WELCOME TO ALL FELLOW CAMPAIGNERS for DISABILITY RIGHTS - a pan disability blog connecting my work with, EQUAL LIVES, the National Survivor User Network (NSUN) and the Survivor History Group.

Protest, Norwich Job Centre

Protest, Norwich Job Centre
Fatso Gets Militant!

Sunday, 5 October 2014

September Meetings

Norfolk HealthWatch AGM at the Curve, Norwich, 22nd September2014 .

The AGM was Chaired by William Armstrong the ex Norfolk Coroner. The first speaker was Doeuke Doebma the owner of Clinks Care Farm who gave a comprehensive account of care farms in general and a special account of his own organisation.

The special guest speaker was Norman Lamb who, after a matey exchange with the Chair about their early mutual experiences as lawyers in London, gave his usual warm, slithey and near meaningless talk about how the government are doing everything to improve and advance mental health services.

Time came for questions from the floor and, unusually I was chosen for the first one. I asked Norman Lamb:

“How do you reconcile your glowing rhetoric with the fact that no actions to implement it are taking place and the government is continuing to make swingeing cuts in mental health?”

In a blustered reply Mr Lamb just referred to what he had said in his talk. Disappointingly, no-one followed up my question.

I think the time is long past when we should put Mr Lamb and his DH colleagues under concerted pressure to fulfill their warm promises as couched in “No Health without Mental Health.”


Gt Yarmouth and Waveney CCG meeting, Beccles, 25th September 2014

In a meeting which was full to the seams with service users, carers and members of the public, the CCG's agenda included their decision about the Norfolk and Suffolk Mental Health Trust's proposals for beds and services cuts at Carlton Court hospital on the edge of Lowestoft.

For the purposes of this write up the following quote in 'Recommendations for the Governing Body to Approve,' section 6, from the CCG's final proposals is my main concern:

“Consolidate all adult mental health inpatient services on the Northgate Hospital site in Great Yarmouth which will be developed as a local centre of excellence for acute mental health services...The Governing Body should note that where there is an acute need, a bed will always be found, even if in exceptional circumstances this means a patient may be placed out of Trust area” (whole document - http://tinyurl.com/oovfot7)

My main objection to this is the acute Lowestoft mental health beds and the Lowestoft multidisciplinary team based at Carlton Court will be transferred at best, 12 miles and at worst 25+ miles out of access for the Lowestoft people with difficult and expensive public transport routes and with all the difficulty being exacerbated by getting to the point of transport.

I asked the CCG board the following questions:

Do you realise you are in breach of the 2010 Equality Act - this is: because of your proposed actions to take the acute mental health services from Carlton Court to Northgate hospital in Gt Yarmouth, you are discriminating against the people of Lowestoft?

And a rhetorical question: do the doctors on the board recognise the words: ’First, do no harm?’

My second question raised a brief comment from the chair - that he found it insulting.



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The Tough Tenor (when I could walk)!

In a Mellotone

In a Mellotone
Ah sweet Youffff