ILF Scotland

202308 - Scotland Advisory Group Minutes - August 2023 (Easy Read)

Type of document: Minutes of recipient/stakeholder groups

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Published: May 27, 2024
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Independent Living Fund Scotland

Scottish Recipient Advisory Group Meeting Minutes

17 August 2023

A spiral notebook with a picture of people and the word 'minutes' written on it. Followed by a calendar icon for August 17 and a calendar icon for 2023.
Grey faces of people with a question mark in the middle. Represents who was in attendance

Who was at this meeting?

Jim Elder-Woodward
Andy Higgins
Chloe McKee
Gordon Mckee
Christine Mercer
Nic Reid
Martha Shortreed - left the meeting at 15.18
Julia Smith

In Attendance
Jack Blaik - joined at 1.30pm
Finbarr Fitzpatrick - left at 15.04pm
Johanne McBean - joined at 15.23pm

ILF Scotland Staff
Peter Scott
Lee House
Linda Scott
Harvey Tilley
Catherine Symington

Grey faces of people with a question mark in the middle. A red line goes through the whole image. Represents who wasn't in attendance

Who could not come to the meeting?

Joan Turner

A pile of money and a person's hand pressing the buttons on a calculator.


  1. Linda and Peter will talk and be clear about when contingency funds can be used.

    A contingency fund is money that is put aside to cover unexpected costs.
Envelope with email written on it on a screen of a laptop
  1. Lee will share the presentation from Finbarr with the group.
A woman in a nurses outfit shakes hands with a man.

1. Welcome and Introductions

Jim Elder-Woodward welcomed everyone to the meeting.

Everyone agreed to Lee recording the meeting.

2. Minutes from previous meeting

The minutes of the last meeting were agreed.

Lee will give them to the communications team so they can put them on the website.

Man in a blue jacket with his back to the camera looks at a screen with three people on it with different colour backgrounds

Actions from previous meeting

1. Lee will talk with Alan Clarkson about starting the waiting room feature for our Advisory Group meetings on Zoom.

A group of people sitting meeting round a table.

2. Linda will organise a separate meeting to discuss having a social return on investment exercise for the 2015 fund in Scotland.

Three people in white t-shirts with their thumbs up

A social return on investment looks at the benefits of a project that are not just about money.
For example it could support people’s wellbeing, or help to reduce inequality.

Woman looks confused. Above her is a thought bubble with a tick and a cross. Above that is a laptop with an email on it.

3. Advisory Group members to email what they think about the Strategic Outcomes document to Linda.

All these actions have been done.

A woman with an ipad on a zoom call. A yellow hand raised to ask a question in the meeting.

3. Matters arising – what do we need to talk about?

Jim asked everyone to raise a hand on Zoom if they would like to make a point or ask a question.

A man in a suit raising his hand in front of the Scottish Parliament which shows the Scottish British and EU flags

4. Re-opening 2015 update - Jim Elder-Woodward

Peter said the Labour MSP Paul O’Kane has asked some questions in the Scottish Parliament about this.

These questions have been answered.

A woman carries a clipboard. She wears red. A man in a suit looks through a small magnifying glass.

The Scottish Government have said that it is still checking that the fund has enough money to do its work before it can re-open.

A group of people sitting meeting round a table.

The statements about engagement opportunities were from a meeting with Peter and the Chair of ILF Scotland’s Board and the Minister.

Three brown bags of money with the pound £ symbol on them. There are £50 fifty pound notes coming from the top of each bag.

Peter said the Scottish Government has given just over 53 million pounds to the ILF 2015 Fund.

From 2016 to 2023 around 40 million pounds was not spent on ILF Scotland.

A girl in a blue t-shirt with the word dandelion written on it. She has her arms out in a questioning gesture. There's a blue question mark at her top right.

Nic suggested we ask the Scottish Government to say where this money was spent.

Julia asked if the Scottish Government was allowed to spend the 2025 fund on other things.

A screen / ipad with a laughing lady holding an ipad on it with a yellow background. Other faces are along the top of the screen.

The Group agreed to ask the Minister this at the meeting on 25 September.

This meeting date has now been changed.

A man in a wheelchair talks to a lady who is kneeling down.

5. Personal Assistant (PA) conditions - Andy Higgins

Andy shared a paper with the Group about PA issues including:

  • if PAs can be paid during their breaks
  • PA travel

This asked if ILF Scotland could cover the taxi fare or mileage at 45 pence per mile for PAs to use their car when supporting a recipient to travel.

A recipient is a person who gets ILF money.

Mileage costs are how much money is paid for each mile of travel.

Nic said her PA had asked about mileage costs.

  • PA wages

Andy would like all PAs to be paid 12 pounds an hour.

Julia said it is difficult for her to hire a PA because of the low wage.

People are more likely to work for supermarkets that pay more.

A man leans over another in a wheelchair. They are touching hands.

Christine said it is important to keep PAs so that recipients get support that stays the same.

Wages are the main things that makes it hard for people to keep PAs.

Gordon said he could not get PAs with experience when offering 10 pounds 90 pence an hour.

Christine asked if ILF Scotland could look at an ILF minimum wage that is separate from the Scottish Government care wage.

A minimum wage is the lowest amount of money you should be paid.

Linda and Peter will talk about this, and will explain at the next meeting how contingency funds can be used.

6. PA Programme Board Update - Jack Blaik

Jack said one of the recommendations from the review of adult social care (also called the Feeley review) is that:

A man in a striped jumper enthusiastically shakes hands with another man.
  • PAs should be more valued

Valued means that people think that they are important and recognise that they do a good job.

  • the challenges that disabled people face when they are trying to hire and retain PAs should be recognised

Jack said the Programme Board are still talking about this.

Jack said the Scottish Government have agreed to deliver the 12 pounds an hour wage for PAs.

We do not know when this will happen.

Jack said it is difficult because there are different rates of pay across the 32 Scottish local councils.

A National Care Service would help to make this better.

Rule Book with Rules written on the front and a green tick and red cross on the front.

Jack said there is a slight chance that the rules and registration of PAs could change.

Information about this could be in the independent review that ends in September 2023.

A black lady in a suit and glasses points at a check list sign that reads numbers 1 2 3.

7. 2015 fund evaluation and social return on investment - Finbarr Fitzpatrick

Finbarr’s work will be very important in supporting the ILF Scotland 2015 fund re-opening.

Linda said the Advisory Group must agree to this work happening.

Two females with speech bubbles. One in pink, the other in black. The one in black is writing something on her clipboard.

The Advisory Group could support Finbarr by:

  • taking part in interviews
A man in a t-shirt slumps over a desk. His hand is holding his head up. Thought bubbles show a thumbs up and a thumbs down.
  • saying what they think of the draft report

Finbarr shared a presentation about the 2019 Northern Ireland report.

He is updating the information in this report.

The Scottish report compares Scottish information with information from Northern Ireland report.

We have not asked for a full report because a lot of the issues will be the same in Northern Ireland and Scotland.

Important things like the covid pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis will be in the Scottish report.

Three people in white t-shirts with their thumbs up

Linda asked if Jim and the Group were happy with this and they said yes.

8. Joint stakeholder and advisory group event update - Harvey Tilley

Harvey said the event has been moved to 28 March 2024.

There was no space in Parliament to have the event in October as planned.

9. SDSS Training Framework (Johanne McBean)

Johanne talked about PA training.

A group is looking at training, and health and wellbeing for personal assistants:

  • to give help to PAs, particularly new PAs
  • to support people to be better employers

Gordon and Chloe said it is important that PA training is right for each recipient.

10. Policy Update - Linda Scott

Linda will send out the draft suspension policy 38 after her meeting with Jack and Colin.

Suspension is when a recipient’s money is stopped for a while.

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

The sponsor team are still talking about increasing the maximum award for an ILF recipient.

This must be affordable now and in future years.

11. Charter for Involvement - Emma O’Neill

This will move to the next meeting as Emma is off work.

12. Using the words ‘disabled people’ or ‘people with disabilities’ - Nic Reid

This will move to the next meeting.

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

13. Any other business – what else do we need to talk about?

There was nothing else we needed to talk about.

14. Date of the next meeting - Linda Scott

Lee to look at dates for meeting in person and to include a Christmas lunch.

Copyright images © Photosymbols. Prepared by Disability Equality Scotland

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