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DR UK response to the Summer Budget

08 July 2015

Commenting on the budget, Liz Sayce, CEO of Disability Rights UK said:

“We desperately needed a budget which supports disabled people to be more independent and helps those who can work into employment. Policies to make that happen would alleviate poverty and cut the welfare bill – both priorities for this government.

“Today’s announcements offered disappointment, not practical support, and will leave swathes of disabled people worse off. There might be a heatwave coming, but for many disabled people there’s a chill in the air.”

On the scrapping of the WRAG rate:

“The loss of the WRAG rate, which is designed to support disabled people back into work, is a bitter blow. Many disabled people want to work. Becoming disabled through an accident, or getting cancer, or some other condition, can happen to anyone. Managing that kind of life changing event is hard enough; a 30% drop in income makes it much, much, harder. In the meantime we are unclear whether these changes include the nearly half a million people currently waiting for a Work Capability Assessment outcome.

“The Chancellor could have been much more proactive by expanding the Access to Work scheme, which helps disabled people to get and keep jobs, as well as improving the current Work Programme, which has a terrible track record in helping people into long term employment."

On the lowering of the benefit cap:

“Some disabled people are exempt from the benefit cap, but many are not – and that number is going to increase by around 20% as disability living allowance is replaced by the new personal independence payment, which has much stricter criteria.“