Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Advice E-Newsletter , February 2011

Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) is a benefit for people who have a limited capability for work because of a health condition or disability. ESA was introduced in October 2008 and replaces Incapacity Benefit and Income Support paid on incapacity grounds for new customers.
Guide to financial support for disabled people
There is a wide range of disability-related financial support, including benefits, tax credits, payments, grants and concessions. This is a general overview with links to detailed information
Finding a place to live – your council and housing association options
Apply for a council home
If you’re looking for a place to live, a council property could be the answer – although you’ll probably have to wait for one. Find out who is eligible for council housing, how to apply, how councils decide who gets housing and where to get housing advice.
Changes to Income Support for lone parents
Your entitlement to Income Support may stop when your child reaches a certain age, if you are only claiming it because you are a lone parent. However you may be entitled to other benefits and support.
Benefits if you are ill or disabled – changes you need to know about
Incapacity Benefit, Severe Disablement Allowance and Income Support paid because of illness or disability are being phased out. If you get one of these benefits your claim will be reviewed to see if you’re capable of work or can get other benefits. Find out how your claim will be reviewed.
Childcare for a disabled child
When it comes to childcare for a disabled child, a lot of the considerations are the same as for any other child. There are a few extra things to think about, such as specialist training or a child's medical needs. Find out about different types of childcare
Immigration and Asylum
How do I apply for naturalisation as a British citizen?
To apply for naturalisation, you should use application form AN. Before you apply, you should ensure that you have read the section on eligibility. You must be aged 18 or over to apply for naturalisation. http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/britishcitizenship/applying/applicationtypes/naturalisation/
What is the habitual residence test?
Exploring the Attitudes and Behaviours of Bangladeshi, Indian and Jamaican Young People in Relation to Reproductive and Sexual Health
Black and minority ethnic (BME) groups generally have worse health than the overall population, although some BME groups fare much worse than others, and patterns vary from one health condition to the next. Evidence suggests that the poorer socio-economic position of BME groups is the main factor driving ethnic health inequalities. Several policies have aimed to tackle health inequalities in recent years, although to date, ethnicity has not been a consistent focus. This POSTnote reviews the evidence on ethnic health inequalities, the causes and policy options.
Improving mental health support for refugee communities – an advocacy approach
The Refugee and asylum-seeker mental health advocacy project was developed to build a better understanding of the mental health concerns of refugees and asylum-seekers in England and to use these data to improve their ability to find pathways to appropriate mental health support. The core approach was to work with advocates from refugee community organisations to develop a robust form of mental health advocacy. This form of advocacy includes not only focused support for individuals, but also advocacy for the community as a whole. In the community function the aim was to create a dialogue with the community on issues of mental health (including stigma) and to engage with primary care trusts and other provider agencies to develop community-focused services
A civilised society Mental health provision for refugees and asylum-seekers in England and Wales
Inside Outside: Improving Mental Health Services for Black and Minority Ethnic Communities in England
This document sets out proposals for reforming the service experience and service outcome of people from black and minority ethnic groups who experience mental ill health and who come into contact with mental health services, as users or carers. The plans set out in this document also aim to improve the overall mental health of people from black and minority ethnic groups living in England. The main focus for change is the pervasive ethnic inequality that currently exists within mental health services. The central objective of this initiative is to reduce and eventually eradicate such disparities and, by doing so, make mental health services appropriate for and relevant to a multicultural society.

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Our Vision and Services

Our vision is of a society where no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health.

Mental health problems are extremely common across society, with one in four of us experiencing them in any year. Despite being so common, people from all communities will still experience discriminatory attitudes and behaviours that can prevent people from speaking out, seeking support and playing full and active roles in our communities. The impact of mental health stigma and discrimination will vary between communities as mental health has a cultural context that affects the way communities talk about the subject and engage with people who have mental health problems. In some cultures depression, for example, doesn't exist and in others an experience of a mental health problem can be attached to a sense of shame.

For the African and Caribbean communities a key issue is the overrepresentation of young African and Caribbean men in mental health services. Misconceptions and stereotypes have led to a perception that this group is more likely to pose a risk of violent behaviour and, as a result, they are more likely to be treated as inpatients and sectioned when compared to other groups. It is well documented that this has led to a fear of talking about mental health issues more openly and a fear of using mental health services. Research by the Race Equality Foundation (2011) also highlighted fears that discrimination against Black & Minority Ethnic (BME) communities and migrant service users will increase in the austerity climate and whilst commissioning arrangements change.

Our Services

· Provide information, advice, advocacy

· Represent diversity communities in Health Care services, policies and strategies

· Organise training in health and social care in collaboration with local colleges

· Provide human resources ( including interpreters) who are suitable to the diversity communities especially to break language and cultural barriers

· Provides domiciliary care and support

· Provide services such specialised support for people with mental health needs, including people who suffer from short-term memory problems, Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease.

· Provide visits to elderly people and help them with outings and home services

· Participate in local authority and NHS consultations , research events and programmes to voice the needs of diversity communities.

· Increase access to services and rights for disadvantaged people and the most vulnerable of our society

· Help and support unemployed people to look for work, including training and job preparation

· Provide legal advice in a range of issues from on Immigration and Asylum , welfare benefits, housing, health, education, community care, and training, employment, etc.

· Provide advice and guidance, information and practical help so that our service users can access opportunities they are entitled to

· Organise training and other community learning opportunities that provide new skills, increase confidence and motivation

· Support our service users to overcome barriers to learning, employment and training

· Provide support for young people with their education, training, confidence building, employment and social needs.

Objectives of our Diversity Living Programme:

· To promote the inclusion and participation of diversity communities* in integrated care.

· To inform policy, locally and nationally, and assisting in the formulation of effective policies, strategies and good practices in integrated care in order to contribute to improved health outcomes for the people from the diversity communities (e.g. Black and minority ethnic communities) and to ensure health services are able to meet their specific needs.

· To improve the quality of life for diversity people with disability, mental health problems and their families and carers through integrated care by providing inclusive advocacy and information.

· To provide service that enable diversity groups and individuals with disability /elderly and their carers to make the right choice for themselves and have an influence on decisions made about their future.

· To promote the rights of diversity people with disability, their families and carers and make sure their rights are safe and protected.

· To promoting access to information regarding healthcare issues and to raise awareness of the needs of diversity disabled children, young people, older people and their families.

· To promote the rights of older and disabled diversity people, helping them overcome and enable them to participate in decisions about their future

· To provide support and information to those suffering the isolation and loneliness that can be associated with disability and old age

· To fight against mental health stigma in refugee, black and minority ethnic communities and ensure no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health or disability.

*Diversity communities are older people, disabled people, Black, Asian, refugees, migrants, asylum seekers and other ethnic minorities.