Welcome to Community Living Online

Community Living is run by a charity independent
of any company or organisation.

Our editorial policy:

Promote equality of citizenship
Promote the inclusion of people with learning disabilities in every aspect of society
To provide readers with essential information in accessible language
Encourage people to express themselves in the magazine
Challenge laws, regulation and traditional ideas which hamper people from achieving their aspirations
Publicise examples of radical ideas being put into practice


Paradigm’s Be free Festival – 13th – 15th September 2016

Don’t miss the chance to get to Paradigm’s Be Free Festival at Gilwell Park in Chingford, in Esssex . Accommodated in lodges or bell tents or bring your own tent- a small festival experience where people will meeting new people, and get live bands, camp fires, picnics, tea parties, wild adventure challenges, music and art […]

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Speaking with one voice

It is vital that families and self advocates unite. They have much to gain and a great deal to lose by not speaking in one voice, says Jan Walmsley   In February, I was immensely cheered to see the photo (right) of representatives of the National Forum of People with Learning Disabilities and the National […]

Posted in 29.4, Campaign, Current Issue, Feature Home | Leave a comment

Why ATUs don’t work

By their very nature ATUs are not set up to work with people in their familiar environment and rehabilitate them; instead, they seek to remove and treat with an extremely small toolkit, says Sam Sly   Over a year ago I was asked to write about getting people out of Assessment & Treatment Units (ATUs) […]

Posted in 29.4, Campaign, Current Issue, Feature Home | Leave a comment

Keeping abreast of Adult Social Care Law – Free Webinar

WHATEVER HAPPENS WE ALL NEED TO BE ON TOP OF THE LAW. If you didn’t make it to our Manchester Belinda Schwehr Care Act seminar don’t despair – get a free webinar and if you subscribe to Community Living you get her regular articles keeping you up-to-date with judgements and the law. We’ll also be […]

Posted in events, Feature Home, Law | Tagged | Leave a comment

Community Living’s July magazine NOW out – don’t miss it

You get a printed copy and a free on-line digital version with full access to back articles….with a regular articles from Belinda Schwehr (LLM) on social care law issues and Charlie Callanan on welfare benefits.. Should these Assessment and Treatment Units (ATUs) providing neither be called prisons? In this issue Sam Sly explains why ATUs […]

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Risk-averse staff are undermining the aims of the Mental Capacity Act

Vicky Yeates worries about the future for her 31 year old daughter. She met two young men whose journey to independence offers some reassurance about her daughter’s future but whose stories show how excessively risk-averse implementation of the Mental Capacity Act can be a barrier to success…   Dan and Steve have learning disabilities; both […]

Posted in 29.3, Campaign, Feature Home | Leave a comment

How to draw parents with learning disabilities into meetings

 How to draw parents with learning disabilities into meetings Child protection meetings can be daunting for anybody and even more so for a parent with learning disabilities struggling to understand what is being said. Alison Matthews explains her system using drawings to communicate crucial information.   A significant proportion of people with learning disabilities have […]

Posted in 29.3, communication, Feature Home | Leave a comment

Creative commissioning in the face of budget cuts

Mark Stables is dealing with a £3 million cut to his budget but he is still determined “to make things happen”, he told Seán Kelly.   Two friends of mine were discussing job vacancies recently.  One of them expressed an interest in applying to be a commissioner for services for people with learning disabilities.  The […]

Posted in 29.3, Commissioning, Feature Home | Leave a comment

Centenary – Legacy of a Remarkable Woman

Four charities which owe their existence to Elfrida Rathbone will be celebrating her legacy and achievements in 2016. Rosemary Trustam reports The recently released film, The Suffragettes, told the stories of some remarkable women but a quieter and in many ways more remarkable story is that of Elfrida Rathbone. Far ahead of her time, she […]

Posted in 29.2, Achievements, Current Issue, Feature Home, Heritage | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Does Olu’s story point to racism in our services?

Could Olu’s story reveal the learning disability equivalent of racism in our services? asks Sarah Reilly Olu, 47 years old, black, powerfully built and over 6 feet, is non-verbal, has a profound learning disability and is on the autistic spectrum. He came to England when he was very young becoming, by his 10th birthday, a […]

Posted in 29.2, Advocacy, Campaign, Challenging behaviour, Current Issue, Feature Home, Good Practice, Mental health | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment





Is there any point to commissioning?

Mike Webster poses this question and comes to the conclusion that, yes, there is a point to commissioning when it is a creative force that gets the best out of people and organisations.
DOWNLOAD – (pdf 220kb)

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Social care law/Care Act

 Do these councils’ policies ensure wellbeing?

Two councils are planning to cap own home care costs at the equivalent value of those for a care home. Does that fit with the Care Act framework and the principle of wellbeing enshrined in it? Belinda Schwehr has reservations.

DOWNLOAD – (pdf 220kb)


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