Second presentation from the January 2018 GMWRAG meeting in Salford.

Matt Ahluwalia from PLPA quick update on the p.m. presentation from Matt Ahluwalia from the Public Law Project talking about RF. As you will be aware this was successfully streamed live from Periscope and by the end of the day of the meeting it had been viewed more than 120 times, which we consider excellent for a first go.

The broadcast itself was available for replay to midnight on the day of the meeting.Whilst we initially hoped to have this permanently available by via YouTube it was suggested that this may prejudice future legal action so we are sorry but we will not be posting a link to the full 1 hour 9 minute recording.  We have been able to post the accompanying screen shot and we will be able to give you a 1 minute taste of the presentation (again via YouTube) but the only permanent record will be the partial transcription/summary included as part of the minutes when we have finished them.

Matt was anticipating a DWP appeal on his desk upon his return to London but obviously events have moved on apace and our notes will hopefully reflect this. Watch this space for the minutes.

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all those whose consent we required to make the live stream possible in the first place. We had a packed room morning and afternoon and, if nothing else, we have learned that live broadcast onto t’internet is definitely the way to get a GMWRAG meeting to behave! That one has definitely been noted for future reference 🙂


First presentation available from the January 2018 GMWRAG meeting in Salford.

There are a lot of materials to upload from the recent GMWRAG meeting in Salford so apologies in advance for doing this in a slightly piecemeal manner. All presentations at meetings are permanently located within Our Meetings sub pages if you can’t find posts like this which initially announce their availability.

Our a.m. speaker in Salford was Catherine Connors, Commissioning Manager from the People’s Directorate in Salford City Council. Her presentation on “The development and delivery of the Tackling Poverty strategy in Salford – the role of specialist advice providers.” is now available for download.

Summary notes from the presentation will be available as part of the minutes

Anyone wishing to view the strategy itself, titled “NO ONE LEFT BEHIND: A joint strategy from the Salford City Mayor and Salford Youth Mayor can view/download it from here.

GMWRAG goes 21st century and live streams/records from our Salford meeting, or falls flat on our face trying.

Considerable interest has been shown in our speakers this Friday but we’re aware that, as ever, a number of people won’t be able to make the meeting because of other commitments. For this reason we’ve decided to take the plunge and see if we can either record our afternoon speaker and get the recording up onto YouTube and/or broadcast a live stream via Periscope.

Even GMWRAG is fairly confident on the YouTube front that most of you will figure out how to find us on there post meeting. If everything works as planned we’ll have a video to view sometime during the days after the meeting and we’ll obviously post a link to it from this site.

Less of you may be familiar with Periscope. If you are on their web site or download an app for your snartphone or tablet you’ll be able to watch our speaker, Matthew Ahluwalia, from the Public Law Project. talking about the role of PLP in RF v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions; what the decision means and what happens or is likely to happen next, from approximately 2:30pm onwards on Friday.

If we get our Settings right the video will also be available for replay later the same day. However, during the live broadcast viewers can type questions for the speaker via the Periscope web site or apps and receive answers as fast as we can get the questions to the speaker via our chair, note taker, IT guru etc. A hopefully truly interactive experience. You can also send “hearts” to show your love for GMWRAG but we’ll not talk about that.

Find us on Periscope as @GMWRAGtweets and on YouTube as GMWRAG Manchester. Please create an account in good time for the broadcast on the former. You can use your existing social media accounts like Facebook to login.

So, this will either work beautifully, intermittently or not at all. We stress once again that, we cannot guarantee the broadcast will work so we’d rather you were at the meeting if you could be.

Practice claiming Universal Credit!

Our friends at Rightsnet have drawn our attention to the following link from We Are Digital. This allows the rare treat of being able to practice a claim for Universal Credit. GMWRAG can foresee that this would be useful in multiple circumstances for claimants, advisers and perhaps many other front line professionals. To the best of our knowledge this absolutely unique. Please have a look at

Accessing the meeting venue for the next meeting of the North West Mental Health Welfare Rights Advisers Group.

Full details of the NWMHWRAG have been posted previously  but we now have the specific details for accessing Manchester Town Hall on Friday the 26th of January 2018. The meeting takes place from 1pm for 1.30pm start in the Town Hall Extension, St Peters Square/Lloyd Street.

We now know that the room is number 4003, also known as ‘Baguley’. Attendees should enter the Town Hall Extension through the sliding glass doors at the Cenotaph/St Peters Square end of Lloyd Street. Buzz the FM reception on intercom to open the glass sliding doors then turn to right and go into the FM office. They will issue a red visitor card.

Go through the swing barriers, using the card and take the stairs or lift to the 4th floor. Turn left from the lift and go through the double doors. Room 4003 is on the right hand side.

Please bring any hot drinks with you.

From previous experience GMWRAG suggests attendees pair up if you can as the building is easy to get lost in and one of you may have a card which fails leaving you otherwise dependent on the goodwill of strangers or people actually more lost than you!

A riddle wrapped up in an enigma – yes, the GMWRAG accounts are available.

Those of you who have been nagging for weeks and then sending your apologies asking politely about the agenda, minutes and other details of the forthcoming GMWRAG meeting this coming Friday will have hopefully noticed that the GMWRAG accounts have a brief slot in the afternoon ahead of our speaker.

Please note that the latest accounts have been uploaded and are available for viewing. We’re sure GMWRAG members are (largely) bright enough to figure out where we hide them on the site and that they are password protected should you wish to print off your own copy before Friday. A small number of paper copies for the elite will be available for perusal on the day but we’d much rather you brought your own.

If you can’t figure it out then the accounts are available from here.

GMWRAG did imply we would post separately about food in Swinton if you’re staying for the day. We were amused to learn that if we used TripAdvisor to give you a list of nice places to go in Swinton it largely sends you to Eccles or Manchester! Most local and nearby pubs no longer serve food. However, we’re going to suggest GMWRAG members have one of four realistic choices. The excellent but small Stupots on Partington Lane (a mere 7 minutes walk from the Civic Centre where we’ll be meeting) or the Asda and Morrisons cafes or dining al fresco at Greggs! Either that or bring your own. The committee room will be available throughout the lunch period.

Next NAWRA meeting.

The first NAWRA meeting of 2018 takes place from 10:00am to 4:00pm with registration from 9:30am) on Friday the 9th of March 2018 at The Tab, The Square, Stockton-on-Tees TS18 1TE.

The NAWRA web site provides a link for the above venue but it appears dead to us and a quick search didn’t reveal a web site so at present you’ll be navigating by post code. Agenda, minutes etc. will be on their meetings page as soon as they’re available.

NAWRA quarterly meetings are held around the country and include keynote speakers, workshops and a range of networking and professional development opportunities. You must be a member to attend. Details of how to become a member are available on their web site.

In the meantime, there’s a GMWRAG meeting taking place…


Oh dear!

A small number of you who were very quick off the mark will have downloaded a GMWRAG agenda which suggests the date of the meeting is today. This was obviously incorrect and was caused by either

  • the agenda template having an auto-update date which always shows “today” as the date depending on which day you open it, or
  • a web author with a head cold.
  • gross incompetence.

The error on the original link has now been fixed and should not reoccur. The author in question has been heartily slapped.

The correct link is also here.

Agenda for the forthcoming GMWRAG meeting in Salford.

The next full day GMWRAG meeting takes place in Salford on Friday the 19th of January 2018. Full details of the meeting and options for travel have already been posted. We may even post options for food at lunch time in the next week if you’re planning on coming for the day.

Minutes of the last meeting can be downloaded from our minutes page and the full agenda is now available for download.

We have a packed agenda including two excellent speakers:

We look forward to seeing you there.