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  • Article: Jan 31, 2019

    Good design touches our lives every day. From the cars we drive to the beds we sleep in, the equipment and products that we use have been constructed to make our lives easier. But often the design decisions fail to take into account those with physical limitations. We are concerned that people with arthritis are missing out because designers have not thought about the challenges they face.

  • Article: Jan 31, 2019

    New figures from the Office for National Statistics on sandwich carers - those who care for both sick, disabled or older relatives and dependent children - show this group are more likely to report symptoms of mental ill-health, feel less satisfied with life, and struggle financially compared with the general population.

  • Article: Jan 31, 2019

    A woman who cares for her severely disabled brother has said funding cuts have negatively affected her life, as pressure to change the system grows. Jayne Newman, from Newport, said she was given "no reason" for a loss of support, which saw 15 hours of care for her brother Tommy cut.

    MP Ian Lucas said changes to support for people who used to get a special grant were causing "real distress".

  • Article: Jan 31, 2019

    English councils have overspent by at least £324m on their budgets for young adults and children with special needs this financial year, the BBC has found. Of the 136 local authorities that provided information to the BBC under Freedom of Information laws, 123 have overspent on their high needs budget.

  • Article: Jan 31, 2019

    A woman has won a landmark case against her landlord after being told she could not adapt her home to suit her needs.

    Stacey Smailes, 33, who has a mobility-limiting condition called Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, had to leave her Newport flat as changes were banned.

    Judge Milwyn Jarman ruled at Cardiff County Court that the alterations were reasonable in light of her disability. Landlords must now allow disabled tenants to make "reasonable and necessary" alterations to their homes. Ms Smailes had requested to move the kitchen of her flat in Clewer Court, Newport, into the larger living room as it was difficult for her to move around when she was using a wheelchair.

  • Article: Jan 31, 2019

    People with disabilities have shared accounts of the online abuse they face, after MPs backed a petition by model Katie Price calling for new laws. More than 220,000 people signed reality TV star Ms Price's petition to make online abuse a criminal offence.

    Actress Samantha Renke, who has brittle bone disease, said she received social media messages calling her "vile" and saying "real humans walk on two legs". "It's most certainly affected my mental health," she told the BBC.

  • Article: Jan 31, 2019
    By Zöe Franklin
    On Tuesday it became clear that Conservative-run Surrey Council Council are planning to increase Council Tax while continuing to pursue deeply unpopular plans to cut essential public services including closing 31 Children's Centres and 4 community recycling centres; scrapping certain concessionary bus passes; making savage cuts to library and cultural services; and cutting spending on special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). In spite of these cuts and tax increases, it is made clear in the report continuing the proposals that the financial future of the council is bleak.

    In contrast neighbouring Kingston Borough Council announced on Monday this week that they had made the hard decision to put up their Council Tax but were very clear that doing so was the only way to ensure that they could safeguard essential services that impact upon the most vulnerable in their community and ensure a financially secure and sustainable future.

    It's worth me saying before I continue that I am not suggesting that increasing Council Tax is the right solution for every authority but when faced with continuing government funding cuts that threaten core services, especially those that serve the most vulnerable in our communities, and council budgets where there is nowhere left to make the savings needed it is sometimes necessary to make tough decisions.
  • community alarm
    Article: Jan 31, 2019

    Lib Dem councillors were left shocked at a meeting last night to see the Conservative administration propose a 20% increase for community safety alarms.

    The systems, that allow the elderly, vulnerable, disabled and ill to call for help via a button on a cord will now have to stump up extra cash to pay for this lifeline.

  • Article: Jan 31, 2019

    MPs passed an amendment last night that required Theresa May to go back to the EU and try to renegotiate the backstop.

    The EU didn't mess around - the vote result came out at 8:41pm, and by 8:47pm they'd said the backstop was there to stay. Here's 11 things that Theresa May could have done to pass the time:

  • Article: Jan 30, 2019

    Brexit latest

    In Parliament last night there were lots of heads shaking in bemusement. The Commons gave the government diametrically contradictory instructions to the Prime Minister: no to 'no deal'; then yes to a proposal that will in all likelihood lead to 'no deal'. As we milled around central lobby afterwards, queuing to speak to the TV cameras, I saw MPs claiming victory for two opposite positions. Someone is going to be disappointed.