WHERE HAVE ALL THE PA'S GONE?

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WHERE HAVE ALL THE PAS GONE AN IDEA FOR RECRUITMENT?

Since moving to a new part of the country at the beginning of February, I have been trying to recruit a new team of PAs with very little success. To date I have spent nearly 400 on advertising in my local paper, Disability Now and the Big Issue, not to mention countless hours delivering flyers to public places around my local community. I have also posted my ad on numerous websites.

All this expense and effort has resulted in approximately 20 enquiries, 10 interviews and me offering two people jobs of which one cannot start until August and the other has declined the position.

Luckily Im getting by with using a local care agency and a number of friends a family member to provide with the 24 hour support I need, however this situation is far from ideal and not one which I would choose to be in.

Im offering 5.50 per hour and 22 per undisturbed sleep over, organised around roughly 12, 24 or 48-hour shifts. I require drivers and ideally people who are over 25 years of age, so that I can avoid paying premiums on my vehicle insurance. In addition Im asking for people with some empathy or experience of working with children, as I have a 3-year-old son who stays with me regularly.

Are other PA users experiencing similar difficulties, if so why do you think this is? Do you think we are asking for too much? Is it the pay? Is it the shifts?

I am totally against the idea of all PA users having to compulsory use a PA register as a means of recruiting, as this takes away the whole principle of individual choice and empowerment. However my recent experience leads me to believe that a voluntary national and or local register of Pas, would serve some PA users extremely well. I also believe many PA users and Pas looking for work would not object to paying for this kind of service, which could be organised around a registration fee system. The idea of being able to match people in terms of geographical locality, requirements and skills etc, seams to make perfect sense to me as it could save on loads of time, money and effort in the long term. Having such a register could also assist to identify all kinds of useful information like levels of provision, training needs etc

Please express your views on this and generate a national debate, which hopefully will be listened to by people and organisations that are in a position to do something about it. Express your views here and please email me at dean@bocciakid.fsnet.co.uk and I will collate the findings and pass them on to the relevant people.

Dean Thomas 22/04/02

-- Anonymous, April 22, 2002

Answers

No idea, but i know what you mean!

We have two part time PA's who are both familiy friends, but we have advertised in the past for them, and it is hopeless. We are going to be putting adverts up again soon, as one of them is moving to spain, and the other to the other end of the country!

What really got me about trying to find a PA was the fact that i dont have an illness which requires me always to need nursing care, nor does it require me to not go out, but it does change on a hourly thing.

My friends who are PA's are quiet, easy going.. and i dont even notice when they come in untill they get the hover out.. Paid ones, seem to start the day by screaming upstairs HELLO.. My husband and i dont need that!

I have no idea where all the PA's have gone, but i know that finding good ones is getting harder and harder. We are moving into a more rural setting soon, and i am hoping that there will be some one local who is interested in doing some work!

-- Anonymous, April 06, 2004


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