Change Vat Rules For Assistance Dogs

Recently there has been alot of talk about the fact that The Guide dogs for the blind association has to pay vat on its dog food. We as guide dog owners do not have to pay for our dog food which i hope never changes. I am so greatful that it is all paid for and that we are so lucky. There are alot of changes taking place at Guide dogs and i hope the fact that we do get our food and vet bills paid for never changes. If i had a choice though i would rather pay for my food as that would be the one amount each time.

Currently guide dogs are not classed as working dogs but grey hounds are. I think this is disgusting. Anyway a scotish MP has set up a
Petition
To try and send to the government. It has already got over a thousand signatures, but needs 100,000 to be considered by Parliament. I would really appreciate it if you could all sign and share this in any way you can.

Guide dogs have to pay £300,000 each year on vat for their dogs. Considering it costs £50,000 for the lifetime of each dog, that money could be used to fund at least 6 more partnerships. Our association doesn’t get any government funding at all.

Here is a news article about the
Vat on dog food
from the guide dogs website.

So please can you get as many people as possible to sign this petition. I’ve been posting this alot on twitter recently too. It is very important. There was even a guide dog owner in Scotland who had a day where they just tried to get people to sign the petition. I am considering asking our branch organiser if we can have a similar day! I don’t know if we would be allowed though.

I know i am not doing much, and sorry if this annoys you, but it is a very important topic and guide dogs like any charity are struggling at the minute because of the recession. I always thank anyone who donates even just a little when i am fundraising.

So don’t just read the petition, do sign and share it. It only takes a few seconds, although there is a capcha on it.

Thank you all and sorry this post is a bit rambly and all over the place.


Stop Sopa Ireland

Recently there was a law that was possibly going to be passed called the “stop online piracy act” or Sopa for short. There was one called Pippa too. These laws would have major affects on everything online like
Youtube,
Facebook,
And
Twitter

Alot of sites went black for a day and Wikipedia would not let you search for anything in protest. Everyone thought that that had stopped the acts from happening as they were being “postponed”. But i read an article saying that
Sopa and Pippa are still there, along with a new act
That could be passed.

I tried to sign the Sopa petitions, but since they were american you had to be living in America to sign it. I did find something to sign but it did take alot of searching.

The minister in The south of Ireland has decided to have irelands own version of Sopa now. There is a very easy petition
That you can sign
To stop this happening. There is even a toolbar you can download if you have a
WordPress
Blog. I’m not sure if there is one for Blogger yet though.

Digital Darragh
Has written a
Great post
On why this petition should be signed. I don’t even know if people outside of ireland can sign this but i presume they can.

Let’s hope we can stop this too. I reckon the government are probably downloading things too, so i don’t think it’s right they want the likes of even Twitter to stop. That’s just my thoughts though.

Oh PS sorry i haven’t blogged in a while but i don’t think i’ve got anything new at the moment to blog about. I hope to get back into it soon though.


A Petition And A Statement

A couple of days ago, I posted about
The Twitter Campaigne
That was started by a young guide dog owners mother after her daughter was discriminated against by her school. The Twitter campaigne is still ongoing.

Since then, the girls mother has set up a
Petition
To stop this happening again to any other guide dog owner. It has got over 500 signatures already and it was only set up on Tuesday! Sorry for you all seeing this on twitter already, but i think everyone who can should sign this.

The mother has contacted various radio stations etc, and ironically as soon as she contacted the media, the principle of the school,
Released this statement
Which to start with had the guide dog owners name in it, but that has since been removed. It does sound convincing if you hadn’t followed the story, but it just seems weird that it keeps changing. It also just seems rather weird that as soon as the mother goes to the media, this statement is released.

I think in this day and age this should not be happening to be honest. Especially as there will probably be more and more younger guide dog owners around since guide dogs dropped the lower age limmit from 16 to nothing back about a year or two ago.

In comparison, here is an article about
Another young guide dog owner
Who has had a much more positive experience at school.

I really hope that something can be done, and that the girl can continue her studdies pritty soon. She is doing lots of exams so it is a pritty important year for her!

Please feel free to sign the petition. It shouldn’t still be happening!


Save The Bees!

I wouldn’t normally post this sort of stuff, but I got this in an email and thought i’d post it. Remember to sign the petition!

Save the bees: 1 million by Friday
Petition exploding, almost 1 million — delivery to key international meeting on Friday. Forward to friends!

Dear friends,

Bees are dying off worldwide and our entire food chain is in peril. Scientists blame toxic pesticides and four European governments have already banned them. If we get the US and the EU to join the ban, other governments across the world could follow, and save bees from extinction. Sign the petition and forward this urgent appeal:

Silently, billions of bees are dying off and our entire food chain is in danger. Bees don’t just make honey, they are a giant, humble workforce, pollinating 90% of the plants we grow.

Multiple scientific studies blame one group of toxic pesticides for their rapid demise, and bee populations are recovering in countries where these products have been banned. But powerful chemical companies are lobbying hard to keep selling these poisons. Our best chance to save bees now is to push the US and EU to join the ban — their action is critical and will have a ripple effect on the rest of the world.

We have no time to lose — the debate is raging about what to do. This is not just about saving bees, this is about survival. Let’s build a giant global buzz calling for the EU and US to outlaw these killer chemicals and save our bees and our food. Sign the emergency petition now, and send it on to everyone and we’ll deliver it to key decision makers:

https://secure.avaaz.org/en/save_the_bees/?vl

Bees are vital to life on earth — every year pollinating plants and crops with an estimated $40bn value, over one third of the food supply in many countries. Without immediate action to save bees many of our favourite fruits, vegetables, and nuts could vanish from our shelves.

Recent years have seen a steep and disturbing global decline in bee populations — some bee species are already extinct and last week we learned that some US species are at just 4% of their previous numbers. Scientists have been scrambling for answers. Some studies claim the decline may be due to a combination of factors including disease, habitat loss and toxic chemicals. But increasingly independent research has produced strong evidence blaming neonicotinoid pesticides. France, Italy, Slovenia and even Germany, where the main manufacturer Bayer is based, have banned one of these bee killers. But, Bayer continues to export its poison across the world

This issue is now coming to the boil as major new studies have confirmed the scale of this problem. If we can get European and US decision-makers to take action, others will follow. It won’t be easy. A leaked document shows that the US Environmental Protection Agency knew about the pesticide’s dangers, but ignored them. The document says Bayer’s “highly toxic” product is a “major risk concern to non target insects [honey bees]”.

We need to make our voices heard to counter Bayer’s very strong influence on policy makers and scientists in both the US and the EU where they fund the studies and sit on policy bodies. The real experts — the beekeepers and farmers — want these deadly pesticides prohibited until and unless we have solid, independent studies that show they are safe. Let’s support them now. Sign the petition below, then forward this email:

https://secure.avaaz.org/en/save_the_bees/?vl

We can no longer leave our delicate food chain in the hands of research run by the chemical companies and the regulators that are in their pockets. Banning this pesticide will move us closer to a world safe for ourselves and the other species we care about and depend on.

With hope,

Alex, Alice, Iain, David and all at Avaaz

MORE INFORMATION

Bee decline could be down to chemical cocktail interfering with brains
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/jun/22/chemicals-bees-decline-major-study?INTCMP=SRCH

Bee briefing
http://www.soilassociation.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=RXLEm9WXrHk%3D&tabid=439

$15 Billion Bee Murder Mystery Deepens
http://www.businessinsider.com/colony-collapse-disorder-still-unsolved-lead-researcher-had-connections-to-bayer-2010-10

“Nicotine Bees” Population Restored With Neonicotinoids Ban
http://www.treehugger.com/files/2010/05/nicotine-bees-population-restored-with-neonicotinoids-ban.php

EPA memo reveals concern that pesticide causes bee deaths
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/green/detail?entry_id=79910

Beekeepers want government to pull pesticide
http://www.palmbeachpost.com/money/beekeepers-want-government-to-pull-pesticide-1107701.html

Bees in freefall as study shows sharp US decline
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/jan/03/bumblebees-study-us-decline?INTCMP=SRCH

Pesticide industry involvement in EU risk assessment puts survival of bees at stake
http://www.corporateeurope.org/agribusiness/news/2010/11/16/pesticide-industry-future-bees

Vanishing of Bees provide details on the EPA leaked documents
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_0Mrm9Y6khk

————–

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Avaaz.org is a 6.5-million-person global campaign network that works to ensure that the views and values of the world’s people shape global decision-making. (“Avaaz” means “voice” or “song” in many languages.) Avaaz members live in every nation of the world; our team is spread across 13 countries on 4 continents and operates in 14 languages. Learn about some of Avaaz’s biggest campaigns here, or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

To contact Avaaz, please do not reply to this email. Instead, write to us at http://www.avaaz.org/en/contact or call us at +1-888-922-8229 (US).


Campaigne For Blind And Partially Sighted People To Get The Higher Rate Of The Mobility Component Of DLA

I’m a bit….ashamed of these entries, bt want to publish the blog from the start. I’m glad my writing has matured over the years.

While reading the RNIB’S website a couple of months ago, I came across
This Link
This is a campaign to make blind and partially sighted people get the higher rate of the mobility component of DLA (disability living allowance).

A lot of you are probably wondering: what the hell is she on about? Let me explain…

There are 2 components to DLA: the care component (This is for people who need extra care, for example, people who cannot feed and dress themselves) and the mobility component (for people who have difficulty getting around). The care component has 3 rates: the higher rate (60 pounds per week),the middle rate (40 pounds per week) and the low rate (16 pounds per week). The mobility component only has 2 rates: the high rate (about 43 pounds per week) and the low rate (16 pounds per week).

Currently only people with physical disabilities like wheelchair users get the higher rate of mobility. The RNIB is trying to change this because blind and partially sighted people have to rely on taxies and people to take them everywhere.

LET’S CAMPAIGN TO CHANGE THIS. Sorry this is in capitals but i want to highlight it. I’m not shouting at anyone.

I’ve also created a petition about this. Please sign it. It’s at:
This Website

Let me know your comments about this issue. Do you think it is unfair that blind and partially sighted people don’t get the higher rate of mobility?? Do you not care? All views welcome!!!!!!