NEWS & Information

Report from December 2018 Assembly


Please click here to find the photo report from the Assembly meeting on 4th December.

Please feel free to print off and give out and distribute to everyone who may be interested.


Learning Disabilities Mortality Review (LeDeR) Programme Bulletin September 2018

Click here for the bulletin

People with learning disabilities are trying to raise awareness of their condition by brewing beer.

August 2018

Spotlight Brewing has been set up in an outbuilding at a residential care home in Snaith, near Goole, East Yorkshire.

As well as providing work experience for the residents, the company has named its range of beers after different disabilities.

Organiser Ric Womersley said he hoped the brewery would give people employment opportunities elsewhere.

"I've worked with people with learning disabilities all my life," he said.

"The idea came about from realising that there's not much out there in our area for these guys to do which is work based instead of activity based.

"When working with people with learning disabilities it's about choosing the job for the person, so each individual has there own strength."

Figures by charity Mencap show only about 6% of people in England with learning disabilities are in paid employment.

The project started in January and any profits will be reinvested in expanding the brewery.

A local pub has started stocking the range of ales.

One More refers to the extra chromosome found in people with Down's syndrome. Fragile X is named after the genetic condition and Spectrum refers to autism.

Sales manager Matthew Cottingham, who has a learning disability, said working helped him avoid being "bored".

"I feel sorry for ones who don't have a job, staying at home," he said.

More on this story can be found here

Carers in employment

Helping carers to stay in, or return to, employment

2nd February 2018

This government-funded and independently evaluated project, which ran from 2015-2017, looks at what works to support carers to remain or return to the workplace. The Carers in Employment (CiE) project took place in nine local authorities, who were encouraged to develop local solutions to support carers to remain in or return to work; work involving employers was found to be a central to the project’s success. Read Full Story HERE


We need to find a strategy for supporting family carers

Ministers and employers are recognising the importance of 6.5 million unpaid carers, but have yet to produce concrete plans.

Click here for full story


Committee investigates Government pilot projects on employment support for carers

10 January 2018

As of the 2011 Census, there were 6.5 million unpaid carers in the UK.  Currently, over three million of those are also in paid employment. The Work and Pensions Committee examines the Government pilot projects that aim to help carers balance employment with their caring responsibilities.  See full story and find updates here




NHS England appoints senior local government leader as National Learning Disability Director

On 5th October 2017, NHS England announced the appointment of Ray James as its first National Learning Disability Director, to drive improvement across the country on services to people with a learning disability, their families and carers.

Ray is the former national president of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services and the long-standing executive director of health, housing and adult social care at the London Borough of Enfield.

Ray has led on significant programmes of work nationally and at Enfield he has led teams who have achieved multiple award-winning services in respect of safeguarding, community involvement and independent living for disabled adults.

Commenting on the appointment Professor Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer for England and Regional Director for London, said:  “Ray has huge experience in local government and is a great addition to the NHS England team. We are committed to ensuring people with a learning disability get the right care and support using innovative services. Ray’s experience and knowledge will help ensure continuing progress across the NHS, local government and the third sector on our shared mission to drive new options for people with learning disabilities.”

Ray James said: “I’m delighted to have this opportunity to lead the NHS’s work with and for people with a learning disability and/or autism, their families and carers.  I am particularly pleased to bring my background and values from a career in local government and social care to this role.  There is much to do if we are to realise our ambition to support people to lead independent, inclusive lives in their communities, able to access high quality, care, support and/or treatment services when needed.  I am looking forward to the challenges and opportunities over the next couple of years and also want to express my thanks to all at Enfield Council for supporting my secondment.”

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