My post from yesterday about more stresses arising from having a personal budget has prompted quite a bit of Twitter discussion. The number of views the post has had is very high as well, but most of my personalisation posts get way above average readership. I wonder whether people set up an alert for every time “personalisation” is mentioned. It would be rather spooky if all those people who declare themselves “passionate about personalisation” went beep whenever I press “publish”.
But nothing changes. And why should it. The LAs are delighted to have got rid of one pesky piece of their statutory duty. Having burdened the carer, why on earth would they want to take that burden back. And all the organisations that have sprung up or grown on the back of personalisation aren’t going to want any change – it would curtail their purpose. Their job is to discuss, sell and produce glossy brochures (thanks Ermintrude).
I thought I’d do a post laying the demands of a personal budget bare. This is my personalisation diary for the past week. It is important to note that the times I mention in this diary, aren’t just the times I spent working on the budget issues – they were the only times this week that I had when I wasn’t either caring for Steven or working. Apart from the 3 hours away on respite on Monday, every single spare moment this week has been taken up with personal budget processes. The bottom line of this diary is that there was no more time left in the week for me to attend to the business – not that I had completed all the business in this time.
8am – Go to Tescos for shopping & stop off at cashpoint to draw out money from DP account to pay the cab fares this week.
11.30am to 1pm – Try to make some sense of the HMRC form they’ve returned to me. Apparently, I’ve done something wrong with the national insurance contributions but for the life of me, I couldn’t see how or where.
Tuesday: No free time at all the whole day but bothered by social worker’s voicemail reminding me that it is important to have kept all my PB records up to date before Panel sits to consider my respite request.
2.30am to 3.15am – Suddenly wake up, anxious about yesterday’s phone message and the veiled threat. Find myself going through the pay slips and cab receipts for the past six months.
8.30am to 9.45am – Write long letter to social worker detailing why I need the increased respite. Tried to do a “competitive” costing in the hope it would win Panel over.
9pm to 9.30pm – Having arrived home from late shift at work and found Steven got out during the evening, have long discussion with support worker about incident and my expectations of him
915am to 9.40am (before my first client at work)- Had long phone discussion with local disability group about employment contract law and how to proceed with the incident from last night. Crestfallen with the response – sounded like the sort of process the LA would have to use with a member of their staff.
2.30pm to 3.45pm – Fancied a quick pint after the weekly shop but had to write formal letter to support worker following the advice this morning.
6.30pm to 7.20pm (whilst Steven at swimming) Did this week’s wages. Took slightly longer than usual as I had to calculate 1 extra night shift and extra hours for worker who came in early that day to help me take care of Steven whilst I dealt with the roofers.
8.30am to 9am (before my 1st client at work) Worked out the Sunday shifts & Monday respite shifts for October.
Still outstanding for tomorrow whilst Steven is at swimming – get back to the HMRC form.
I just want to stress again – this isn’t just the time I spent on the personal budget this week – it was the only time I had free and all free space was choc a bloc with PB tasks. I did get to watch an episode of Lewis whilst I was away on Monday night and I did spend an hour on Friday morning browsing furniture for my new flat. But that was the week.
Pretty much the same as every other week.