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Personal Independence Payment briefing notes and draft assessment regulations - closes 6st June & 1st August 2011

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kevin
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To support the Welfare Reform Bill as it progresses through Parliament, we have published briefing notes to set out key elements of policy relating to the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and provide greater clarity on our proposals.

As further policy decisions are made we will update this page.

Briefing notes

Draft assessment criteria

Ministers have committed to publishing initial draft regulations for the PIP assessment criteria and the required period conditions to inform discussion at Commons Committee stage of the Welfare Reform Bill. To provide context to our early development work and the draft assessment regulations, we have also published an explanatory technical note. This outlines our plans for refinement and testing of the initial draft criteria.

Comment on the draft criteria

We would welcome your views on these initial draft criteria for the PIP assessment.

We will consider comments received by 6 June 2011 before we test the likely impact of the draft criteria during the summer.

We will consider comments received by 1 August 2011 following completion of the summer testing when we will seek to refine the criteria further, as necessary.

Changes made to the criteria as a result of refinement and testing will be reflected in a second draft of the assessment criteria and regulations, to be published in the autumn.

Please send your comments on the initial draft of the PIP assessment criteria to:

Email: PIP.assessment@dwp.gsi.gov.uk<

DLA Reform – Assessment Development
Department for Work and Pensions
2nd Floor, Area B
Caxton House
Tothill Street
London
SW1H 9NA

http://www.dwp.gov.uk/policy/welfare-reform/legislation-and-key-documents/welfare-reform-bill-2011/personal-independence-payment-briefing/

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kevin
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The Government has released draft regulations for the new benefit, Personal Independence Payment (PIP), which will replace Disability Living Allowance (DLA) from 2013/14.  These regulations include the first details of the new assessment for PIP.  DWP has also released an explanatory note with more details on the assessment:

http://www.dwp.gov.uk/policy/welfare-reform/legislation-and-key-documents/welfare-reform-bill-2011/personal-independence-payment-briefing/<

DWP is seeking comments by 6 June 2011 from people with disabilities and the organisations who support them.  This is a good opportunity to highlight any unfair impact this will have on people living with HIV at an early stage of development of the assessment.

NAT is planning to respond, and would be grateful for any comments from UKCAB members on how they think the new assessment would impact on people living with HIV.

As well as this initial call for comment on the PIP assessment, DWP has set out a timetable for engagement with disabled people and support organisations so that the assessment may be further developed:

• 9 May-6 June: Engage disabled people and their organisations to gather comments on this draft. Concurrently, carry out an exercise to ascertain if it is accurately and consistently assessing individuals.
• Mid-late June: Revise and refine the criteria if necessary.
• Mid June-1 August: Engage disabled people and their organisations for further comments.
• End June-September: Test the impact of the criteria.
• September: Refine the criteria further where necessary.
• October: Publish a second draft of assessment regulations, reflecting changes made to the criteria as a result of refinement and testing.

For any questions or comments, please contact sarah.radcliffe@nat.org.uk<

http://www.ukcab.net/forum/index.php?topic=1197.0<

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kevin
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Disability rights campaigners say they remain optimistic that changes can still be made to the government’s hugely unpopular welfare reform bill before it becomes law.

This week, the Commons committee that was examining the bill in detail finished its deliberations, with the Conservative and Liberal Democrat majority ensuring the reforms remained intact.

But four Liberal Democrat MPs have registered their unhappiness with proposed reforms to disability benefits – an important part of the bill – warning that they could “push thousands of disabled people into poverty”.

The four MPs – Andrew George, Mike Hancock, John Leech and Bob Russell – have signed an early day motion condemning reforms such as time-limiting the payment of contributory employment and support allowance and removing the mobility component of disability living allowance (DLA) from people in residential homes.

They are also unhappy about plans to force people with permanently high support needs to undergo new assessments in order to claim personal independent payment, the proposed replacement for DLA.
A Liberal Democrat party spokesman said discussions were “ongoing” over “various concerns” around the measures on disability benefits, although he claimed there would “not be any broad brush changes” to the bill.

Neil Coyle, director of policy for Disability Alliance, said he was not hopeful of any improvements to the bill before it leaves the Commons, but was optimistic that the “more independent-minded House of Lords” would make “significant changes”.

He said: “By the time the Lords have finished a more thorough analysis of the impact and we have further time for disabled people to make clear what the impact could be, when the bill returns to the Commons the government should be forced to make some amendments.

“I don’t think they will go far enough, but I think we are going to see a vastly different bill coming out of the Lords and there will have to be some level of change.”

Sue Bott, director of the National Centre for Independent Living, said she believed it was crucial to convince the Labour party to oppose the bill, as campaigners were “not making any headway” in persuading the party’s “upper echelons”.

But she added: “At first the Labour party were pretty much behind the welfare reform bill, but I do sense that that position is shifting. If Labour are going to vote for the bill it doesn’t really matter what anyone else does.”

She said she felt that Liberal Democrat MPs would back the bill because they wanted to reserve their opposition for other pieces of unpopular coalition legislation.

Jaspal Dhani, chief executive of the UK Disabled People’s Council, said he believed there was still an “opportunity” to secure changes to the bill.

He said this could be aided by recommendations expected later this year from the inquiry by the joint committee on human rights into the implementation of disabled people’s right to independent living.

He added: “I think the fact that more MPs are starting to question the policy direction of the disability reforms and spending cuts would indicate to me it is not too late.”

http://www.ukdpc.net/index.asp?GetPress=TRUE&id=153&sid=76&ssid=0&sssid=0<

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Summary

The Disability Benefits Consortium is very concerned over Government plans to abolish DLA for disabled people 16-64 years of age and replace it with the 20% less well resourced Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

Many DBC members have previously highlighted the need to reform DLA but we do not believe there is a strong case to reduce DLA expenditure by 20%; nor has the Government justified the level of the cut. We believe that ‘reform’ is being used to cut expenditure and that the PIP assessment is undermined by being designed to reduce costs rather than reflect disabled people’s support needs or ensure independence.

We believe DWP has failed to demonstrate that the Government has fully considered the potential impact of such a significant reduction in support for disabled people and their families, despite increasing amounts of evidence  of the risks involved. Failure to adequately assess the impact and mitigate the risks could see a judicial review of the DLA/PIP plans.

More information

view full response

http://www.disabilityalliance.org/dbcpipresponse.htm<

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