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Soaring costs hit Disabled people

27 October 2022

The Greater Manchester Disabled Peoples Panel has released shocking findings on the impact of the cost of living crisis on Disabled people.

It is the largest current survey of disabled people in the UK, led and designed by Disabled people.

Over 1,495 Disabled people responded to the survey. In addition the GM Disabled People’s Panel ran focus groups for disabled people for whom an on-line survey was inaccessible.

The findings show that the situation for Disabled people has greatly worsened since the last survey in 2020 .

The current survey findings show a large increase in disabled people whose quality of life is being severely negatively impacted by rising prices, higher bills and inadequate social care.

20% of Disabled people could sometimes afford essential items, while 28% could afford only essential items but nothing else. A quarter of respondents said that they have had to use a foodbank while 68% have changed the food they eat to save money.

While on Social care 29% questioned said it was worse than 2 years ago and that it did not fully meet their need for a social life or their wellbeing.

The report highlights what the Government needs to do to support Disabled people, including increasing  the income of Disabled people, urgent uprating of benefits and the introduction of social tariffs for energy.

Andy Burnham Mayor of Manchester said of the report’s findings that: “No decisions should be made until [this survey report] has been fully absorbed at a Westminster and Whitehall level because this is the picture that needs to guide all of those decisions.” adding that “there is nothing left to cut, actually, other than people's hope''

Dan White Policy and Campaigns officer at Disability Rights UK said: “While this report is based on responses from Disabled people in the Greater Manchester area, it highlights the experiences of Disabled people across the UK.

"The findings should act as a wake up call to Government to get a hold of this crisis and increase incomes and improve services for Disabled people. Benefits need to be increased in line with inflation, additional financial support for energy costs put in place  and public services protected”. 

The full report is available from gmdisabledpeoplespanel.com.