Under Universal Credit, payments for a disabled child are to be cut by more than 50 per cent for most disabled children. Consequently, many families with a disabled child will be worse off.
More than 5,000 people have signed our petition. We handed this into Downing Street in June.
Families whose caring responsibilities prevent them from working and who qualify for the lower disability element appear certain to be worse off by at least £1,600 per year. This is because there is no prospect of them seeing the reduction in their disabled child element offset by other features of the Universal Credit designed to make work pay.
While it is possible that some working families could see the reduction in their disabled child element offset by other features of Universal Credit, this is now less likely as a result of cuts to Universal Credit work allowances from April 2016.
It seems certain that the number of families with disabled children who will be worse off is likely to be significantly more than 100,000.
Many of these families are already struggling to afford basic essentials such as food and heating. The impact of a further cut of more than £1,600 a year for many is likely to be increased debt, stress and ill health.
Contact is therefore calling on the Prime Minister to reverse cuts to child disability payments under Universal Credit.
More than 4,000 of you signed our petition to the prime minister so a big thank you. We will let you know her response.
What we want
We have produced a Universal Credit briefing [PDF] on the government to:
- Reverse cuts to the lower disabled child element under Universal Credit.
- Continue to pay Universal Credit to parents whose disabled child is living away from home solely due to their disability.
What you can do
What we are doing
- Launched a Universal Credit #KnowYourClaim campaign on 10 May aimed at making sure that more families with disabled children are aware of Universal Credit and how it is likely to affect them.
- Briefing MPs, peers and officials on the impact of Universial Credit on disabled children; our briefing includes case studies.
- Using our Counting the Costs campaign to highlight that more than half (52 per cent) of families with disabled children told us they are worried or very worried about Universal Credit (a further 40 per cent don't know how the changes to Universal Credit will affect their family).
- Giving advice to families: this new benefit is gradually being rolled out to families with disabled children. Please see our advice pages on Universal Credit or contact our helpline to find out how this new benfit will affect you.