Alzheimer’s Society

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Alzheimer’s Society is the UK’s leading dementia support and research charity for anyone affected by any form of dementia in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
 In a guest blog for Life Law NI,  Sam Cox, Knowledge Officer (Legal and Welfare Rights) for Alzheimer’s Society tells us about the work that Alzheimer’s Society do and how they can help you if you are dealing with dementia within your family.

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 Currently there are 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK and this is set to rise to 1 million by 2021. Dementia can happen to anyone, and currently there is no cure.

Receiving a diagnosis of dementia, or finding out about a relative or friend’s diagnosis can be difficult and upsetting.  It can be hard to know what to do next, or how to access any support or care that may be needed.

At Alzheimer’s Society, we are here for anyone affected by dementia. We provide information and advice to people as well as running services.  We also invest in different types of research and work on campaigning for change.

Information and advice

We are the first point of contact for anyone dealing with dementia. Through our website, factsheets and booklets, National Dementia Helpline and face-to-face services, we provide comprehensive, reliable and up-to-date information about dementia. This can be anything from information about Enduring Power of Attorney, to care home fees through to accessing a diagnosis.

We also operate a 24 hour online forum – Talking Point – whose members are people affected by dementia who offer support and advice to one another.

Care and Support

We have almost 3,000 local services across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, providing practical and emotional support for people with dementia and their carers.

These services include dementia advisers and support workers, dementia cafes, day and home support, befriending, carer support groups and Singing for the Brain groups.

Research

We also fund research that not only looks at finding a cure and the causes of dementia, but looks at best practices in care and how to prevent it.

The distinctive feature about our research is the integral involvement of people with dementia and their carers. This is as those with a direct experience of living with dementia inform our research priorities.

Campaigning

Alzheimer’s Society also campaigns for changes that improve all aspects of care and support for people affected by dementia.

You can find further information on the Alzheimer’s Society and the work they do on their website https://www.alzheimers.org.uk/
 

 

The National Living Wage : – Is Your Business Ready?

money2Most of us, (given the option,) would happily accept an increase in pay for the job we do!  

Well, on 1st April 2016, the new “National Living Wage” came into effect in Northern Ireland, making the dream of a pay increase for some workers a reality.

The implementation of the National Minimum Wage (Amendment) Regulations 2016 means that all workers aged 25 and over are now legally entitled to at least £7.20 per hour pay. 

Whilst this is great news for workers over 25, businesses now need to be prepared for how this change will impact on them. 
Here is some important information for you on the National Living Wage:-

What is the National Living Wage?

The National Living Wage is different to the “Living Wage” which is a voluntary hourly rate set at £8.25 which employers can choose to pay.  It also differs from the “National Minimum Wage” which technically remains in place for workers under 25.  The new “National Living Wage” is essentially a compulsory top-up for workers aged 25 and over.

As things stand, the National Minimum Wage rates are as follows:-

  • £6.70 per hour for those aged 21 and over
  • £5.30 per hour for those aged 18-20
  • £3.87 per hour for under 18’s
  • £3.30 per hour for apprentices.

In effect, it is only those workers in the top band, who are over 25 and currently earn £6.70 per hour who will be affected by this  new regulation.  These workers will now be entitled to the top-up of 50p per hour.

What impact will this have for businesses?

Concerns were raised that the new Regulations would be detrimental for businesses in Belfast in that it could have an impact on profits, the use of overtime, bonuses, recruitment and potentially consumer prices but only time will tell.

No doubt employees who now benefit from the increase will certainly be pleased with its introduction. Hopefully a positive effect will be increased productivity and job satisfaction in the workplace.

What happens if businesses don’t pay the “National Living Wage”?

An employee could make a number of claims to the Industrial Tribunal for failure of his/her employer to pay the National Living Wage including a claim for unlawful deduction of wages or a detriment.

Not only that, if an employee is dismissed for a reason related to the National Living Wage they will be able to make a claim for unfair dismissal even if they have less than one year’s service.

Finally, if that wasn’t enough to ensure compliance, an employer can face penalties being imposed by HMRC including a requirement to pay any arrears of pay owed to an underpaid employee and a penalty of up to 200% of the arrears owed. Bear in mind there is also the potential for businesses to be named and shamed if held to be in breach of the Regulations.

If you require any further information in relation to the NATIONAL LIVING WAGE or any other EMPLOYMENT RELATED ISSUE please do not hesitate to contact us here at Life Law NI or email mgavin@fhanna.co.uk