The government is set to slash benefits intended to meet the additional cost of living with a disability warning that up to 640,000 people could be affected by 2021.
The shocking announcement follows a recent consultation into Personal Independence Payments (PIP) – the benefit currently being rolled out to replace Disability Living Allowance. This benefit is awarded based on a points system which assesses addional costs incurred due to disability such as care or mobility needs. In a press release issued this morning the DWP have said that in future the numbers of points awarded to people who need some form of aid or appliance to help them dress or manage toilet needs will be halved.
According the department this is because much of the equipment needed by disabled people to manage these activites is available for one one off purchase at a low price or can sometimes be accessed for free from local councils or the NHS. The key word here being sometimes. If a disabled person needs a ceiling hoist to help them dress, or a specially adapted toilet, and their local authority will not pay for it, then unless they can find the money they will not be able to do these things unassisted. And this money may have to come out of meagre out-of-work sickness benefits, soon to be slashed to just over £70 a week for some disabled people.
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