Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Former Politician Raising Money, And Awareness, For sufferers of M.E.




Former Jersey Deputy, Shona Pitman, is embarking on a 1,200 mile walk from Land's End to John O' Groats in order to raise money, and awareness, for M.E.

Mrs. Pitman, a long time campaigner against Child Abuse, and its cover up in Jersey, has issued a Press Release reproduced below.

Team Voice interviewed the former Deputy before she set off on her epic journey and discussed her 15 year battle with this debilitating illness and why she suffered in silence with it for so long. We hope our readers/viewers will find the interview (and Press Release) of some interest and might consider donating whatever they are able to afford to this worthy cause?

PRESS RELEASE

ME Sufferer Walks 1200 miles Across Britain

With the support of the Association for Young People with ME (AYME) and ACTION FOR ME, Shona Pitman (an ME sufferer of 15 years) will be embarking on a 1200 mile route walk from Land’s End to John O’Groats on the first day of the International ME Awareness Week – this being the 12th of May. 

Due to the physical effects of her ME, the journey is estimated to take up to five months to complete.  During this time, Shona’s  intention is to stop and speak to raise awareness about ME and funds for the above charities (with the target of £4000.00 each – see the Just Giving website to donate) HERE and HERE at as many national, county, city and town TV and radio stations and newspapers, as is possible, throughout the course of the walk.  These charities undertake great work in supporting research and informing and supporting sufferers, the wider public and Government about the illness - they deserve all the help and recognition possible.

Initially, Shona was undertaking the challenge with a gentleman who also has ME.  Unfortunately the severity of his ME at this present time is such that he cannot start the walk with her.  However, Shona is hopeful that he will still be able to join her on the trek at some point. ‘Baz has put in such a lot of work to help make this fund and awareness raising challenge happen’, Shona says. ‘I thus very much hope he will be able to join me when and wherever he can’.

Why she is doing it: There are an estimated 250,000 people in the UK (with 25,000 of those being children and young people), living with the illness.   Each experiencing the symptoms listed below - to different degrees.  Please note, these are just some of the symptoms:

·      Brain fog, poor concentration, confusion, short-term memory problems
·      Reduced coping skills, depression, mood swings, anxiety
·      Intolerance to certain foods, drinks, drugs and chemicals
·      Digestive and detoxification problems
·      Weakened immune system
·      Sensitivity to light and noise
·      Joint and muscle pain
·      Chronic and persistent fatigue

The degree of the illness and symptoms can vary from person to person and so too can they vary within the sufferer, depending on the levels of stress to the body and/or mind.  Some sufferers are able to work; some are housebound; and some are even bedbound and need physical assistant with the most basic of tasks such as: changing clothes, preparing meals and even going to the toilet.  The illness may affect a person for just a few years or it may be decades. 

With medical conditions like ME also being what may be called a ‘hidden disability’, the truth is that the lack of awareness amongst the public, the medical profession and Government about the illness, leaves most sufferers and their families to ‘deal with it’ themselves in whatever way they can afford.   This can be as stressful as living with the illness itself and can regularly make symptoms even worse. 

Increasing awareness and understanding is absolutely crucial in support of ensuring adequate funding is made available at Government and local authority levels.  Within this context, Shona will also be talking about how the work of the Optimum Health Clinic (a private Clinic treating ME sufferers) have made a huge positive difference to her own mental and physical state in just a few months of starting their on-line computer course; and will be assisting them with their own fundraising for a very significant undertaking that they are also launching in May.

‘The irony is’ states Shona ‘ if Governments accommodated for the need properly, it would actually save taxpayers money in the long-term because sufferers can fully recover or their health may at least improve sufficiently to a point where they may be able to work and once again be able to contribute to the economy and thus the Treasury’.  Health Services, Social Security, Housing and other Departments would then save money in the long-run.  This is undoubtedly a major issue that politicians are always apparently concerned about – making savings!  ‘The bottom line is that with adequate funding for support and greater research quality of life can  be significantly enhanced’.

Shona is very passionate about pushing this subject in to the position of public and Government awareness it so deserves and to where sufferers have waited for, for far too long.  In essence - to achieve official recognition that ME is as serious as many far better understood debilitating illnesses which as a consequence, receive more appropriate levels of political backing for the funding of public service provision and research.  For this reason, she feels it necessary that it should be a person who has the illness to make this point - and do it in a big way. 

As Shona states: ‘This is what I wish to play my part in by undertaking this marathon walk; and by talking about the realities of ME to all and anyone willing to listen - not least national and local media who have so much potential to force those in positions of power to take note. ME is very real and at present it is ruining a lot of lives, which with greater awareness and funding could be made so much better'.


43 comments:

  1. I'll only donate if they have a just giving page

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are links to the Just Giving page in the Press Release.

      Delete
    2. No need to ask who wrote this churlish comment. HIC...

      Delete
  2. What people the PItmans are. After all that our bent Establishment have done to them and still putting other people worse off first.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Shona - I wish you the very best on your 'journey'. May your travels be safe and rewarding. I have a great awareness of the impact of ME which my partner's mother suffered from. An unseen and very misunderstood affliction, and every respect to you for dealing with this during your time as a States Member and all the subsequent fall out from doing a job well done for the ordinary people of the Island and the child abuse survivors.

    Hopefully you will also raise a lot of support on the way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Totally agree. Shona Pitman was often overshadowed by the huge character that was Trevor. But for my money she was every bit as valuable to the ordinary folk of Jersey. Its not mentioned here but I assume Trevor is accompanying his wife in this noble enterprise?

      Delete
    2. Not surprisingly the pretend witch and her couple of fellow haters on the trolling site don't agree with you Jill. What a shame such people cannot get over the petty jealousies.

      Delete
    3. What a failed election candidate like MM who could not even be bothered, too damn lazy, to even knock on my door in St. Helier or that of my parents in St. Saviour kids herself gives her the right to criticise someone willing to slog hundreds of miles for charity I would love to know. Can only come in a can. Bitter and pathetic.

      Delete
    4. Walking a thousand odd miles could only do Witch Way Maureen the world of good. Might even sweat the jealousy out too?

      Delete
    5. I don't think some embittered serial election failures could walk 1200 yards let alone 1200 miles

      However did the malicious one ever think she could do a town Deputy's job?

      #Deluded

      Delete
  4. Well done Shona. Gutsy as always.

    ReplyDelete
  5. ME Is a horrible and little understood illness so full credit to Shona Pitman for what will be a well worthwhile if highly demanding initiative.

    ReplyDelete
  6. After watching your video I have even more admiration for Shona. Her reputation for working hard for her constituents was probably unequalled. So managing to do this with a debilitating illness is a quite remarkable illustration of dedication.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Your blog certainly carried s wide variety of stories of the most interesting kind. Fair play to you and your team

    ReplyDelete
  8. Has Shona's walk been reported anywhere else because I can't say I've noticed any mention of it in the Media?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why on earth should Shona want to engage with any of the MSM over here? They certainly never did her any favours.

      Delete
    2. Too right. But if Susie Pinel was opening a hairdresser 'for charity' or Alan MacLean a privatised hospital with loads of public sector job losses the Rag, Been and Rankin TV would be all over it. I hope Shona simply gave you an exclusive as Jersey's leading news source.

      Delete
  9. I can't believe a hugely wealthy place like Jersey doesn't even have a qualified specialist to assist sufferers of ME. We have got so many of our priorities wrong here. Should bring Sturt Syvret back as Health Minister. Remember when he refused to be bullied into saddling us with Brocken's money making scam of a private hospital?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, whatever his faults you have to say the ministers who followed Syvret have been disasters. #Shenton

      Delete
    2. Yes, I doubt former Senator's Shenton, and Perchard, will be getting any thanks from the taxpayer and FAMILY X.

      Delete
  10. Perhaps neither Shona or Trevor are even interested anymore but we could certainly do with both of them back in the States. Once Stuart was gone Trevor was the only thing that made the States essential listening. Now it is just dire.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Why do so many people go on about Syvret and Trevor Pitman? Face facts - they are gone and Progressive politics in Jersey is in disarray. What do you think vfc?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Until people start looking at the real power in Jersey (The Law Offices Department) things will never get any better regardless of the political opposition being in disarray or otherwise................That's what I think.

      Delete
    2. 'So many people talk about Stuart Syvret and Trevor Pitman' because, to use Trevor's famous term, they have TF (Testicular Fortitude). It is a quality almost totally absent from politics now no disrespect to Deputy Mike Higgins. Stuart and Trevor shook politics up and made people think. We will regret not doing enough to support such brave people. I include Shona in this assessment too and wish her all the best in her charity efforts

      Delete
  12. Things will only improve when we get rid of Bailiffs and Bailhaches. End of.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Never was a more accurate statement made. I obviously agree 110%

      Delete
  13. VFC.

    Do you think the Bailiff, the Law Offices Department, and the Bailaches, will be looked into by the Jersey COI?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If the COI is implementing its TOR's then yes it will. Philip Bailhache, and others, are (or should be) under investigation by the COI for the apparent leak of Lenny Harper's statement to Philip Bailhache.

      Delete
    2. This particular TOR should sort out the Bailhaches/Bailiffs/AG's/Law Offices.........And others.

      13. Establish the process by which files were submitted by the States of Jersey Police to the prosecuting authorities for consideration, and establish –
      • Whether those responsible for deciding on which cases to prosecute took a professional approach;
      • Whether the process was free from political or other interference at any level.

      If, for these purposes, or as a result of evidence given under paragraph 7, in the opinion of the Chairman of the Committee, it would be of assistance that one or more of the prosecution files underpinning any prosecution decision may be examined in a manner to be determined by the Committee.

      Delete
  14. What you say VFC is absolutely correct. That's a requirement of the ToR, so yes, if the CoI disregards that part, the public inquiry will be unlawfully failing a key part of its legislative purpose.

    But - what makes us think they won't fail in respect of part 13?

    After all, they've already unlawfully failed - for example, failing to carry out Paragraph (e) of the States of Jersey decision, so it's already the established, evidenced case that this public inquiry and the lawyers running it, Evershed, contemptuously disregard their lawful obligations. And that failure is not some minor, trivial thing we can overlook. In so many ways it was key to the proposition. Paragraph (e) says this: -

    "(e) to agree that the proposed Chairman should be requested to recommend any final changes to the Terms of Reference for the Committee of Inquiry referred to in paragraph (b) above for approval by the Assembly, and also to set out the proposed process for conducting the Inquiry having consulted with interested parties where necessary;"

    Not only has the Jersey CSA "public inquiry" failed to implement a vital part of the establishing legislative decision, they also continue to refuse to provide any explanation or attempted justification for acting as they've done - even to the extent of contemptuously ignoring questions raised in formal Letter's Before Claim/Action.

    The CoI and Eversheds think we're idiots, so we shouldn't be surprised if they think they can get away with failing to carry out a vital part of the ToR, such as paragraph 13.

    Stuart Syvret

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am glad Stuart Syvret has commented here because he and Trevor and Shona Pitman - the subject of this blog of course - are three of just a handful of Jersey political figures who can hold their head high for their efforts on our behalf. Can I also ask Stuart if he thinks it is directly linked that he and the Pitman's have been so targeted for character assassination by the Establishment courts because they have been willing to put their necks on the line and stand up to the bullies such as our beloved Bailiffs.

      Delete
  15. Without doubt. The next few months is by far the best and biggest chance there is and will be for a long time to hold the Bailhaches and Law Office to account....
    Whether the COI do this remains to be seen!?

    ReplyDelete
  16. Stop writing excuses and get all this damning evidence to the COI.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Inquiry has lots of damning evidence now. The question is will they be brave enough to act upon it and hold the likes of Birth and the Bailhache bullies to account?

      Delete
  17. Do you know if Shona is planing to do any kind of updates on her trek as she progresses? I an understand she might not want to tip off stalkers or even government hit men where she will be. But an update every now and again once she has passed through would be nice if she feels it appropriate. I will be making a small donation either way to what is a very worthy cause.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Talking about this interview it was suggested to me that an ME sufferer can't even access specialist support locally but have to pay for UK support. Do you know if this is true? Maybe if she isn't in the sticks somewhere and reads this Shona could tell us if you don't know the answer. But thanks yet again Team Voice for bringing us yet another excellent and varied story. You really do go from strength to strength.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Can I ask that you repeat the Just Giving site links for this story please? As an ME sufferer myself I do hope your readers, subject to personal circumstances, will try and don't a few pounds to help research this sapping illness. Many thanks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Indeed. The Just Giving Sites can be found HERE and HERE.

      Delete
    2. Think you meant to say please 'donate' to this excellent cause. As for me I already have. Won't hurt me to go without my usual packet of fags this week will it? Trying to give up anyway. There's a thought why not suggest all your other readers who smoke do the same? We can all feel holier than thou, help people with ME and get healthier at the same time! Lubbly jubbly.

      Delete
  20. My friend says its been hammering with rain down Cornwall so I hope Shona packed her waterproofs! Good luck to you though if you are reading this Shona.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I remember how the then Health Minister Ann Pryke couldn't answer questions on support for ME sufferers. No surprise I suppose. Pryke was thick as a fence post and typical of the head nodding automatons First likes to appoint. As we all know thanks to former Deputy Pitman there also isn't really any support so a double problem for Thicky Pryky.

    ReplyDelete
  22. What a contrast this story is with your latest one
    A comparatively young woman once again doing her best for people. An old and arrogant man WB once again exposed as trying to do what is wrong and against the community's best interests. Maybe Shona should become Bailiff and clean the judiciary up? Certainly long overdue.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good idea. Except. I doubt there is a broom big enough for the job. And two - Shona has surely suffered enough along with Big Trev. It would be cruel to inflict a job of this magnitude on any one person. We need a fully fledged Task Force armed to the teeth and with gas masks for the toxic stink. Believe me when this job does get undertaken it will be a bunker buster rocking the Oligarchical forces to their foundations.

      Delete