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					Changes to the welfare system:
 implications for people with a
       learning disability
            Tatu Delaney
      Regional Campaigns Officer
           September 2012
  Overview
• Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) &
  the Work Capability Assessment (WCA)
• DLA reform – the new Personal Independence
  Payment (PIP)
• Wider changes under the Welfare Reform Act
  2012:
   – Housing Benefit changes
   – A new Universal Credit
Part one – Employment and
Support Allowance (ESA) and
the Work Capability
Assessment (WCA)
   ESA and the WCA (1)
• ESA to replace Incapacity Benefit, Income Support
  (because of a disability), and Severe Disability
  Allowance.
• New claims from October 2008, ALL existing
  claimants from April 2011 – March 2014.
• 1.5 million people being re-assessed.
• New assessment underpinning ESA – the WCA.
• No exempt group as per the previous PCA – small
  number of exceptions. Likely that many of the
  people we support will be called in for a face to
  face assessment with a medical practitioner.
• If a claimant does not attend the WCA they face a
  sanction.
                ESA and the WCA (2)

                                                 Limited
          Limited                              capability   Yes   Support
         capability         Eligible for                          group
                      Yes                       for work
         for work?             ESA
                                                 related
WCA
                                                activity?
              No
                                                N
         Fails the                              o
          WCA                                 Work-related
                                              activity
                                              group

      Apply for JSA
                                       6 work focused interviews and
                                         some work related activity
IB migration - reassessment process
1) Near review date – letter from JCP
2) Telephone call from JCP
3) ESA 50 form
4) WCA (for the majority) – claimants can take a
   supporter, they can request help with taxi fares,
   in some cases they may be able to be examined
   at home
5) A decision maker will telephone to inform claimant of
   decision they are likely to make
 ESA claimants – what will
 they have to do?
• 6 work focused interviews
   – Identify activities or training that may help
     claimant move towards work
• Work-related activity
   – “activity which makes it more likely that a
     person will obtain or remain in work or be
     able to do so”
   – Welfare Reform Act inserts ‘work
     experience’
• Take part in Work Programme if required
Implications for people with a
learning disability

  • Supportive of broad principles of ESA
  BUT
  • Too many people being found ‘fit for work’
  • Staff training issues – DWP and Atos staff
  • Increased conditionality – but are claimants
    getting the right support?
Part two – Reform of DLA
and the new Personal
Independence Payment (PIP)
DLA reform – the proposal
  • Replacement of DLA with the Personal Independence
    Payment or PIP (working age adults only)
  • Rising caseload and expenditure unsustainable
     – More enabling – helping people to manage their
        disability or condition
     – Periodic review
     – No automatic entitlement
  • PIP to be introduced 2013/14 – daily living and mobility
    component
  • To remains a non-means tested, extra costs benefit
  • Context: estimated 500,000 less people will receive PIP
    than under DLA
              Before and after… DLA to PIP
                                           Non-
                                          means
             DLA                          tested                           PIP


  CARE             MOBILITY                Extra         DAILY LIVING            MOBILITY
component          component               costs          component              component


Highest rate £77   Higher rate £54                        Enhanced rate          Enhanced rate


Middle rate £52     Lower rate £21                        Standard rate          Standard rate


Lowest rate £21                      Automatic entitlement for those
                                     with “severe learning disabilities”
DLA to PIP – next steps
• New assessment being designed –
  consultation on assessment and thresholds
  taken place
• Regulations expected Autumn 2012 (i.e.
  some of the details – rates, finalised
  assessment etc)
• Key dates
   – April 2013: PIP for new claimants
   – Autumn 2013 (- 2016): PIP migration
     Implications for people with a
     learning disability

• Half a million people to lose out
• Focus on those with the “greatest need”
• A threat to independent living?
• The draft assessment – will it allow people with lower
  level needs to meet the threshold for eligibility?
• Will the assessment process work for people with a
  learning disability?
• Impact on passported benefits?
Part three – wider changes
under the Welfare Reform
Act 2012
    Housing Changes
•   New size criteria (under occupancy / bed room tax)
     – 450,000 disabled people affected
     – Some exceptions for those with a social care package
       including overnight carer
•   Household benefit cap
     – Upper limit, family: £26k (£500 / week)
     – Upper limit, single person £19k (£350 / week)
     – Exemptions – DLA recipient
•   Council Tax Benefit
     – Outside the Universal Credit
     – Council discretion, but with Government requirement to
       achieve 10% cut whilst maintaining concessions for older
       people
 Universal Credit
• To replace all means-tested support (i.e. Income Support,
  income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, income-related
  Employment and Support Allowance, Housing Benefit,
  Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit).
• Aim: improve work incentives (i.e. people are often not
  better off in work) and to make the system less
  complicated.
• Basic allowance + additional elements for disability,
  children, housing costs etc.
• First individuals expected to enter the new system from
  2013.
• Great in principle, but some issues with the details:
   – Loss of Severe Disability Premium
   – Children’s disability additions
Any questions or comments?

				
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posted:11/5/2012
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