A GLASGOW group has branded the UK government’s changes to Disability Living Allowance a breach of disabled people’s human rights.
The Glasgow Disability Alliance (GDA) went on to describe the ceasing of lifelong DLA payments as “unfair and unjust” to people who depend on these payments.
The UK government is phasing out Disability Living Allowance and introducing Personal independence Payment.
One contentious change is that of a test of ability, which was once measured as if you cannot walk more than 50 metres you received payment.
This has been reduced to 20 metres under PIP to receive the enhanced payment.
The decision has also been condemned by Disability Rights UK.
Nick Henderson of the GDA said the 50 metre-rule was a benchmark used “of significant mobility impairment, including for blue parking badges and in official guidance on creating accessible built environment, such as how close parking spaces have to be built”.
Mr Henderson also claimed that these alterations could see disabled people left unable to hire or buy specialist, powered wheelchair scooters, effectively confining them to their homes.
Mr Henderson continued: “Depriving disabled people of independent mobility will increase costs elsewhere due to the knock-on effects in health and social care services and breaches their human rights, including the right to independent living.”
Tressa Burke, chief executive of the Glasgow Disability Alliance, told The Extra: “There is a perfect storm of cuts to services, reduced access to justice, welfare reform and back-door taxes through community care charges, which are violating the human rights of disabled people right now in our country.
“Disabled people are facing destitution as a result of welfare reform.
“It is of grave concern to GDA and to the nation that there are now at least four suicides a week in Glasgow.
“This is intolerable in a wealthy and supposedly civilised society and action needs to be taken now to support the people most affected.”
n Glasgow Disability Alliance are offering help to those who are confused or need help with the changes to DLA. Contact them on 0141 556 7103.