Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Isle of Wight disabled allowance scrap plan criticised

Disabled parking sign
Image caption Scope says disability-related costs amounted on average to £550 a month

A charity has criticised Isle of Wight Council's plan to scrap its flat rate disability allowance to save £300,000.

Currently about 1,300 people on the island receive £10 a week in addition to their state disability benefit.

Councillors want to replace this with individual cost assessments, meaning some "people will no longer receive an allowance".

But Scope said the council was not considering the higher cost of living for disabled people.

£28m savings plan

A charity spokesman said on average disability-related costs amounted on average to £550 a month because of higher energy bills as well as greater insurance, equipment and transport costs.

He added: "These extra costs have a huge impact on disabled people's living standards."

The independent-run council formulated its proposal following a two-month consultation.

Adult social care cabinet member Steve Stubbings said: "We are introducing a fairer and more robust approach to disability related expenditure which focuses on making sure people receive support when they really need it."

The plan is part of a £28m savings plan over three years.

The Scope spokesman said the charity acknowledged council budgets were "under pressure", but added that it would "urge all councils to make sure disabled people get the support they need to live independently".

If approved, the changes will be made from 1 November.

In 2013, Disability Living Allowance (DLA) was replaced Personal Independence Payments (PIP) which require extra checks.

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