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Scope responds to the health and disability green paper on welfare

Scope has commented on shaping future support: the health and disability green paper. 

James Taylor, Executive Director of Strategy at disability equality charity Scope, said:

“It’s absolutely right that the government is looking at how to improve the welfare system for disabled people. But if this green paper is to have any positive impact for disabled people, it cannot simply tinker at the edges. The last 20 years have seen successive governments tweak the welfare system at huge costs but despite this, almost two million more disabled households have fallen into poverty in the same time period. Something isn’t working.

“We need a welfare system and assessment process that ensures disabled people’s needs are met. It should provide support to disabled people in and out of work, to help offset the extra costs they face, and ultimately to improve lives. Instead, disabled people and their families are being trapped in poverty and ground down by a system which doesn’t work.

“The constant stress, uncertainty and distress the system creates are the result of a process that penalises and treats disabled people unfairly, instead of supporting families to have a decent standard of living.

“Overhauling the woefully flawed assessment process has to be a priority. The high rate of successful appeals demonstrates the scale of the problem. It is vital that disabled people receive the right decision first time, instead of facing more months of stress and hardship to get the support they need.

“Now more than ever, we need to see this consultation lead to ambitious change, set out how the UK economy can benefit from all that disabled people can bring, and put disabled people’s experiences at its heart.”

For more information call the Scope press office on 0207 619 7200 or email pressoffice@scope.org.uk

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