Friday, 2 August 2013

'Welfare reforms make no sense' - Katy Clark MP

Katy Clark MP has voiced her anger at the impact UK Government policies are having on disabled people.

Ms Clark spoke out during an Opposition Day debate in the House of Commons, which called on the Tory-Lib Dem Government to conduct a ‘cumulative impact assessment’ to determine how the disabled are being affected by welfare reforms.

 Katy Clark said, “Whenever I hold events in my constituency on issues such as the Bedroom Tax and welfare changes, I hear from carers who look after people with disabilities.  Their stories reinforce my belief that it makes no economic or social sense to target this group of people. 

“Often those affected by welfare reforms live in social housing where a large amount of money has been spent on adaptations to meet the needs of people with disabilities.  Putting such people in a situation where they may not be able to continue to live in their property makes no sense whatsoever.”

Ms Clark, MP for North Ayrshire & Arran, said various studies in Scotland showed that £1bn is expected to be “taken out of the pockets of those who currently receive disability benefits.”  The MP added, “Citizens Advice has said that across the UK, up to half-a-million disabled people will lose out, just because of the change to Universal Credit.  As we move towards those changes and the Personal Independence Payment, a cumulative range of impacts will disproportionately affect those with disabilities.”

The Labour MP says the Tories and Lib Dems have “no mandate for targeting those with disabilities,” noting, “We know the Government does not like impact assessments because of what they reveal, but we need them to tell the truth about the impact of their policies on disabled people.”

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