Disabled people have right to know findings of mobility benefit review
31 May 2011
It has emerged that the Department of Work and Pensions is not planning to publish the conclusions of a review into mobility benefit cuts for disabled people.
In a written response to a parliamentary question about the
review of the withdrawal of the mobility component of the
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) from disabled people living in
registered care, Minister for Disabled People, Maria Miller, stated
that the Department had no plans to publish the findings of the
The parliamentary question was put forward by Margaret Curran,
Glasgow East MP and Shadow Work and Pensions Minister.
Responding to this development, Capability Scotland Director of
External Affairs, Richard Hamer, commented:
"Capability Scotland is shocked by claims that the UK Government is
not planning to publish the findings of a crucial review of
mobility benefit for disabled Scots.
"The Government's plan to axe the mobility component of Disability
Living Allowance (DLA) from disabled people living in registered
care is one of the most controversial proposals in the Welfare
Reform Bill because of the massive impact it will have on thousands
of disabled people across the UK - including 6000 people in
"Capability welcomed the Government's decision earlier this year to
reconsider withdrawing the benefit and we know many disabled people
are anxiously waiting for the outcome of its review. The news that
the findings are to be kept secret will come as a real blow to
people who already feel victimised and undervalued by the proposed
"Research commissioned by Capability and Margaret Blackwood Housing
Association and undertaken by the Strathclyde Centre for Disability
Research demonstrates how the removal of DLA from those in
residential care will prevent disabled people in Scotland from
doing everyday things that so many take for granted. Visiting
family and friends, seeing the doctor or simply being able to go to
a park on a nice day will be denied to thousands. As one individual
who uses Capability's services puts it, these changes would result
in 'a permanent state of cabin fever'.
"The fact that the Government has proposed these cuts is bad
enough, but to keep the findings of the review a secret is wholly
unacceptable and demonstrates a total disregard for the views and
opinions of the people who will be most affected by them.
"Capability would urge the Government to honour its commitment to
listening to and consulting with disabled people and make the
findings of this review public."