Councils could be left to “pick up the pieces” resulting from the government’s decision to ditch a means-tested premium for disabled people with high support needs, a shadow minister has warned.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has always made it clear that it plans to abolish severe disability premium (SDP) as part of its move to universal credit, which is gradually replacing six benefits with one single, monthly, means-tested payment.
But a parliamentary answer this week by the minister for disabled people, Justin Tomlinson, appears to confirm that although SDP is being ditched as claimants are moved to the new universal credit over the next four years, there are no plans to provide funding to help cash-strapped councils meet the resulting extra pressure on social care needs.
SDP is currently set at nearly £62 a week, and is aimed at helping those receiving means-tested benefits with the extra costs of disability.
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