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DLA downgraded & Blue Badge lost - advice please

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Hello all


My son's DLA has just been reassessed and he has gone down to medium care, low mobility awards. We needed his DLA to justify his Blue Badge, which came up for reassessment at the same time.


I submitted a request for a mandatory reconsideration of the DLA award and a review of the Blue Badge decision. Both came back negative. Although Monkey Boy's needs are greater, if anything, than before.


Apparently a Blue Badge can't be awarded for mental health Issues as they judge that he is choosing not to walk, not unable to walk.


MB has sensory processing disorder, but all his other diagnoses are related to trauma, attachment difficulties, possible ASD, possible ADHD, etc.


Can anyone advise whether we can find grounds to fight this?


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I would recommend going to Tribunal - do get support from your local CAB or Welfare Rights Team as the process is fairly involved and there are definitely some things that help. Many decisions are overturned at Tribunal, but few at Mandatory Reconsideration.


Just watch your timing you only have a month to start the Tribunal process and often CAB/Welfare Rights will need a but of time before that to understand your situation and give you best support.


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It is so frustrating ! You have probably already done this but if not I think you need to come at it from the angle of yes he can walk but he needs high level supervision in order to be safe when out and about. It is not about physical need but the fact that he is unsafe near traffic etc and he is ( probably i assume ) impulsive and liable to do things in public that could put himself and others at risk. Etc etc . Might lend a bit more weight to your argument. Sorry if teaching you to suck eggs !

I really hope you are able to get it sorted ! Good luck


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Hi Wizzywoo. Yes. That's the information I gave them. And that if he kicks off I need to get him back to the car safely, and he's now to big to carry. They're not interested.


As Bop says, tribunal is the next step.


Has anyone had success getting the upper level mobility award for DLA plus a Blue Badge for a child that has attachment disorder plus? (He's nearly 8 and large for his age, very oppositional and frequently completely loses it!)


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It sucks. Appeal. Honestly DLA higher and that blue badge are there for people like Monkeyboy.


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Without causing any offence, I do not agree with this. If a child can walk, I do not see the difference between going to a supermarket and parking direct in front on a blue badge place or 100 meter further. If the child plays up you have to act, this can be in the middle of the supermarket. If you get him going another 100 meter is not going to make a huge difference, while it might for someone who's 89 and has trouble walking.

My child has attachment disorder and is not cooperative (I know exacly what you are talking about) , my oldest severe autisme. He just fell to the ground screaming his lungs out when younger. For me the solution was not to walk less but to walk more, kilometers in nature where there was nobody.

You are dealing with behavioural problems, and you might want help to get strategies to get him going, in my opinion a blue badge is not the answer. I got high rate dla, just realise be happy you get still dla, where I live in the eu none of that, all cut away.


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Thanks for all your replies.


I'm going to talk to CAB.


Pluto, I am surprised by your reply. It seems very tough. To paraphrase, be grateful you're getting money from the State. Don't expect to be able to park close to places you need to go to. Your son needs training and effective management. Other people's needs are greater. My son's have very significant needs and I manage them fine.


Have I misread your post?


If my son's needs were mild enough that I could consider going to a supermarket with him, I wouldn't need a Blue Badge. If I could find strategies to get him to walk 100m rather than running recklessly across roads without looking (or rather than kicking and hitting me, or sinking to the floor and doing 'jelly legs') I probably wouldn't need the DLA at all.


He goes swimming, to gymnastics, horse riding and to tennis every week. He has long walks and cycle rides in nature. He's not lacking in exercise or calming fresh air.


Please do not assume that what works for you and your boys can be replicated by other families with the same success.


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It was not my intention offend, I just think that a blue badge for an 8 year old who is very able physically is somewhat strange. I fully understand and agree that you get dla, that's because the child has behavioural problems and needs active parenting all the time, way above what a mainstream 8 year old needs, they do not run into traffic or sit down not willing to walk further.


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maybe its not for adopters to comment on what another adopter needs to help them manage their children. I'm sure Daffin does not see the blue badge as a replacement to strategies to get her child moving, but as something which makes a difficult life a bit easier to manage.


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Cerebra produce a helpful guide to DLA including appeals process. It's in this list http://w3.cerebra.org.uk/help-and-information/guides-for-parents/ there is quite a lot of information on criteria for higher mobility element. Like others I'd urge you to make an appointment with CAB asap as timescales are tight and CAB can be booked up.

The CAB also provide details re appealing blue badge, https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-c...

Good luck


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Thanks so much for the advice.


Spoke to CAB today - and they put me in touch with a local charity that helps with benefits appeals.


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I must admit, I disagree with your need for a blue badge. They are for children and adults that are disabled or unable to walk very far, not for controlling children who clearly have no mobility issues, that to me is an abuse of what they stand for. Disabled spaces are hard to come by at the best of times and if more and more people are issued them when they are not really needed then those that genuinely need them are going to be the losers. I'm sorry if this offends but in our opinion blue badges should only be given to people/children who have a genuine physical mobility as that was surely the original reason they were brought out?


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Good luck, Daffin. A strong and fit young person with whom I am involved professionally has just been awarded the higher rate for mobility and a blue badge, although she has no physical disabilities.


Her autism and SLD mean that she finds it extremely hard to wait. When she intuits that the car is stopping, she circumvents the child locks by opening her window, flings open the door and runs, with no regard for traffic etc. Her mother cannot stop to employ behaviour management strategies as she is a single parent who is driving the car. The assessor to whom I explained this understood perfectly and made no judgement about "control" or the need for her mother to learn strategies.


I appreciate that this is slightly different to your circumstances. However, blue badges are for people who have difficulties getting about safely, for whatever reason - there is no requirement that they show a physical need.


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To be honest as a single parent I would disable the windows so the child can not open it and leave the car. Let's be fair if this is what happens the child might open the door and run if you stop for a traffic light. Who says she will always wait and not open the car door while the car is moving? It does not make sense, if this mother can not prevent her daughter coming out of the car, how can she prevent her runnung off into traffic any other moment she walks with the child? I pressume this is not the sort of child what accepts hand holding.

'But pluto, you do not know her', no I don'that's right, but I have enough experience knowing that this is no real solution, nor makes it the situation any safer. It might appear that way but it's not.


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where is Daffin saying that a blue badge is a 'solution' ? It something that helps her. She isn't depriving anyone else, blue badges arent rationed. If you meet the criteria you get one. And having looked at the criteria she does meet them if he gets high rate DLA.

We get mobilty, at low rate. He is perfectly able, gets himself to and from school on the bus and by bike, but there are other issues.


Perhaps we should lay off telling another adopter what they should or should not be entitled to.


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Well I think Daffin is the best person to judge whether a blue badge makes her and her child’s life safer. We don’t have one - despite two on high rate care / low rate mobility, and now we wouldn’t need one because they’re safer now than they were when they were younger. Having said that, my 11 year is still not able to cross roads safely and independently and will still take hold of my hand. Frankly if I’d thought it would have made all our lives safer when they were younger, then I would have gone for it.


It does slightly irk me that there still seems to be a presumption that you have to be physically incapacitated to deserve help. We get this every year at airports when we travel. I book assistance with the airline and still we come across airport staff who cannot see beyond the fact that they’re not wheelchair bound. They can walk therefore how and why do they need/deserve assistance? I’m the best person to judge - not some stranger who knows nothing about my kids and their capabilities.


Go for it Daffin. Appeal x


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My reply was not to Daffin, it was to Blaise.


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Looking at the rules on CAB and a couple of other sites, all say mainly same, mobility issues,


"If you get certain benefits you'll automatically be able to get a Blue Badge. The application will be straightforward.


It's still worth applying if you're not automatically eligible, but you'll need to have very severe problems moving your legs or arms. The application will be more complicated, because you'll have to describe your mobility problems in a lot of detail. " CAB


"The Blue Badge scheme provides a national range of parking concessions for disabled people with severe mobility problems who have difficulty using public transport." GOV.uk


It's only natural people query how someone with no mobility issues would need a blue badge or be allowed a blue badge when the guidance for them says they are for mobility issues.


M


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Meggles - mobility issues can be physical or mental. The mobility component of DLA/PIP covers both.


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The criteria also states that carers of children with a health condition may be eligible for a blue badge, or are some of you now going to dispute that this child has health conditions.


Its hard enough getting support for our kids without fellow adopters accusing an adopter of abusing the system


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This is a forum where everyone is allowed to speak. I simply pointed out why people might question a need for a blue badge for someone with no mobility issues...because on websites such as these it doesn't say anything about mental issues been an eligible criteria. Perhaps if the criteria was more specific it would prevent people questioning a childs need for one. I would say that 9/10 people questioned would say that a blue badge is for someone with mobility issues. I can understand why someone might think it is unfair for someone without mobility issues to have a blue badge. As Wordsearch said, disabled spaces are like gold dust, people with mental health issues, not mobility issues, are taking spots from them, from people who cannot walk far, are in a wheelchair etc. It's not adoption specific so I'm not sure why you keep making it so and it is a bit harsh making such comments yourself, but of course that's alright. You are allowed your opinion but no one else is allowed there's?? And I don't see anyone accusing someone of abusing the system. Someone simply questioned the need of a blue badge when everywhere it highlights that they are for mobility issues and I am sure lots of other people - not just on this forum - would do the same. Perhaps if sites like gov.uk and CAB emphasised what other "health needs" met the required criteria then it could prevent people been abused simply for naturally questioning one's need for one of these badges?.


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if you read the thread carefully someone has used the words 'abuse of what they stand for'


I am merely trying to make the point that it is not for us, adopters or otherwise, to question what another adopter may or may not be entitled to, particularly when we have no clue what the extent of his difficulties are. That is the job of the assessment process.

The fact is that this child was assessed as being entitled to these benefits and consequently a blue badge. Now, despite a worsening of his conditions, those things are being withdrawn. So yes it would seem reasonable to appeal.

Peartree who is a wheelchair user doesnt appear to have a problem with this


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Interesting debate!


I think it goes to the heart of what we as a society recognise as disabilities.


What is a mobility issue? My son can run, jump, swim, climb trees, ride a bike. Surely everyone would agree he has no mobility problems!


However, his complex and severe mental health problems mean that he is triggered most of the time - ranging from a buzzing with anxiety through to full fight (kicking, punching, head butting, biting), flight (head long reckless running, with no awareness of his own safety or that of other road users), freeze (sinking to the floor with toddler jelly legs or going into full on ODD mode). The triggers are unpredictable and relative tranquility can be turned on its head in a moment.


Before we got our Blue Badge, I didn't take Monkey Boy out of the house on my own for 18 months. With it, I can park next to the school gate and get him into the car safely (he often goes pop after school), I can take him to the cinema and park directly outside the door- and so I can take him out for a treat and some 'Mummy time', and I can take him out to other venues (having first checked their parking arrangements).


His mental health problems (some of which may have organic causes that we're exploring now - ADHD, ASD, FASD, cognitive impairment) don't stop him moving or walking (or even running) but they do cause him to have mobility problems.


I can see that it's a different way of looking at mobility problems- we are so primed as a society to associate wheelchair use with disability - but without a Blue Badge my son is excluded from participating safely in society.


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As it says on the disabled toilet signs sometimes " Not all disabilities are visible"


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Then perhaps someone needs to somehow address how the information on criteria for a blue badge needs updating, needs to be more specific? Like I said, most people asked would say they are for people with physical disabilities, which is probably the reason they came into existence in the first place. You cannot shout down people who question the need for one for someone seemingly without a physical disability when even CAB and Gov. uk insinuates this. Perhaps focus your anger and aggression there instead of on people who quite rightly wonder why one is needed for someone? Let's not forget that the most important need for a disabled space IS for those users who have a physical disability and need extra space to manoeuvre, get in and out of a wheelchair.


Quite right Pingu, but when you use a blue badge with no visible disability then people ARE going to question it, that's life, because of the view on who blue badges are for. That is the point I have been trying to make.


M


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I would have hoped fellow adopters are not 'most people'


We all know how hard it is to to have the needs of our children recognised and to get support. I'm sure I'm not alone in experiencing the disapproval of parents with nice normal, ordinary children, when out in public trying to deal with a total meltdown, of being 'that' mother who can't control her child.


I don't see what's ambiguous about a criteria which states that you are automatically entitled to a blue badge if you are in receipt of high rate mobility for DLA.


I'm not being aggressive but yes I do feel somewhat disappointed that people are questioning a child's disabilties.


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I myself had mixed feelings when I first read this, but hearing the difference having a blue badge has made to this child's quality of life ( and his mums) I am glad she had it, and hope she can continue to do so as long as needed. A child who is stuck in the house for safety reasons has a mobility problem as far as I am concerned. If a blue badge can change that for monkey boy and his mum I think that's important. My husband works in school transport for special needs kids, and MB would almost certainly be entitled to special taxi with escort if he lived here.


I was not angry or aggressive and I didn't notice anyone else being that way. Folks just expressed their own opinion, and in some cases their support for the OP's stance, some the opposite, disagreeing on rights to a blue badge. I respect your opinion and I

I admire the OP for not getting offended at posters that disagreed with her.


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And I feel disapointed that unless you're a potato member and use 'the method recognised and approved by some very verbal people on this board', you can just be told off. Not seen as adding a valuable reply, just someone who needs to be told to keep quiet as 'you don't understand', lol

Become a potato memberrrrrrrrrr, we understand, those dummies on the board here have no idea. Just pay money and become a member of this exclusive group of adopters who dooooo understand. Oh and do not forget to read book X, Y and Z Biggrin


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My daughter recently had an assessment to transfer from DLA to PIP - she doesn't have a blue badge but was getting the lower level for mobility due to not being able to safely travel independently as would another young person of her age. I was in the middle of explaining all this to the assessor and she stopped me and said that as she does not currently leave the house AT ALL due to mental health issues then she was entitled to an increase in mobility rate (presumably as she would have to be driven and accompanied if she went anywhere) It is not even a safety issue in this case but clearly qualifies according to their criteria.


It is definitely worth appealing as there seem to be some assessors who are less experienced than others and also a move to reduce costs.


As for the understanding of mobility issues amongst the general population - it is understandable that anyone who has not come across these sort of needs would not automatically think of them as mobility issues - it is the same for disability - many people automatically think "wheelchair users" for disability again largely because of lack of experience.


My mother who is 92 and can barely walk was refused the taxi service and blue badge the first time she applied as she rated her pain as 2 (out of 10) and said she can get about (an example of the independent spirit and resistance to help of many of her generation) and had to get her GP to intervene. She does have to use a wheelchair if going anywhere more than half way up her road (which she hates) too


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I'm not a potato member


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What's Potato got to do with it Pluto? Genuinely curious.


Re the blue badge situation, I guess that the CAB are giving guidance. They are not the DWP and it's the DWP who decide if you need a blue badge or not. I know a young lady who has Downs Syndrome. She can walk perfectly well as far as I can see but she qualifies for a blue badge. I don't know on what grounds but I accept that life is very difficult for her family and it's something that is going to help them - presumably she has issues around safety and running off or maybe she can't walk long distances. I don't know and it's not my business, but hey, she has Downs Syndrome, she has an obvious disability, her family have a very difficult time with her for lots of reasons, I don't begrudge her the blue badge at all.


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You could...... Wink


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Flosskirk I'm sure you know.


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Sorry to correct, but its Local Authorities that award and issue blue badges - they are automatically awarded if you get the mobility payments for DLA/PIP and are discretionary without that - although the criteria should be broadly similar, different LAs will interpret the rules differently. The discretionary element is designed for people who don't want to/ aren't eligible for disability benefits but struggle with access.


I work for CAB - the public guidance is fairly high level and general to avoid confusion; advisers have access to the detailed rules behind it. Your LA website should have the specific blue badge criteria for your area - ours certainly does.


ETA: I guess some of this will vary by area - where we are there isn't a pressure on disabled spaces generally, but then all parking is mostly easy, so maybe our LA are less tight on the criteria than others where disabled spaces are at a premium.


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No, I have no idea what you mean and it seems bizarre tbh.


I have reread this thread, a couple of people seem to be supportive of your line about not needing the badge and a couple of people disagreed. That's life.


I absolutely don't see the relevance of potato group. Just because someone is a member, so what? I could see the point if a whole lot of people from Potato came over here and ganged up on your post but they haven't. No one has ganged up on you.


There are lots of new groups being set up to support adopters which you have to pay for btw. Adoption UK funds this forum because it gets income from members and grants and it extends the forum to non members. But the money to fund it has to come from somewhere. The new groups don't have grants etc. They tend not to be charities so they ask people to contribute a bit. Where's the problem in that?


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On our LA website it states " Blue badges help disabled people with severe mobility problems to access goods and services by allowing them to park close to their destination. "


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The membership is only £10 pa I believe anyway (for Potato that is) I will look into blue badge for my daughter then - had no idea she could qualify!


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This might help.


http://www.autism.org.uk/about/benefits-care/other-support.aspx


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Meggles quote:

On our LA website it states " Blue badges help disabled people with severe mobility problems to access goods and services by allowing them to park close to their destination. "


I guess it depends how you define "severe mobility problems" - to me that could include non-physical disabilities.


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Goodness it has become a v contentious issue this one ! As i have 2 wheelchair kids i thought i would give my opinion on the matter . Feel free to disregard / ignore if you wish !

I personally find the blue badge invaluable for getting wider spaces to allow us to get the kids in and out of the car safely ( we have a minibus which is wider than a normal car ) but actually the proximity to the venue is not the big issue to me as they are restrained in the chair as it were so cannot do a runner if they wanted to ( or indeed were able to which they arent).

However my grown up son has aspergers and was hyperactive as a child ( it wasnt called adhd /add in those days ) and he really struggled with sensory stuff , crowds etc and so i understand all too well the nightmare of getting out safely with a child with autism. A blue badge would have made a massive difference to us when he was young so i can see both sides of this one. I personally have no issue with non wheelchair users / able bodied people having blue badges and using disabled parking bays if they need them for whatever reason. The issue is not black and white surely ( what issue ever is ? ) and each case should be treated on its merits .


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Thanks for the clarification, Bop - I really meant that CAB advice is not the final word on who gets a badge or not and was a bit concerned that CAB was being promoted as the 'bible' on who gets one or not. I know that DWP support e.g. getting high rate mobility for DLA or PIP is a great help in getting a blue badge. But I guess it's like travel passes - my daughter gets a London freedom pass because she has certain special needs. I had to get that through the LA - that was a real load of work and seemed to require more evidence than you would need for a passport! If getting a blue badge is anything like getting a freedom pass, I can definitely say that they don't give them out without a lot of evidence.


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No one was saying CAB had anything to do with people getting blue badges, it was just somewhere, a reliable source, to look at the guidance, as was Gov.uk. As I have said, it needs updating to show that nowadays - I'm sure it would have been differently originally - it is not just people with a physical disability that can have a blue badge, because lots of people (adopters/non adopters, I'm not sure why Serrakunda finds this such an issue, been an adopter doesn't make you an expert on blue badge guidance. will naturally think this is what they are for and who can blame them? Yes, not all disabilities are visible but no one expects a child/adult that has no mobility difficulties to need a blue badge, because the general info given on a blue badge info site always states about "disabled people with severe mobility problems " And that will probably 9/10 be interpreted as wheelchair users, people who can't walk far... You cannot blame people for thinking this, it's the lack of clarity on the given info that is lacking.


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Ok, here is chapter and verse on blue badges. It is from the Government, not the CAB, who seem to have missed out some of the detail in their attempt to be helpful. It says that you automatically qualify if you get high rate mobility as part of DLA or PIP:
https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/fil... OR if you have certain mobility issues. I think that the DLA used to be more generous with giving DLA high rate mobility than it is now.


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I'm going to make this my last post on the issue. Why do I find it an issue ?


We have an adopter who is currently in serious difficulty. She has lost benefits to which she was previously entitled at time when the needs of her child are increasing. She asked for advice about how to appeal the decision.


She received some advice on appealing


She also then had a number of people questioning her need or entitlement to this benefit. Questioning whether she has a genuine need. The words 'abuse of what it stands for' were used.


I am not claiming to be an expert on blue badges. But as I said in an earlier post, and Flosskirk has pointed out, the criteria is quite clear. If you receive high rate DLA mobility you automatically qualify for a blue badge. That seems quite straightforward to me.


I am just suggesting that it is not for other adopters to question her entitlement to a benefit, or whether she had a 'genuine' claim.


She applied, she got it, therefore she had a genuine claim and was not abusing the system.


It is now for the assessors and the appeal process to establish the facts about her new claim. Not a bunch of people who are taking a very narrow view of disabilty and have no idea about this child's level of need.


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By getting on your high horse Serrakunda, you have totally, totally missed the point...again and again. I totally agree, it's probably best if you don't make any more comments as you aren't helping anybody ranting without reading properly first.


As a parent of a disabled dd, with a blue badge, that has had to fight for everything she needs, I am not of a narrow view at all. I have reiterated over and over that the issue is with the lack of available information on just who, what disabilities, qualify as a requirement for a blue badge. If that was freely available, and it isn't, then people wouldn't think the system was been abused. It is WIDELY viewed as something a person who cannot walk or walk far is given.


Only recently joined this forum. I had heard that you weren't allowed an opinion, got jumped on for disagreeing...seems it's true!


M


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Meggles - everyone is entitled to their opinion. Sometimes there is a disagreement - like here. But I think that the general rule on any site to do with disability is that people don't question someone else's right to services. I have been on several closed Facebook groups for disability (I have two children with disabilities / special needs) and that's the usual rule and people who question others are normally asked to stop. Sorry, not meaning to sound unwelcoming and I really hope you stay as it sounds like you have lots of useful experience and hope you can find it useful to post with other adopters, but I do think it's a bit of general rule and that Serrakunda is just working from that place xx.


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Hi Flosskirk, I was simply trying to explain why someone might, and why people do, question someone's right to a blue badge because the information on other criteria other than physical mobilities isn't out their in the public domain so people can be educated and therefore not question, be more understanding. Serrakunda consistently completely ignored this point I was trying to make. Perhaps instead of keeping batting back as she was it would be a good idea to use this energy into encouraging the powers that be to make the criteria much clearer to avoid misunderstandings like this? Clearly someone needs to.

We have experienced glares and stares because of the age of our child using a disabled space...as if they think we are misusing it, that we should be in parent and child instead or something, so I can only imagine what people would think about someone using one that doesn't have any physical mobility issues at all and they have one for a 'hidden disability'. The criteria has obviously changed from when they were first issued and this needs to be made clear on all sites that give info about them.


M


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Maybe the criteria have not changed that much as the problem was that the badge was not awarded again.


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"Instead of putting others in their place, put yourself in their place."


That's all.


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Very wise Big!


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Hello Daffin

I know a boy with severe autism. He can walk but is often very difficult to control when he is out in public. Sometimes he uses a wheelchair when out, but not all the time. He was initially refused high level mobility DLA but the decision was overturned. It was extra evidence and intervention by the boy's GP that did the trick.

best wishes

guinea pig


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