As the parent of an autistic child, (as many of you can relate) I've been round the block a good few times trying to secure, change and keep hold of resources for my child. The whole system in the UK really is a minefield and I've found that from the moment you get your diagnosis (whatever that may be) you are metaphorically thrown in at the deep end and forced to either sink or swim. Most of us, thankfully, manage to somehow keep our heads above water and then you hear about the unfortunate few who don't.

After years of being vocal about how the system in the UK is letting down families of disabled individuals and the child or adult themselves, and after submitting a complex complaint to the PHSO (which was upheld), I have been selected as 1 of 9 people in the whole of the UK to participate in a PHSO Service Charter Project as a member of the customer panel. More information available here: http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/

The PHSO (Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman) investigates complaints when individuals in the UK have been unfairly or poorly treated by government departments, public organisations and the NHS in England. They are currently working to modernise their system to better meet the expectations of it's end users (i.e. you and me).

It really is an honour to have the opportunity to be actively involved in the future changes of this vital system, but this is now where I need your help!

I attend my first meeting on 19th December (in 11 days times) and I would love to bring to the table, many more voices than just my own as this issue is just so much bigger than just the story of one family.

Please add your stories, voices, and comments about your experiences with govenment departments and the NHS, both good and bad. I have a special interest in the journey's of families and individuals with special needs but all comments are welcome and I can assure you all that I will do all I can to highlight the major issues being addressed.

Please keep your information concise with (preferably) bullet points of the major issues you or your loved ones have experienced. Most importantly, please let me know of the outcomes, whether or not your complained and how this has affected you or your family. Please share this post, the more voices heard, the better!

I can be contacted via social media, my website, or my email address.

Thank you and best wishes to you all.

Tahira Bartolo



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