Welcome to our 14th podcast episode and the first of the new year.  We have a bumper podcast for you discussing a wide rage of current topics.  Firstly we discuss the issue of mental health which has figured recently a a major part of the Government's agenda (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/theresa-may-mental-health-stigma-funding-government-nhs-a7516461.html).  We meet Ricky from 'Mentally Sound' which is a campaigning podcast for Mental Health North East (http://mhne.org.uk/) which offers informative, challenging, engaging and entertaining show featuring a variety of interviews, news, features, debate, comedy, poetry, discussion, drama and music around the theme of mental health with contributors from all walks of life.

One of the many problems experienced by MS sufferers is the accessibility both at home in the UK and when travelling overseas.  We welcome a very powerful and original voice in this discussion - Stephanie Scawen a renowned journalist and blogger (https://disabledin.com/2017/01/11/disabled-in-bangkok/) living between Malaysia and the UK.   Stephanie talks with us about MS and her own medical history and how she has learnt to deal with the frustrations of living out of a suitcase in hotels that do not pay attention to the needs of the disabled.

We hope that Stephanie will talk to us regularly about MS and the problems of accessibility and the high cost of medication. I am very interested in the many positive advances in MS treatment (http://www.medscape.org/sites/advances/ms) and I will be discussing this with Stephanie in future episodes of our podcast.

Last, but by no means least, we welcome Daniel Williams from the Visualise Consultancy in Cardiff (http://www.visualisetrainingandconsultancy.com/us/).  From Daniel’s own personal experience and extensive market research, he found that many employers and employees were unsure on how to correctly assist with, or communicate effectively with people who have disabilities. This gave Daniel the motivation to establish a training and consultancy company to contribute and raise awareness in making a positive change within organisations and society.  Daniel would be very happy to receive input from our listeners about disability in the workplace.

If you wish to be in touch with Daniel to tell him about your own experiences. either as a disabled worker or as an employer with disabled staff please do be in touch with him.  His contact information is at the end of this post.

I really hope you enjoy our podcast which I produce as a unique resource for the disabilitymatch membership and for the disabled community in the UK and around the world.  We have many podcast fans in The United States, Australia and Canada.  Please share our podcast link and feel free to embed it in your own blog.

Best wishes for 2017