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‘Equal Lives ‘new name for Norfolk Disability group

“This government has torn up the rule book and targeted disabled people” says chief executive of relaunched Norfolk disabled rights group

By DAVID FREEZER Wednesday, April 3, 2013
6:30 AM

 Anna Abraham, who spoke at the Time for Equal Lives event at the Forum, Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams
Anna Abraham, who spoke at the Time for Equal Lives event at the Forum, Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams

Rights for disabled people were the main topic of conversation at the Forum in Norwich as the Norfolk Coalition of Disabled People was relaunched with a new name, Equal Lives.

 

The group’s new identity and services were unveiled yesterday with a presentation of upcoming plans and priorities in The Curve digital theatre, which was attended by around 250 people.

There was also a series of stalls with information, advice and activities from Equal Lives and its member groups.

Chief executive, Mark Harrison, said: “Over the last 25 years consecutive governments of whatever colour talked to people and acted on what was said, or at least tried to.

“The Disability Discrimination Act was brought in under the last Conservative government but this government has torn up the rule book and targeted disabled people in a completely unfair way for some of the sharpest cuts.

“So the demand for our information and welfare rights services are going up as our funding is reducing.”

Day care services for elderly ‘hit by cuts’

The number of older people using day care centres in England has fallen by nearly a quarter in three years, charity Age UK has said.

Age UK found the number using services such as lunch clubs had fallen from 88,498 in 2009-10 to 68,160 in 2011-12, and blamed councils’ funding pressures.

It warned that thousands of older people faced “the prospect of living out their last years in loneliness”.

The government said councils received sufficient funding to protect services.

Campaigners throughout the UK are making use of technology to show their support for carers this Christmas.

Guest Blog by Sawsan Bastawy

The 2011 Census data released earlier this week has shown disappointing progress for carers. Since 2001, the number of carers in the UK has risen by just over 600,000 people and it is predicted that three out of five people will be carers at some point in their lives. Notably, the number of carers over the age of 65 is rising quicker than for any other age group.
Among the results were the findings that young carers and BAME (British Asian and Ethnic Minority) carers are being neglected by government support systems, namely the NHS; being offered support at a rate less than for older white carers, as well as a lower quality of support.
With the advent of the festive season, however, comes a wealth of support from NGO’s, charities, and individuals taking advantage of the festive spirit and bringing in support for carers across the UK. It is the use of simple technology, however, that is taking the lead in the campaign to improve conditions for carers.

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