Report on ‘The impact of Universal Credit on disabled people and their families’

‘Holes in the Safety Net: The impact of Universal Credit on disabled people and their families’ is the report of an inquiry led by Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson and supported by The Children’s Society, Citizens Advice and Disability Rights UK.

The inquiry found that:

  • The impact of cuts to support for disabled children could be extremely severe particularly for families receiving the mid rate care component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA). When families who may be affected were asked about losing £30 per week in support for disabled children they expressed widespread concerns about having to cut back on food or heating, and getting into (or further into) debt. Around one in 10 families expressed fears that they could no longer be able to afford their home.
  • Severely disabled people who do not have another adult to assist them have additional costs not faced by other disabled adults and currently the Severe Disability Premium (SDP) already only goes partway to meeting these extra costs. Evidence suggested that without this financial support these disabled people would be unable to meet their most basic of needs. The report also raises concerns that many disabled lone parents rely on their children to help with their care needs, and that the loss of the SDP could increase this burden of care.
  • The evidence suggested that removing financial support for those who face extra costs in work would not only cause hardship for disabled people, but also risks being counterproductive, potentially preventing disabled people from being able to work.

The report was published in October 2012.

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