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DISABLED people will be given more support to be able to live independently under a Labour government, the party announced today at the launch of its manifesto on disability rights.
The manifesto pledges to reverse cuts comes after the UN reported that successive Tory governments have committed “systematic violations” of the rights of disabled people and their families.
They have been “driven to breaking point” by cuts to legacy benefits through the Tories’ universal credit scheme, it added.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said Tory and Lib Dem governments’ treatment of disabled people should be “a source of shame.”
He said: “Labour will put right this injustice. We are on your side.
“This election is a chance for real change, for a more inclusive, fair and equal society that works for the many, not the few.”
Shadow minister for disabled people Marsha de Cordova said that she was “proud” that Labour is the only party with a manifesto developed by and for disabled people.
Labour’s manifesto Breaking Down Barriers vows to ensure disabled children on universal credit receive the same amount as disabled children whose parents receive child tax credits.
A disabled child on universal credit receives less than half the basic addition for disabled children in child tax credits to help pay extra costs of having a disability — £1,513 a year, compared with £3,355 a year under child tax credits. The difference is equivalent to £154 a month.
Labour also pledges to introduce a “self-care element” into universal credit to support people with severe disabilities without formal carers.
This group of people is worse off on universal credit than both those on legacy benefits and those on universal credit who do have a carer.
The party wants to increase employment and support allowance by £30 a week for those in the work-related activity group, and increase carer’s allowance to the level of jobseeker’s allowance.
Labour intends to immediately scrap the universal credit sanctions regime and “dehumanising” work capability and personal independence payment assessments which are “unfit for purpose.”
The party says that in government it would halve the disability employment gap by restoring specialist employment advisers, require employers to be trained to support disabled people, establish the right to paid disability leave separate from sick leave, and produce statutory guidance on timescales for reasonable adjustments in the workplace.
Labour would also abolish driver-only operated trains and expand bus networks with vehicles offering audio-visual announcements. British Sign Language would also be given full legal recognition.
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