Disabled people lose out after fund’s coffers are plundered

Disabled people

More groups affected by Glasgow's Communities Fund shambles 

11th September 2020 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

Vital services to improve access and inclusion for disabled people are at risk after Glasgow Access Panel was refused cash financial support through Glasgow’s Communities Fund.

Having previously been recipients of the Glasgow Integrated Grant Fund (IGF), the panel has serious concerns around where disability falls in Glasgow City Councils priorities, particularly during these times.

Disabled and older people are amongst the most isolated people in society, and this has only been exacerbated by COVID-19. People with long-term health conditions are at the greatest risk and regular social contact is critical to a person’s health and wellbeing.

Glasgow Access Panel address social isolation by providing volunteer opportunities for disabled people. This involves developing skills and confidence and utilising knowledge and lived experience to feed back to service providers and planning officials: making positive and lasting changes in their communities.

Hundreds of Glasgow charities will miss out on vital cash under the controversial Communities Fund after councillors pared back its budget radically.  

Some 134 third-sector organisations have been knocked back by the council to the tune of around £77m although a £4m transition fund has been set up.

Bobby Park, project officer for Glasgow Access Panel commented: “Our board and staff have decades of experience with disability - personally and professionally - which, combined with the many lifetimes of experience of our members, we believe is a valuable asset to the city of Glasgow. In continuing our work remotely over the past several months, we have developed new ways of safely working with and supporting our members and clients, managing the risks posed by COVID-19, and we have continued to provide access audits locally as a means of generating income.

“We have been notified of a “transition fund” supporting communities of interest and equalities groups helping those most impacted by the pandemic. We would like to be considered in this conversation. As we continue to seek additional funding to ensure the continuity of our service, we hope that the value of our project to the disabled people of Glasgow and the city as a whole will not be overlooked through this transition.”