On Monday 16 March Greenwich Parent Voice hosted a pre-Election reception for councillors and parliamentary candidates in Greenwich. They unveiled a set of action points that demand real commitment by local politicians to meet the needs of parents and families living locally.
Joanne Delap and Vivien Davies, co-Directors of Greenwich Parent Voice and GPV Health Lead, Wendy Horrobin gave a presentation on how the forum gives parents a voice in decision-making. They spoke about the realities of caring for a child with special educational needs and disabilities before announcing their plans to work more closely with politicians and councillors. A group of GPV Parent Consultants representing different special needs each gave their own account of where they felt more support was needed.
A live twitter feed from the evening at @GPVinfo gave parents at home the chance to follow and contribute to discussion using the hashtag #SENDparentvoices.
Vivien Davies from GPV said:
“The parents we speak to aren’t looking for more money. They want understanding, integrated support and responsiveness from the people who can help them. They want better communication and a guarantee of equality of opportunity for their children.”
Joanne Delap from GPV added:
“This was a break-through event for Greenwich parents. For the first time GPV have been able to bring local politicians and parents together in the same room for constructive discussion. We expect this to be the start of a long, productive relationship”.
Greenwich Parent Voice asked councillors and MPs to ensure they are aware of the issues facing families with disabled children and to speak up for them in parliament, local government and in the London Assembly.
Greenwich Parent Voice asked councillors and MPs to always listen and support parents who go to them for help.
Greenwich Parent Voice asked councillors and MPSs to consult the group on decisions affecting families with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities.
Greenwich Parent Voice: Action For Change
Based on feedback from parents and carers from across Greenwich, the action points cover Communication, Education, Health, Social support & Housing and Employment. Click on the link to read our Action for Change document. This will be updated yearly and progress on action points reported back to parents and carers.
Greenwich Parent Voice ‘Disability Trust Mark’
Greenwich Parent Voice also announced its plans to create a Disability Trust Mark, which will be adopted by businesses, leisure providers, shops, restaurants, bars, schools and other services in Greenwich.
The Disability Trust Mark would guarantee that people with disabilities are welcome as customers, service users and employees, receiving equality and inclusion.
Greenwich Parent Voice hopes to work with the Royal Borough of Greenwich to develop this idea.