Your March 2019 Direct Payment e-newsletter We get on our bike… On Sunday May 19, five present and past staff members from Independent Lives will be donning their lycra suits and taking part in the Greater Brighton Cycle Challenge. This consists of a thirty mile trip along the coast, out to the south downs and finishing at Burgess Hill Velodrome. The group are doing this to raise money to combat social isolation and loneliness in West Sussex. Loneliness is recognised worldwide as being a health and wellbeing priority and we’re doing all we can to fight it. If you’d like to donate to our riders, please click here. To find out more about the campaign to reduce social isolation and loneliness across the county, please click here. The CQC want to know about your care Whether you visit your GP or a hospital every week, every month, or only a few times a year, there’s lots of things to take into consideration: parking, prescription prices, how long you’ll need to be there for, etc. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) are asking as many people as possible to share their experiences of the NHS and care through their ‘Tell us about your care’ survey. If you have a disability, long term health condition or care for someone who does, the NHS and the CQC want to hear from you. To access and complete the survey, please click here. Proposed changes to disability benefits assessments The government has announced a range of proposals to disability benefits assessments, which it says, aim to make the process of applying for benefits much easier. From 2021, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has announced they plan to combine client data for those who receive PIP and ESA. This would mean that if you apply for both of these benefits, you would only need to provide evidence once, rather than twice. Other proposals include scrapping repeated reviews for 270,000 pensioners and a softening of the sanctions regime. To read about more proposed changes to disability benefits assessments, please click here. Your Right to Participate The always fantastic Disability Rights UK have created a new website to help you find out more about the Equality Act, how the act affects you and what you can do to fight discrimination. It also features a resources section with templates to help you write a letter of complaint if you ever experience discrimination or feel that you’re being denied access to education or employment because of your impairment. To visit the website, please click here.