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 New mental health strategy for York being discussed next week

Members of York’s Health and Wellbeing board will comment on York’s mental health strategy when they meet on Wednesday 24 January.

A newly formed mental health partnership will lead and co-ordinate the delivery of the final strategy which has the vision that ‘every single resident enjoys the best possible emotional and mental health and wellbeing throughout the course of their life’.

The report highlights that people with mental health conditions have a lower life expectancy and poorer physical health outcomes than those that do not.

The main focus of the strategy is to get better at spotting the early signs of mental ill health and to intervene earlier.

The other priorities are to:

  •          focus on recovery and rehabilitation
  •          improve services for mothers, children and young people
  •      ensure that York becomes a suicide safer city
  •        ensure that York is both a mental health and dementia friendly environment
  •     improve services for those with learning disabilities.

The strategy expands on the joint health and wellbeing strategy 2017-2022, of which mental health is a key priority.

Councillor Carol Runciman, Chair of the York Health and Wellbeing Board said: “This five year strategy looks to ensure that every resident in York enjoys the best possible health and wellbeing and will see us establish a city wide mental health partnership to improve mental health and wellbeing for people of all ages.

“Positive mental health and wellbeing is a key priority of the board. We want York to have services that support people in need without delay where there is no stigma and discrimination and where everyone has the best mental and emotional wellbeing. Working with partners across the city this strategy will help us to achieve this.”

The Health and Wellbeing Board meeting takes place on Wednesday 24 January from 4.30pm and is open to members of the public or is available to watch live online from: www.york.gov.uk/webcasts

To find out more about the report, or to attend, visit: http://democracy.york.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=763&MId=10242

Plans for Centre of Excellence for Disabled Children revealed.

Ascot Way proposals generally welcomed

The plans to establish a new centre for disabled children on the former Windsor House site on Ascot Way were generally welcomed at a public meeting held on Monday. The plans will now be discussed at a Council Executive meeting next week

The Council says that the new building will be the setting for a range of support services which will enable disabled children to remain in their families and in their community, delivered from a safe, accessible space

  • Flexible short break provision to meet the needs of children and young people with Autism, Learning Disabilities and/or additional health needs.
  • Family Intervention Rapid Support Team (FIRST) and Therapeutic Short Breaks a specialist Clinical Psychology led intensive assessment and intervention service for families with children and young people who have Autism and Learning Disability and challenging behaviour which affects their ability to live in the local community

The facility will be linked to Hob Moor Oaks special school. Disabled children will be able to walk to the new provision after school, instead of being transported across the city on minibuses. Part of the playing field of the school will be used for the project.

The buildig will replace the facilities currently provided at The Glen.

The scheme is imaginative and worthy of support. However, the proposal to retain the front entrance (and therefore vehicular access) via Ascot Way is controversial. There are already congestion and parking problems in the area. An access, with car parking,  via Hob Moor school would address this issue, while offering the opportunity to provide better accessibility for Lincoln Court.

The detailed plans also suggest that an outdoor play area be provided adjacent to Lincoln Court. While many older people like to feel involved in the local community, inevitably playgrounds can be noisy places. We think that the location of this part of the facility should be reconsidered.

Residents will hope that any building work on the project will not take place at the same time as the threatened development of the Newbury Avenue garage site.

Illustrations of what is proposed are reproduced below

Lendal Arch junction upgrade to start on Sunday

 

Major congestion fears

City of York Council is reminding residents, businesses and visitors that work to upgrade the traffic signals at the Lendal Arch gyratory will start on Sunday 21 January.

Lendal Arch gyratory includes the junctions of Station Road, Station Avenue, Station Rise, Rougier Street and Lendal Bridge.

Due to the location and nature of these works, motorists should expect significant disruption. Whilst everything reasonably possible is being done to keep this disruption to a minimum, motorists should expect delays. We are advising motorists that regularly travel through this location to plan an alternative route where possible.

To help the junction function better there will be a full renewal of the traffic signal equipment. Changes will also be made to the pedestrian crossing facilities, including widening and realigning the crossing to make the area safer and better for the thousands of pedestrians who regularly use the crossing.

The pavement in the area will also be brought up to date and widened. Following this work the junction will be resurfaced.
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Haxby Hall care home to be privatised

Councillors will consider the future of Haxby Hall older persons’ home when they meet on Thursday 25 January.

Following a consultation with residents, relatives and staff at Haxby Hall, the council’s Executive will be asked to note the feedback and make a decision on whether to transfer ownership and management of the care home to an independent sector provider, with the aim of securing its future and providing modern, improved facilities.

If the transfer of Haxby Hall is agreed councillors will also be asked to:

  •      Agree to procure a developer to take over Haxby Hall as a going concern with a commitment to delivering improved care facilities on the site.
  •      To dispose of the site of the care home in return for a capital receipt which will reinvested as part of the Older Persons’ Accommodation Programme.
  •      To procure a contract that will allow the council to purchase a specified number of beds at an agreeable rate.

In December 2016, Executive agreed to consult with residents, relatives and families on the option to seek a partner to take over the 49 bed care home, with a commitment to delivering improved care facilities.
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Grants to help keep your home warmer this winter and beyond

As the cold weather continues to bite across the county, householders in York are being reminded that they can apply for up to 100%-funded grants to help insulate energy inefficient homes and reduce heating bills.

Funded by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority’s Tackling Fuel Poverty Programme, the scheme, which has been running since early 2017, will help pay for the cost of topping up existing loft insulation or installing new cavity wall insulation.

Householders struggling to heat their homes and earning less than £20,000 a year combined income, can apply for 100% funding while 75% grants are available for those households earning between £20,000 and £35,000.

Residents who think they may be eligible should call City of York Council on 019040 552300 or email betterhomes@york.gov.uk.

To qualify, homes should have suitable, un-insulated cavity walls or minimal loft insulation.

Have your say on our plans for new sports pitches at Tadcaster Road

Residents are being invited to have their say on plans to build eight new sports pitches on fields near Askham Bar.

The drop-in consultation event, which will take place between 4pm and 7pm at Askham Bar Park & Ride on Wednesday 24 January, will offer the chance for people to feedback on plans to build three 11-a-side pitches, two 9-a-side pitches and three 7-a-side pitches with relevant on-site facilities.

The event comes after the council’s executive in November agreed that officers should continue to work on plans for sports facilities on the land near the Ashfield estate.

Sensibly the Council has now stopped trying to link the new provision with the loss of football pitches at Lowfields 

This will help to provide much needed community sports facilities to the south and west area of York.

The council’s public heath team are also working with Bishopthorpe White Rose FC to prepare a club development plan that will help them thrive in the future and access grant funding.

The cost of these works will be funded from the Football Foundation, Bishopthorpe White Rose football club, local sponsorship and small grants, with the remainder from the capital programme agreed by City of York Council.
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More about candidates in Holgate by election

There is an increasing tendency for election candidates to announce themselves on social media, with their political party left to play “catch up” in the communications game. Last week a Labour activist announced that he would be the next Councillor for Holgate. Turned out that he had applied to be the candidate. Later he was turned down.

So, what do we know about the runners and riders?

Liberal Democrat

Candidate is local resident Emma Keef who lives in Clive Grove. Has been involved with local groups like the Friends of Hob Moor and the Friends of St Paul’s Primary School. Is a Trustee for York’s Special Care Baby Unit.  Works for a local Charity. Married with two children. Formerly a helper at the local children’s centre. Has lived in the area for over 10 years. The LibDem campaign got off to a slow start, but they are the only party to have beaten Labour in this seat since local government reorganisation, so they have a chance.

Labour

Had a false start when one “George Norman”, a Momentum activist, declared last week that he would be the next Councillor for Holgate. Apparently, he hadn’t told anyone else and was promptly unseated by a Kallum Wilson. Wilson is a former Student Leader at York Uni and very much in the James Alexander mould. He has a lot to do to retain the seat following disclosures about lack of activity by the present Labour Councillors (who failed to post a single update on their web page between April 2015 and January 2018). He works for JRHT in housing. Main claim to fame seems to be his connection with Poppleton FC.  Kallum Wilson claims to live in the ward, but it is unclear where. Possibly another instance of Maskell syndrome – buy/rent a local property a few days before you seek election?

Tory

The Conservative candidate is expected to be Joao Rei Villar a Portuguese national who has lived in York since 2011. He moved into the Holgate ward in the summer of 2016 after which he tweeted that he was the Holgate Tory spokesman. EU nationals are currently eligible to vote, and stand for election, in Council elections in the UK. The York Council already has one EU national amongst its membership (a Green Party Councillor in the Micklegate ward). Joao Rei Villar seems to be a colourful character having formerly been a CDU Councillor in Lisbon. He is also a qualified anti-aircraft gunner which could come in handy if Teresa May starts “claiming back our borders”. Which side of the border Joao will be on come 2019 remains to be seen. By profession he is a script writer and had a minor part in last years Mystery Plays.

The by election takes place on Thursday 15th February.  Nominations must be submitted by Friday.

Residents who are not currently registered to vote are encouraged to go visit www.gov.uk/register-to-vote. All applications must be made by Tuesday 30 January 2018.

Residents who wish to arrange a postal vote can find further information at www.york.gov.uk or by contacting Electoral Services on 01904 551007 or electoral.services@york.gov.uk.

Completed applications for a postal vote must be received by 5pm on Wednesday 31 January 2018. Postal votes will be sent out first class from Thursday 1 February 2018.

What’s on in York: Discussion about the use of plastics tonight (Wednesday)

 Local residents are being invited to an informal ‘mingle’ event to find out more about how to tackle plastic pollution and recycling plastics in York tomorrow evening (Wednesday 17 January).

Organised by One Planet York- a network of organisations working to make York a more sustainable, resilient and collaborative ‘One Planet’ city – the free event will be held at FortyFive Vinyl Cafe, 29 Micklegate between 7pm and 9pm.

Organisations, including Planet South Bank, will be sharing tips and hints at the informal event.

For more information visit www.facebook.com/oneplanetyork

UPDATED Work completed on new bus lane. ANPR cameras on site

UPDATE 17/1/18 WE UNDERSTAND EXECUTIVE CLLR IAN GILLIES IS TO INTERVENE IN TH DISPUTED. WE UNDERSTAND THAT HE ACCEPTS THAT SOME PROVISION NEEDS TO BE MADE FOR MOPEDS NEEDING TO  ACCESS MILLFIELD LANE & LOW POPPLETON LANE. WE EXPECT SOME CHANGES, BUT NOT NECESSARILY BEFORE THE ANPR CAMERAS ARE SWITCHED ON. 

The new bus lane on Low Poppleton Lane/Millfield Lane is ready to be opened. It will be guarded by ANPR cameras which will automatically issue £90 fine notices to anyone driving through the “gate”, other than local bus services

The scheme has attracted criticism because of safety concerns. It emerged the decision was taken in early September without any public consultation.

The papers for the decision meeting don’t include the usual safety audit.

Most criticism has come from moped users who claim the new system will force them to use the busy A1237 northern by pass. That route involves the use of two multi lane roundabouts.

The Council have been alerted to the issue, but they claim that moped riders could dismount and push their bikes along the adjacent cycle lane. We think that there is little chance that most moped users will do that. Most will simply by-pass the gate by riding along the cycle track.

Anyone with concerns can email them to lowpoppletonlane.trial@york.gov.uk

In the meantime, a Freedom of Information request has been submitted to the Council asking it to publish the safety audit reports for the area together with accident, speed and volume figures

NB. Restrictions on Low Poppleton Lane were originally introduced following problems with sugar beet lorries short cutting through a street which included a school entrance. The sugar factory has long gone while the school has moved and now occupies a site on Millfield Lane