It’s chilling how smoothly the coalition government is pushing forward with their austerity measures. Every time they claw money back from the services and peoples that are the most vulnerable in society, children like my daughter, I am struck by the lunacy of the measures.
- Scope produced a report his week on the government’s shift from the Disability Living Allowance to the Personal Independence Payment (PIP). These are payments the government makes to disabled people because being disabled is expensive. (Don’t agree? Read this.) When the government moves to PIP they plan on cutting the funding by 20%. As if that’s not bad enough, here’s Scopes’ assessment, “Unless the test for PIP considers the social, practical and environmental barriers disabled people face, thousands of people could be left with the wrong levels of support – and, in some cases, no support at all.”
- Cuts to legal aid will mean that in a year’s time, children like May will have to cough up thousands of pounds to pursue their cases against hospitals who cause lifetime injuries and impairments to patients. Where exactly would May, a toddler, get that money? If the hospital is negligent, and she can’t receive money from their insurance company, who will pay for her costs? You. The public. And, who will hold the hospital to account? No one. That is a frightening thought.
- The government is not only cutting funding for the disabled, they are not ring-fencing funding in local councils. Not that big a deal? My council the London Borough of Lambeth, has come second to last in the country for cutting the front line services the government said they wouldn’t cut.
The most striking thing about all these measures is how short-term they are. Short-change the services, therapists, schools and children themselves and in the end those children – who will already be a financial burden to the country will become ever more so. For who will teach May to walk, how will she do it without equipment and where will she learn to do it without community support. If she can’t walk, she will require wheelchairs, transport units, taxis or personal assistants to move her from place to place.
How expensive will May be to the country?
Walking. Talking. Feeding herself. If May doesn’t learn to do these, someone has to do them for her. The government has many options, it just so happens that they are choosing the most expensive one for Britain’s future.
You can read more from Stacie on BabyCenter’s Momformation.