While I thank you all very much, service users, staff and the third sector, for your emails to SLaM, it seems pretty clear that the Trust has no intention of listening to you.
I’m finding it too stressful continuing and feeling like a sitting duck, so we’re closing the blog now, so this will be the last post. This means that I no longer have to deal with the Trust re the blog, rather than continuing until the 8th September, as previously notified.
I had previously asked Bridget and Matthew if they wanted to say anything to you, so if they do, I will post this by 8th September. If they do I will then repost this so that it remains at the top.
To continue the blog we need £5000 each year, from an organisation that can pay me PAYE. To continue to run our other Social Media we need £4000, subject to the same conditions. We very much hope that funding will be offered in the future, as we all passionately believe in the work that we do :-).
If you have any offers to make, or if you wish to explore this further, please email me at email@example.com.
You can see the history of this via the following links:
I have been given a very small amount of funding until the end of October and will be using this time / £ to reply to people who send us things to post by emailing them this post; advising them that for now we are closed, so to take us off their mailing lists; and advising them that if they subscribe to the blog then they will hear if it is subsequently reactivated, at which point we can take postings again.
Here are some of the emails we’ve been copied into recently, asking for reconsideration about the future of the blog:
It seems that most people who have written in since we asked last month have not / are not being responded to; however, in one that was responded to, The Trust specifically mentioned that they would be working with Bridget and Matthew, who run our other social media, so we can only assume from this that they do not intend to be working with me / the blog:
“We are looking at new plans for communicating the work of those on the involvement register, and how we can support service users more widely, to forge their own networks and engage with staff SLaM. Social media is as you say a very important tool. I am working with those who run the Twitter site and the Facebook page for TWIG Ops to look at how best we can take things forward.”
This is despite them earlier giving me this assurance: “Hi D. Matthew and Bridget both contacted me after our last meeting to say that they would be happy to help out between now and September if needed. More than happy to seek your views too if you would like to offer them.”
Last year we were told that our social media was specifically excluded from the Review of Involvement, but now this review is being quoted by the Trust, where there is no reference to us:
“These developments are part of a wider review of the involvement register. The Board paper (reviewed and approved by the Board on 27 May) is here if you need more information: http://www.slam.nhs.uk/media/266270/May%202014.pdf.”
Next they told us to change our blog address, which they knew was impossible:
“If you have decided to keep the site inactive (rather than shutting it down) then you will need to make sure you use the time to remove all associations to (and mentions of) South London and Maudsley / SLaM / SLaMTWIGOPs from the blog. This includes the domain name for the blog which reads as: slamtwigops”
and then quickly backtracked:
“To explain, there is no pressure for the TWIGOPs blog site to be removed or deleted. Those running the blog may decide to continue it if they choose to. My request was that the blog site (which is now named ‘South London Involvement Forum’) change its WordPress domain address from the old SLaM one, to match its new name, given that SLaM will not be paying for the blog to run.
Thank you again for making this such a wonderful resource for the last 3 and a half years! It’s been a complete joy to be working with you all, spreading the word 🙂
With very best wishes,
I received these today and am posting the draft minutes of the final TWIG Ops meeting FYI.
Dear All TWIG Op members, back in October 2013 I wrote to you inviting you to an event in November about the proposed changes to the Involvement Register and to the Trust wide Involvement group for Operations. As you will remember that TWIG Ops was dissolved following the last meeting in October 2013 and as you know we are about hoping to embark on new involvement and patient experience journey. I hope that we can continue to work in partnership. I wish you all the best and hope to see you at some stage in the future.
Strategic Lead for Patient and Public Involvement
Posted here at Ray’s request
SLaM TWIG Ops Committee was disbanded in December 2013, and since then we have been chasing SLaM to give us the minutes of the last meeting and a statement regarding it’s closing, to share with you and the TWIG Ops Committee. As soon as we have this we will post it.
SLaM have also announced a review of all of our SLaMTWIGOps media presences which they fund, i.e. the blog, Facebook and Twitter, and this has prompted us to begin another review of these things ourselves.
The first change we have made is a new working title, which we hope more accurately reflects what we do. In due course we will be asking for your ideas on what we should be called :-).
We will keep you in the loop about the discussions we will be having, which will be lead by SLaM’s Head of Communications. At key points in these discussions, we will be asking for your views, and we very much hope you will get involved so that we can continue to do the best possible job for our subscribers and visitors, across all our media platforms.
If you have any thoughts now, we’d be very grateful if you could add them as comments to this post.
The blog is used by many health and third sector organisations, to make contact with service users and carers in South London. Twitter and Facebook have followers and friends across the Country.
Our media platforms belong to you, the people who use them, and we need your input to try to ensure that funding stays in place to provide these forums for everyone who wishes to be involved, and that we can continue to have a degree of independence from the Trust, as the key to our presences is that they are run by service users and carers, for service users and carers.
Abi, Bridget, D and Matthew