Archive for July, 2010

Your views needed re Government ‘consultations’

31 July 2010

Carer Watch will be responding to the ‘Consultations’ below, please join our message board where debates are already taking place. Registration is needed but automatic so access to forum is immediate, wherein you can both read and post.
This is the chance to put YOUR views forward .

Register here

DWP consultation – 21st century
. This discussion document seeks views to inform our thinking on reforms to the benefits and Tax Credits system. We would like to hear from all who are interested. Subject to the outcome of this consultation, we propose to bring forward legislation early in the New Year to reform the current system

Dept of Health
Refreshing the National Carers Strategy. Minister for Care Services seeking views, by 20 September 2010, on the key priorities, supported by evidence of good practice, on what will have the greatest impact on improving carers’ lives in the next four years. All carer issues back in the melting pot.

Independent review of work capability assessment
ESA. The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions has asked Professor Malcolm Harrington to undertake an independent review of the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) and make recommendations on the future development and efficacy of the WCA


Coalition responses

30 July 2010

Below you can find a response to each section of The Coalition: our programme for government. These responses focus on the main themes raised in each section.

Details in full here

Refreshing the national Carers Strategy

29 July 2010

Letter from the Minister for Care Services seeking views, by 20 September 2010, on the key priorities, supported by evidence of good practice, on what will have the greatest impact on improving carers’ lives in the next four years. see here

Template for responses can be found on the above link too.

Disability Alliance – views on Disability Living Allowance

24 July 2010

The new coalition Government announced, in its emergency budget, that it would be introducing a new medical test for people wanting/receiving Disability Living Allowance (DLA). The Treasury has revealed that this will mean a 20% cut in ‘caseload and expenditure’ on DLA by 2015. Disability Alliance is aware that previous research has demonstrated the need for DLA to reach greater numbers of people to help tackle disability poverty. We welcome your opinion on the Government’s proposed change and how it might affect you/the people you work with.

Survey here

ABLE magazine

21 July 2010

Carer Watch received this. Please contact them if you can help


I’m currently writing an article in Able Magazine on the issue of the changes to Disability Living Allowance being made by the coalition government.

As part of the article, I would like to include views of some disabled people and their carers about their fears, how the proposed changes would affect their lives and similar topics.

If you would like to contribute, if you could please email me as soon as possible at with your statement, plus full name and town of residence. I will then select a few of these to appear in the magazine.

Thank you for your help!

Minister makes Concession on ESA

20 July 2010

In Parliament yesterday –  Monday 19th July 2010

Nadhim Zahawi: In my constituency, people are rightly worried about relatives with severe mental health disability attending the work capability assessment. Can my hon. Friend tell us what safeguards will be put in place for those people?

Maria Miller: The work capability assessment was, of course, developed in consultation with medical experts and disability specialist groups. There will be an annual review to ensure that any problems with the assessment are dealt with, and there has already been a Department-led review dealing with some of the issues that my hon. Friend raises in connection with people with mental health problems.

Modifications will be made, especially by expanding the support group to cover people with severe disability issues, to ensure that they are not inappropriately put into groups of activity.

CarerWatch welcome this statement from the Minister. This is exactly what we asked for in the CarerWatch General Election ESA campaign.

It’s a small step and we hope it will lead the way for more protection for the many groups of people with severe and enduring illness. 

But it is certainly a very welcome statement from the Minister.

We need your help and support

18 July 2010

As part of our Campaign to protect Disability Living Allowance, Carer Watch have been gathering support from groups/organisations and some of the responses received can be found here

As an individual, perhaps if some of these proposals were implemented it would affect you. Please tell us here   how DLA is of benefit to you and why you disagree with the Coalitions proposals .

Last but not least, we would like to ask you to contact the groups / organisations that you  belong to, or have an interest in and ask them to send us a statement of support.  See below ….


Alexandra Kemp, Chief Executive,West Norfolk Women and Carers’ Pensions Network

18 July 2010

Statement from West Norfolk Women and Carers’ Pension Network

see here

Caroline Lucas co-sponsors Carers Bill

14 July 2010

Caroline Lucas, Green Party MP for Brighton Pavilion, has co-sponsored a bill designed to increase support and quality of life for carers and young carers.

read more here

Emergency – please help

12 July 2010

from Benefits and Work

Sterilise claimants urges racist treasury website

12 July 2010
This is a single issue newsletter asking for your urgent help in getting a government website closed down. The site, set up by the treasury to allow people to suggest ways to cut government spending, is full of hate-filled racist and disablist suggestions, including the sterilisation of benefits claimants, the return of the workhouse and the forced repatriation of asylum seekers and migrants.  Some of the site’s content is so extreme it may even constitute a criminal offence.

The Spending Challenge website at

was set up on Friday by the coalition government and features an introduction and video on its home page by chancellor George Osborne.

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