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ILF closure: what you can do

01 April 2014

Yesterday Baroness Campbell of Surbiton raised a question, on the Independent Living Fund, for short debate in the Lords Grand Committee

Independent living Fund debate: Lords Grand Committee

The question asked by Baroness Campbell of Surbiton was:

“To ask Her Majesty’s Government what arrangements they are putting in place to ensure that disabled people currently in receipt of money from the Independent Living Fund will not be left in hardship when the Fund is wound up next year and the responsibility for Fund recipients is handed to local authorities.”

You can view the debate, which began at 5.14pm, at http://www.parliamentlive.tv/Main/Player.aspx?meetingId=15221

You can also read a transcript of the debate at http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld201314/ldhansrd/lhan138.pdf

Disability Rights UK has produced a Briefing on the closure of the Independent Living Fund (ILF)

What you can do

Get your MP to sign Early day motion 1234 to Save the Independent Living Fund

The Motion states:

“That this House is deeply concerned by the plan to close, by June 2015, the Independent Living Fund (ILF) on which over 18,000 severely disabled people rely instead of being in residential care; questions the Government's rationale for local authorities taking over this funding given their higher overheads and squeezed budgets; notes that experts believe this financial pressure and loss of experienced ILF staff will mean current recipients will be placed in residential care or left at home without adequate care provision; further notes that many users will no longer be eligible for any local authority care funding because of tightening of eligibility criteria; is aware that the average cost of the ILF at £345 per week is less than half that of the average cost of residential care at £738 per week; is reminded that in November 2013 the Court of Appeal upheld a legal challenge to the Government's decision to close the ILF in March 2015, because the Department for Work and Pensions had breached equality duties; and urges the Government to respect its obligations under the UN Convention of the Rights of Disabled Persons by maintaining the ILF and reopening applications which were closed in 2010.”

You can find out who your MP is at http://findyourmp.parliament.uk/