currently facing. Credit is given by link to original article.

21st-27th November

How can disabled people get help with energy bills?

Disabled people across the UK are disproportionately feeling the effects of the cost-of-living crisis.

Having a disability is already linked to higher living costs and home energy needs, so rising energy prices have an even bigger impact on disabled people.

According to disability equality charity Scope, disabled people are more than twice as likely to have a cold house. Scope also found that out of the two thirds of disabled adults who saw their energy bills rise, 48% said that this had worsened their long-standing health condition. A similar percentage also reported a decline in their mental health (figures from February 2022).

How many people are affected?

There are 14.6 million disabled people in the UK.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported that almost 55% of disabled adults are finding it hard to afford their energy bills. ONS also found that disabled adults are more likely to have cut back their spending on food and other essentials because of the cost-of-living crisis.

What challenges do disabled people face during the cost-of-living crisis?

Living costs were already higher for disabled people before the cost-of-living crisis. Disabled people and families with disabled children already spent around £583 more a month on average.

Extra costs for disabled people might include:

  • Powering medical or specialist equipment, such as an electric wheelchair or hoist.
  • Travel, such as taking taxis more frequently because public transport isn’t accessible.
  • Needing to have the heating on for longer or more often to make their homes more comfortable.

Alongside this, disabled people are nearly twice as likely to be unemployed than non-disabled people. Disabled people are also more likely to be living below the poverty line.

Delays in Personal Independence Payment (PIP) applications are making the situation harder. Meanwhile, disabled people on Universal Credit face a cut in income if benefits aren’t increased in line with inflation.

Read the full article here: https://energysavingtrust.org....

Disabled children can’t afford to use their ventilators this winter. Politicians need to face reality

As the winter chill hits and the energy crisis starts to become very real, it is hard to shake off the feeling that not only is suffering becoming normalised in this country, but those in power have an ever-decreasing interest in easing it.

Few examples are starker than the news that the NHS is trialling “heating prescriptions” to give to people who can’t pay their soaring energy bills. Some patients need electricity for disability equipment, such as ventilators, wheelchairs and feeding tube pumps. Others need to put the heating on to ward off stiff arthritic joints or to ease breathing. Warmth and electricity used to be human rights – now they’re medicine.

In his autumn statement earlier this month, the chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, pledged to target cost of living support to “the most vulnerable”. “British compassion”, he said, would be at the heart of government policy during these difficult times. Reality is turning out to be quite different. Those who rely on the state pension or benefits may have been given a reprieve with their payments being uprated with inflation, but they must get through a cold winter before the 10.1% rise kicks in next April. Even when it does arrive, thanks to historically low benefit rates, the increase won’t come close to covering the essentials.

Read the full article here: https://www.theguardian.com/co...

Disabled nan forced to drive mobility scooter 1.5 miles in rain 'after coach refused her'

A disabled grandmother has hit out at a coach company and accused them of "discrimination" after she said it refused to allow her to board the bus with her mobility scooter.

Lesley McMaster was left to travel for 1.5 miles in the pouring rain to visit her sick daughter and grandchildren after a staff member for Nu-Venture allegedly told her she wasn't allowed on the bus with the scooter.

She claimed the bus driver told her it was "too heavy" and that it was up to his discretion whether to let her on.

The 54-year-old often uses a scooter or walking stick to get around due to complex medical needs.

This time she had opted to use the scooter because she was weighed down with shopping for the ill family.

Full article here: https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/...

Zoo plans to improve access for disabled people

The Welsh Mountain Zoo plans to improve its access for disabled people and those with mobility problems.

Neil Morris of the National Zoological Society of Wales has now applied to Conwy County Council’s planning department, seeking permission for a new boardwalk.

If the application is granted, a new access boardwalk will be built adjacent to the tigers and red squirrels, in lieu of the existing steps.

In a letter to the council, a spokesman for the zoo explained: “The zoo premises, being a hillside site, presents some degree of challenges for access around the site for disabled persons or people with some degree of mobility impairment.

“In recent years disability-friendly and accessible toilet facilities have been provided beneath the Safari Cafe with a disability-friendly boardwalk access across the slope to access the toilet facilities.

“However, from the location down past the tigers and towards the red squirrels, the visitors to the zoo are faced with the uneven and narrow steps down past the tigers to access the lower path; these steps are extremely difficult for anyone with a mobility impairment to negotiate, and the steps are completely unusable by wheelchair users.

“The managers of the zoo have identified this as a key area where access can be vastly improved by the provision of a boardwalk access that can traverse the hillside slope to provide disability-friendly access arrangements for both staff and visitors to the zoo.”

Read full article here: https://www.northwalespioneer...

Disabled plane passenger outraged as she's asked to move so couple can sit with cat

A disabled woman was left furious when she was told to move by a flight attendant so fellow passengers could sit with their cat.

The 25-year-old and her 32-year-old husband, who "both have significant invisible disabilities", boarded a plane home at the end of a trip.

The woman, whose foot was in "unbearable pain" after a recent fall down the stairs, so she was exhausted relieved to be settled into her seat.

Then a couple boarded the plane with a cat in a carrier and sat down in the front row.

"After a while, the flight attendant tells them that they cannot have a pet in a carrier in first row because there is no seat to put it under," the woman recalled on Reddit.

Read full article here: https://www.mirror.co.uk/trave...

Disclaimer- We do not own/write any of these article extracts, we are simply sharing to our audience in order to raise awareness and increase coverage. Credit is always given.

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