Cllr Nick Nolan, Coventry City Council, Coventry Disabled Persons Network, Coventry Consultation Campaign, Council House
SEMI-NAKED campaigners staged a Lady Godiva-style protest against Coventry City Council's policy of charging disabled and elderly people for home-care services.Campaigners Robin Surgeon and Tom Cumerford, clad only in underpants and wigs, sat in their wheelchairs in the lobby at the Council House, demanding to see council leader Cllr Nick Nolan (Lab, Holbrooks).They wanted him to reconsider the policy of charging for home services and bring back funding for the Coventry Disabled Persons Network, withdrawn several years ago.The demonstration marked the launch of the Coventry Consultation Campaign calling for a better deal for disabled people.Pensioners and disabled people assembled at Broadgate before marching to the Council House, where they piled into the lobby.They shouted slogans, demanded to see Cllr Nolan and refused to let anyone enter the building through the main entrance.Council officials told the protesters Cllr Nolan was unavailable and eventually they agreed to a meeting with senior officials.Arrangements were made for another meeting with Cllr Nolan, Cllr Tom White (Lab, Henley), cabinet member for community wellbeing, and Cllr Kevin Maton (Lab, Whoberley), cabinet member for social services.Mr Surgeon, representing both the Coventry Consultation Campaign and the Disability Action Network, said: Today has been a big success. This is an opportunity for Coventry City Council to demonstrate whether they put people before money."Cllr Maton said: "Both Cllr White and I recognise that we need to work closely with people with disabilities.""
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