Update 2: York Safe Place Scheme

Did you know that there are at least 35 Safe Place Schemes in England? We hope to put York on the map before too long. At an Inclusion North event, June Peacock, a member of the steering group, joined representatives from Safe Place Schemes in Yorkshire to share information and good practice.

Each Scheme is different, and so the steering group is looking at developing a Scheme that reflects the unique characteristics of York and which can operate effectively here. For instance Peta Hatton from the York Independent Living and Travel Skills and Fiona Andrews from the British Transport Police have worked with young people at Manor CE Academy. They looked at a YouTube video from another Safe Place Scheme and talked about what they liked and did not like. They also had many suggestions for which venues could become Safe Place venues. We have also been invited to talk to the Mental Health and Learning Disabilities Partnership Board, the Safeguarding Adults Board and the Children’s Society young disabled children advisory group in York.

At the second meeting, the steering group discussed Safe Place venues, awareness raising and guidance and looked at operational models. You can read more about what we have been discussing on the steering group page: steering group

We would love to get ideas and suggestions from people, also if you are able to offer help with developing the resources or interested in becoming a safe place venue then please get in touch with us. Email  admin@yiln.org.uk or text/leave a message at 07752 365 297.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

At the #disabilitynatter event held on the 29th June, Citizens Advice York gave us a bit of an update on some of the changes happening to disability benefits. This included to the move from Disability Living Allowance (DLA) to Personal Independence Payments (PIP). Below is a brief summary of what they said.

The government is aiming to have everyone of working age transferred from DLA and claiming PIP by October 2017. Individuals will carry on getting DLA if they were 65 or over on 8 April 2013. For everyone else aged 16 and over, DLA will stop and they will need to claim PIP instead – even if they have a ‘lifetime’ or ‘indefinite’ award for DLA. Individual’s will not be automatically moved over to PIP, they will get a letter from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) before October 2017, asking them to make a new claim.

Many people on DLA will qualify for PIP but it isn’t guaranteed. Being prepared with the right information about when completing the new form is important. Referring to your previous DLA claim forms, including medical evidence of how your condition is affecting you, keeping a diary about good and bad days and listing any aids or appliances may be useful.

If your claim is unsuccessful you can appeal. There has been a gradual increase in the success rate of PIP appeals, and additional data suggests that attending a hearing in person increases the chances of success. Before you have a right to appeal to a tribunal you must usually ask for the decision to be looked at again. DWP call this a mandatory reconsideration. You must then appeal within one month of this response. Further details of the appeal process by Citizens Advice can be found here. The process can be complex and in order to ensure you present your case strongly it may be worth seeking support to help you appeal.

Citizens Advice York can offer support to people to help with applications and appeals. Details of the how to access the service in York can be found here.

Update: York Safe Place Scheme

The work on the York Safe Place Scheme started a month ago and we’ve been really pleased with the interest and enthusiasm shown so far!

We made it into The Press, you can read the article here: York Press article

The steering group had their first meeting on 12 May. The members discussed the role of the steering group and what needs to happen between now and the launch at the end of the year. The steering group will make recommendations to the City of York Council and North Yorkshire Police about how the Scheme should be run and what resources are needed. You can read a summary of the meeting on the  website: York Safe Place Scheme

We would love to hear from you what you expect from a Safe Place and which venue you would like to be a Safe Place and why. You can speak to any of the steering group members or send an email to Shelley, YILN administrator, at admin@yiln.org.uk.

As part of the Festival of Ideas, Out of Character Theatre Company is performing a show contributing their ideas about a new design for mental health treatment in York. Safety – ‘a safe place to go’ – is one of the key things people have been talking about. It will be on Tuesday 14 June from 7 to 9pm at York St John University. Find out more and get your ticket here (it’s free!): Out of Character Theatre Company

Finally, a date for your diary!

We will have an open event to discuss the York Safe Place Scheme. Everyone is welcome. We will send information about how to register nearer the time.

Date: Thursday 22 September

Time: 6.30-8.30pm

Venue: George Hudson Room, West Offices, Station Rise, York YO1 6GA

 

York Disability Natter – disability, benefits and other matters.

Doodled image of hand cuffs with text 'P.I.P. having to appeal against my unfair PIP assessment was like a prison'.

Date: 29th June 2016, 6pm – 9pm. Venue: Hudson Room, City of York Council Offices, West Offices, Station Rise, York, YO1 6GA. Refreshments and some food will be provided. 

What’s happening with disability benefits? How have things changed? What’s the experience of disabled people in York?

York Independent Living Network invites you to an open debate and ‘natter’ about these and other issues. We want disabled people, informal carers and their allies to come along and share their experiences, issues, achievements and ideas about disability benefits and other matters. 

This ‘natter’ will include an update from Steve Allitt from Citizens Advice York about current issues regarding disability benefits.  From this we will open it up for a more general debate for people to ask questions and share experiences. We will try and summarise it at the end and explore any future actions and next steps that may have arisen. You are welcome to come for all or part of the meeting too.

The space will be friendly and there are no wrong answers, and everyone that wants to contribute will be given a chance to do so.  So if you have something to share, like what happened to you, or how you’ve achieved a goal, a question, a memory, a poem, some useful information, a bee in your bonnet, a film or photo, a campaign or an idea about disability, benefits or something else do please come along.

Just in case your wondering, by disabled people we refer to the social model and include a broad range of issues, i.e. mental health, learning difficulties, physical, sensory and other impairments, chronic illness and other health related issues. By informal carers we refer to friends or family members that provide an unpaid caring/support role. By allies we mean anyone who is committed to achieving disability equality and inclusion and recognises the everyday struggle disabled people face.

Please let us know if you can attend. We aim to facilitate an inclusive event, but let us know if you need something accessible for you to participate we will do our best to provide it.

For more information, directions, details of parking etc, and to let us know you are coming please email admin@yiln.org.uk or text/mob 07752 365 297.

York Safe Place Scheme Steering Group

People sought to join a steering group to set up a Safe Place Scheme in York

York Independent Living Network, with support from the City of York Council, is setting up a Safe Place Scheme in York. We are looking for community groups/voluntary organisations to join our steering group.

What are Safe Places?

Safe Places help disabled people feel confident and safe whilst out and about. If they are having difficulty, feel lost or frightened, then they can go into a ‘Safe Place’. A Safe Place is a public space (e.g. a shop, a library, a café or a council service) that displays a ‘Safe Place’ sticker in the window. People in the Safe Place can help individuals make contact with a nominated person or helpline and create a temporary safe place.

For more information about Safe Place Schemes, please visit the Widgit website: http://www/widgit.com/safeplacescheme/

About the steering group

We have a limited number of places on the steering group for community groups/voluntary organisations.

You must commit to:

  • Attending all meetings
  • Consulting with your networks
  • Developing and promoting the Safe Place Scheme

We are keen to have at least the following groups represented: people with mental health issues, people with autism, people with learning disabilities and older people (e.g. people with dementia). That is because they are most likely to use the scheme. We are also looking for a young disabled person (17 – 25 years) to join the steering group.

The first meeting will be on Thursday 12 May, 6.30pm – 8.30pm, at the West Offices, Station Rise, York YO1 6GA.

There will be 3 – 4 meetings including an information/consultation event.

We aim to launch the York Safe Place Scheme by the end of the year 2016.

We will cover reasonable expenses if agreed in advance.

How to apply

If you are interested, please complete the form [Steering group Form] and return it to us:

Email: admin@yiln.org.uk

Post: YILN, 15 Priory Street, York YO1 6ET

Deadline: Thursday 14 April 11:59pm

We will let you know by Thursday 21 April if you are selected for the steering group.

Other ways to get involved

If you cannot join the steering group, we would still love you to be involved! We would like to hear from disabled individuals, family carers, organisations working with disabled people. If you are an organisation/business who would like to find out more about offering a Safe Place, please get in touch.

We will let you know who is on the steering group, what is happening and how you can help shape the Safe Place Scheme in York.

Please send an email to admin@yiln.org.uk or text/leave a message at 07752 365 297. Please state that you are interested in the York Safe Place Scheme and include your name, organisation (if applicable) and email address.

Any questions?

If you have any questions or comments about the project, please do not hesitate to contact Marije Davidson, Facilitator, by email: admin@yiln.org.uk.

#YorkDisabilityNatter – Wednesday 10th February 2016, 6pm-9pm

inclusionDate: Wednesday 10th February 2016, 6pm-9pm. Venue: Snow Room, City of York Council Offices, West Offices, Station Rise, York, YO1 6GA.

What are the key issues for disabled people in York? What does equality and inclusion mean in 2016? Where do we go from here, and how do we get there?

York Independent Living Network invites you to an open debate and ‘natter’ about these and maybe other questions. We want disabled people, informal carers and their allies to come along and share their experiences, issues, achievements and ideas about disability equality and inclusion. 

The space will be friendly and there are no wrong answers, and everyone that wants to contribute will be given a chance to do so.  So if you have something to share, like what happened to you, or how you’ve achieved a goal, a question, a memory, a poem, some useful information, a bee in your bonnet, a film or photo, a campaign or an idea that will help further disability equality and inclusion in York do please come along.

The event will begin with a bit of getting to know each other and then we will open it up to those that come along. We will try and summarise it at the end and explore any future actions and next steps that may have arisen. You are welcome to come for all or part of the meeting too.

Just in case your wondering, by disabled people we refer to the social model and include a broad range of issues, i.e. mental health, learning difficulties, physical, sensory and other impairments, chronic illness and other health related issues. By informal carers we refer to friends or family members that provide an unpaid caring/support role. By allies we mean anyone who is committed to achieving disability equality and inclusion and recognises the everyday struggle disabled people face.

Please let us know if you can attend. We aim to facilitate an inclusive event, but let us know if you need something accessible for you to participate we will do our best to provide it.

For more information, directions, details of parking etc, and to let us know you are coming please email admin@yiln.org.uk or text/mob 07752 365 297.

#yorkdisabilitydoodle

text reads - #yorkdisabilitydoodle in black lettering and blue backgroundOn the 3rd and 4th Dec 2015, at City of York Council Offices to mark disability history month and mark international day of disabled people we asked people were to share their histories, experiences, ideas and knowledge about disability in doodles and words. International day of disabled people aims to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of disabled people.

We got a wonderful response and a wide range of contributions from people in York which we would like to thank everyone that took part. These included personal experiences, visions of  equality,  how to do inclusion, the naming of barriers and the impact of exclusion. Overall the words and doodles recognise both the personal and political struggle, as well as celebrating the unique and valuable contribution disabled people make, and their potential to make to everyday life.

Photos of each comment and doodle can be seen by clicking hereWe have purposely not edited these and are sharing them in totality as a way of allowing the diverse voices of disabled people and their allies to be seen and heard.  This we hope will help enable a conversation and debate to continue about disability so that disabled people are included as equal citizens in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life. 

York Independent Living (YILN) is a disabled people-led organisation. We are focused on the empowerment of disabled people to have our voices heard, to influence the services we receive, to be included in, and get the most out of our lives.  If you would like to get involved, get in touch.

Stephen Lee Hodgkins (YILN trustee).

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