Archive for the ‘elderly’ Category

Carer issues judicial review proceedings against Iain Duncan Smith

14 June 2014

A disabled grandmother and her granddaughter who provides full time care for her have this week issued judicial review proceedings in the High Court against the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Iain Duncan Smith, challenging the inclusion of Carer’s Allowance in the ‘benefit cap.’  The benefit cap policy has been in force across the country since September 2013.

The government has already conceded that the cap had unintended consequences for victims of domestic violence living in women’s refuges, and after the families case was heard in the Court of Appeal, Ian Duncan Smith with no fanfare amended the regulations to remove women’s refuges from the cap.

The proceedings issued this week highlight another consequence of the cap, which may surprise those who consider that the cap achieves fairness. Included in the group of families who are capped are those who receive Carer’s Allowance. To qualify for Carer’s Allowance the benefit claimant has to be providing upwards of 35 hours a week care to a severely disabled person. This means that anyone receiving Carer’s Allowance is by definition not available to work, because they must be providing care.

read in full here

3.      The judicial review challenges Part 8A of the Housing Benefit Regulations 2006, which was inserted by the Benefit Cap (Housing Benefit) Regulations 2012, SI 2012/2994, pursuant to section 96 of the Welfare Reform Act 2012.  The claimants argue that the Regulations are discriminatory and unreasonable.  They also argue that the Secretary of State did not take proper account of the impact of the policy on carers and those they care for, and is irrational.



Draft care and support Bill – Wednesday 16th January

9 January 2013
2.45pm Draft Care and Support Bill

Subject: Draft Care and Support Bill
Witness(es): John Adams OBE, General Secretary, Voluntary Organisations Disability Group, Des Kelly, Executive Director, National Care Forum, Lord Victor Adebowale, Chief Executive, Turning Point, United Kingdom Homecare Association Ltd (UKHCA) and The English Community Care Association (ECCA); Sue Brown, Head of Public Policy, Care and Support Alliance, Standing Commission on Carers and Emily Holzhausen, Director of Policy, Carers UK
Parliamentary business for Thursday 17 January 2013
9.45am Draft Care and Support Bill

Subject: Draft Care and Support Bill
Witness(es): Laura Robinson, Policy and Communications Adviser, National Voices, Marc Bush, Head of Research and Public Policy, Scope, Caroline Abrahams, Director of External Affairs, Age UK and Alex Fox, Chief Executive, Shared Lives Plus; Mark Goldring CBE, Chief Executive, Mencap, Mental Health Foundation, Action on Elder Abuse and Sue Bott, Director of Development, Disability Rights UK

Upcoming business – Parliament

9 January 2013

Parliamentary business for Thursday 10 January 2013

House of Lords Main Chamber


Differential impact on women of changes to welfare benefits – Baroness Royall of Blaisdon


Select Committee

9.30am Draft Care and Support Bill Joint Committee

Subject: Draft Care and Support Bill
Witness(es): (at 9.45am)
Frances Patterson QC, Commissioner responsible for Public Law, Law Commission and Tim Spencer-Lane, Lawyer, Law Commission; (at 11.00am) Lorraine Butcher, Director of Children’s Services and Director of Adult Services in Cheshire East, Association of Directors of Children’s Services Ltd (ADCS); Cllr David Rogers OBE, Chair of Chair of Community and Wellbeing Board, Local Goverment Association; and Sarah Pickup, President, Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS).
Location: Committee Room 6, Palace of Westminster

“What’s Right and Wrong in Health and Social Care for the Elderly?”

5 November 2012

The House of Lords Select Committee on Public Service and Demographic Change will tomorrow ( Tues 6th Nov ) take evidence from experts, doctors and the care regulator on the current state of health and social care for older people. The Committee will look at whether changes are needed to meet increasing demand from an ageing population, given current pressures on public spending.

The evidence session will start at 9:45am on Tuesday 6 November in Committee Room 2 of the House of Lords.

You will be able to watch live here

The witnesses giving evidence will be:

  • Caroline Abrahams, Director of External Affairs, Age UK
  • Professor Chris Ham CBE, Chief Executive, The King’s Fund
  • Philip King, Director of Regulatory Development, Care Quality Commission
  • Steve McIntosh, Policy and Public Affairs Manager, Carers UK
  • Dr Martin McShane, Director, Domain 2, National Commissioning Board ‘Improving the quality of life for people with long term conditions’, NHS Commissioning Board
  • Professor David Oliver, Consultant Physician, The Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust, Department of Health National Clinical Director for Older People’s Services (England) and Professor of Medicine for Older People, City University, London.

full details can be found here


If anyone wants to participate on twitter – please use hash tag



Do you have experience of home care – BBC Inside Out would like to hear from you

12 September 2012

We received this request from Andy Smythe. Can you help?

I’m a producer for the BBC Inside Out programme in the Northeast and Cumbria and I’m currently looking at the issue of care at home for the elderly.

Most councils are making cuts to their social care budgets and there are concerns that it could affect the quality of services.  I’d like to talk to people from the Northeast & Cumbria, in confidence if they prefer, who have experience of care in the home.

Do you or a relative receive a care package from a private company?  If so is the quality of care good, or could it be better?

Are you someone who works for a private company providing this type of care?  Is the nature of the job changing?

Without accurate accounts from real people we can’t give a truthful picture, so I’d
very much like anyone who feels strongly about this issue to get in touch.

My email address is

Many thanks for reading this,


Andy Smythe
BBC Inside Out

Disabled People Against Cuts – protest April 18th

18 April 2012

Disabled people Against Cuts

April 18th meet for 1.30 pm McDonalds Leicester Square.

Let us have text contact details if definitely coming. Access needs if any too.

Action will be around benefit cuts, care funding and Loss of Remploy jobs.

this affects older people too so bring your grannies and grandads too.


Press release

Photo opportunity. Meet Leicester Square McDonalds, 1.30pm


Already three-quarters of disabled people live in poverty yet the Condems seem determined to push people even further into destitution. It seems that this is a means of punishing them for daring to be or become disabled – something that can happen to anyone at anytime. This is part of the new economy and Condem society of Britain.

Linda Burnip co-founder of DPAC says  “If cuts to benefits don’t kill you slowly by leaving you starving or freezing to death in winter then massive cuts to care and support funding should finish off those Maria Miller, the so-called minister for disabled people, calls “unsustainable” a bit faster. “
Campaigners say disabled people are being unfairly picked on because they are seen as an easy target by millionaire politicians and the ex-banker Lord Freud in particular.
Disability benefits designed to pay the extra costs of disability and originally awarded for a lifetime term are being reassessed. Many who were certified by medically qualified and independent doctors are losing their meagre incomes to politically appointed and performance incentivised ATOS assessors.

Huge increases to hate crimes, cuts in housing benefits, cuts in public services, the closure of the Independent Living Fund, job losses in the public sector, closure of Remploy factories when unemployment is at a record high the list of attacks is endless.

Debbie Jolly another co-founder of DPAC says: “Disabled people will be descending on London again to tell all politicians we’ve had enough. We are fed up with being vilified as scroungers by successive governments, we are sick of hearing about disabled people who have died from neglect and lack of services or who have committed suicide because services and benefits were withdrawn from them. Debbie from Leicester says: “Disabled people will be descending on London again to tell all politicians we’ve had enough. We are fed up with being vilified as scroungers by successive governments, we are sick of hearing about disabled people who have died from neglect and lack of services or who have committed suicide because services and benefits were withdrawn from them. We are angry at the constant attacks by this government  because we are seen as an easy target .We want to make sure politicians know we will not accept these attacks on our lives any longer. “


Contact-  Linda 0771 492 7533 or Adam 07801058235

Notes to editors:

Data from Family Resources Survey and the National Equalities Panel found that:

  • 75% of disabled women and 70% of disabled men are already at the bottom end of Britain’s income distribution scale living in poverty.
  • A tenth of disabled woman have incomes below £31 per week and a tenth of disabled men have incomes below £59 per week including earned income and benefits.
  • Under the coalition government’s economy drive disabled people are set to lose at least £140 per month through direct cuts to disability benefits (initially devised to pay the extra costs of being disabled) alone.
  • The Condems are removing DLA saying that the number of claimants must be reduced by half a million.
  • Employment Support Allowance and work capability assessments have been criticised by CAB, disability charities and Disabled People’s Organisations. ATOS healthcare failures are costing £50 million in additional appeal tribunal costs.
  • Housing Benefits for all tenants will be reduced. From October 2011 for those 2 million disabled people living in private rented accommodation and from 2013 for anyone living in social housing which is deemed too large for their needs
  • Added to that funding from the Independent Living Fund for care and support has now ceased to all new claimants and any additional needs cannot be met by them

Extra costs of disability to individuals

A Rowntree report (2004) found that the weekly income of disabled people who are solely dependent on benefits is approximately £200 below the amount required for them to ensure an acceptable, equitable quality of life’

However, even if receiving maximum benefits, disabled people still experience a substantial shortfall in income. The income of disabled people solely dependent on benefits, irrespective of the type or level of their need, is approximately £200 less than the weekly amount required for them to ensure a minimum standard of living.

Source: Disabled people’s costs of living: ‘More than you would think’ (2004) by Noel Smith, Sue Middleton, Kate Ashton-Brooks, Lynne Cox and Barbara Dobson with Lorna Reith, is published by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (ISBN 1 85935 236 7,


The employment rates of disabled people are around 48% compared with around 78% of non-disabled people Source Labour Force Survey, Quarter 2,2010

 Only 20% of those with mental health problems are in employment- Source- Labour Force Survey, Jan-March 2009.

. Please click here to sign Pat’s Petition  which calls on the government to –

“Stop and review the cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families”

Once you have signed share it with all your contacts asking them to sign and pass on too.



Hardest Hit North East: Conference on the impact of cuts on disabled people

13 April 2012

Friday 1st June 2012  –    09:00 until 16:30

Banqueting Suite & Pandon Room, Newcastle Civic Centre, Barras Bridge, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 8PP
.The Hardest Hit North East Coalition are holding a conference on 1 June 2012 that will consider ways to take action against government cuts and examine their impact on people in the region. Have you been hit by welfare and benefit cuts, or through changes to local servic…es? Are you concerned about cuts making tackling disability hate-crime more difficult, or wider reforms like changes to support towards housing cost and council tax meaning the disabled could miss out? Are you a carer, someone who works with or alongside those affected by these changes? If so, please come along to this event to help build our region’s response to an ongoing programme of cuts falling on disabled people. Listen to people tell their own stories about how the cuts have affected them and find out more about what we can do to try and stop the disabled being hit harder than society as whole. The event is free to disabled people, their carers and those from charities or Trade Unions. If you would like to attend as a visitor from a commercial or public sector organisation there is a small charge, please email Stephen Powers at to find out more about your organisation exhibiting or to be invoiced for a £25 Public/Commercial visitor place.
.Please visit: to register your place for this event
.Join discussions on facebook here

Are you worried about cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families.

Sign Pat’s Petition too and ask all your contacts to do the same. Tell them to share it also.

Have your say about how caring has affected your health

1 March 2012

Carers Week 18th – 24th June 2012

In sickness and in health

Every year we ask thousands of carers to tell us about their lives. We use the survey to generate interest in the press and media. 

Our theme for 2012 is “In Sickness and in Health” and your answers will help us to highlight;
– How does caring impact on your health and wellbeing?
– How much have the cuts to local services impacted on your health and wellbeing?
– What could really make a difference to your life as a carer?

Take the survey here


If you are worried about cuts to services please sign Pats Petition too and then gather as much support as you can.


End the Care Crisis – We cant afford not to

1 March 2012

Lobby 2012

We are entering a key time for our social care system. Our social care system is broken. It cannot cope with a rapidly ageing population and positive impact of people living longer with illness and disability.

Read in full here

On Tuesday 6th March 2012 we will hold a lobby of Parliament to take our message to MPs across all parties. People from up and down the country will be travelling to the Houses of Parliament in London to present their concerns and lobby their MP.

Take part in the lobby

Take part online


If you are worried to changes in services, charges being increased, eligibility criteria being tightened – please sign Pats Petition and gather as much support as you can.


Unfair care charges hit most vulnerable – Nottingham

2 February 2012

THE planned increase in care fees for city residents will have a huge impact.

Around a quarter of those who receive adult social care will be affected. Most of them will see an annual increase in fees up to £1,000, but some will pay as much as £3,000 more.

The changes proposed by the city council will affect older people and those with dementia and disabilities.

The hike will affect day centres, home care and transport, and will be subject to a means test.

Until recently, there were no charges for day care centres. Now, it will be £5 a day. Other changes will see home care go up to £12.50 an hour, but it could be as high as £17.50 for those people with dementia.

As we report today, some families are faced with huge bills. One couple from Clifton will see their charges rise to £1,762 a month, an increase of more than £500.

see in full here

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