West Lancs Labour MP Rosie Cooper has added her support to a campaign by national children’s mobility charity Whizz-Kidz to improve the wheelchair services for disabled children and young people.
Rosie Cooper MP is writing to Central Lancashire Primary Care Trust to find out more about the wheelchair services they provide to disabled children and young people, and their plans for improvement as outlined in the Government’s recent review ‘Aiming High for Disabled Children’.
“This is an important campaign and it’s critical that we find out what steps local services are taking to provide the right wheelchair and ongoing support that growing disabled children and their parents rely on to enjoy a normal, family life.”
Chair of the charity’s ‘Kidz Board’, Jamie Green (14) added:
“This is about a lot more than a piece of equipment for me, it’s about being able to make decisions for myself about where I go, what I want to do and when."
“A heavy or uncomfortable wheelchair can mean you end up having to rely on other people to push you. Not ideal for a teenager who wants to go out with friends and start being more independent.”
“I want the Government to recognise that having the right kind of wheelchair is a basic human right, not something you should have to fight for."
There are 70,000 children across the UK who need a wheelchair to satisfy their basic right to a full and active childhood, and to develop the skills and confidence they need for the future, such as when they enter employment.
Whizz-Kidz is campaigning to ensure that the forthcoming reform of the NHS wheelchair service will meet the needs of young wheelchair users. It is calling on the Government and PCTs to allocate additional targeted funding to improve the quality of wheelchairs that are provided to children and young people and reduce the lengthy waiting times for essential mobility equipment.