We Love Carers looks to take action against Dudley CCG image
Credit: Express & Star

We Love Carers is looking to take action against Dudley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as it says children and adults with disabilities are being refused vital wheelchairs.

The charity states that the CCG’s new criteria means that people who are able to walk around their homes unaided do not qualify to be able to use a wheelchair outside, therefore leaving some people in the Dudley area who need a wheelchair without one.

We Love Carers has launched a Crowd Justice Page (which has already raised over £2,000) for a Certificate of Investigation as it believes that the wheelchair users are not being listened to.

Founder of We Love Carers Rachel Gardener said that her son Harry, who has a profound disability, has been refused a wheelchair where he previously had been provided with one.

She told the Express & Star: “We as a charity got notified of the criteria changes towards the end of last year – and it basically seems if you can walk in the house, you don’t need a chair outside of the house.

“This affects a lot of people in Dudley. My son can walk but for longer distances it’s difficult, his joints can swell up and cause him a lot of pain. The chair was there to relieve the pressure.

“I know a lot of parents of children and adults who need the chairs have now been refused. A lot of people were unaware of the change of policy – there was not a fair consultation.”

Rachel added that a lot of parents are now worried that if they take their children to a wheelchair assessment, then the equipment will be taken off them.

“I think the change in policy is a lot of rubbish – it impacts on the whole family and it takes away their independence,” Rachel continued. “Families feel they can’t take their children out of the home.

“We want the children to be independent but they will be reliant on us if they have their means of transport or of getting about taken away. It’s quite expensive to fund a wheelchair ourselves.”

The charity has taken part in a walk at Baggeridge Country Park to raise funds to take action against Dudley CCG for its changes.

Neill Bucktin, Director of Commissioning at Dudley Clinical Commissioning Group, responded: “Our policy has always sought to ensure those who are immobile have access to a wheelchair that meets their mobility needs and we are sorry to hear these families do not feel we are currently doing that.”

Founded in 2009, We Love Carers supports, advises and give information to unpaid carers across the Dudley borough.

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