PIP and Reform

By: A.C.

On this blog, it is quite clear from my previous articles, that I have tried to highlight the unfairness of the welfare reforms and how that causes continual uncertainty, a feeling of being “ got at” just for being disabled , and the real factual state of poverty brought about by the implementation of these reforms on genuine claimants . We know well the rise in the use of food banks for example.

At Holyrood a report by the Welfare Reforms Committee on Disabled people, has produced a report which does take a bit of reading, but an extract from the document states.

  • Of the 190,000 existing DLA claimants in Scotland who will be reassessed for PIP,it is expected that around 105,000 working-age disabled people will lose some or all their disability benefits by 2018, with a loss of at least £1,120 per year.
  • Including reassessed and (projected) new claims, approximately 66,000 few individuals in Scotland will receive DLA/PIP by 2018, due to the introduction of PIP.
  • Approximately 47,000 fewer disabled people in Scotland are expected to receive the PIP enhanced rate mobility component than would have received the equivalent DLA component if DLA were not replaced by PIP. If these claimants receive the PIP standard rate mobility component instead, they face a loss of income of around £35 per week (£1,820 per year), while if they lose all eligibility for the mobility component, they face a loss of income of around £57 per week (£2,964 per year).

These reforms were announced in January of this year by the DWP and the UK Government and they were rolled out in areas in the south and central regions of Scotland, will now come into effect across Scotland as a whole.

The Press release from the Scottish Government reporting the findings of the Welfare Reforms on Disabled People Committee can be found here.

One has to accept this committee’s findings as factual, based on their evidence and research of the DWP Reforms. To do otherwise is call their professionalism and that of their researchers and the civil servants into question. Unfortunately the report gets lost in the noise of politicians using it as weapon to belt each other and they do exactly that.

For thousands of disabled people, the report makes it clear there are no ifs or buts, and the UK welfare reforms will see the payments change.

The UK Government always makes the point that that reform was necessary. However, this was done against a backdrop of demonisation of the disabled, as though they were all engaged in fraud, theft and embezzlement of welfare. This has resulted in a lack of compassion and sense in the implementation of the reform. You can access the BBC Report that was scathing about Triage contractor for ATOS in Aberdeen via one of our other articles.

For those who have been disabled by disease, genetics, road accident, warfare, criminal acts etc, the juggernaut of Welfare Reform rolls on, leaving misery, confusion and despair in its wake.

I think it is clear that all disabled people want, is to be treated with respect, fairness and equality’ in the knowledge that the “ powers that be” are not using them as a political football.

At least at AAD we try to understand people, and their situations, and help them through the minefield of forms, and legislation. This is not always easy, because the UK Government keep changing the goalposts and we are always looking for expertise, and help from those who have that knowledge in the field.

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