Poverty and Social Security

The Westminster Government’s cuts to benefits labelled “welfare reforms” have unfairly targeted and impacted disabled people. Over half of all the cuts made to welfare fall on disabled people and our families. The Covid-19 pandemic has shone a light on the impact of years of austerity for disabled people.

There is a new Scottish system of social security for some of the benefits disabled people use. There is a Charter for how the new Scottish Social Security Agency will operate including that they will treat people with dignity and respect. Disabled people, and other benefit claimants, were part of an Experience Panel to develop the charter and other elements of the new benefits. Inclusion Scotland has helped inform and shape the new benefits, including how they will be delivered.

  • Nearly half (49%) of all those living in poverty in the UK, are either disabled people or live in a household containing a disabled person. (Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Feb 2020)
  • Research by Demos found that, over 5 years (2012 – 2017) 3.7 million disabled people throughout the UK would lose over £27 billion in benefits due to seven different benefit cuts.
  • 24% of people living in poverty in Scotland live in a household with a disabled person, rising to 30% when benefits such as Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payment and Attendance Allowance are not counted.  This compares to a poverty rate of 17% for people who live in a household with no disabled people.
  • More than half (52%) of those on the Higher Rate Mobility component of Disability Living Allowance have lost it when they were reassessed for PIP and this has led to over 100,000 disabled people losing their motability vehicles across the UK.
  • Less than half disabled people of working age are in work. See our employment page for more information.
  • COVID-19 update -A survey carried out by Citizens Advice Scotland found that one in four disabled people (27%) were facing redundancy. This rose to 37% of those who said their impairment had a large impact on their day to day lives.

Have an application for PIP in that is not seeming to progress? I’ve read they are pushing these aside to prioritise new claims (to Universal Credit) which will leave me with no money for food after bills are paid.

How can we reduce disabled people’s poverty and make Social Security more accessible?

  • Use Scottish Social Security powers to help reduce the number of disabled people living in poverty
  • Reduce child poverty by increasing funding for the Scottish Welfare Fund and assisting families in priority groups, including families with disabled children.
  • Run campaigns to ensure everyone who should be in receipt of the new Scottish Disability Payments, Children’s Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payment or Attendance Allowance is getting it.

Learn more in our briefing on using Scottish Social Security powers to help reduce the number of disabled people living in poverty.

Scottish Parliament Manifesto Briefing – Poverty and Social Security (PDF)

A briefing created for the Scottish Parliament Elections 2021 on the need to use Scottish Social Security powers to help reduce the number of disabled people living in poverty.

Scottish Parliament Manifesto Briefing – Poverty and Social Security (Word Doc)

A briefing created for the Scottish Parliament Elections 2021 on the need to use Scottish Social Security powers to help reduce the number of disabled people living in poverty.

 

Poverty and Social Security Resources

Inclusion Scotland Briefing – Mandatory Reconsiderations

Date of publication: 8 December 2017

 

Inclusion Scotland response to Adult Disability Payment consultation March 2021

In February 2021 Inclusion Scotland ran a survey to ask disabled people their views on key aspects of the Adult Disability Payment draft regulations. Adult Disability Payment is a new Scottish benefit which will replace Personal Independence Payment for eligible disabled people aged 16 to 64. It will be delivered by Social Security Scotland from spring 2022.

Over 300 people responded to the survey and we used the findings to write a response to the Scottish Government’s consultation on the regulations which closed on Monday 15 March 2021.

We also ran a webinar for Inclusion Scotland members on Monday 1 March where we had an in-depth discussion about some of the issues in the consultation. This also informed our consultation response.

This report sets out what disabled people told us and our response to the Scottish Government’s consultation.

If you require this report in an alternative format please contact research@inclusionscotland.org.

Disabled People’s views on the draft Adult Disability Payment Regulations (PDF)

This report set’s out Inclusion Scotland’s response to the Adult Disability Payment consultation March 2021.

Disabled People’s views on the draft Adult Disability Payment Regulations (Word)

This report set’s out Inclusion Scotland’s response to the Adult Disability Payment consultation March 2021.