Tag Archives: disability living allowance

Opinion: 2013’s banana skin?

Banana skin - Some rights reserved by purplemattfishThe LibDem Voice end of year survey gives us, as usual, much food for thought.

Net approval of the coalition’s record is down to 14% from 41% a year before. “Three big hits seem to have been responsible: first, the row over the NHS Bill; secondly, the omnishambolic March budget; and thirdly, the collapse of Lords reform”.

What issues might derail us this year? One is slowly poisoning our society, and with it the claims of the Liberal Democrats to be a party of fairness.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 37 Comments

Opinion: what’s wrong with Personal Independence Payments?

I joined the Lib Dems only a couple of months ago after being a long time voter. In fact, I first voted Lib Dem back in 2001 at my very first election. I decided to join now because I wanted to become more politically active and because I was deeply unhappy with some of the policies of the Government. I’m totally blind, have been since the age of 5 and am extremely disturbed by the removal of Disability Living Allowance and its replacement by Personal Independence Payments.

There’s a great deal I could say about the current proposals and how they …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 10 Comments

The path to 2015 should be one guided by our principles, not by doubt

Before the Christmas break, I produced an article on Lib Dem Voice about how the EU veto could and should be the first step of many where our party expresses its individuality in coalition loud and clear. After this blog I saw many opinion articles about where we stood on various issues. The conclusion? Varied.

Let’s just take one example – tuition fees. Some of us think we will be congratulated at the next General Election for making the loans system fairer. Wrong. While ensuring that up-front fees are in the past and protecting graduates by asking no one to

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 17 Comments

Opinion: Welfare reform – LibDems must stand up for the vulnerable

The Commons have already passed, and the Lords are currently voting on, the Welfare Reform Bill. It contains provisions which will scrap the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and replace it with the Personal Independence Payment (PIP). It also contains changes to time limit receipt of contributory Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) (a sickness and disability benefit) to a maximum of 12 months.

As has been pointed out by Lib Dem blogger Caron Lindsay, the change to ESA is utterly destructive and senseless.

The arbitrary time limiting of ESA is, incidentally, also directly against official party policy as set out in

Posted in Op-eds | 33 Comments

Lord German writes… A benefits system that works: the Welfare Reform Bill in the House of Lords

As Co-Chair of the Parliamentary Party Committee on Work and Pensions the Welfare Reform Bill has absorbed most of the past year. It is now in the final stages of passage through the House of Lords. There has been some negative press surrounding the Bill, which is clouding aspects that have been long term goals of the Liberal Democrats.

A big first step is being taken towards our long term ambition of merging tax and benefits. Our benefit system is the most complex and cumbersome system in the developed world. It requires an annual book to be published which explains …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 36 Comments

Jenny Willott MP writes… Protecting a lifeline – Lib Dem success in battle for DLA Mobility Component

With all the headlines and discussion this week about the Autumn Statement and public sector strikes, people would have been forgiven for missing an announcement from the Minister for Disabled People, Maria Miller MP, that proves once again the Lib Dem influence in Government, and fulfilling yet another Conference motion.

Maria Miller has today announced that the Government is dropping the proposals to remove the Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) from people in residential care homes.

The reversal answers the calls our Party made last Spring in Liverpool, where we passed a motion calling for the plan to be dropped. …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 12 Comments

Steve Webb’s speech to the Liberal Democrat conference

The other day, someone came up to me and said:

“Steve, you’re an above-average pensions minister!”

In a world where praise can be a bit hard to come by, I took that as a compliment.

But he quickly said:

“No, I didn’t mean that you’re good at your job, I meant you’ve survived longer than most pension ministers!”

And when I inquired, I found out that I was, indeed, the 11th different pensions minister in the last 14 years.

So it is hardly suprising that pensions policy has been a bit piecemeal and messy over the years.

Every change with the best of intentions, but put it …

Posted in Conference | Also tagged | 5 Comments

The Independent View: Coerced, bullied and fighting back: living with Multiple Sclerosis and Welfare Reform

I am a 54 year old woman who has had Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis for around 6 years. It involves increasing pain and loss of mobility and, as there is no remission, only progression, it takes me all of my energies to manage.

After the legion of neurological symptoms forced me to give up work I have had to endure the trauma of an Employment and Support Allowance “medical assessment” by ATOS Healthcare (a French private contractor), I have struggled to attend the mandatory Work Related Activity Group, which was not a safe place in my worsening condition.

I waited months for an appeal and won, but live in fear of the brown Department of Work & Pensions envelope that indicates that the whole sorry process will start again, as appears to be the case for many who win their appeals.

If the Welfare Reform Bill is agreed this week, I face the same stress and anxiety in yet another assessment, to test for an already proven condition, in order to retain high rate mobility Disability Living Allowance (DLA) in its new guise as Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged , , , , , , and | 35 Comments

Independent View: the Broken of Britain campaign against Welfare Reform Bill

Earlier in March The Broken of Britain launched a campaign against the “anti-disability” provisions in the Welfare Reform Bill, the Government’s main plank for a raft of cuts affecting disabled people. Campaigners, politicians and academics are all agreed that parts of the Bill will cause hardship for disabled people.

A disabled person lies on the beach, having fallen from a wheelchair

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged , , and | 35 Comments



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJohn Dunn 24th Oct - 9:42am
    John Tilley writes : "Of course a few sacred cows might have to be humanely destroyed..." Indeed. Like the EU 'mafia', who have just demanded...
  • User AvatarLiberal Al 24th Oct - 9:42am
    "The people in Hong Kong currently taking part in the “umbrella” protests there are being treated better by the police and Beijing than UK citizens...
  • User AvatarMatthew Huntbach 24th Oct - 9:33am
    John Tilley You deride protesters as “stuck-up middle class types” and “trendy-wendies”. Nobody has ever described me as Ike that before. Well, it seems my...
  • User AvatarMalcolm Todd 24th Oct - 9:33am
    John Tilley :D Congratulations -- I think that's the best play on JBT's name yet (better than any of mine certainly) -- and lord knows...
  • User AvatarIgor Sagdejev 24th Oct - 9:30am
    I don't think this charge is political, but it is no good to demand a lot of money from several countries on a short notice...
  • User AvatarRobin McGhee 24th Oct - 9:28am
    Pleased to see my post has, in LDV terms, been successful- lots of ranting in the comments! To clarify a couple of things from my...