South London and Maudsley’s social media platforms

Just a reminder that the TWIG Ops blog, Facebook and Twitter accounts are closing at the end of the month. You will still be able to see the blog, but it won’t be updated from this date.

From 3/11 you will be able to find out what’s happening in mental health across Lambeth, Southwark, Lewisham and Croydon through a new website portal:

Please follow them and send them your news and views to share with others. Why not follow South London and Maudsley on Facebook? Visit

You can also follow SLaM on Twitter @MaudsleyNHS and Google Circles

Changes to rules for people in the WRAG group of ESA: effect on people working on the Involvement Register (supported permitted work)

Please see the attached letter to SLaM, sent today, on behalf of TWIG Ops.

SLaM WRAG ESA letter

SLaM UNISON staff strike on 30th November

Dear Service User Consultant colleagues,

Your SLaM staff colleagues are intending to take strike action on 30th November with other public sector workers across the UK, over government attacks on public sector pensions. This day of action is backed by the TUC, amongst others. This could possibly be the biggest strike in the UK since 1926 (when there was a General Strike).

This is just one more part of the resistance against the terrible ConDem cuts which of course include attacks on our incapacity and other benefits, with more to come, including a “review” of DLA already announced, as well as attacks on old age pensions which will affect us all. In Cameron’s words, I hope you would agree that in this respect, we (SLaM staff and service user consultants) are indeed “all in it together”.

There is no doubt that we are all faced with the impact of the cuts directed by the Coalition goverment to save money, having bailed out the banks’ irresposible actions with our money, and while continuing award huge contracts to ATOS (who are conducting the IR to ESA assessments) and other private companies working in the health service, many of whom have been major donors to the Conservative party.

We urge you to decline any work you are offered on 30th November, making it clear that you are “on strike” in support of your UNISON colleagues. Please also don’t cross any picket lines.

In solidarity,

D Rosier (Service User Consultant Co-Chair, TWIG Ops, personal capacity)

Vanessa Bray (Service User Consultant Vice Co-Chair, TWIG Ops, personal capacity)

Liz Dalton (SUC, Arts Strategy Project p/c)

Bridget Jones (SUC, Food Project, p/c)

Stefano Perera (SUC, SUITE & Psychosis SUAG, p/c)

Please feel free to add your name in support 🙂

TWIG Ops statement on the proposal to withdraw funding from the Southwark NW MAP Service User Group

TWIG Ops believes that CAG and central PPI budgets should be reserved for developmental and start up work, after which the costs should reasonably be borne by the relevant commissioning or using service unit. Only this way can we ever embed involvement into the work of the Trust.

Where business units have agreed a piece of work, we believe that they should not be allowed to cut the service without consultation with all affected parties, including those involved in the start up.

We note that the MAP CAG involvement budget is being used to underwrite the running of the Southwark NW MAP service user group (SUG) and do not support this arrangement although we are of course grateful for the pragmatic offer.

Southwark involvement budget (as was), put substantial funding and many staff hours into the set up, and we feel that the key service users and members of staff should be consulted about any possibility of withdrawing funding from the group.

We further note that the existing staff and Service User Consultant co-facilitators are both about to leave, for unrelated reasons.  It could be perceived that this has provided the opportunity to withdraw funding from the SUG, now that the two main drivers are leaving.

We note that the Southwark NW MAP SUG costs about £100 per month to run, and over 20 service users have been to the meetings, which they have said they found useful and helpful, as have staff.

Staff and service users from the group have been and remain engaged in some meaningful work to improve the NW “experience” for both staff and service users.

If the proposal remains that the service does not fund the project, we would like to request that the service users who attend the group should have the opportunity to look at the management accounts in order to suggest other places where £100 pcm could be saved.


D Rosier (Co-Chair, TWIG Ops, personal capacity)

Vanessa Bray (Vice-Chair, TWIG Ops, p/c)

Paul Ashton

Dolly Sen

Jason James

Sarah Nayler

Garry Ellison

Paul Paterson

Leslie Casimir

Bridget Pearce

Abisoye Rokosu

Jane White

Christine Khisa

Lorna McKenzie

Douglas Taylor

Tahar Hamadouche

Martin Saunders (Vice-Chair, TWIG Stategic)

Gerry Kelly

Nina Hallett

Gill Ashwood

Jean Cozens

Veronica Conte

If you support this statement, please add your name above or below: thank you

*UPDATE 5 September* Jo Kent, Deputy Director of the MAP CAG has confirmed that this post will continue to be funded.