A year after PIP refusal.

Getting past April as autism awareness month is always good, but my mind has turned to it being a year since I was refused PIP.

I did the applications, asked for the Statutory Reconsideration and took it as far as the appeal panel.

I’m aware of Scotland’s new social security system coming in and I just couldn’t bring myself to re-apply. Even if all they say is true.

I tried and had a Doctor and Nurse lie to ensure I didn’t get anything. It stripped me of dignity and confidence and I couldn’t go through it all again.

My attempts to get help petered out after the Health and Social Care partnership referred me back to GP.

It’s a new GP after my old one excluded me and at an appointment I was told they prefer to phone than do appointments, so I’ve given up on that, barring getting my regular prescription.

I’m no better than I was. Not much I can do other than hope I don’t have a meltdown.

I think I’m self medicating between nicotine tablets and CBD oil. I’m not drinking alcohol at least.

I’m not sure on there being enjoyable days, maybe when with the kids, certainly not when alone or in the day to day of the work week.

For work, I’ve had to remove all my accommodations.

An email reminder on clear desk policy has sent me backwards on use of cutting pads to stop reflections and after a meltdown, I was told my earphones are antisocial to my colleagues, so I’ve stopped using them.

(Pointless saying I was triggered by the email system not working and a demand made for me to access email by someone not having issues with the email.)

Same guy that made comment on the headphones, later sent an email saying my employer is ‘disability confident’ – er..

I’m hating the trains and travel to and from work, as it usually means standing.

I had a dialogue with Scotrail’s inclusion team and it seems I can use the priority seats, but it’s not an issue as they’re usually occupied.

Everything’s pretty much still a mess and difficult.

Financially, I’m trying but it’s difficult every month.

I haven’t yet had that holiday I was deluding myself about.

I’m still alone and haven’t seen anyone new. I don’t think I can in the state that I’m in and I really am still hurt from past events. I don’t think I’m a prospect anyone would want.

It’s a boring and lonely existence watching TV and reading twitter but it’s about all I have.

So.. onward, ever onward.

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The St Mirren Championship Arithmetic possibility post.

Jim Goodwin with the League Cup in 2013.

St Mirren’s next piece of silverware, the Scottish Championship trophy is around the corner. Seven points or three more wins ought to do it.

St Mirren and Livingston have 6 fixtures left. The calculation is that Livingston could get 18 points maximum and reach 73 points.

Saints have 67 points as of 31 March.

74 points wins it although reaching 73 and having superior goal difference might well be enough.

Any changes over the next three games will affect the target as a Saints loss or draw takes the matter on a few fixtures, any defeats or draws for Livingston speeds it up.

Morton are out the equation as currently 47 points and 15 more possible makes a maximum theoretical finish of 62 points. Saints have 67 already.

Dundee Utd have 46 points and seven games to play making a possible 21 points making a maximum theoretical finish of 67 points.

Dunfermline moved 4th on 31 March they can reach 61 points maximum in theory. 5 games to play and a current 46 points.

Tuesday April 3rd

Dunfermline vs Livingston

St Mirren sit out the fixture. But will be a must know result.

This could take Livi onto 58 points but will be their 31st game played. 5 games left, 15 points possible.

Saturday April 7th

Brechin vs St Mirren

Livingston vs Morton

70 and 61 points if both teams keep winning.

Tuesday April 10th

Dundee United vs St Mirren.

This could be the one where saints hit 73 points if they also win their previous two matches.

Livingston don’t have a game that night.

Saturday April 14th

St Mirren vs Livingston.

A coup de grâce. An opportunity to nail it down if it wasn’t already done and dusted. Saints might draw or lose in a previous fixture. A win for St Mirren reduces the highest possible finish for Livingston too.

Tuesday April 17th

St Mirren vs Falkirk

Again a possible fallback game for Saints.

Hopefully that helps the Mirren massive, because it will be fluid if Livingston lose or draw.

updated to 31 March, twists and turns.

There is no help.

17th March 2018.

My attempts to get any sort of help or support have failed. The letter pictured says..

Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnership.

Date 9th March

Dictated 23rd February

Dear Mr Gibson

Thank you for attending your assessment appointment at the Charleston Centre on 8th February 2018.

Following discussion with the multidisciplinary team we will be discharging you back to the care of your GP as there appears to be no role for CHMT at this point.

I have written to your GP informing them of this decision.

Yours

X

Community Psychiatric Nurse

Community Mental Health Team.

So, if I want help I’ll probably have to go and commit a crime. Seems to be the only way.

Alcoholics, drug users and all other forms of low life scum and vermin are treated to a higher standard than someone with a lifelong condition.

I’m beyond disgusted at this and I’m going to end up lower and more isolated as a result.

The Scottish NHS isn’t worth a fuck as far as I’m concerned. They’d rather see me dead.

Happy Trains between Edinburgh and Glasgow ?

This is a ‘Happy Train’ or a Class 365 Networker. They date from the mid 1990’s and have been suggested as a solution to Scotrail’s lack of trains available for The Edinburgh and Glasgow mainline (via Falkirk) route.

The ‘Happy Trains’ are coming off lease after replacement by new class 700 units for Thameslink/Great Northern.

They are 4 carriage 20 metre long units.

Scotrail’s lease arrangements for a number of diesel units is up and these are due to move south, some have already been received at Northern.

The Hitachi class 385 units that were to replace them have been held up due to an issue with vision in the drivers cabs through a curved Windscreen.

The Happy Trains are one of the few available electric multiple units that Scotrail might get their hands on.

Some online forums have speculated on a cascade of the existing Siemens Desiro Class 380’s from Inverclyde and Ayrshire to fill in.

These are already used in two sets of seven carriage formations for selected journeys on the E&G.

E&G passengers have already complained about the stub tables on the 380’s for their ‘essential laptop working’, and there’s mutterings on the lack of first class on the units and that’s there’s no particular time benefit from running in a mixed timetable with diesel units also preset on the line.

Conversely, there’s an issue for Inverclyde commuters. At times, a forty minute or longer journey is carried out by Class 314’s that don’t have toilets and the comfort or facilities of the 380’s.

Local press and politicians in Inverclyde have been noisy about the downgrade.

Rumours and speculation are abound and there’s been mention of a wholesale transfer of 380 units as well as more 320/4’s created from class 321’s.

Certainly there’s a plan for more conversions of 321’s but this may only be five units.

Perhaps, a more Simple answer for Scotrail is to procure a replacement fleet for the E&G as all infrastructure on Ayrshire and Inverclyde lines is set for the 380’s.

That’s where the Happy Train and a series of questions comes in.

Firstly, should the 380 fleet transfer over to E & G duties?

It must tempt Scotrail, but the fleet and it’s working diagrams are based out of Shields depot to the West of Glasgow.

The limited transfer of units for use on the E&G was supposed to be temporary.

A long term transfer east of the fleet would give issues and not least in terms of Ayrshire and Inverclyde passengers losing ‘their trains’.

Theres a further question of resourcing suitable units to replace the 380’s and work with the infrastructure and equipment on the Ayrshire and Inverclyde routes.

Secondly, the issue is on the E&G, isn’t it?

Proposed schedules for completion of the EGIP electrification slipped and these delays should have made sure that the introduction of the proposed rolling stock was on time.

At present, not all units are complete and not all units have been delivered.

Therefore, can Scotrail come up with rolling stock for the E&G and stop a knock-on effect on other routes and their usual unit allocations.?

Units intended for EGIP were also meant for the Stirling, Dunblane and Alloa services and for a fleet strengthening to ensure that the class 314’s could be retired in 2018.

So what should happen now?

There’s only so long that a temporary solution can be found and like any other business, Scotrail will have income to derive from its services and will want some certainty.

The question is how long it takes to resolve the issues with the 385’s, and how long to fix a solution to the window issue and have all units ready in service.

There’s a time and familiarity issue for train crew, drivers especially, and even a temporary fix in using another class of train would mean time and expense.

I’m unconvinced that it’s worthwhile for Scotrail to go to the lengths of bringing up a ‘new to Scotland’ class of electric multiple unit and train staff in using it, before converting all E & G route journeys.

The only way this might happen is if the frontages of the class 385’s need entirely replaced and with two windows on each cab end and 70 units total means 140 ‘fixes’ and quite possibly, that issue might take a bit of time and effort.

This image by Thomas Nugent clearly shows the difference in window size when compared to a class 380. Thomas Nugent Geograph

When seen together, it shows the difference in design used by Hitachi.

The original design was without a gangway between units.

The visual was later altered to Scotrail livery before the design with gangway was added.

In overall terms, it’s quite a change and there’s even a difference to the test units as captured above with the Siemens 380.

Hitachi have also had to endure some criticism of their Intercity Express Programme units introduced on the Great Western routes, however, the issue with these units isn’t at a great time and is at a point when rival manufacturers CAF and Siemens are building UK plants and where Bombadier have been introducing their Products to a number of franchises.

As to the ‘Happy Train’ Networker, it doesn’t seem likely that there will be the expense of time and effort to bring them to Scotland especially if a solution to the 385’s problems is months away.

Then again. I’ve been wrong before.

Long Way

I think I finally ‘get help’ this week.

Been struggling since October and kind of ironic that appointment with Community Mental Health is at a point where I’ve had to get through ‘the worst’ myself.

Rather than tell a story to them I’d really much rather try and direct them to what I need.

I think that is formalised Diagnosis of Anxiety and whether I can get that for Generalised Anxiety and Social Anxiety is my first question.

My other is a formal diagnosis of Depression. I’ve lived with it all my life. I need it confirmed and certified.

I’ll have to tell the nurse, presumably, that I can’t follow their script to CBT.

I can accept they’ll follow whatever the GP wrote to say, so I have to think through a polite way to say ‘Stop. This is what I need’ rather than go with the flow of the appointment.

Being Listened to is the thing that I need.

I may need to write cue cards and just show them.

I may need to sink the nurse’s attempt to do a ‘usual first appointment.’ By being awkward and uncooperative.

The risk in that is that I don’t get help as I’ve not did things in the way that they want.

It makes it critical that I get those points in before they start and especially get across that I’m Autistic and not needing a neurotypicals treatment for ‘just’ depression.

So, yeah I worry about ‘getting help’, I can’t just ‘be relieved’ and go with that.

I know I need more than that and I’ll try to ask but if they’re Interviewing as a first appointment I’m scared of a screen and someone at right angles to me.

I’d like to know if other specific medication can help or if I’m trucking along. I don’t need time off or a rest or anything like that.

Help and something to guide and soothe me please.

Obviously I’ll write after Thursday and I can only hope for the moment, but to temper that with a dose of realism too.

Glasgow’s Jigsaw Logo for Autism Friendly City Centre is Wrong and Offensive.

I was aware of Glasgow’s plans to have a more Autism Friendly City Centre environment. I completed some online surveys and read the information that had been posted.

Then the logo was announced.

As you see above it uses a ‘Jigsaw Piece’ or ‘Puzzle Piece’ design.

It’s based on this. The multicoloured jigsaw ribbon that The Autism Society in the United States of America use. A similar blue single piece design is used by the controversial ‘Autism Speaks’ group.

The design of a Jigsaw comes from The UK and the National Autism Society.

The logo was created in 1963 by a parent of an autistic child. It represents the puzzle of autism, the missing piece and a sad confused child.

Ultimately other groups such as the American groups used the design and modified it to their ends.

As an ‘autism parent’ I get the sentiment as my son doesn’t speak and is non verbal.

As a #actuallyautistic person with a diagnosis myself, it gets me angry.

It represents a childish image of autistic conditions. (No-one grows out of it)

It says there’s a mystery to autism and that it’s unfathomable. (Many of the sensory and communication issues aren’t that hard to discern.)

It says autistic people have things missing. (Most of us are complete, in having heads, bodies, arms and legs, our heads are wired differently)

Therefore to me, this choice of symbol by Glasgow is wrong and offensive.

I’m aware that the design is the work of a schoolchild and reports state that the person is autistic too.

I don’t easily want to upset anyone, especially given the context of the idea of having kids design the logo.

It’s also important for ‘Autism Awareness’, sadly that’s not ‘Autism Acceptance’. Minority groups for race, feminism and LGBTI rights seem to get ‘Acceptance’ on the agenda rather than just ‘Awareness’.

The initiative is obviously well meaning, but the criteria given to the children at the schools needs questioned.

What were they told to design?

What were they taught about Autistic People, as child and adults and what were they told was acceptable as symbols?

I visited the exhibition of the children’s art work and the preponderance of the Jigsaw symbol on designs suggests that they were not.

To my eyes 80% of designs included either a single jigsaw piece or the combined pieces ribbon design.

One even had the slogan ‘put the pieces together’

A failure in teaching?

Or a failure in understanding by grown adults that set the children the task.

Was ‘Neurodiversity’ mentioned in any context or any point of setting the task?

My other issue is that Strathclyde University’s affiliated Autism Network Scotland were on the panel that chose the winning design.

Was someone from ASN content to accept such a design having knowledge of Autistic People?

I can’t understand the Council not consulting their Autism Resource Centre on this either, surely someone from there would have queried this design.

A step back for the #actuallyautistic and another example of the jigsaw/puzzle piece being used, despite how people feel over it.

The Autism Journal in the US recently removed the Puzzle Piece as their logo.

Autism Journal abandons Puzzle Piece

“As one would hope for a research journal, what led to this change was research,” said David Mandell, an autism researcher at the University of Pennsylvania who serves as the journal’s editor. “Given that we published that study, we thought we should act on it.”

“I really thought it was time to modernize and get rid of the puzzle piece and go with something more up to date and less offensive,” Brook said in a podcast about the change.

“The puzzle piece is therefore no longer an apt, or even adequate, symbol for autism as we currently understand it,” the journal editors wrote in an editorial announcing the change. “The move away from the puzzle piece here and towards our new design is not only about how we choose to represent autism, but it is also about proving that we represent that broader change itself.”

All in all a good move.

Here’s the research behind it

Participants associated puzzle pieces with imperfection, incompletion, uncertainty, difficulty, the state of being unsolved, and, most poignantly, being missing,” according to findings published online this month from researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, Ursinus College and the University of Kentucky

it went on

If an organization’s intention for using puzzle-piece imagery is to evoke negative associations, our results suggest the organization’s use of puzzle-piece imagery is apt,” the study authors wrote. “However, if the organization’s intention is to evoke positive associations, our results suggest that puzzle-piece imagery should probably be avoided.”

Disability Scoop Article

So will Glasgow acknowledge that this logo isn’t progress for Autism Awareness and will the perceptions that are behind the jigsaw piece design be challenged or taught properly to children?

Never be a truth teller.

The closure of the Children’s ward at Paisley’s Royal Alexandra Hospital by the Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board was approved by Shona Robison, The Scottish Government’s Health Minister.

It was followed by a blizzard of stupidity from SNP supporters defending the decision.

Wings Over Scotland goes off in his typically truculent way.

5 minutes away, 10 minutes away.

They refer to the relocated Glasgow Hospital for Sick Children on the site of the Southern General Hospital with the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital.

Somehow this one got over excited and threw in photos of the old yorkhill.

Yorkhill is still shown on this map that is shown. There’s one specialist RHSC and it’s at the Govan site.

‘It’s only six miles away.’

Others travel further.

‘Just a ward in an adult hospital.’

‘Are these people for real? ‘

Yes there’s lots that live in Paisley, Renfrewshire and other areas affected by the closure.

My family amongst them as both my sons attend appointments there.

But..

‘It’s only 10 minutes away.’

I don’t routinely drive and use public transport a lot. I know that’s untrue and I challenged that.

By bus a minimum of 33 minutes, from the one hospital to other 52 minutes with a change.

Data from Traveline Scotland, the public transport website.

The QEUH complex is also at other side of Renfrew and Braehead and I’ve been that way by bus too as well as driving at weekends and it’s not brilliant journey either.

Now, of course, I wasn’t supporting an SNP government decision.

‘How many live at the old hospital?’

So.. don’t be a truth teller kids. Don’t use your own mind. Don’t support independence without turning your brain off.

I fully understand the desire to try and shield this decision from Criticism by Scottish Labour politicians, but the defence of the indefensible here is bizarre.

It’s the closure of a Children’s unit in an NHS hospital that has Adult and Maternity services on site.

Paisley had some of Scotland’s poorest statistical postcodes. That poverty extends to car use.

And to finish, very strangely for a self confessed pedant, the ten minute claim stayed in his article online.

https://wingsoverscotland.com/absolute-fanny-of-the-week/