ILF Scotland

202303 - Northern Ireland Stakeholder Group Minutes - March 2023 (Easy Read)

Type of document: Minutes of recipient/stakeholder groups
Front cover of the Northern Ireland Stakeholder Minutes March 2023 Easy Read

Read the document

Published: April 9, 2024

Independent Living Fund Scotland

Northern Ireland Stakeholder Group Meeting Minutes

7 March 2023

Easy Read

The meeting happened on Tuesday 7 March from 11.30am to 3pm.

The meeting happened in 2 ways:

  • on Zoom
  • at the Mount Conference Centre in Belfast

Permanent Members

David McDonald, Chair
Niqi Rainey
Frances McHugh (on Zoom)
Robert Dallas
Collette Jones
Caroline Wheeler
Kieran McCarthy (on Zoom, left meeting at 12:25)

Affiliate Members

Amanda Paul (left meeting at 13:30)
Bryan Myles

From ILF Scotland

Linda Scott
Lee House
Peter Scott
Harvey Tilley
Robert White (joined on Zoom at 1.30pm and left at 2.20pm)

Who could not come to the meeting?

Michaela Hollywood

List of Actions

Linda to share with Bryan the AI/Uplift records of the accounts that Lothian Council for Inclusive Living manage

An uplift is an increase in the level of pay.

Peter will talk as soon as possible with the Northern Ireland Government about the increase in Personal Assistant (PA) rates happening in April 2023

Linda will email the group with the main ways that money could be saved when the fund is re-opened

Lee will email:

  • details of training of PAs to the Stakeholder Group

Insurance could be invalid if PAs are not trained properly.

  • the link from the ILF Scotland website on Advanced Care Planning to the Group

Advance care planning means making decisions about the care you would want to get if you could not speak for yourself in the future.

1. Welcome

David welcomed everyone and checked everyone was okay with the meeting sound being recorded.

2. Minutes of previous meeting

Everyone agreed the Minutes from February 2022 were fine.
The Minutes will be put on the ILF website.

A pile of money and a calculator with a hand pressing the buttons. A red up arrow is on the right.

Actions from the last meeting:

Colin and Linda will talk about increasing the rate of PA pay by 12 per cent before April 2023 and backdating the increase to 1 April 2022.

This action has happened.

Lee will share weblinks from Michaela to the communication team on PA support and training

3. Matters arising - what do we need to talk about

4 people stand talking to each other. There are speech bubbles coming out their heads. A red line is through the talking.

There were no new things we needed to talk about.

4. Re-opening of the 2015 Fund in Northern Ireland

Harvey said that because there is no Northern Ireland Assembly in place, they do not know if the fund can re-open.
Colin will work on a new proposal to be sent to the Permanent Secretary in April 2024.

A nurse stands beside an older lady in a wheelchair being pushed by a younger man. They all stand in front of a building with a sign half seen showing it's an NHS hospital.

David suggested that people leaving hospital and returning home should be part of the new proposal.

Harvey agreed that this will be included.

Niqi suggested that it would be a good idea to include information comparing ILF Scotland recipients to non ILF Scotland recipients for how many people had to have a hospital stay, particularly for Covid.

A recipient is someone who gets ILF money.

Linda said we could give the number of recipients who have advised ILF Scotland of hospital stays but was not sure if they will be able to mention Covid or not.

ILF Scotland will look more at this.

5. The plan to open the fund again in Northern Ireland

Linda confirmed that all uplifts have happened to the new maximum of 43 pounds a week or less.

David thanked Peter, Harvey, Linda and everyone else at ILF Scotland and Mark and Colin at the Department of Health who have worked hard on this.

6. PA increase in wages

A pile of money and a calculator with a hand pressing the buttons. A red up arrow is on the right.

Linda asked the group if they agreed with the way to uplift PA rates by 12 per cent, as agreed between the Department of Health and ILF Scotland.

Any recipient who pays their PA 14 pounds and 75 pence an hour keeps this rate.

Any recipient’s PA who is paid below the national minimum wage will be increased to 9 pounds 50 pence an hour.

These increases will happen for most recipients by the beginning of April 2023.

The increases may take a bit longer if a recipient is having a review visit or their money has been suspended.

The Group accepted the proposals and thanked everyone involved at ILF Scotland and the NI Department of Health for making this possible.

It will make a big difference to hiring and keeping PAs and to all our lives.

Members asked that future increases happen in time for recipients and Award Managers to increase PA wages on 6 April.

Peter will talk to the Government about this as soon as possible.

7. Review Visits

Robert said that ILF Scotland are behind on review visits because:

  • it is complicated to hire and keep PAs
  • assessors are finding it difficult to have social workers at review visits

Urgent reviews will always happen first.

Robert will keep giving the Group information about this.

8. Stakeholder/Advisory Group meeting

Harvey said we must send a proposal to the Scottish Government before ILF Scotland can plan a joint event.

David will invite the Permanent Secretary of the NI Department of Health.

A working group will start in April or May with members from Scotland and Northern Ireland to plan the event for September or October.

9. Advanced Care Planning

Linda said that ILF Scotland has added information about advanced care planning to its website.

10. PA training programme

David asked that we talk about this at the next meeting so Michaela can be there.

11. Supporting Award Managers/Third Party payroll

Peter said the Department of Health are looking at this and Colin will then give an update to the Stakeholder Group.

12. Charter for Involvement and ILF Scotland Meetings

Emma will arrange a working group to decide what work is the most important.

Linda said that ILF Scotland are looking at what recipients said in feedback surveys and this will be linked into the Charter.

Linda said that working groups will be arranged to start in the first 3 months of 2024.

ILF Scotland will publish an updated action plan in April 2023.

13. Any other business

Three people behind a desk with speech bubbles above their heads. The middle bubble reads 'Any Other Business?

No one had anything to add.

14. Next meeting

Lee will check potential dates with The Mount and will send out ‘save the dates’ emails to Group members.

Copyright images © Photosymbols. Prepared by Disability Equality Scotland

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