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is this discrimination?

(47 Posts)
adviseneededasap Thu 19-Oct-17 19:10:05

I have NC for this as the situation is very outing! But I would like opinions as DH thinks I'm opening a can of worms!

We have had issues with DS2's SN transport this year. Previously he always had his transport to/from grandparents to ensure he had the care he needs as we both work. This year the CC decided this should have never happened and can not happen. (his grandparents live 1.4 mile away and on route to his FE...) We have done the 2 appeals and apparently "the request for an alternative address due to work commitments as an exceptional circumstance can not be considered as many parents have similar issues and will be expected to make their own arrangements".

We are doing the 'sad face' thing for the local paper, contacted the MP , informed SS that we need care BUT I'm thinking that this is actual discrimination as a 'NT' child can access childminders, care clubs etc whilst quite often this is not the case for a SEND child, especially one who is now classed as an adult - does this not discriminate as NT children can access other forms of care, but this policy means that SEND children must be cared for at home?

CotswoldStrife Thu 19-Oct-17 19:12:35

Can the grandparents go to your house to care for him there?

TidyDancer Thu 19-Oct-17 19:14:56

Have you looked to see if childcare would be available? If it genuinely isn’t I would see if grandparents could come to you maybe.

adviseneededasap Thu 19-Oct-17 19:15:54

I can't ask that of them - they have provided his care for 13 years free of charge; his GM works (ironically as a guide on SN transport!) it is mainly his GF that cares for him, why should he be expected to drive to my house, stay in my home for 3 hours a day to provide free care? It will cost him petrol/taxi to get to our house.

We can't 'change DS2's address' as PIL live just over the border in a different LA...

kaytee87 Thu 19-Oct-17 19:16:48

I would ask gparents to come to you if possible. I don’t think it’s discrimination as parents of NT children have to organise transport to their childcare iyswim? Are you not able to drop him off if gparents can’t come to you?
I sympathise as you’ve had the rug pulled out from under you.

TidyDancer Thu 19-Oct-17 19:16:57

Oh sorry, just seen that your DS is an adult. Have you looked into the possibility of care for him by anyone other than grandparents?

MancLife Thu 19-Oct-17 19:17:11

Discrimination on what grounds?

adviseneededasap Thu 19-Oct-17 19:17:24

but my main issue is no one would expect care for a NT child to be in their own home; they can access a range of providers etc, the CC are expecting his before/after FE care to be in the home

manicinsomniac Thu 19-Oct-17 19:18:31

I'm not sure - I think a better case for discrimination would be that your child cannot access the after school club? That seems far more wrong than applying blanket transport rules to me. But I'm no expert - your claim might well be uphold-able.

kaytee87 Thu 19-Oct-17 19:19:26

Crosspost. I think the LA only really have to try and level the playing field and as other parents have to provide transport to their childcare of choice they will see it as not their role.
I could be wrong though, someone with more knowledge than me will come along. Could you use your attendants allowance, if you get it, to pay for gf fuel?

adviseneededasap Thu 19-Oct-17 19:19:58

we have looked into the possibility - SS have been running his assessment and looking at providers since the end of September - but the question I am asking is would anyone expect a NT child be cared for before/after school in their own home or would it be anticipated that working parents need outside care at a different address than home

shaggedthruahedgebackwards Thu 19-Oct-17 19:20:08

I wonder if the argument is that if you are able to transport him to and from grandparents every day without transport being provided then why does he need transport provided for the remainder of the journey?

adviseneededasap Thu 19-Oct-17 19:22:18

I wonder if the argument is that if you are able to transport him to and from grandparents every day without transport being provided then why does he need transport provided for the remainder of the journey?

as his Special School does not have a before/after club then dropping him off at 7am is not an option

his grandparents are a mile away, his taxi has to pass their street to go to his college!

SmilingButClueless Thu 19-Oct-17 19:29:17

I'm not sure it's fair to compare the situation to that of a child with no SEN being able to accesss a variety of settings, given you say your son is legally an adult? You wouldn't expect an 18 year old to be able to access the same facilities as, say, a 5 year old, regardless of SEN.

Obviously, an 18 year old with no SEN would be expected to find their own transport and wouldn't need care. So i suspect the council are using other people in exactly the same position as the comparator i.e. young adults with SEN, and their parents may also have work commitments.

Appreciate it makes life more difficult for you flowers, but I'm not sure I see the discrimination here.

Anotherdayanotherdollar Thu 19-Oct-17 19:29:39

I'm not sure you would have grounds for appeal if comparing to an "nt child", and their accessibility to childcare services, when you're looking for childcare for someone classed as an adult.
His nt college peers will equally not have access to after-school club etc

adviseneededasap Thu 19-Oct-17 19:29:57

luckily for us our employers have been very accommodating so far, but this can't continue. But my question remains - you would not expect a NT child to have care before/after school if the parents work at home so why are SEND children expected to have this?

Anotherdayanotherdollar Thu 19-Oct-17 19:30:40

Sorry, crossed posts with smiling!!

Thistledew Thu 19-Oct-17 19:32:40

I would think that it is worth speaking to a solicitor who specialises in discrimination/disability rights. It does seem to be a restriction on his/your ability to take advantage of a provision to which he is entitled, and it may well be discriminatory for the reasons you say - i.e. Limiting the options for after school care and also potentially interfering with his right to a family life with his grandparents. It's not a clear cut case but I would think it would be worth exploring further, particularly as you say that the journey to the grandparents would in fact be a shorter one than the one which they are prepared to provide. It makes no sense, so is worth challenging.

kaytee87 Thu 19-Oct-17 19:32:54

I don’t think it is discrimination, it must feel unfair and petty though.
It actually gets harder as SEN children grow up as you lose facilities they have as a child. My BIL is in his late 20s with SN and if MIL didn’t have us for help I’m not sure she’d cope.

Cokeis Thu 19-Oct-17 19:33:32

School transport in my LEA won’t transport SEN kids to and from grandparents the pick up and drop off has to be at their home address. They don’t transport NT kids to grandparents either.

I don’t see how you can appeal other wise anyone could ask for transport to any address and that’s open to abuse. Hence it being to an from home address

adviseneededasap Thu 19-Oct-17 19:33:55

*I'm not sure you would have grounds for appeal if comparing to an "nt child", and their accessibility to childcare services, when you're looking for childcare for someone classed as an adult.
His nt college peers will equally not have access to after-school club etc*

apparently though this is their overall policy for any age - it was a not authorised when he transported to/from grandparents (so not sure how this happened for 9 years....)

TabbyMumz Thu 19-Oct-17 19:35:35

Sorry, but what does nt child stand for? I'm guess non xxxxxx? You mentioned your pils live over the border in a different county, so perhaps that has something to do with it too?

kaytee87 Thu 19-Oct-17 19:36:55

neurotypical

TabbyMumz Thu 19-Oct-17 19:37:00

If your pils live a mile away from school, can they not take him in their car?

TabbyMumz Thu 19-Oct-17 19:39:19

To be fair, if that's the rules for everyone, you have been lucky to have this transport from a different location for nine years?

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