Enabling Technology – Welcome to the Enabling Technology January 2019 Newsletter!

Welcome to the Enabling Technology January 2019 Newsletter!

Happy New Year! We wish all of our customers, old and new, a peaceful, healthy and successful 2019.

As always, we hope that you will find something of interest in our newsletter but if not, or if you have any comments or questions, just drop us a quick email and let us know. We’d be delighted to hear from you.
You can email us at: info@enablingtechnology.com or call on 01785 243111. Mark.


This month we take a look at:

Dates for your Diary

And finally..   If the links do not work, please view this newsletter in your browser.

Missing special needs support ‘a national scandal’
Thousands of children missing out on support for diagnosed special educational needs in England is a “national scandal”, Ofsted has said.  There are 2,060 children in 2018 who have education, health and care plans (EHCs) setting out their needs, but who receive no support at all.
Some parents said a child is only assessed when they are excluded.  Ofsted chief, Amanda Spielman, also raised the issue of children disappearing from education.

Ms Spielman says: “Too often, children who have been assessed still do not receive the services they need.”

Read the full article on the BBC website:



The Simplest Way to Read RNIB Overdrive – EasyReader
EasyReader & RNIB Overdrive make reading Talking Books easy and free!  There’s a new and much easier way to read audio books from RNIB OverDrive and the best news is that it’s a FREE app. EasyReader is available for iOS and Android and is fully accessible with VoiceOver and TalkBack.

Login to your RNIB OverDrive library via the EasyReader app, and you can browse and download books the straightforward way. Plus, if you like to use the RNIB’s Newsagent or Bookshare (popular in schools) services, they are also available through EasyReader.

EasyReader has been designed for readers with blindness, a visual impairment or dyslexia and offers access to millions of books and newspapers. Reading on your smartphone or tablet has never been so simple!

RNIB Overdrive link: https://www.rnib.org.uk/talking-books-digital-download

Dolphin EasyReader link: https://yourdolphin.com/en-gb/products/individuals/easyreader-app

‘Next Stage’ launches to empower deaf and disabled artists in the music industry
The charity Attitude Is Everything have launched the ‘Next Stage’ initiative, which starts with a survey.

The accessibility project aims to empower deaf and disabled artists in the music industry. It aspires to change the conversation about music artists with disabilities, impairments and health conditions, by celebrating their skills and removing their barriers to creativity and progression.  The project starts with a survey. This seeks to build awareness on how to improve access to venues and recording studios, create opportunities and identify attitudes across the music industry.

“We have spent almost 20 years working for disabled audiences and now, with support from Arts Council England, we want to improve accessibility for disabled artists. This process will not be easy. The challenges facing deaf and disabled people are often hidden, and rarely discussed publicly. There are a range of stigmas and sensibilities. So our first goal is to collect information through a comprehensive and wide-reaching survey. By paying attention to artists’ voices, I believe we can build a thriving network of talent that will enhance British music and benefit all in the wider music community.” – Suzanne Ball, Attitude Is Everything CEO.

The survey is open to musicians and artists who meet the following criteria:

  • Produce their own music and aim to progress their musical career
  • Identify as a Deaf or disabled person, or have a health condition or impairment that impacts their daily life.

If this is you, click here to complete the survey. Next Stage also aims to boost talent development and make the music industry more accessible, by developing an artist network so artists with access requirements can connect, showcase and start funding opportunities. https://www.britishdeafnews.co.uk/next-stage-launches-to-empower-deaf-and-disabled-artists-in-the-music-industry/

Government releases new guide about what PIP means for carers
A new guide, released by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), explains how Personal Independence Payment (PIP) affects carers.

PIP began replacing the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) in April 2013 for disabled people aged 16 to 64.

Entitled ‘What PIP means for carers,’ the guide discusses Carer’s Allowance and Carer’s Credit.

The document explains that the ‘daily living’ component of PIP – both the standard and enhanced rate – is a qualifying benefit for Carer’s Allowance and Carer’s Credit.

For people providing at least 35 hours of care a week to someone who claims, or is going to claim, the independent living component of PIP, they might be eligible to claim Carer’s Allowance (provided they meet the other qualifying criteria).

The Government states that carers should not claim this allowance until the person they care for is awarded the daily living component. However, it emphasises that people need to claim Carer’s Allowance within three months of the PIP decision being made, else they could lose benefit.


Fresh Motability criticism after watchdog’s report


The company that runs the Motability car scheme and the charity that oversees its work are facing fresh criticism from disabled campaigners, following a watchdog’s report that criticises the company’s huge financial reserves and excessive profits and executive pay.
The National Audit Office (NAO) report concludes that the Motability scheme has delivered “excellent service” and “remarkable satisfaction levels” (99 per cent in 2017-18) among its more than 600,000 customers.  But it also says that the scheme has generated “substantial cash surpluses”, while Motability Operations – the company that runs the scheme – has failed to disclose more than £1.5 million in bonuses that were due to be paid to its chief executive, Mike Betts.


Read the full article on the Disability News Service website:


Read&Write – Improve reading and writing confidence
Read&Write lets everyone read, write and express themselves more confidently.  The easy-to-use toolbar makes documents, files and web pages more accessible. Read&Write is a big confidence booster for anyone who needs a little support with their reading and writing, at school or in the workplace. And its friendly literacy features help English Language Learners, as well as people with learning difficulties or requiring dyslexia tools.

From hearing emails or documents read out loud to text prediction, picture dictionaries, summary highlighters and a grammar, spelling and confusable words checker, Read&Write makes lots of everyday literacy tasks simpler, quicker and more accurate.

Read&Write is licensed on a subscription basis. Individual and site licenses are available for school, college, home or in the workplace. For more information and pricing, please contact us on 01785 243111, or email us at; info@enablingtechnology.com



Don’t forget - we have a huge range of assistive hardware and software available to buy online at very competitive pricing on our website. We offer free trials for most of our software, and also the services of our professional, friendly and highly experienced fully DBS checked assistive technology trainers. We also offerWorkplace Strategy Trainingwhich is highly effective in increasing productivity, particularly for Access to Work clients. http://enablingtechnology.com
Dates for your Diary… 

BETT 2019 23-26 January 2019 at ExCeL London. Discover innovative education technology, see practical solutions, share experiences and learn from industry experts at the world’s biggest education technology event. https://www.bettshow.com/
Disability conference 2019 by Hope Alive Church Date and Time: Sat 26 January 2019 11:00 – 16:00 GMT Location: Willow Dene School, Swingate Lane, Royal Borough of Greenwich SE18 2JD Description: Registration is now open for disability conference 2019. It will bring together disability leaders, ministers, parents and children to share experience and teach how to practically and effectively promote disability ministry in the Christian community. The day will involve workshops and interactive sessions. Cost is free. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/disability-conference-2019-tickets-50714914675
Physical Activity and Mental Health in Young People – Making the Connection by Sport Across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. Date and Time: Wed 13 February 2019 09:30 – 12:30 GMT Location: Entrust, Riverway, Stafford ST16 3TH Description: Physical Activity and Mental Health in Young People – Making the Connection The Local Organising Committee for the Staffordshire School Games would like to invite you to an event that will explore the relationship between physical activity levels in young people and the positive effects that this can have on their mental health and offer some practical ways that we can use physical activity to influence this increasingly important agenda. Cost is free. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/physical-activity-and-mental-health-in-young-people-making-the-connection-tickets-53646683675



And finally…Aye-aye! what have we here? Well, it’s a time-lapse video of someone drawing an eye. We thought it was good enough to share here:


See you next month!

Please follow the link for more information – https://mailchi.mp/enablingtechnology.com/enabling-technology-newsletter-may-3382985?e=4bda97b2c0
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