The minutes of the Stockport GMWRAG meeting are now available.

The minutes of the June 2017 GMWRAG meeting which took place in Stockport are now available for download from here and of course you can find them permanently on our Minutes page for which you will of course have the magic password. If you don’t then please either DM @GMWRAGtweets or email a GMWRAG member and they’ll be happy to oblige provided you are willing to delete, set fire to or eat any related communications.

The handouts from the session on hearing impairment and PIP can be found here and the case law pack from the session on sight impairment and DLA/PIP can be found here.

The next GMWRAG meeting is scheduled for Oldham in October 2017 and we’ll post up all the information you’ll need as soon as everything has been finalised.

Stockport GMWRAG meeting this Friday – a quick reminder.

In light of the sudden burst of activity on GMWRAG in the past 24 hours it has been pointed out that some people will lose sight of the fact that there is a GMWRAG meeting this Friday so, here you are, a quick reminder.

Everything you need can be found at https://gmwrag.wordpress.com/2017/06/09/the-stockport-gmwrag-meeting-is-here-speakers-public-transport-presenting-officers-and-biscuit-details-all-below and by “everything” we mean the venue details (apparently hoods are no longer required); transport details; the agenda and the minutes of the last meeting, which took place in the dim and distant place known as 2016. There are 2 speakers as previously detailed and there are, of course, biscuits.

We’ll see you there.

Ooh look. GMWRAG has remembered that we’re supposed to have meetings.

You may have been wondering what on earth happened to the first scheduled GMWRAG meeting of 2017 back in March. As ever, we’ve had to do a little rejigging and as a consequence of that we are pleased to announce that our first meeting of 2017 will take place at the (almost) height of summer in sunny Stockport courtesy of our friends at Stockport Advice (or Benefits Appeal Help as they now appear to be known!). An agenda will be cobbled together circulated in due course. If members have any priorities for speakers please let us know asap via @GMWRAGTweets.

The minutes of the last meeting, which took place in Tameside in December 2016, can still be downloaded from here.

In the meantime all you need to know is that the meeting is our new style “clandestine” meeting :).

In order to get into our exclusive club you will need to make your way to Fred Perry House where you will be hooded and escorted to the depths of Stopford House, otherwise known as “next door”. Special tokens and a magic password will need to be ordered in advance in order to give each of you a sticker with your name on to say that, yes, you are a part of the show.

We will, as ever, cast open the doors with a dramatic swoosh and maybe a very large gong at 9:30am for lukewarm coffee, tea from an urn down the corridor, cold water and stale biscuits. Oh yeah, and networking. Is that still a thing? The meeting itself will commence at 10:00am and will run to 4:00pm with a break for lunch if you ask nicely and play well.

GMWRAG hopes our members are able to discern fact from “fake news” in the above paragraphs. Agenda to follow.

Correction to Manchester TUG details – GMWRAG apologises for actually being administratively worse than the Tribunals Service.

Our recent post re: the Manchester TUG was incorrect.

The Manchester and Stockport TUG will take place on Monday the 27th of March 2017 (not February) at Manchester Crown Court Building, Ground Floor, Crown Square off Bridge Street, Manchester M3 3FL. It will start at 10am and no doubt finish on the dot at 12:00pm.

As per our Blackburn TUG post you need to let the Tribunals Service know if you’re attending.

If you haven’t been notified of the meeting by post then you will need to contact Sandy Barnes, Clerk to the Tribunal on 0151 243 1451. Questions will need to be submitted in advance and the clerk is also the route for that as far as we can ascertain. TS are also asking for details of your organisation, work phone number and work email address. GMWRAG refuses to be anything other than highly amused at the latter given ongoing issues persuading them that appeals can be lodged by email.

We’ll see you there or, alternatively, in the Spinning Fields Costa Coffee beforehand 🙂

 

Manchester TUG sort of announced.

GMWRAG refuses to accept we will ever come up with a better post title than Blackburn Tug(ay). However, with grateful thanks to our friends at Stockport Advice (at least that’s what we thought they were called) we are pleased to announce that the details for the Manchester Tribunal Users Group are now available.

The Manchester TUG will take place on Monday the 27th of February 2017 at Manchester Crown Court. It will start at 10am and no doubt finish on the dot at 12:00pm. If the Tribunals Service ever let us know more details then we’ll let you know.

In the meantime, as per our Blackburn TUG post you need to let the Tribunals Service know if you’re attended. If you haven’t been notified of the meeting by post then you will need to contact Sandy Barnes, Clerk to the Tribunal on 0151 243 1451. Questions will need to be submitted in advance and the clerk is also the route for that as far as we can ascertain.

The next (and future) GMWRAG meeting(s).

Now, GMWRAG members, please pay attention and listen very carefully. We shall say zis only once! Possibly.

A few years back we had to rejig the organisation of GMWRAG meetings thanks to the reality of public sector cuts decimating services in Manchester, Rochdale and Bolton. A core group of Salford, Stockport, Tameside and Trafford kindly agreed to rotate hosting meetings in order to ensure we could continue.

An unexpected but entirely welcome rejuvenated service in Oldham assisted with this aim but further service reviews and staffing changes in three of the first four above have meant that meetings over the past year have very much had to be organised “on the hoof” as services in the midst of being reviewed to death felt that hosting a meeting for a full day was a step to far in the midst of other stresses. We are very grateful to Stockport Advice, Salix Homes and Bolton at Home for stepping up at short notice to keep the show on the road.

GMWRAG fully appreciates this and so in a bid to provide some stability this year we are pleased to welcome an offer from Manchester to host our next meeting in June 2016. This pushes back meetings in Trafford and Tameside. It would be really helpful if all GMWRAG members could check out our meetings page and note these changes but if you can’t access the site in work then 2016 and 2017 currently look like this.

June 2016 – Manchester.

September 2016 – Trafford.

December 2016 – Tameside.

March 2017 – Oldham.

June 2017 – Stockport.

September 2017 – Salford.

December 2017 – Bolton.

All hosting members need to note these changes dates. There may yet be further date changes as none of us know what the remainder of 2016 will bring but we will try and avoid this if we possibly can. We will try and contact someone at each host in due course to firm all the above up but, if there are issues, it would help us if you “Contact GMWRAG” ASAP to let us know.

There will be a more specific post about the Manchester meeting imminently.

For those of you who periodically complain about the length of these posts, please remember not all members can access the site in their workplace, for a variety of reasons, so it is important that the posts contain what is elsewhere on the site.

An update on the next meeting of the NWMHWRAG.

As per our previous post the next meeting will be at 9.30am for 10 on Friday the 18th of March 2016 in the Community Room at Manchester Central Fire Station. The address is Thompson Street, Manchester, M4 5FP.

The entrance to the room is at the back of the building via Cassidy Close. Please don’t enter the Fire Station by any other door – cos then we get told off!

If you can’t find the room, you can ring  Helen Rogers on 07800 617 866.

We are having a seminar discussion on the Right to Reside and the Habitual Residence Test. Please bring details of any case studies that you want to discuss.

The attached article is the notes from Dan Manville’s talk on the IM decision at the November 2015 meeting. Dan has kindly provided these.

March 2016 meeting of the North West Mental Health Welfare Rights Advisers Group.

The next meeting of the North West Mental Health Welfare Rights Advisers Group will take place on Friday the 18th of March 2016.

A speaker from the Booth Centre in Manchester has agreed to come to the May meeting of the North West Mental Health Welfare Rights Advisers Group.

However, they don’t yet have a speaker for the March meeting.

We have discussed in the past about having a seminar on the Habitual Residence Test and the Right to Reside. Can you please email Helen Rogers to let her know if you would be interested in having this for the March meeting?

Also, can you please let her know if you would be prepared to lead off part of the discussions or if you have any case studies you are willing to talk about?