Access: Social media, disability activism and community inclusion
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Presumably these people who have been in a privileged position compared with the rest of us will at the end of March be paid 40 hours a week at minimum wage under FFC, if they are lucky.
If they are not and must make other arrangements for care it is their disabled family member who is most likely to pay the highest price, going into care or coming under the haphazard care of strangers while the family comes under additional pressure trying to make up for the loss of income.
Even if they are eligible for FFC it is likely to create strain because of the tight conditions and because it is likely to be less income than they are used to.
Put the disabled person first and be fair. Is that so much to ask?
Why I do it, I don't know...but I did a google peruse last night and found this.
T'would appear that Our Friends at the Miserly felt the time is right to remind all those people with disabilities who are utilising Hosted Schemes ( Individualised Funding, Enhanced IF and Enabling Good Lives) of the Rules.
"Restrictions on Access to Hosted Budgets"
Recommended reading for all those accessing these schemes...seriously.
(I don't believe it is coincidental that this document was released by the Ministry a week before the termination of the 'backdoor" family payment arrangements.)
There was a brilliant discussion on Natrad this morning between Kathryn Ryan and Graeme Moyle (whose brother was killed by a mental health patient) and Graham Roper, Mental health Advocate.
Peter and I listened closely, and we were both struck by the parallels between the shitty, shonky services provided to those struggling with mental illness and the similar levels of dysfunction in the disability support sector.
It would seem that family are expected to be responsible for their mentally ill loved ones, with the occasional input from 'primary care'. However...as in the disability sector...when help is needed from the 'experts'...the opinions of the family are often ignored....often with tragic consequences.
Families that I've spoken to have rung crisis teams and they've been told to ring police because they just can't cope. A lot of times, the police drop them off to the crisis teams and they are just sent home," he said.
"Time and time again, it's the family of the person involved that come begging for help. They're the expert in this, they live with the person who is going through the psychotic crisis, on a daily basis, 24 hours a day, they're living with it day in and day out - when they need help, they are desperate and they are going to these people and they are just being ignored or turned away."
Funding, theoretically ringfenced for mental health services, has been redirected by DHBs to other areas, leaving the mentally ill and their families with nowhere to turn for vital supports.
And the suicide rate rises.
Well, Himself and I have come to the conclusion that They (the Government, the Misery of Health) see those with disabilities, those suffering from mental illness as the undesirable classes.
The weak of wind, limb and mind.
We honestly believe that They have an Agenda.
Make life and living such an intolerable struggle that these people become so exhausted, so dispirited, that the oblivion of death is a welcome relief.
(And rush through legislation to facilitate assisted suicide.)
What They don't seem to understand is that it is no longer the case that mental illness and disability are conditions that 'other people' have to deal with...a relative rarity...and definitely not something that we discuss in polite company.
We are talking about these issues...and we need more discussion.
We need to collectively demand that central government stops pissing around with empty talk of increased budgets and 'Action Plans' that never get off the ground and actually do something.
Hilary Stace, in reply to
I've heard that organisations are getting more risk averse and with insufficient funding and resources available have started picking and choosing their clients. So there are more people being 'exited' from services and others with high and complex needs for whom no one will provide new services.
And then people complain about increasing numbers of beggars and overloaded emergency departments.
Where better to post this?
A former America’s Cup official has taken a top job at the Health Ministry as it continues with a major restructure.
Stephen O’Keefe, a former general manager of KiwiRail, will be the new chief financial officer.
The Miserly have their Strategy to implement and clearly need capable hands at the helm.
Not all are happy however..(miserable haters and wreckers)…with the Association of Salaried Medical Specialists having a whinge and with the same organisation currently supporting Christchurch doctors in their latest stoush with the Misery of Health executive and with concerns being raised on the NZDoctor website the future relationship between the Ministry of Hell and doctors (as if they would know anything about health delivery) is going to be a prickly one.
So, while the New Crew on the Health Boat is steering us along the track to a Brighter Future…my constant companions (Syd Cynic and Sally Sceptic) and I are going to have a coffee and leave further analysis and discusiion to the resident PA experts.
“Of the top 13 positions, there is not a single one whose responsibility is about the health of the population of New Zealand.”
Hilary Stace, in reply to
The Ministry of Health is supposed to be about Health and Disability but the disability part seems to be often overlooked (as well as the health part).
Apologies to anyone who might have followed the link to the NZDoctor site....sends one to a subscriber login page....
Don Matheson's paper "The NZ Health Strategy: refreshed or eviscerated?", evaluating the new Health Strategy, is well worth a read...hopefully available here.
Well if you can't make a profit out of the poor and the sick how are you supposed to make money out of the wealthy?
Simple, a two tier system, one for the rich and one for the poor then degrade the lower, public" tier so that more people want to pay for the top tier and there's yer profit.
This of course is slightly unethical but easy to fix. Subsidise the lower tier to upgrade to, the private, top tier and there's even more profit.... for the overseas corporation "Medex"®... or whoever...
We are certainly on the cusp of something....
Hilary Stace, in reply to
Thanks Rosemary. Very informative insight from a former senior insider.
Don Matheson's paper is frightening. Are the Nats really stupid/greedy enough to take a route which has already failed badly in the U.S? Are we silly enough to let them?
Sacha, in reply to
Don Matheson's paper is frightening.
Yep. Can't connect to the MoH site from home lately (strange glitch) to download the Strategy to read for myself, but the way he describes it seems perfectly consistent with the direction of travel since 2008. Won't end well.
Sacha, in reply to
Are the Nats really stupid/greedy enough to take a route which has already failed badly in the U.S?
It has succeeded in enriching the same folk as their local sponsors and chums, so yes. Now what's the 'opposition' going to do about it?
What next? How long will it be before we start seeing wheelchair users getting pushed out of their wheelchairs by ableists who think they're 'faking it', as has happened in Britain?
Rosemary McDonald, in reply to
to download the Strategy to read for myself,
"All New Zealanders
Jonny Wilkinson, disability activist, encourages all to participate in the Revision of the Disability Strategy.
He is a representative with (Lived Experience of Disability) on the Reference Group and he speaks about the genesis of the current strategy.
The strategy had 15 objectives, spanning all the usual areas of one's life that largely dictate whether you have a decent time on this Earth, or a crap one. These encompassed education, leadership, cultural identity, employment and recreation.
So the time has come to rethink and renew the strategy and (to use good ol' Whangarei lingo) I'm stoked that I have been appointed to the review committee, responsible for this important work, albeit in an advisory role. The reason I wanted to be involved was to make sure that our disabled community are represented and have a say about the way forward.
One of the main issues of the first strategy has been its aspirational nature was let down somewhat by a low level of implementation.
With somewhat eerie coincidence, Jonny references Chris Ford's Master thesis from 2012....
....a link I have to hand since a friend emailed it to me the other day. :-)
Perhaps we could have the tee shirt printed... 2001 NZ Disability Strategy-High on Aspiration...Low on Implementation
More than 20 people protested outside an early screening of the film at the Embassy Theatre in central Wellington last night, chanting "assistance to live, not assistance to die" and "tell sad stories about your own lives".
Protest organiser Esther Woodbury said negative attitudes towards people with disabilities were as disabling as physical problems.
Angela Hart, in reply to
yup, go Esther.
This movie is offensive.
Hilary Stace, in reply to
It was a vocal gathering and good that Radio NZ came along to find out what it was all about. Esther recently joined DPA bringing some fresh activism energy to that organisation.
yes, Auckland lost her in a HDC reshuffle, along with some other great people.
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