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30/10/17 09:41

UK Government welfare cuts

New report highlights impact on disabled people.

Around 30,000 people in Scotland could lose entitlement to disability benefits, once the full rollout of the UK Government’s Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is complete.

A new report ‘Impact of UK Welfare Policy on Disabled People’ examines the consequences of recent UK Government welfare policy changes on disabled people. For example, the introduction of PIP and cuts to Employment and Support Allowance.

The main findings include:

  • Between 7000 to 10000 disabled people per year are set to be affected by the removal of the work related activity component of Employment and Support Allowance
  • 40,000 disabled people claiming Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) have been affected by the bedroom tax
  • Around 30,000 disabled people could lose entitlement to non-means tested disability benefits due to re-assessment to PIP

Minister for Social Security Jeane Freeman said: 

“The Scottish Government is committed to full equality and human rights for disabled people and we have published an ambitious delivery plan to help us achieve this.

“It is therefore with dismay that we see in this report, the impact of the UK Government’s unrelenting strive for austerity.  Like Universal Credit, these cuts are failing the very people they are designed to support.  They are causing unnecessary hardship and suffering to people across the country.

“The UN’s  Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities issued a report earlier this year, which is damning of the UK Government and rightly highlights the changes urgently needed to halt the damage they are causing.  That is why I’ve written to Penny Mordaunt, the Minister for Disabled People, calling on them to take action.  The UK Government must listen to the cacophony of voices and growing evidence telling them about the damage their policies are causing and stop their assault on disabled people.”

Background

Full report will be published here on the Scottish Government website

The report builds on the annual report on the impact of welfare reform, which was published in June.

The UN’s Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities called on the UK Government to:

  • Repeal the latest PIP regulations and the PIP, ESA and Universal Credit are in line with the human rights model of disability
  • Ensure that legislative frameworks provide social protection to secure income levels for disabled people and their families
  • Produce an impact assessment of the welfare reforms on disabled people and address retrogression in standards of living
  • Review conditionality and sanction regimes for ESA and tackle the negative consequences on mental health