Category Archives: Local Councils

Pensioners given ‘ASBO’ for putting plants outside their flat

Two pensioners were slapped with an “ASBO” for putting plants and a welcome mat outside their home of 35 years.

John Whelan, 70, and his wife Alicia, 67, were recently handed an “ASBO” for trying to brighten up the communal areas of Sefton Park tower block in breach of fire regulations.

Former project manager Mr Whelan said the corridor has been left looking like a ‘prison’ since residents of York House on Croxteth Drive were ordered to remove any decorations.

An injunction, which has been seen by the ECHO, was issued to Mr and Mrs Whelan in January, forbidding the couple from ‘placing any items in the communal areas’.

Mr Whelan claims the “ASBO”, which lasts for the lifetime of the couple’s tenancy, could result in the couple being evicted – if they were to break the conditions of the order.

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Our comment: is this really what ASBOs were intended for ?

Social care postcode gap widens for older people

Older people in England’s most deprived areas are twice as likely to lack the help they need for basic acts, like using the toilet or taking medicine, compared with those in the richest neighbourhoods, according to figures that expose gross inequalities in access to social care.

The official analysis is another sign that years of cuts have damaged the ability of councils in poor areas to meet the growing demand for care, potentially putting significant pressure on the NHS. It comes on the back of the crisis over social care that is still unresolved. There have been a series of warnings about a multibillion-pound funding black hole and increasingly severe consequences for the health service.

A third of men aged 65 and over in the most deprived areas (33%) have an unmet need for at least one so-called “activity of daily living”, such as washing their face and hands or getting out of bed. In the least deprived areas the figure falls to 15%. Meanwhile, 42% of women over 65 in the most deprived areas have an unmet need for at least one such activity, compared with 22% of their counterparts in the richest areas.

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Automatic renewal plan for senior bus passes in South Yorkshire

Older people in Sheffield will no longer have to renew their bus passes. From January 1 the South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive, or SYPTE, will roll out an automatic renewal scheme for senior concession passes. The trial scheme will run for a year and will apply to all passes that expire after December 31 this year. SYPTE executive director Stephen Edwards said: “We are pleased to introduce the new auto renewal pass process for English National Concessionary Travel Scheme pass holders. “The process will remove the need for our customers to reapply for their pass, making it even easier for them to continue to benefit from free and discounted travel across South Yorkshire.” Passengers currently have to renew their pass every five years, either in person, on the phone or online. Once the trial period starts, all they need to do is wait for their new pass to come through the letter box. The only time anyone will need to contact SYPTE is if they have moved house or need to update their details or photo – or to apply for their first pass. If the trial is successful, automatic renewal will become permanent.

Sheffield bus services

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Our comment: Not the first to do this, but hopefully to be followed by many more local councils

West Berkshire bus passes will no longer be valid before 9.30 causing confusion in Berkshire

Both West Berkshire and Reading pensioners lose out in the changes to bus pass concessions resulting from a subsidy cut by West Berkshire Council

A cut in West Berkshire Council’s subsidy to free pensioner bus passes will mean a different deal for passengers living in Reading and West Berkshire in future.

Although Reading’s concessionary bus passes are unchanged, the West Berkshire changes mean Reading concessionary bus passes will only be valid on buses boarded in West Berkshire after 9.30am from this Sunday, May 1.
Reading pass holders are being given advanced warning of the change, which comes after West Berkshire Council withdrew its subsidy and reverted to the National Concessionary Bus Travel Scheme.

It means free travel for concessionary pass holders boarding buses in West Berkshire will only be allowed after 9.30am.

In Reading borough, the ability to use concessionary passes from 9am is still in place.

The changes being implemented by West Berkshire Council from Sunday, May 1 will also affect companion pass holders who will no longer be able to travel for free on a bus in West Berkshire at any time.

This means a Reading companion pass holder and their companion boarding a bus in Reading borough can both travel for free to places like Sainsbury’s in Calcot for example, or to Newbury.
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Elderly patients afraid to complain in ‘care’ homes

Hundreds of thousands of elderly people are “suffering in silence” because they are too afraid to complain about their treatment in care homes and hospitals, a government watchdog says.
According to a report published today, a third of over 65s who experienced below standard care did not speak up because they were concerned their future treatment would be compromised.
The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman said it had received far fewer complaints than it would expect from older people, given their frequent use of the NHS and social care services.
“Older people are some of the most frequent and vulnerable users of health and social care services but are the silent majority when it comes to complaining.”
Julie Mellor
Of the ten million people aged over 65 in Britain, the watchdog found 76 per cent used the NHS this year.
But of the 14 per cent who were unhappy with their care, only half of that number complained.

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Elderly residents accuse council of “bullying” to make them pay as much as £13,700 to reach their own homes

Elderly residents have accused a council of “bullying” them by trying to make them pay as much as £13,700 to reach their own houses.

And now Shepway District Council is threatening to block the access altogether unless the dispute is resolved.

Three couples and a widow living in Green Lane, Hythe, use two bridges over a dyke to get to their four bungalows.

This means crossing over council-owned land, which had a charge of just over £1 a year for all four households under a 1950s lease but, now that lease has expired Shepway is trying to charge each household £500 a year rent or a one-off payment of £13,700 for permanent access.

One resident, Sue Page, 61, said: “I would call this bullying and intimidation. You don’t dare to even go out because you wonder even if the bridge will be lifted when we come back.

“It is a nightmare, it has cause us sleepless nights.”

Most of the residents, aged from their 60s to 80s, have health problems such as disability from industrial injury, osteoarthritis and heart condition. One is a cancer survivor.

The four homes, plus a fifth, had been under a 50-year lease, from January 1957, to have access through the land, owned by the then Hythe Borough Council, for a guinea (£1.05) a year between them. That would be a rent of 21p each per year in modern decimal currency but Shepway became landowners after replacing the borough council in 1974 and the lease expired in January 2007.

The fifth household bought a permanent right of access from the council for £12,500 in 2011.

In April 2014 Shepway wrote to the remaining householders saying it wanted to charge them. The high price demanded was based on soaring land prices since the 1950s and following advice from chartered surveyors.

But the sums expected have yo-yoed.

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Trending Mad Friday Tim Peake Syria bombing ISIS Terrorism Technology Money Travel Fashion Mums Home News UK News Hospitals Pensioners to be charged £26 ‘falling fee’ to be helped back to their feet by local council

A district council said it would introduce the fee on top of the existing cost of a subscription to its service for elderly people who require home care.

Pensioners who need help being helped back to their feet after a fall at home will be charged £26 by their local council.

Tendring District Council said it would introduce the fee as part of its Careline service for elderly people who require home care.

An elderly rights campaign group has described the charge as “shocking” and equivalent to a ‘falling fine’.

The £25.92 annual charge means a carer will come to pick an elderly resident up after a fall.

Our comment: This sounds crazy, older people will be scared to pull the chord when in need.

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