Author Archives: admin

Universal Credit

By: A.C. Our Facebook Page has featured articles from national media about Universal Credit,  or the  “pausing” of Universal Credit as Esther McVey and her colleagues change the benefits landscape, timetable and application process on a daily basis This situation makes … Continue reading

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Disability, the Establishment and the Press

By: A,C, The reporting of the this story at The Guardian is about a senior civil servant Andrew McDonald who developed Parkinson’s, and then subsequently got cancer. In the period that he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s he became a volunteer chairman … Continue reading

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Medicinal Cannabis Products

By: A.C. In relation to a recent  BBC link on our Facebook page on medicinal cannabis products for pain relief amongst other uses,  I have always been aware that people very quietly have been using some form of cannabis for … Continue reading

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Jazz Hands

By: A.C. It was reported this week that Manchester University National Union of Students decided  through democratic means to swap applause, clapping shouting approval for the silent  BSL sign of approval “Jazz Hands”, at all of their Student Union Meetings. … Continue reading

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Disability and The Police in the USA

By: A.C. The more that I read about the political situation in America the more I am reminded of Darwin’s Book “On the Origin of Species”. Darwin posited that animals evolve to suit their environment and evolve certain characteristics as … Continue reading

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Social Security Scotland

By: A.C. It is that time of year again when the politicians go into conference and surreptitiously or otherwise, put a textual stiletto into their rival, in an attempt to promote themselves and thus gain better jobs, more recognition and fuel … Continue reading

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Guest Post: Podiatry and Diabetic Foot Screening

By. Aberdeen City Podiatry Clinic Diabetes is a lifelong condition which can cause foot problems. Some of these problems can occur because the nerves and blood vessels supplying your feet aredamaged. This can affect: feeling in your feet (called ‘peripheral neuropathy’) … Continue reading

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Diabetes Foot Screening

By: A.C. The following comprehensive article by the Clinical Leads on Podiatry in Aberdeen and Grampian, has been submitted to us after a very lengthy re–organisation of who is responsible for the podiatry care of vulnerable or at risk patients in … Continue reading

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The Prosecutor Who Just Happens To Be Blind

By: A.C. On our Facebook Page we have a link to a BBC programme entitled “Prisons, Drugs & Drones “. However, to clarify my interest in this programme, it is the role of Eran Cutliffe, the Senior Crown Prosecutor in the … Continue reading

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BSL and Grampian Health Board’s Consultation

By: A.C. I cannot even imagine what a sensory deprivation is like. To be deprived of one’s sight or hearing and having to live in world which is operating for those who have little or no sensory impairment or deprivation, … Continue reading

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Disability History: Projects and the Personal

By: A.C The informal talk on “Disability History in the Granite City” at our premises on 25 April, was well received by the two dozen or so people who ventured out on a Spring evening.  Our main speaker Andrew Hunter, explained … Continue reading

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Motobility Vs the Daily Mail

By: A.C. A rather small and under –reported item in the BBC news caught my attention this week. Motability is a charity that has funded millions of vehicles for the disabled and given them independent living.  This story started in the … Continue reading

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PIP Review

By: A.C. The unexpected & sudden U –Turn made by Esther McVey in deciding not to contest the decision of the High Court in December,  which heavily criticised the DWP and its blatantly discriminatory regulations toward those disabled who cannot navigate, … Continue reading

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Blue Badge Updates

By: A.C. Recently, heavy national news coverage about the Blue badge Scheme in England, regarding the inclusion of people with “navigation difficulties” and who are therefore now eligible for a blue badge have raised questions by some folk about what happens … Continue reading

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Work

By: A.H. As hard as it may be to imagine these days, there was once a time when the words “Aberdeen” and “Industry” didn’t always come with the word “Oil” in between them. Aberdeen was once a city with a wide … Continue reading

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McVey Appointed

By: A.C. When someone in an elected office gets the heave–ho and loses their seat because of their massive unpopularity and support for policies that were affecting hundreds of thousands of people, then one does not expect to see them running … Continue reading

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Alan and Specsavers vs the DVLA

By:A.C. The TV advert has become quite well known: “should’ve gone to Specsavers”.  I always thought that the well –known national chain of Opticians was a large monolithic company.   So it was a surprise to find out that each individual … Continue reading

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School Days

By: A.H. Aberdeen has a long and well known relationship with education. It’s a matter of not inconsiderable civic pride that the city was home to two universities when the entirety of England was home to just two (Marischal and Kings … Continue reading

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Hammond’s Comments

By:A.C. In the North –East of Scotland we have numerous Scots words in the local dialect that would describe Phillip Hammond when he made his statement  about the unproductivity or burden of disabled people on the economy – as he … Continue reading

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Goebbels and the Disabled

By: A.C. In this week of Disability Awareness & History, I am reminded of Goebbels, the Nazi Minister for Propaganda, for the Third Reich.  He was indeed a very strange man. He measured around 5’ tall, had a club right foot … Continue reading

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Introductions

By: A.H.  There is an old curse: “may you live in interesting times”. This is a curse that has come true for everyone who has ever lived. All times are interesting. Everyone has stories and experiences worth sharing. It’s tempting … Continue reading

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Stand By Your Charity- An Appeal

By A.C. There are so many things going on in the world that I find an overabundance of news to comment on. However, I am simply going to draw stark lines between various stories and how that affects little charities … Continue reading

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Bullying Then And Now

By: A.C. This article at the BBC on disabled families being subjected to hate crime is not new at all. Just that those hateful people with little to occupy their minds or hands, have easier methods through social media to carry out … Continue reading

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Neighbourhood Alert System

By: A.C. The following text originates from the Crime Reduction Unit of North –East Scotland Police Division of Police Scotland. “Police Scotland’s North East Division covers rural and urban areas in Moray, Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City. Within the Division the … Continue reading

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Para-Swimming Bullying

By:A.C. The BBC ran a report yesterday on the apology by British Swimming as regards the bullying complaints against coaching staff    These complaints include according to the BBC: “The governing body said the unnamed member of staff – understood to … Continue reading

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Assessment Changes

By: A.C. Those who follow our Facebook News Feed will have noticed the usual Gov.UK logo announcing  Changes for Assessment (Work Capability Assessment) . This announcement, which took effect on 29 September, is not exactly being trumpeted by the Government. Maybe … Continue reading

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Mandatory Reviews and Targets

By: A.C. For years I have suspected that civil servants were on some kind of instruction, directive or incentive to knock back as many applications, of what used to be called Incapacity Benefit,   which changed to ESA, and other disability benefits … Continue reading

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Blue Badge Scam

By: A.C. I recently became aware of a scam that affects Blue Badge applicants in Aberdeen. It is a very simple, cynical and convincing scam that involves paying £49 for what is a £20 Blue Badge– if one qualifies in the … Continue reading

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Insurance for Disabled Drivers

By: A.C. Like many teenagers, when I was young I was bursting to get my own wheels.   I started with a Heinkel three wheel bubble car, which was sold fairly quickly to a bubble–car enthusiast. Then I moved to motor bikes, … Continue reading

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Nuisance Call Blockers

By: A.C. A couple of years ago, I was fed up of spivs, con-men and fraudsters  who all somehow knew that my computer was badly infected with a virus and needed cleaning,  or other con-men who wanted into my bank details.  … Continue reading

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New Premises

By: A.C. By this time our readership will have noticed that we have moved from Spring Garden to Units G & H Kettock Lodge, Campus 2, Balgownie Drive, Bridge of Don. Photographs of the new Office and associated unit next door … Continue reading

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POEM: No One Else

By: S.W. No one else has seen me cry Went to their bed and hoped to die Ever heard my side of the story Lived my existence just my pain no glory No one else can regret my sins The troubled … Continue reading

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ATOS Assement Appointment Scheduling and Rescheduling

By: A.C. There was a story over the weekend that caught my eye in the National as I browsed the Scottish News. The headline ran: “DWP tell stroke victim to use food banks after being left with no DLA payments” The article … Continue reading

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Exercise, Now and Then

By: A.C. I don’t know if it’s the age I am at, or if my memory is only selecting memories of my growing–up in Lanarkshire. I noticed today ( 1 April) a story on disability  and forms of exercise for those … Continue reading

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Off-topic reviews 2017

<Editor’s Note: Aberdeen has a great range of Accessible cinemas. We’re sharing these reviews in the hope that by encouraging people to take advantage of these accessible screenings, the cinemas will expand the service even further. Check back often to … Continue reading

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PIP changes

By: A.C. I have deliberately kept my computer silent over a longer period than normal. I did this because of the extraordinary changes in politics, that appear to be very right–wing and cares not about people’s rights, subverts court decisions, and … Continue reading

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Transport difficulties in the 60s

By: A.C. Nowadays, I seem to get distant memories triggered by an innocent conversation. This was evident when I was talking with my wife, on what is available nowadays, and what happened in the sixties, with regard to disability access to … Continue reading

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New Scottish Welfare System- Where We Are And How To Get Involved.

By now you are probably aware that a certain amount of new powers over some benefits are being devolved to the Scottish Government.  Our contributor A.C. recently wrote to the Scottish Government about the new powers. He brought to their attention … Continue reading

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Home or Cinema – Autism Friendly Screenings

By: A.C. I am sure that many of our readers, have a lot their technology worked out to give them the best experience for watching movies or their favourite TV series.  Some may have Chromecast, Amazon Fire, Now TV,  Netflix as … Continue reading

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The UN Committee on the Rights of Disabled Persons and The DWP

By: A.C. I think most disabled people who have been under the regime of the DWP in the Work Capability Assessment (WCA), will recognise since before 2010,  having  had their benefits cut, mobility vehicles taken away, and being generally demonised by … Continue reading

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Abolition of the Work Related Activity?

By: A.C. From the time of the announcement of the changes to be brought in on ESA/WRAG by Damian Green and Jeremy Hunt at the Tory Party Conference in September, a bit of confusion has reigned over ESA and what will … Continue reading

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Review: I, Daniel Blake

By: A.C. There is a strange irony in my reporting and reviewing the harrowing Ken Loach film “ I, Daniel Blake” which was released today, Friday 21 October 2016, as many people who have been denied ESA or refused other … Continue reading

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How Studying Psychology Has Helped Me Cope With My Disability

By: E.R Throughout my life so far, I have always had a certain fascination with how people think and feel. From a young age I have been quite sensitive to how people are feeling and hold great empathy towards individuals … Continue reading

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Review: Cash Not Care

By: A.C. Mo Stewart is a former healthcare professional, a disabled female veteran and, for the last 6 years, has researched the links between the DWP, Atos Healthcare & Unum Insurance. To date, the research evidence has been quoted during … Continue reading

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“Treated Like A Criminal”

By: G.E. According to the Disability News Service the sister of a man who was driven to suicide by the Work Capability System also tried to take her own life after the way she was treated by the department for … Continue reading

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61 Year Old Amputee Declared “Fit For Work”

By: G.E. According to a story I came across a 61 year old amputee has been told he must look for work despite being unable to leave the house. After 3 unsuccessful attempts to remove a blood clot, in December … Continue reading

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Long-Term Illness Policy Changes

By: A.C. Usually when a press release is put out in the dead of night, it is probably to catch the newspaper & online media cycle for the morning. If an announcement is made hours before a political party gathering, … Continue reading

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iPlayer Changes

By: A.C. I would guess that many of our readers watch TV through tablets, iPads,  mobile phones, or other devices, using the BBC iPlayer. Catch–Up TV is very popular as a serial can now be watched at any time after broadcast. … Continue reading

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Police and Diversity Training

By: A.C. In recent times, there have been incidents which have occurred in the USA which show an initial inability to understand deaf mute or autistic people who have had an interaction with the Police. Acording to the BBC, in the … Continue reading

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Musicians With Disabilities Part 2

By: R.A. As a continuation to my earlier writing on this, let’s take a look at some other famous musicians with disabilities. Brian Wilson, lead singer of the Beach Boys.  On top of singing backing vocals, Brian was the bands songwriter … Continue reading

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Open Season

By: A.C. We know it is autumn when those who enjoy blasting birds from the sky for fun take to the field, or indeed  when Tesco and others fill their aisles with Christmas biscuits and chocolates, and start to use posters … Continue reading

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Ready, Steady….Gone

By: G.E While researching another article, I came across a story on the Disability News Service website about Paralympians fearing they would lose their Motability  vehicles after being reassessed as part of the governments programme of cuts and reforms. Young wheelchair … Continue reading

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Deaths linked to benefit cuts

By: G.E. Since the cuts to benefits and the change from DLA to PIP, many people, after losing their benefits or being found “fit for work” after an ESA assessment, have taken their own lives. A story I found online … Continue reading

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The Nights are fair drawin in

By: A.C. It is a phrase that for some reason is derided by comedians and those who appear to have a secret snide chuckle at it.  “aye, the nights are fair drawin in”. Why the so–called intelligentsia or pseuds in the … Continue reading

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Musicians with Disabilities Part 1

By: R.A. Music. What appeals to us? Who do we like or think is musically talented? Which musical acts do we rate for their achievements?  We have to immediately think of rock acts like Rudely Interrupted, or Heavy Load, the Brighton … Continue reading

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Does Not Compute

By: A.C. I note that, once again, the computer systems at the DWP hotline was described by Disability News Service as “ The system used for new personal independence payment (PIP) claims has crashed twice in a fortnight, leaving disabled callers … Continue reading

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Pet Therapy

By: R.A. We know that pets provide us with good companionship…well sometimes.  If you are simply looking at pets, most are lovely and cute. Owners of pets may disagree, depending on their pet’s behaviour today.  Can we own a healthy … Continue reading

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PIP Criteria and Descriptors

Editor’s Note: We are often asked what exactly the criteria for various benefits are before people start the application process. With this in mind, we have compiled a list of the descriptors of peoples’ abilities as used in the assessment. … Continue reading

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Blue Badge Eligibility

By: A.C. I noticed this story in Disability News Service recently. Its rather shouty headline refers to the situation in England where the author of the article relates his opinion on the allocation of Blue badges, as it concerns those in … Continue reading

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Supermarket Delivery and Charges

<Editor’s Note: If you do shop online, then why not help us by raising donations via Easyfundraising.org? The donations come from the retailers you’re already buying from, so will only cost you a couple of clicks more than it would … Continue reading

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Erraid Davies

By: A.C. Erraid Davies, from Shetland, is the youngest ever Commonwealth games medallist, and she did that by winning bronze in the para–sport Women’s 100m Breastroke.   Erraid has Perthes Disease, which has affected her hip joint since she was a child.  Some … Continue reading

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National Entitlement Card

By: A.C. In researching another article, I was reminded that many disabled people already have The National Entitlement Card, which allows people aged 60+ and people with a disability to travel for free on local or Scottish long distance buses. Transport … Continue reading

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Travel Discounts and Jobcentre Plus

By: A.C. It is maybe not that well known, but has anybody ever taken up a Jobcentre Plus travel card?  If you have, did you know about them, or were you made aware? Please comment below. These were introduced a few … Continue reading

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Profile: Sophie De OIiveira Barata

By: A.C. Did anyone see the The One Show on 8 April 2016 on the subject on jewel–encrusted, techno-robot, and realistic looking prosthetics?  This item featured the work of Sophie De OIiveira Barata a prosthetic limb designer.  Sophie writes that: “Polyanna Hope … Continue reading

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‘nil carborundum illegitimi’

By: A.C. Over the years of the present UK Government, I have always had an attitude of ‘nil carborundum illegitimi’. To see what this ‘dog Latin’ means, you can search it on the web. Yesterday, whilst at my local supermarket, I … Continue reading

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After the Battle on Iplayer and An Appeal for Infromation

By: S.W. My own parochial instincts kicked in on Saturday night when I felt unprepared to listen to Our English friends repeat jingoistic claims about winning against a sworn enemy of seventy years ago. This friendly played in Germany is of … Continue reading

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Autism Awareness On TV

By A.C. Have you been aware of more programmes on the BBC about Autism? The National Autistic Society have been campaigning to make people more aware through the Schools Awareness Week ( 14 -18 March 2016), and World Awareness Week (2 -8 … Continue reading

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What’s Going On With Cuts to Benefits?

By: A.C. Over the last few days, I’ve tried to find out if the recent statements about PIP/DLA being scrapped also included the legislation which was forced through by Ian Duncan Smith after the Lords had sent the legislation back for … Continue reading

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Disabled People Are “An Afterthought” Say Lords

By: A.C. It would appear that the oft-despised Lords appear to be a friend to people with disabilities. In recent times they’ve played Parliamentary Ping –Pong – a Westminster Term for when legislation is passed back and forth between the Commons … Continue reading

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More on IDS Resignation

By: A.C. I usually try to avoid Andrew Marr on a Sunday Morning unless there is a reason for watching.   As I get older, I no longer sit quietly and listen to politicians being interviewed.  I seem to end up uttering … Continue reading

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IDS Resigns

By: A.C. I happened to be online late the other night, when newsrooms started to broadcast the breaking news that Iain Duncan Smith had resigned from the UK Government Cabinet.   I was as puzzled by his resignation as David Cameron was … Continue reading

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Return to the Sensory Corridor

By: A.C. On a recent visit to the David Welch Winter Gardens at Duthie Park, I was a bit alarmed to see that the Sensory Corridor, had been “ renovated” and the herbaceous perennial scented pelargoniums had been removed , only … Continue reading

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Aberdeen Care and Repair

By: A.C. A problem that many people in Aberdeen have had in recent years is finding a decent tradesman, who will actually turn up for small jobs. It has been my experience that tradesmen when contacted for an estimate either … Continue reading

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Grace and Thula

By: A.C. Yesterday on our Facebook Page we shared the BBC News item about Thula the Maine Coon Cat and her close friend Iris Grace, the daughter of Arabell Carter –Johnson. Arabella Carter –Johnson is a wedding photographer and author of … Continue reading

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Lost Voice Guy

By: S.W. I decided to avoid the usual diet of Ant and Dec and associated stupidity available on a Saturday night to attend a comedy club known as “Breakneck Comedy”. I have only been to the club once before and found … Continue reading

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Interview- The Disabled Person’s Media Unit and The People’s Projects

By: A.S. This interview is with our media production training project tutor and editor, Andy Hunter. We asked what the project offers the folk who attend, and those who read and listen to what they produce, what he gets out of … Continue reading

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Interview- Aberdeen And District Disabled Multisport Coaching Group

By: A.H. This is the first, of hopefully many, of our radio style interviews with people involved in disability activism of all types. We sat down and spoke to Alistair Williamson, from Aberdeen and District Disabled Multi-Sport, who have been providing … Continue reading

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The Gift of Life

By: S.W. I wrote an article in December 2013 promoting organ donation as I approached a major milestone in my life. I was lucky enough to receive a kidney transplant in January 1994. Since then I have never failed to use … Continue reading

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The People’s Projects

By: A.C. A couple of weeks ago, I was asked without ceremony or warning to come into the Office, as there would be a “filming session” by STV. There was a great deal of secrecy surrounding the film crew and why … Continue reading

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Dyslexia and Discrimination

By: A.C. I bring to your attention a report that appeared recently,  about a woman who has dyslexia, and has won a Disability Discrimination Act tribunal against her employer Starbucks.     Messeret Kumulchew was a supervisor at a branch of Starbucks … Continue reading

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Terms and Conditions

By: S.W. When asked if I could write an article or similar for this blog I was shown a list of politically correct names and phrases for people with disabilities.  On the negative side the somewhat derogatory and unseemly references used … Continue reading

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Human Rights, Europe and the UN

By: A.C. There are 30 Articles in the Declaration of Human Rights at the United Nations. Article 25 is one that concerns the disabled and their rights in welfare and social security, and employment. Article 25. (1)Everyone has the right to … Continue reading

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PIP, DLA and Motabillity

By: A.C. The recent figures published by the BBC recently on the amount of disabled people having their Motability Vehicles taken away when the DWP order a reassessment from DLA to PIP is very disturbing.   According to the BBC statistics: “More … Continue reading

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Bus Pass Discrimination

By: A.C. It is no surprise that I read today of woman in Gloucestershire who was refused access to a Stagecoach bus.    The woman presented her bus pass, for a journey she made daily to see her daughter, as she … Continue reading

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A New Start

By: W.A.M Loneliness can be so bad you want to scream from the rooftops: “why me?”. Finding somewhere you belong is like finding water in a desert, you want to dance and yell, “yes l have found a place where l … Continue reading

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PIP and Reality

By: A.C. It was with a wry smile I saw the inevitable but expected review by the UK Government on the definition of what disability is, as regards the qualification for PIP reported in by Frances Ryan in the Guardian. … Continue reading

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ESA changes and Burns

By: A.C. It is ironic that on 25 January, 257 years since the birthday of Robert Burns, when thousands of Scots and others will toast the immortal memory of the Scots’ National Bard, the controversial Work and Welfare Reform Bill … Continue reading

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Sister Rita to The Rescue

By: A.C. This spell of very dreich and gloomy weather has meant that I am watching more daytime TV that I would normally. On BBC at 0915 today ( 7/12/2015) and all week, is a programme about a Catholic Nun … Continue reading

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Hallowe’en and Wheelchairs

By: A.C. Halloween has been and gone, and Guy Fawkes Night is imminent. I was reminded of the mistaken cultural crossovers by my married daughter when she insisted that “Guisin” was really all about Penny for the Guy. With some … Continue reading

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Immigration, the NHS and Landlords

By: A.C. The Tory Conference this year does seem to have thrown up contradictory statements and promises of swingeing and radical legislation. Unfortunately, Theresa May the Home Secretary does not seem to like people who come from foreign lands and … Continue reading

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Fringe Comments at Conference

By: A.C. The Tory party Conference 2015 did attract some fringe groupings, though one lobby group with lot to say for itself was the Taxpayers Alliance, which at fringe meeting, its Chairman stated an unsettling policy proposal for Hard–Right Tories … Continue reading

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Conference and Universal Credit

By: A.C I try to be apolitical and have never joined a political party. However, I can spot when politicians engage in contradictory lies and hypocrisy, and that is not a hard task, because as the old joke says “you … Continue reading

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DVLA And Medical Reporting

By: A.C. The subject that I am about to try and comment on, is without doubt probably one of the few occasions where individuals are left to choose a path that will probably affect their job, mobility & social life … Continue reading

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Adventure Holidays

By A.C. Holidays are always parts of our lives that we will remember, either for all the right reasons, in how much it was enjoyed by everyone, or the wrong reasons and the disaster that it turned out to be. … Continue reading

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Blue Badges

By: A.C. There are quite a few articles on this blog that comment on how disabled people look at themselves, and the definitions of what Disability is and is not under the Disability Discrimination Act 2010. (See our previous article … Continue reading

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False Examples

By: A.C. How many of us were shocked at the recent revelations about the DWP using stock photos and very dodgy stories to illustrate how wonderful – in the view of the DWP – the sanctions system is? The leaflets … Continue reading

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The Story of Nairn

By: B.B. I have become familiar with the town of Nairn on the Moray Coast in recent years, but it’s always a pleasure to revisit old haunts. Nairn is a Victorian seaside town favoured by Charlie Chaplin, who apparently was … Continue reading

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Supreme Court DLA Verdict

By: A.C. Earlier this year the Supreme Court heard an appeal regarding the case of Cameron Mathieson, a child who was born with Duschennes Cystic Fibrosis and had other complications which meant that from infancy his parents received the highest … Continue reading

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Hidden Disability 2

By: A.C. Last year, I wrote about Hidden Disability, and the Hierarchy of Disability, which was to illustrate as best as I could, how both visibly disabled people, and society in general view hidden disability. Recently, BBC 3 has been … Continue reading

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Windows 10

By: A.C. Has anybody taken up the free upgrade to Windows 10? I did, and I lasted a day and then reverted back to Windows 8.1 Even though I dislike its annoying features. I then did a bit of digging … Continue reading

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