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December 4th 2006 sees the introduction of the Disability Equality Duty, part of the Disability Discrimination Act (2005). This is a legal duty for public authorities to ensure that they:
· Promote equality of opportunity between disabled people and other people.
· Eliminate discrimination that is unlawful under the Disability Discrimination Act.
· Eliminate harassment of disabled people that is related to their disability.
· Promote positive attitudes towards disabled people.
· Encourage participation by disabled people in public life.
· Take steps to meet disabled people’s needs, even if this requires more favourable treatment.
Some public authorities, including our local councils, must produce a “Disability Equality Scheme” telling people how they will practically meet these duties.
Over the past few months, ICOD members have taken part in surveys and attended events by Strathclyde Police, OfCom and the Scottish Executive. These events have been to make contact with disabled people and to shape the Equality Schemes for these organisations.
Inverclyde Council started off its own process by having an event at the James Watt College which was attended by around 70 disabled people. In conjunction with Inverclyde Community Care Forum, ICOD helped to organise the event at which many differing views and issues were discussed. A summary of the meeting, prepared by Inverclyde Council, is enclosed with this issue of Linkability.
In addition to these initial meetings public authorities also have a duty to meaningfully involve disabled people in the development and implementation of their schemes and this should not just be a “ticking boxes” exercise.
Our Council has started positively and ICOD expects that disabled people will have the opportunity to be actively involved in the monitoring of its equality scheme and have an input into how services and equality can be improved.
Only time will tell as to the level of involvement and participation that disabled people are allowed in the new scheme, and as the old saying goes, The proof will be in the pudding!
Harte buses have now introduced low-floor accessible vehicles to their Braehead Service. Below is their timetable for the low-floor buses:
Greenock (Green Oak Bar, Inverkip St)
9.30am, 11am, 1pm, 3pm, 5pm
Port Glasgow (Coronation Park)
9.40am, 11.10am, 1.10pm, 3.10pm, 5.10pm
Greenock (Green Oak Bar, Inverkip Street)
11am, 1pm and 3pm
10.15am, 12pm, 2pm, 3pm, 6pm and 6.30pm
Leaves Braehead- 12pm, 2pm, 4pm
Harte buses can be contacted on tel: 01475 787781 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Inverclyde Deaf Youth Club have recently been awarded their John Muir Environmental Award. The group carried out a number of activities in the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park, including exploring areas of the park and clearing litter.
The presentation took place recently at the Watt Museum, one of the members, Scott Grant, told guests: “It has been a great experience and has given me the confidence to go out and do more things like this."
Inverclyde Council’s magazine In View was published recently. It can be made available in a number of different formats such as Braille, Tape, and Large Print etc. If you would like to receive your copy in a different format please call Keith Moore at Inverclyde Council on 712723 and he will be happy to arrange this for you. Alternatively it can be accessed through your local library.
ICODs continuing campaign to have dropped kerbs enforced and yellow lined took on a new perspective recently when ICOD members leafleted cars Thanking their drivers for being considerate when they parked.
The BBC also had a news item on Reporting Scotland highlighting the issue.
The response was good and several drivers commented positively upon the campaign.
The council Roads Services will be putting white “H Bars” to highlight the kerbs in Greenock Town Centre and it is hoped that this will help motorists to identify the crossings more easily and avoid parking across them in future. More dropped kerbs are planned with various locations under consideration.
To all who help keep our built up environment accessible a big Thanks! and to those who sometimes don’t, Have a Care!
ServiceCall is a way for a disabled driver or wheelchair/scooter user to call for service at premises where access or use of the service being provided is difficult or impossible. Service call receivers can be found in many petrol stations, but also in some banks, supermarkets, and chemists.
These flash and bleep when a service call user presses the button on their transmitter and alert staff that someone is in need of assistance.
The service call transmitters for disabled people are available from ServiceCall priced £9.95 including postage. Service call can be contacted on tel: 0800 458 3008,
email: email@example.com or you can also visit their website: www.service-call.net where you can buy a transmitter on-line and also find which petrol stations and other shops have the system.
At the recent AGM of ICOD Ltd. four new directors were appointed namely Connie Sisson, Carol Reid, John Webb and Jim Mowat.
Jim MacLeod, Chairman, said, “at a time when volunteer directors are hard to come by ICOD has now increased the size of its board to fourteen. All have their own experiences and knowledge to bring to the table and we are particularly happy to have them on Board”.
Up to date information on subtitled and audio-described screenings can be found at www.yourlocalcinema.com which has listings for all UK cinemas with these facilities. They can also be contacted by telephone on: 0845 056 9824, textphone users please call using 18001 before the number. Always remember to contact the cinema before you travel to make sure the screening is still taking place.
From time to time our members contact us with disability/mobility equipment for sale, if you would like us to publicise your equipment please contact us.
I have recently visited a number of shops and banks in Greenock and have found out to my dismay that although they all displayed signs indicating that a hearing loop was available many staff were unable to operate them. What can ICOD do to help?
We checked out your comments with the places you told us about and basically its about staff training and instruction. Many of the staff were unaware how the systems worked and in some cases even how to switch the systems on.
All stores in question have assured ICOD that they will carry this training out in future and make sure that staff are aware of loop systems and the way they operate. This should help and when you set your hearing aid to the T position better communication should be achieved.
Watch out in January for our annual service users survey. This is one of the ways you can let us know what you think about our services and helps us improve them to better suit your needs.
Shopmobility will be open on Sundays between 12pm-4pm until Sunday 14th January 2007. See below for our Christmas and New Year opening hours.
Shopmobility will be open 10am-4pm Monday-Saturday and 12pm-4pm on Sundays apart from on the following days:-
Christmas Eve (Sunday 23rd Dec) 9am-1pm,
Christmas Day and Boxing Day Closed,
New Years Eve (Sunday 31st Dec) 12pm-4pm,
New Years Day and 2nd January Closed
On a beautiful autumnal day members of ICOD Ltd.wrapped up warm and ventured out on a ramble from Bridge of Weir to Port Glasgow. It was also a good chance to try out shopmobilitys newly purchased scooters and they performed execeptionally well. Only the electric wheelchairs struggled slightly to complete the course but help was on hand if required.
The trip , 6 miles in total , took about 3 hours with a break for a spot of lunch. Liz Anderson, a Shopmobility user said “the weather and the scenery were
magnificent it was just great to get out in the country rather than just being confined to the town all the time. The fresh air was very refreshing
and relaxing. People we met along the way were slightly surprised at first when they saw us but but were vey friendly”.
“Plans are afoot for another ramble in the new year and I for one willdefinitley be there, its a great opportunity to meet your friends in an
entirely different setting.”