Posts Tagged ‘disability now’


18 June 2013


Following Carers Week, a debate on carers will take place in the House of Commons on Thursday 20th June

Full details can be found here  and you will be able to watch it LIVE via this link

It is vital you contact your MP , ask them to attend – and raise any/all issues that you are concerned about. Time is of the essence, so it may be worth phoning their office and following up with an email outlining your worries.

Questions can be asked on benefits, juggling work and care, social care, support from the NHS and all the other policy areas which affect carers.

Please share this with family, friends, contacts. The more MPs we have there, the more issues that can get discussed.

Share via Facebook and Twitter too. Hashtag during the event will be #CarersDebate


Coalition government – a ‘machine’ made from steel

8 September 2011

For countless years, with successive governments, family carers have continuously raised their voices outlining the many problems they face, about resources, finances, respite and/or equipment.

Yet no matter how much they chipped away at the brick wall no real action has been taken, by past and present govts. Campaigns have followed one after the other from many individuals, groups, and charities.

We are currently witnessing the biggest shake up of welfare benefits in over 60 years and still the issues surrounding Carers Allowance are not being addressed.  It is the LOWEST of all benefits at £55.55  per week.

As campaigners we will not give up even though the brick wall is now made of re enforced steel. Behind that wall lies a Coalition machine made from cold steel too. It shows NO understanding, NO compassion. It operates so clinically, so precise and its actions prove that it has no heart.

It speaks of Responsibility, Big Society, yet continues on its mission to persecute many disabled people, their families, and carers, with this current Welfare Reform Bill.

Is this the future we want for ourselves, for our children?

A future where disabled people and their families are battered from all directions.

Borrowing the famous words from Winston Churchill and altering them slightly…

Never has so much been given so freely by so few, for the benefit of so many.

 Carers need action and they need it NOW

 Please contact any groups/charities you belong to. Tell them your concerns surrounding Welfare Reform.

Contact your MP . Add your postcode in the box on this link to find their details

Feel free to use this template from Sue Marsh of The Broken of Britain

Support the Hardest Hit campaign which following on from a successful march in May 2011 are now planning local protests.

One simple change re ESA

As individuals any action we take may seem so small, but collectively we can be stronger.

End the care crisis: Dilnot must be a ‘turning point’

2 July 2011

End the care crisis: Dilnot must be a ‘turning point’

Care and Support Alliance


In advance of the publication of the Dilnot Commission’s recommendations on care and support funding, 25 members of the Care and Support Alliance – organisations representing older people, those living with disabilities and long-term conditions and their families – have set out the case for reform. In a joint statement they said:

“The publication of the Dilnot Commission’s recommendations must be a turning point in social care. We can no longer ignore the demographic reality of an ageing population and people living longer with illness and disability. Nor can we ignore a growing number of stories of abuse, neglect and unmet need from a chronically underfunded care system, which now faces further cuts. Successive Governments have kicked the question of long-term care into the long grass. This must not happen again, and the public will not forgive delay or half-measures.

The time is past for tinkering with a crumbling system, and urgent, fundamental reform is needed. A central part of that, and our bottom line for reform, must be additional public funding.

The current system is a postcode lottery of often high charges and poor quality services. Years of underfunding, compounded by cuts this year, mean that hundreds of thousands are going without vital support to eat, wash and live their everyday lives. If we want a care and support system raised to the standards we would all expect, then substantial additional funding cannot be avoided. Hard choices need to be made about who pays, but we cannot afford for decisions to be postponed as too costly or too controversial.

Unless you’ve been through the social care system it is difficult to understand how urgently it needs reform. If you need medical treatment, the NHS provides wherever you live. But different councils provide different levels of care services, and the state only pays for the care of people with the lowest levels of income or savings. If you have savings, income or a home worth more than £23,250, the costs of care in your own home or in residential care can be catastrophic.

The current system means that someone with dementia and their family could end up having to pay over £100,000 for the costs of care. Disabled people who want to live independently face a lifetime of huge bills to get basic support. Carers caring round the clock for loved-ones are forced to pay hundreds of pounds to get a few hours rest.

This is not simply a question of a societal duty to a small group of the vulnerable. Every family in this country will be affected by ageing, illness and disability. We all need a care and support system which protects families from catastrophic care costs, ends the postcode lottery in care and delivers fairness, dignity and independence.”

 Signed:                                          (more…)

Potential DLA legal challenge – Disability Alliance UK (United Kingdom)

2 July 2011

 UPDATED WITH BBC VIDEO – Watch from 1 mins 48 secs

You may have heard that Disability Alliance might be taking legal action against the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) over some Government welfare plans. Our legal advisors, Unity Law, have examined Government plans and believe there is a very credible case.

Disability Alliance is especially concerned over plans to abolish Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for working age people (defined as 16-64 years of age by DWP) and introduce a new benefit (Personal Independence Payment – PIP) which will have a £2.17 billion lower budget by 2015. PIP will not provide an equivalent level of support for the 652,000 disabled people currently receiving low rate care DLA payments.

We have raised our concerns with DWP over the last year, since plans were announced in June 2010. We have ensured our member organisations’ views and those of the disabled people we have surveyed have been communicated to DWP. We have aired concerns in meetings, briefings, a consultation and evidence to two parliamentary committees. Over 5,500 organisations and people responded to the Government consultation on DLA reform. But concerns have sadly gone unanswered and the Government have made no changes to plans to reflect the level of anxiety disabled people and organisations like Disability Alliance have communicated.

Potential DLA legal challenge – Disability Alliance UK (United Kingdom)

Joint Committee on Human Rights – Tuesday 28 June

29 June 2011

This meeting can be watched from the start here

Committee Room 4a
Meeting started on Tuesday 28 June at 2.22pm
ended at 4.12pm

The implementation of the right of disabled people to independent living

  1. Disabled people with experience of independent living issues
  2. Carers UK, People First, Scope, and Age UK

 Visit the Committee’s homepage.


Employment Support Allowance and Work Capability Assessments

29 June 2011
submitted by Frances Kelly
Anyone with a long term illness or disability is already feeling the impact of the government welfare reforms. Incapacity Benefit has been abolished. Sick and disabled people are in the process of being forcibly migrated to Employment and Support Allowance. They are being subjected to Work Capability Assessments which are tests unrelated to their medical condition, tests which they do not understand and which have dubious validity.
The government target is for two thirds of sick and disabled people to be moved off the new replacement for Incapacity Benefit. This will be done by ‘helping’ them find work along with a regime of mandatory activity and  threats and sanctions. If this fails they may hit a time limit.
The main impact on the lives of sick and disabled people is fear. Fear that the meagre financial support that they depend on will be withdrawn. Fear that they will not be able to cope with the requirements being put upon them. In many cases the stress is impacting on their health and making them less well.
This is why the Impact Report published by the DWP on the recent proposed changes to ESA is truly shocking.
It isn’t just the inaccuracies in the report identified by Steve Griffiths that are so appalling.
It is the tone and focus of the report that is the real wake up call. As far as the government is concerned the impact of these reforms is not about the fear being visited on vulnerable people but solely about how much money will be saved.
Have the government completely abandoned any residual of duty of care to people with long term sickness or disability. Do the government now regard people who are disabled only as an economic burden to be minimised or otherwise disappeared.
Where is the compassion and concern for the lives of these people. Where is the assessment of how their lives will be turned upside down and made impossible as their only income is reduced and often time limited and stopped. Where is the covenant between the community and people who are disabled.
Fear and the loss of security, support and trust is the real impact of the introduction of ESA but shockingly these concerns are not raised in the Impact Report as the focus moves to saving money. The government has just wished all this fear and hardship away.
Further details can be found here
and here

Carers need statement from Coalition Government re Carers Allowance

22 June 2011

In support of Carers Week 2011, CarerWatch set up an information stand in a local Gala hall covering the period Wednesday 15th June through to Sunday 19th June 2011.  

The theme was the True Face of Caring and facts and figures can be found here

It has always been important to reach carers, to provide advice and information, and this year it has become even more vital.

Changes proposed within the Welfare Reform Bill, coupled with cuts to Social Services are going to have a massive effect on many familys.

Families providing care are a necessity and as the number of elderly increases and medicine breakthroughs continue, many people with illnesses will live longer…and the country will rely even more on the foundation that family carers provide.  Carers are a group of people who provide a vital service, yet governments past and present have taken them for granted, have taken their Love for granted.

Carers seem to have been completely forgotten, as benefits are changed around them. Both ‘Refresh Carers Strategy’ and ’21st Century Welfare’ – failed to address the issue of Carers Allowance and now the WR Bill is repeating that mistake. The only detail we know is that CA will remain outside of the Universal Credit.

 However, it still remains the lowest of all benefits, claimed by a group of people that contribute immensely to our society. We cannot and must not allow this opportunity to fully reform CA pass us by.

Carers are used to words of praise, more of which can be heard here from David Cameron last week  but it is NOT enough. No matter how much understanding he says the Coalition has, no matter how many times he says…Thank you, it is NOT enough.

Carers need action and they need it now

‘How to solve a problem like Maria’ – Disability Alliance

3 June 2011

Disabled people in care homes and DLA mobility cuts

3 June 2011

The Guardian’s Amelia Gentleman recently probed the Minister for Disabled People, Maria Miller MP, on the issue of Government plans to cut mobility support for disabled care home residents.

The Minister’s ‘explanation’ of plans is below in the transcript of the interview. But what the Minister neglects to mention is that, under clause 83 of the Welfare Reform Bill currently in Parliament, disabled people living in care homes will not be eligible for the DLA replacement benefit (the Personal Independence Payment; PIP). The current Bill prevents care home residents accessing the PIP.

AG is Amelia Gentleman and MM is Maria Miller:


Welfare Reform Bill -Public Bill committee

4 May 2011

Written evidence to be reported to the House 



The Committee consisted of the following Members:

Chairs: † Mr James Gray  , Mr Mike Weir 

† Baldwin, Harriett (West Worcestershire) (Con) 

† Bebb, Guto (Aberconwy) (Con) 

† Buck, Ms Karen (Westminster North) (Lab) 

† Curran, Margaret (Glasgow East) (Lab) 

† Elliott, Julie (Sunderland Central) (Lab) 

† Ellison, Jane (Battersea) (Con) 

Elphicke, Charlie (Dover) (Con) 

† Fovargue, Yvonne (Makerfield) (Lab) 

† Gilmore, Sheila (Edinburgh East) (Lab) 

† Glen, John (Salisbury) (Con) 

† Grayling, Chris (Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions)  

† Green, Kate (Stretford and Urmston) (Lab) 

† Greenwood, Lilian (Nottingham South) (Lab) 

† Hollingbery, George (Meon Valley) (Con) 

† McVey, Esther (Wirral West) (Con) 

† Miller, Maria (Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensi o ns)  

† Newton, Sarah (Truro and Falmouth) (Con) 

Paisley, Ian (North Antrim) (DUP) 

† Patel, Priti (Witham) (Con) 

† Pearce, Teresa (Erith and Thamesmead) (Lab) 

Sarwar, Anas (Glasgow Central) (Lab) 

† Smith, Miss Chloe (Norwich North) (Con) 

† Swales, Ian (Redcar) (LD) 

† Timms, Stephen (East Ham) (Lab) 

† Uppal, Paul (Wolverhampton South West) (Con) 

† Willott, Jenny (Cardiff Central) (LD) 

James Rhys, Committee Clerk

† attended the Committee

Councillor stands down due to party’s policies

25 April 2011

A DISABLED councillor has spoken of his anguish at stepping down from politics because he can no longer support the policies of his party.

LCflitcroft 2504Councillor Ollie Flitcroft, who has served as a Conservative member of Barrow Borough Council for almost five years, disagrees with the Tory’s national stance on disabilities.

Cllr Flitcroft, a wheelchair user and disability rights campaigner, said he could not represent a party making cuts which would affect the most vulnerable.

read in full here

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