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Welfare Reform on the Web (June 2012): Services for the disabled - UK

Autistic adults bullied and not supported at work

S. Cassidy

The Independent, May 14th 2012, p. 12

A poll by the National Autistic Society found that more than a third of adults with autism had been bullied or discriminated against at work. 43 per cent of those interviewed said they had lost or left a job because of their autism

Benefit cuts could hit Paralympic legacy

P. Butler

The Guardian, May 21st 2012, p. 1

Britain's greatest Paralympian, Lady Tanni Grey-Thompson, warned that disability benefit cuts would affect the development of top athletes and undermine the Games' key legacy aim of widening access to sport for disabled people. Hundreds of thousands of working-age people would lose disability benefits over the next four years as a result of the government's controversial welfare reforms. Her comments came as the starting gun was fired on the 100-day countdown to the Paralympics, which were to take place at the end of August 2012. She said that although the very top disabled athletes might get financial help from sponsors, many others would find it difficult to compete if they lost the benefit. "I know someone who is on the edge of qualification who has had her DLA removed. It impacts on her ability to get involved in society, not just sport."

'Can we play on the swings and roundabouts?': creating inclusive play spaces for disabled young people and their families

R. Jeanes and J. Magee

Leisure Studies, vol. 31, 2012, p. 193-210

Several studies have established the potential value of play for fostering the development of children's physical, social and intellectual skills. However, existing literature also suggests that children with disabilities are frequently marginalised and excluded within play spaces. The need for inclusive play space to combat discrimination and marginalisation has been increasingly emphasised in UK policy over the past decade. This paper presents a case study of a playground facility developed in 2008 which realised the aim of allowing disabled children and their non-disabled peers to engage in active play together. It seeks to analyse in detail the key factors which contributed to the achievement of inclusivity. It concludes by examining the implications of the findings for the delivery of the 2008 Play Strategy in the context of public spending cuts, and considers whether inclusive play spaces can become a standard and embedded part of community facilities.

The ILF - a cut too far?

M. Cohen

Community Living, vol.25, no. 3, 2012, p. 8-9

The Independent Living Fund (ILF) is an agency of the Department for Work and Pensions run on a small budget to help a small number of disabled people with very complex needs. Its closure to new applicants and anticipated demise could have costly implications for local authorities struggling with reduced budgets for adult social care. The author has doubts that they will be able to plug the gap.

You can't meddle with FACS

B. Schwehr

Community Living, vol. 25, no.3, 2012, p. 10-11

In an attempt to save 1.5m, the Isle of Wight Council decided to restrict the eligibility threshold for adult social care. The claimants issued judicial review proceedings. They alleged that the restriction was unlawful as it failed to comply with 1) the requirements of the statutory guidance (FACS 2010) by adopting a hierarchy of needs within bands and by impermissible band-splitting, on the basis of how likely and how frequently a need may arise and 2) the public sector equality duty in the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. The case was successful on both grounds, although this article looks at the first ground only.

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