One of the UK’s leading disabled people’s organisations has issued a list of important issues it says the new Tory minority government must consider to help improve the lives of disabled people, including abolishing ‘bedroom tax’ and replacing the hated work capability assessment.
Disability Rights UK (DRUK) has outlined what it would like to see from the new government and says it is willing to work with the government to help bring about those changes.
Firstly, the charity has urged the Conservatives to move forward with their manifesto commitment to review the Mental Health Act.
They also urge the new government to outline “concrete plans” on how it it intends to get an additional one million disabled people into work.
Moving away from pledges included in the Conservative Party manifesto, DRUK has highlighted “ten priorities” it says need to addressed to improve the lives of people with disabilities and/or long-term illness.
These 10 priorities are as follows:
- Ending social care charging for disabled people of working age
- The replacement of WCA for ESA and Universal Credit with a new system that reflects the true barriers disabled people face in obtaining work; and is capable of identifying the support needed to overcome these barriers
- The removal of the benefits sanctions system and the introduction of better employment support, including peer support
- The abolition of the bedroom tax
- The addition of the severe disability premium within Universal Credit and a new disabled child addition
- Allow those disabled people who submit fit notes to again be treated as having a limited capacity for work until they have had a work capability assessment
- Give Universal Credit entitlement to disabled students on the same basis as ESA
- The house building strategy to require building to lifetime homes accessible standards
- Ensure that disabled people are included in apprenticeship schemes
- Government to use its powers of procurement to ensure those it contracts with set a baseline for the employment of disabled people and set targets for increasing the recruitment/retention of disabled employees
Sue Bott, Deputy CEO DR UK said: “We look forward to meeting the new ministers with portfolios relevant to disabled people once appointed.
“We want to work constructively with the new Government to improve the lives of disabled people in the UK.
“We hope there will be opportunities to contribute our own ideas and that in turn Ministers will listen, and act on, the very real difficulties many disabled people currently face.”