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JMW Solicitors Supports Brain ID Card launched By Prince Harry
The launch of a brain injury ID card has been praised by JMW Solicitors, who believes it will greatly benefit brain injured people all around the UK to get the support they need.
His Royal Highness Prince Harry today officially launched a new initiative by the national charity Headway UK, a charity that supports people affected by brain injury.
The card is part of the charity’s Justice Project, which aims to raise awareness of brain injury within the criminal justice system, and ensure survivors are identified at the earliest possible opportunity to ensure they receive appropriate support.
The ID card has the additional benefit of being used in social situations: with holders having renewed confidence in the knowledge that they can easily explain their support needs should they require assistance in everyday situations.
Liz Bamber, Manager of Headway Preston and Chorley said, “We are delighted that Prince Harry has generously agreed to support this important project. The hidden effects of brain injury can often lead to misunderstandings and difficulties for survivors. Symptoms such as slurred speech or an unsteady gait, make it difficult to explain the effects of their brain injury to others”.
Headway in Preston is one of a number of Headway groups across the country to have piloted the card prior to its nationwide launch. Eighty five local brain injured adults signed up. Many have used the card every week, some when purchasing items at the supermarket, in pubs and restaurants and even at the airport.
Andrew Lilley is a Partner in JMW’s Catastrophic Injuries team and a Trustee of Headway Preston and Chorley. He commented: “Brain injury and the unseen damage it can do are such important topics that are often left uncovered. As both a solicitor and a trustee of Headway Preston and Chorley, I see the effects that misunderstanding the implications of a brain injury can cause.
“It is wonderful that Prince Harry has chosen to lead on this project and support such a vital cause. I hope that this is another step in turning public perception of those who’ve had a brain injury on its head and highlight that these individuals don’t want to be victims – they are survivors.”
The card also includes a unique 24-hour criminal legal helpline managed by solicitors trained in understanding brain injury.
Liz added, “Being a victim of crime or being arrested can be a traumatic time for anyone, but can be particularly distressing for a survivor of a brain injury. They may feel confused, afraid and emotional about the situation they find themselves in. Communication difficulties, which result in anger or bad language, and severe anxiety from being confronted, left alone, being in a noisy environment, or being in a confined space can all make matters worse. This project helps the police to quickly identify brain injury survivors so they get the support they need”.
To apply for a Headway Brain Injury Identity Card, which is personalised to include the individual’s photo and lists some of the effects they commonly experience, applicants are asked to provide clinical verification of their brain injury.
The card is supported by organisations across the UK, including the National Police Chiefs’ Council, which covers England and Wales, Police Scotland, the Police Service of Northern Ireland, the National Appropriate Adult Network, and NHS England’s Liaison and Diversion Service.
For more information about the Justice Project and details of how to apply for a Headway Brain Injury Card visit www.headway.org.uk/idcard www.headwayprestonandchorley.org.uk.
For more information:
0161 828 8349
Note to Editors
JMW Solicitors LLP is one of the leading Manchester law firms and offers a broad range of legal services to both commercial and private clients. We are committed to providing legal services in a cost effective and timely manner.
Headway Preston and Chorley Contact: Liz Bamber
Direct line: 07557 123 493 or 01772 791460
About the Justice Project
For more information about the Justice Project and the Headway Brain Injury Card visit www.headway.org.uk/idcard.
About Headway Preston and Chorley Group
Headway Preston and Chorley is a small independent charity. It set up in 2010 and has over 400 members. The charity supports people after brain injury caused by trauma or illness and it also supports families and carers. www.headwayprestonandchorley.org.uk
About Headway UK
Headway – the UK’s leading brain injury charity – provides support, services and information to brain injury survivors, their families and carers, as well as to professionals in the health and legal fields. It has more than 125 groups (independent charities) and branches throughout the UK.