Rambling and Funds

By: A.C.

I saw a BBC News report about the Disabled Ramblers Association demanding better access to the countryside by changing the gates for access and so on.

With all the confusion, fear and reports about people being stripped of their PIP/DLA or even having their Higher Rate Mobility component affected, I was rather curious to say the least about what appears on the surface, to be a report about a group of disabled people on very expensive all –terrain machines, which can vary in price, quality of build, and whether new or used, from £500 to £10,000.

However, once I started to look into this absolute minefield of who is actually allowed mobility, I found blogs, forums, and disability websites about people scared stiff, reporting that folk have had the mobility component stripped out of their benefit, thus ending their Motability. It became clear, that this simple Ramblers story about more access, contains many aspects of specialist knowledge on PIP, Motability, who is eligible and how to use the component payment – if granted – is all a bit of nightmare.

It does seem though, on researching though, that many people do not qualify for the Higher Rate Mobility Component any more, and in one case a girl with a rare disease, because she was taking further treatment to help her, was told she was putting her PIP/DLA at risk.

It is good that the profile of disabled ramblers on scooters is raised, and publicising the fact that disabled people do enjoy getting out and about, whether on these expensive machines or not.

I do have a little discomfort with this BBC story, because I know there will be many disabled people who will not be able to afford such expensive machines, maintain them, get spares or repairs, and have little access anyway, even though these machines can be hired. I am sure there are folk out there who have a rusting mobility scooter in a shed, and cannot even afford to get it fixed.

However, I am not an expert on PIP/DLA/ Motability or how one can even get to the stage of owning, maintain or affording such a machine.

The real experts are those who have gone through the system. They have inside knowledge that can be shared with others.

So tell us about your personal experience. Tell us how PIP/DLA or the removal of it, has affected you and how your mobility allowance is working for you by commenting below.

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