Debbie urges people to fight against new Government regulations hitting disabled people – again

I am urging people to stand with me and fight the Government’s new regulations which will see another cut in support for disabled people and people with chronic mental health conditions. 

The new regulations introduced on 23rd February 2017 are due to come into force on 16th March without any debate in Parliament. They in effect overturn the rulings of two tribunals that say it should expand the reach of Personal Independence Payments (PIP) to include 164,000 people with such debilitating mental health conditions that they are unable to leave their homes unaccompanied. 

Across Oldham 3,561 people are in receipt of PIP. 

Instead of listening to the court’s criticisms of Personal Independence Payment assessments and correcting these injustices, the Government has instead decided to undermine the legal basis of the rulings. 

The tribunals’ decision’s illustrates exactly how the PIP assessment process is just not fit for purpose. The Tories are failing to give support to those who need it most. They must ensure that all assessments are undertaken fairly and by appropriately trained specialist staff.

This is an unprecedented attempt to subvert an independent tribunal judgement by a Government with contempt for judicial process and for Parliament. It also contradicts the Government’s previous policy position as argued in Court in 2015 and in their response to the mental health charity MIND! 

I’m urging people to sign this petition against these cuts and to get their MP to sign EDM 985 calling on the regulations to be annulled. With sufficient signatures these regulations have to be debated in Parliament. 

Once again this Tory Government is targeting the poor, low paid, sick and disabled for cuts while giving tax breaks to the wealthiest. The new regulations exclude over 164,000 disabled and chronically sick people from PIP support, risking them falling into debt, increasing their isolation and worse.

This is a step too far, even for this Tory Government. Labour will stand with disabled people, who have already borne the brunt of seven years of austerity, in fighting this injustice.

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