On My 2012 Radar

Whilst up with the birds & walking the dogs before the heat set in this morning, I was thinking about themes and topics that I might cover this year.

This is my hit list so far

  • National Disability Insurance Scheme, as it is being built
  • Innovative ways to make peoples disability support funding stretch further
  • Using Human Rights as a tool to get your message out there
  • Accommodation Institution, are they quietly, slowly being redeveloped under a different name “Cluster Housing”
  • Mobile phone applications for people with Autism and Aspergers
  • Reviewing service providers that really get it when we talk about, “Individualised Choice”
  • How we work with people who have behaviors of concern?
  • The value of “Peer Support” from people with disabilities
  • Relinquishment of children with disabilities
  • The pros and cons of directly employing your support workers
  • Facilitated Communication
  • Fashionable clothing specifically designed for people who only sit
  • Will direct employment of carers extinguish a volunteer passion?

Thanks all of you who continually take the time to give me feedback, I guess this is what keeps me going.

Also would like to again acknowledge Simon Kneebone and his support with the illustrations.

You are great Simon, thank you

Flying In Your Wheelchair

The captain’s announcement I was dreading.

“We apologise for the delay, this is due to an issue concerning cargo that is being loaded”

Our flight was 6:30 am my electric wheelchair was checked in at 5 am, so I knew it had nothing to do with them not getting my chair in time.

What’s gone wrong this time, I thought to myself.

My wife and I even have a dress rehearsal on how we pack and prepare my wheelchair for the flight.

Remove all pieces that come off such as control box, armrests, leg rest, headrest, and pack them separately into a case.

We then disconnect all electrical cables and put lots of signage on the chair for the luggage handlers.

The signage says things like, the weight of the chair is 100 kg, hoping that this would stop individuals trying to lift the wheelchair by themselves.

We also include instructions on how to freewheel it, and where the brakes are.

Although some airlines are starting to allow people to take their chair all the way to the plane, I have always have chosen to check it in with my luggage to minimise the likelihood of it being damaged.

My presumption that my wheelchair was the reason for the captain’s announcement was confirmed via a whisper from one of those guys that wears fluorescent jackets that run around as you board the plane

However when querying the announcement during a flight with the flight attendant she was very quick to say “No no, the captain didn’t mention your wheelchair was the reason for the delay”

I guess I will never find out exactly what the issue was?

Most importantly I’m now sitting in Townsville North Queensland in my undamaged electric wheelchair, the only casualty is a cold sore I have due to worrying.

Stay in your wheelchair on plane