Are the govt cutting benefits for disabled children?

  • 9 Replies
  • 2948 Views

devine63

  • *
  • Guest

Hi

The full fact people have published a piece on the impact of welfare cuts on disabled children:
http://fullfact.org/factchecks/government_cuts_benefits_disabled_children_welfare-3196 

I'll just provide the conclusion (and its update) here:

Conclusion

The Prime Minister's claim that benefits will be uprated by 5.2 per cent, while correct, does not address the specific concern raised by Anne McGuire.

Ms McGuire is correct to state that some disabled children's benefits are being reduced by over 1,300 a year, although it is worth noting that not all families will be worse off, and those with the most severely disabled children will see their entitlement rise slightly.

However, across all those in receipt of the tax credit, the net average loss could still be over 1,000.

Full Fact has contacted the Department for Work and Pensions to confirm these points, and are awaiting a response.

UPDATE (16/12/2011)

While we are still waiting for a response from the DWP regarding our points, one of our Facebook followers pointed out this quote from Work and Pensions Minister Lord Freud on the matter, which sheds some light on the Government's position:

"The question is this: does the noble Baroness [Grey-Thompson] want to maintain the rates for moderately disabled children at the expense of raising the limits for severely disabled people? That is really the juggle that we have to do.

As I have said, this is not easy; these are difficult judgments. It has been very difficult to get to this position, and that is the decision that we think is best for people who we really want to help.

We want to focus our support on the most severely disabled people regardless of their age; to simplify and to align the extra payments for disabled people; and to smooth the transition into adulthood."

=================================================

This sounds like more divide and conquer tactics to me: setting  moderately disabled people against severely disabled people!
regards, Deb

SashaQ

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 863
Quote
This sounds like more divide and conquer tactics to me

Indeed

But the question I wonder is what is their definition of "severely disabled"?

Seems to me that the most severely disabled people will be the ones who fall between the goalposts and get little or no support - not people who fit the stereotypes and look obviously impaired... 

I don't think the government shares my definition though (as it is a bit of a paradox) - more likely they think it would make them look good to pledge help for people who look disabled...

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
Hi Sasha

yes I'm afraid the govt sees it entirely in terms of severity of impairment (not severity of disability which would be a very different thing!).  They forget almost entirely about their supposed intention to use the social model of disability** and they revert to looking at things like a care needs assessment which rates my needs as being low / moderate / serious / critical  - but now local authorities are often ignoring those with the lower levels of care need and only supporting those with serious or critical need and sometimes only supporting those with critical needs.

As I have said before I think the people who will actually be most vulnerable under the cuts are not those with obvious, critical (usually physical) care needs who are difficult to ignore.  I think the most vulnerable are those with invisible unseen health conditions, whose needs are not obvious and visible and so those needs can more easily be denied and ignored.   And this vulnerability has been further increased by the govt's decision to reduce access to legal aid and cut funding which eventually goes to Law centres - so those people whose needs are denied and refused will also be unable to access help to challenge the decisions...
regards, Deb

** for readers not familiar with it, the Social Model of Disability was developed by disabled people themselves, it is where this distinction between disability [i.e. the problems created by society for me which may or may not be really linked to my impairment(s)] and impairment [i.e. the things about my body and mind which function less well than the average person] comes from.

SashaQ

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 863
As I have said before I think the people who will actually be most vulnerable under the cuts are not those with obvious, critical (usually physical) care needs who are difficult to ignore.  I think the most vulnerable are those with invisible unseen health conditions, whose needs are not obvious and visible and so those needs can more easily be denied and ignored.   

Well put - yes.


bulekingfisher

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2964
Hello SashaQ

This divied + rule shows David Cammoran is LIE-ING yet again when he say's were all in it together so can we trust this man (he is not a human but an alliean in disguise) is capable of running this country

lankou

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2945

** for readers not familiar with it, the Social Model of Disability was developed by disabled people themselves,

It was and look how it has come back to bite them in the form of the "Work Capability Assessment."

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
ANy tool can be put to a use for which it was not intended, by other people, L'Ankou.   That does not mean it was a bad idea to invent the tool in the first place,
regards, Deb

ATurtle

  • *
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1504
    • The Awesome Turtle Blog
I think the dangerous part of the Tory spin on benefit cuts is they are using words very cleverly.

We are not cutting Child Benefit.  True, but the Income support that you use to feed the child is being cut in real terms.

We are not cutting disability benefits. True, but the Income support that you use to feed yourself is being cut in real terms.

We are not cutting Income Support, we are raising it by one percent. OK we get 70p increase while inflation takes our weekly shop up by 5.
Tony.

"I choose not to place "DIS", in my ability." - Robert M. Hensel

huhn

  • *
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 913
I send a complaint to the ministry in Cyprus against the cuts of child benefit and reducing the allowance for children with special needs. The answer came per post on the 24. December. The minister wrote, there were no cuts, but we are just not more qualifying for Child benefit as unemployed people and people with special needs are not more qualifying for extra payments for nappies, special food, wheelchairs etc. I do not know what is the difference between cuts and not more qualifying. The result is the same and when nobody qualifys then it must be a cut. Or???? >doh<

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
Hi

yes the result is the same, but technically they are different: if you make a cut, you take away something which someone already receives.  e.g.  person A has been receiving unemployment benefit for a year, each week she has received 50.   Now there is a cut, so from now on, she will receive 45 per week.

If they impose new criteria for qualifying then:

Person B qualified a year ago for a disability benefit, if the criteria are changed on 1 Jan for qualifying for that benefit, then person B continues to get the benefit after 1 Jan; but person C, who has exactly the same circumstances as person B and applies on Jan 2 for the disability benefit, person C is refused the benefit.

regards, Deb