Raising awareness of Tourette Syndrome

By on 11/10/2013 in Cllr Bedser, News

Cllr Steve Bedser and Hannah PrenticeBirmingham City Council health bosses have added their support to calls for greater understanding of Tourette Syndrome.

Cabinet member for Health and Wellbeing, Cllr Steve Bedser, Director of Public Health, Dr Adrian Phillips and Chief Executive, Stephen Hughes met four mothers touring the UK to raise awareness of the neurological condition, which sees sufferers often develop involuntary ticks and movements.

Jacqueline Campbell, Eileen Darling, Liz Mielnik and Donna Emmerson, who between them have six children and grandchildren who are diagnosed with Tourette’s, have undertaken a 2,200-mile road trip, aiming to visit 52 cities in 10 days, to hand over information packs, as well as supporting children and adults with the illness.

The quartet are meeting politicians and officials to dispel misconceptions surrounding the condition. For example, 90 per cent of Tourette’s sufferers do not swear involuntarily, as they are often depicting doing in the media.

And they were joined by Birmingham campaigners Catherine Mosey and Hannah Prentice as they made a flying visit to the Council House.

Cllr Bedser said: “Tourette’s is an often misunderstood condition and I applaud the four ladies for undertaking this journey to increase awareness.

“I know in Birmingham we have passionate campaigners like Catherine, who works tirelessly to change people’s perceptions of Tourette’s, and Hannah who is a Young Disabled Champion.”

Donna Emmerson, whose eight-year old son, Kristian, suffers from Tourette’s, said: “Raising money by doing this isn't the main thing for us. There have been a few TV programmes about Tourette’s, but we don't feel they portrayed certain aspects of the condition fairly, so we are trying to change people's perceptions.”

For more information and advice about Tourette Syndrome go to: http://www.tourettes-action.org.uk/

Photographs of the visit can be downloaded here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/birminghamnewsroom/sets/72157636424536296/

A blog of the road trip can be found here: http://www.twitchnshout.co.uk

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