ILF Scotland

202312 - Northern Ireland Stakeholder Group Minutes - December 2023 (Easy Read)

Type of document: Minutes of recipient/stakeholder groups
The front cover of the Northern Ireland Stakeholder Group Meeting Minutes from 5 December 2023 in Easy Read.

Read the document

Published: July 4, 2024

Independent Living Fund Scotland

Northern Ireland Stakeholder Group Meeting Minutes

19 December 2023

Easy Read

a pink rectangle with the disability equality Scotland logo in white, inside it - a white outline of a speech bubble with an equals sign inside it next to the words easy read made by Disability Equality Scotland. It is next to a blue rectangle with a white tick on it with the words made with photosymbols on it.

Who was at this meeting?

The meeting happened on Tuesday 5 December 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

Who could not come to the meeting?

Michaela Hollywood

List of Actions

A laptop with an email envelope on the screen alongside a pile of cash and a hand pressing a calculator.
  • 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.

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

Envelope with email written on it on a screen of a laptop

Insurance could be invalid if PAs are not trained properly.

A lady has her hands up to her face in a thinking pose. She has a thought bubble showing nurses and doctors inside it.

- 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.

  • assessors from Northern Ireland will find recipients to be interviewed by Finbarr as part of the social return on investment evaluation work

A recipient is someone who gets ILF money.

1. Welcome

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

2. Minutes of previous meeting

A bundle of papers with minutes written on it and a thumbs up hand. There's a laptop computer below with the word click and a hand icon on it.

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

There were no new things we needed to talk about.

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

A man in a suit sits at a desk looking at his laptop.

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.

Three people looking at a graph on a table.

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.

A man outside a hospital. He has a bag as is holding a sign that says hospital passport and the traffic light symbols.

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. ILF Available Income reduction

A lady in a grey top has a speech bubble coming from her that reads thank you.

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 increases 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.

April and 2023 calendar icons.

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.

Three people in white t-shirts with their thumbs up

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

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

April 6 calendar icon with a pile of cash and a hand pressing a calculator. A red arrow pointing up is on the right.

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

4 people sitting at a table in what looks like an interview. Underneath is a person with a bag, coat and clipboard. She's writing something on it.

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

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

The ILF logo on the screen of a laptop.

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

10. PA training programme

A meeting with 4 people at a table and 2 people on screens. A red arrow points from them to the right.

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

11. Supporting Award Managers / Third Party payroll

Young lady in green holds up a clipboard. She gives a thumbs up. A big green check tick mark is on the clipboard.

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

A lady in red smiling and giving a thumbs up. She is holding a sign that says what do you think. There are three smiley faces with yes no and not sure beside them.

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.

A Plan booklet followed by the April Calendar and 2023 icons.

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 2024.

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

a pink rectangle with the disability equality Scotland logo in white, inside it - a white outline of a speech bubble with an equals sign inside it next to the words easy read made by Disability Equality Scotland. It is next to a blue rectangle with a white tick on it with the words made with photosymbols on it.
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