100,000 fam­i­lies with dis­abled chil­dren will be £1,750 worse off

Daily Mirror - - NEWS -

AS many as 100,000 fam­i­lies with dis­abled chil­dren could be more than £1,750 a year worse off un­der uni­ver­sal credit, a char­ity warns.

An anal­y­sis by char­ity Con­tact re­vealed the re­forms will re­sult in £175mil­lion less be­ing spent on dis­abled kids than un­der the cur­rent sys­tem.

With UC, a pay­ment known as the “lower dis­abled child el­e­ment” has been halved. This ap­plies to all dis­abled kids ex­cept those on the high­est rate of the DLA care com­po­nent and those reg­is­tered blind. In most cases, only those need­ing 24-hour care qual­ify for the top rate.

In June, min­is­ters rolled out pro­tec­tions for dis­abled adults fac­ing cuts on UC – but fam­i­lies with dis­abled kids were not in­cluded.

Con­tact’s Una Sum­mer­son said: “Why would any govern­ment in­tro­duce a sys­tem that makes car­ing for a dis­abled child more dif­fi­cult?”

Marie Collins, of Bat­tersea, South Lon­don, has boys of six and seven with ADHD and autism.

She said: “[I have] been told I will lose £67 a week or £3,500 a year. It seems un­fair.”

Kath­leen Max-Lino, of Peck­ham, South East Lon­don, who has two chil­dren with sickle cell disease and speech and lan­guage dif­fi­cul­ties, said: “I will get £33 a week less for my dis­abled daugh­ter. It would be dif­fi­cult to deal with.”

PM Theresa May says no­body mov­ing to UC will lose out. But Con­tact says many fam­i­lies’ pay­ments will be “eroded” as changes in cir­cum­stances make them in­el­i­gi­ble for £3bil­lion of “tran­si­tional” pro­tec­tion.

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