Equality A Diversity A Inclusion

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Forward Mid! Members

Members of Forward Mid are disabled volunteers, we all have the same vision and that is to see a fairer community in which we live.

Forward Mid has a work load from all parts of the Midlothian area from housing to access to parking to direct payments and sitting on Midlothian Councils meetings for disability issues

Forward Mid get invites to assist in the design of buildings to ensure they accessible, two of the projects have been influenced by Marlene Gill, the first was to assist Newbattle Abbey College adapt the building to allow wheelchair access, Newbattle abbey College was built around 1140 and is a listed building, the second was the accessibility of the Midlothian Community Hospital

Forward Mid are also asked to check public access buildings for details that have been missed, such as is the reception desk at the correct height, are the disabled toilets large enough for a wheelchair user, can a wheelchair user reach the facilities and get into and out of safely, when road works dig up pavements is there a way for a wheelchair user to get past.

Through the very nature of being disabled Forward Mid members cannot attend all the time owing to illnesses that take longer to recover from than usual, Disabled people wishing to see how we work are welcome to come along and talk to us and see what it is all about.

If you would like to learn more and wish to talk to someone before coming along to one of our meetings you will be made to feel welcome, Parents of disabled children are welcome also

Please phone Eric Johnstone on Telephone icon :0131-663-9471 or Email: email symbol Eric Johnstone to arrange the details

Eric Johnstone

Eric Johnstone development worker Age: 21 Plus VAT
Position:Development Worker.

My hope is to bring clear focus and direction to the work of MCCF and Forward Mid, to strengthen their membership and support these groups towards real achievement. Perhaps most important to listen to what individual people want the Forums to do / achieve.

My role is to support and develop Forward Mid in Midlothian, this is a group of individuals with a focus on issues of equality and equal rights for individuals affected by physical disability.

Jeff Adamson

Age: I am the same age as Blue Peter, Donny Osmond and Osama Bin Ladin answers on a postcard please.

Jeff Adamson ChairI have lived most of my life in Danderhall, Midlothian. Educated at Dalkeith High School I left to study at Edinburgh College of Art graduating in 1980. After a variety of jobs I began a career with Royal Mail spending most of my time working in Training & Development.

I have been happily married to my wife Elizabeth for 6 years and will be celebrating our 17th wedding anniversary this year (an old one I know but I couldn't resist).

In 1999 a sudden illness resulted in my paralysis. When I heard of a meeting to discuss the idea of an organisation,based in Midlothian which would “promote the voice of disabled people” I was intrigued enough to attend this meeting, which was to lead to the formation of Forward Mid.

For my sins I have been chairperson for most of the organisation’s life. Thankfully this as an easy job as those that attend our meetings are fairly civilised. The only raised voices being over who gets what piece of cake? I have received a lot of personal satisfaction as a member of Forward Mid and plan to continue to contribute to the organisation’s growth and success.

I would urge anyone who wants to help resolve the issues faced by disabled people in Midlothian to join us at future meetings.

Marlene Gill

Age: I am the same age as the National Health Service. Position: Active member interactive with Midlothian council

Marlene Gill Tireless worker I am one of the original members of the group before we had a name.

As a member of Forward Mid I attend meetings with Senior Officers from Health, Social Work and the Voluntary Sector where future plans and expectations for services to people with disabilities in Midlothian are agreed.

I am one of a number of the Formidable group who are in the process of devising a programme of Disability Awareness Training which will be offered to a range of agencies to assist staff to experience issues arising for people with disabilities. I hope to meet with staff from local schools colleges and businesses looking for ideas for improving access to their premises.

I Have meet with Jim Muirhead who is chair of Midlothian Council’s Equalities Committee and is keen to involve our group in the work of the committee. These developments are welcome and should prove to be of real benefit to those of us with disabilities.

I hope I am not as scary as I look in the photo!

Iain Tait Web Developer B.Eng (Web Technologies) Hons

Age: Same age as my tongue and a little older than my teeth.
Position:Newsletter editor and web designer.

Iain Tait Web DeveloperSince leaving school I have lived and worked all over the United Kingdom and have seen a lot of the world, I served in the Royal Navy for more than ten years and then became a taxi owner for twenty years. I am separated for the second time and have four children and four grand children.

I became disabled on July 15th 2002 .

I became a founder member of Forward Mid in 2005 and now take on the role of editing the newsletter, our web site is now responsive meaning you can view this on a Computer,Tablet, Smart Television or Mobile Phone. If you would like a website please contact me. Being part of Forward Mid lets me get out and meet people and explain to them what it is like to be in a wheelchair and how some people treat me as a patient and not a person. I have had a major operations and I and was able to walk short distances again but I got tired easily, the operation's success was short lived and I am now in a wheelchair permanently.

I believe that when I am home that I give my family the best and not what is left.

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