Free Inclusion Scotland Membership
Would you, or your organisation be interested in free membership to Inclusion Scotland?
We are keen to build on the work already done so the voice of disabled people can really be heard by policy makers and enable disabled people to make a real contribution to the improvement of every day life in Scotland.
For information on becoming a member of Inclusion Scotland please contact us on 0141 559 5025 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Inclusion Scotland respond to the Smith Commission
Inclusion Scotland's response to the Smith Commission is now available.
New briefings from our Rights Now! project
We have two new briefings from our Rights Now! project:
Please note that the information is correct at the time of publication and should only be used as guidance, and not a definitive document.
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Friday, 12 December 2014
‘Hypocrite!’ Minister for disabled people sparks anger over inaccessible HQ
The minister for disabled people has been accused of hypocrisy after he called for shops and restaurants across the country to improve their access, even though his own high street constituency office is inaccessible to wheelchair-users.
Mark Harper is Conservative MP for the Forest of Dean, and the party’s constituency office in Cinderford high street has a large step in front of...
Thursday, 11 December 2014
Down’s syndrome does not shut the door on work
Many people with Down’s syndrome thrive in the workforce, so a new push to help them get there is welcome, says Callum Mackinnon.
Government minister Lord Freud last month commented that people with disabilities were “not worth” the minimum wage. While the Westminster welfare minister apologised within 24 hours, his comments do reflect the difficulties many people with...
Thousands of Scottish children affected by benefit sanctions as food bank users top 900,000
Thousands of children in Scotland have been affected by cruel and vindictive benefit sanctions, new figures reveal.
Figures released by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), in response to a Freedom of Information request (FOI), reveal that 3,600 Scottish benefit claimants with dependent children were hit by benefit sanctions between 1 June 2012 and 31 May 2013.
The figure includes...
Wednesday, 10 December 2014
Scotland's first ever Minister for Mental HealthJamie Hepburn is the first Scottish Government minister to have mental health in his or her job title.
Commenting on his plans for mental health, Jamie Hepburn, Minister for Sport, Health Improvement and Mental Health, said:
“I am proud to be the first Scottish Government minister with mental health in my job title. This demonstrates the importance we place on improving the nation’s...
Faruk Ali: Bedfordshire PCs Christopher Thomas and Christopher Pitts cleared
Two police officers accused of pursuing an autistic man before one beat him have been cleared of all charges.
Bedfordshire PCs Christopher Thomas and Christopher Pitts were found not guilty of misconduct in a public office by chasing Faruk Ali, 33, in a police car.
PC Thomas, 33, of Welwyn Garden City, was also cleared of racially aggravated assault over the incident in Luton.
Tuesday, 9 December 2014
Bus firms not required to force parents with buggies to move for wheelchairs
Wheelchair users should petition parliament for a change in the law if they want to be sure of the right to reserved spaces on buses, according to a court of appeal judgment.
In a ruling that balanced the interest of passengers with pushchairs against those in wheelchairs, three senior judges decided that transport firms are not required to force one traveller to make way for the other.
Yes, people can starve in benefit-sanctions Britain
Unemployed, disabled and chronically ill people are going hungry – because a sadistic government is removing the money they need to eat.
“Hunger stalks this country” is the finding of a church-funded report by an all-party group of MPs and peers released today. Lady Jenkin, a Conservative, used its launch to declare the main cause of this national crisis was “poor...
Monday, 8 December 2014
Disabled man refused benefits and left on crisis loan because he asked for help with form
A disabled job-seeker was refused benefit payments and left relying on a crisis loan because he wanted help understanding a document before he signed it.
Chris Hart, 47, from Plympton, was refused job seeker’s allowance (JSA) and hardship payments because he asked for support before he signed the agreement.
Now Mr Hart’s legal challenge against the Department of Work and...
New coalition will battle for humane welfare system
A coalition of leading civil society groups has been formed to press for a humane welfare system.
The Scottish Leaders Welfare Group (SLWG) met today (Monday) in Glasgow and said it would start to collate evidence which would be used to put pressure on both Westminster and Holyrood.
Its work kicked off straight away when it met in Drumchapel Citizen's Advice Bureau and its members...
Friday, 5 December 2014
Exclusive: closure threatened charity worth 11 million a year to Glasgow
Millions of pounds will be squandered if funding is pulled from a closure-threatened frontline charity in Glasgow.
A report into the workings of the Glasgow Association of Mental Health (GAMH), seen by TFN, shows that for an annual investment of £2.1million, it provides a return of £11.1m.
Despite this, Glasgow City Council has said it wants to withdraw its support from...
Dundee man tells how benefits were stopped: ‘I was 10 minutes late for my job interview, now I am homeless’
A six-hour commute each day began to take its toll on Victor Gowans.
Unable to continue and eager to improve his quality of life, the 52-year-old Dundonian applied for a new job — only to find himself the victim of tough new sanctions.
Arriving at his interview 10 minutes late meant his Jobseeker’s Allowance was cut off and he has been forced to live on just £30 a...
Disabled man 'put up for auction' on care website
The family of a man with a learning disability say they are horrified that their local council put him 'up for auction' on a care website.
Emma Knight found Devon County Council was inviting companies to bid to look after her 45-year-old brother James.
The website listed other personal details that James's family say could easily identify him.
Devon County Council says it was...
Thursday, 4 December 2014
Smith Commission: DWP accused of U-turn over work programme
The UK government is extending its work programme contracts despite a cross-party deal that it was due to come under Holyrood control.
The Scottish government said it was a 'flagrant and wilful breach' of the Smith Commission process to devolve more power to Scotland.
But Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael said the decision was made before the commission was set up.
UK Government welfare reforms are 'pushing Scots to breaking point'
UK Government welfare reforms are 'pushing people to breaking point' in communities throughout Scotland, according to a new report.
The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) said cuts are having a 'devastating' impact on individuals and the charities that help them.
Benefit claimants face depression, fear and anxiety as a result of changes to the system, a report by the...
Tuesday, 2 December 2014
How benefit sanctions hit single parents and their children hardest
Raising an 18-month-old child is not easy when there's two of you, but when you're a single parent on benefits it's one of the hardest things in the world. Helen (not her real name) is on income support and has been threatened with sanctions if she doesn't 'do more' to find work.
She now has to decide whether she can work nights, leaving her baby alone - or face losing her income for a month.
New online Carer’s Allowance application system
The new online Carer’s Allowance application system has launched today, replacing an “outdated” and “difficult to complete” online system, the government has announced.
The new system for England, Scotland and Wales has been developed by the Government Digital Service and the Department for Work and Pensions, aimed at simplifying the process for busy carers...
Monday, 1 December 2014
300,000 disabled people waiting for housing living in unsuitable homes
About 300,000 disabled people are stuck on housing waiting lists across the UK, forced to make do in accommodation that does not meet their needs, according to a charity report.
In No Place Like Home, published on Monday, Leonard Cheshire Disability accused the government and housing developers of failing disabled people.
The charity wants the government to make housing developers...
Charities warn councils over disability law
Charities have warned Scottish councils risk breaking the law if they do not acknowledge their duty of care towards young disabled people doesn’t end as they turn 18.
The Scottish Disability Equality Forum made the warning following a landmark Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court ruling that Fife Council broke new equalities legislation by ending its financial support of disabled student David...
Friday, 28 November 2014
Smith Commission 'dropped welfare proposals'
Plans to give Holyrood more extensive welfare powers appear to have been struck out of the Smith Commission's report in the final days of negotiations.
The BBC has seen a draft of the Commission's recommendations which included devolving the power to vary Universal Credit.
The draft was from 11:00 on Tuesday.
The proposal did not make it into the final version, although some...
Iain Duncan Smith vetoed greater Scottish powers over universal credit
Proposals for Scotland to have greater independence over billions of pounds worth of benefits were personally vetoed by Iain Duncan Smith in the final stages of cross-party talks.
The work and pensions secretary made a last-minute intervention during the Smith commission talks in Edinburgh, ordering Tory negotiators to block moves to allow Holyrood to change significant elements of his new...
Motability rule change ‘discriminates against drivers with high support needs’
New rules introduced secretly by the Motability car scheme mean only disabled people who spend more than 12 hours-a-week in education, work, volunteering or caring will be given grants to lease a vehicle they can drive from their wheelchair.
The Specialised Vehicles Fund (SVF) is run by Motability on behalf of the government, and provides grants for disabled people who need vehicles that...
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