At Harrow Mencap we use campaigning as a tool to improve the lives of the citizens with learning disabilities that we work with. 

The latest Public Health England report has estimated that 6.3 times more deaths occurred among people with learning disabilities than the general population between 21 March and 5 June 2020.

Deeply concerned about this tragic spike during the Covid-19 pandemic, and the already higher death rates of people with learning disabilities than the national average, we stepped up our campaign for another learning disability (LD) nurse at Northwick Park Hospital. 

 

After our successful campaign to lobby North West London Healthcare Trust to recruit another LD nurse which involved a petition signed by over 600 people and gaining support from the local MP Gareth Thomas, we have used this as a springboard to try and raise awareness of the shortage of LD nurses across the UK.

(The Harrow Mencap Self-Advocate Group first started their local LD Nurse campaign in 2019)

 

According to the latest figures from NHS digital, there has been a 40% drop in the number of registered LD Nurses in NHS posts from 5,368 in 2010 to 3,223 in 2020.

 

We have already made steps to do this as we have worked with the MP for Harrow East, Bob Blackman to table an Early Day Motion (EDM) in Parliament on the shortage of LD nurses. The motion won support from MPs all over the country, including Northern Ireland, Hartlepool, and Brighton. You can see the EDM on the parliamentary website by clicking here.

 

We want to you to be part of our campaign to help make MPs aware of the chronic shortage of LD nurses. You can do this by using the draft letter that we have created. We have prepared two separate drafts.

1) One is for self-advocacy groups - available on this link.

2) The other is for individuals who want to send a letter to their MP - available on this link.

3) There is also an easy read letter which can be sent to an MP - available on this link.

If you are not sure who your local MP is, you can find out on Parliament's find my MP page - available on this link.

Please be part of our campaign and make the shortage of LD nurses a priority on the national agenda.

 

Together, our voices are stronger in making both politicians and healthcare professionals recognise the urgent need to address the healthcare inequality that exists in our society between people with and without learning disabilities.