‘Barely human’ disability benefit changes to affect 764 Crawley homes, council leader says

Crawley council leader Peter Lamb SUS-141107-162950001
Crawley council leader Peter Lamb SUS-141107-162950001

More than 700 Crawley households would be affected by ‘barely human’ disability benefits cuts, the leader of the borough council has said.

Iain Duncan Smith resigned as works and pensions secretary after the Government announced plans to save £1.3bn from Personal Independence Payments, which are due to replace Disability Living Allowance from January.

He wrote that he believed the cuts “would have been even fairer to younger families and people of working age if we had been willing to reduce some of the benefits given to better-off pensioners”.

Cllr Peter Lamb (Lab, Northgate) said 764 Crawley households would be affected by the cuts. He said: “Taking money from those with disabilities to give tax cuts to the wealthy is not just a bad policy, it’s barely human.”

Crawley Tory MP Henry Smith said he would raise the issue with ministers this week.

He said: “The disability budget will be increasing by more than £1 billion, and more will be spent in real terms supporting disabled people than at any point under the last Labour government.”

The council’s opposition leader Cllr Duncan Crow (Con, Furnace Green) said: “While I haven’t yet seen the detail, it is important to ensure that the people in greatest need receive the right benefits in order for them to be as independent as possible. Total government spending on disabled people is increasing and I want to see this money being used in the fairest and most effective way for them.”

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