The response highlights the importance of a human rights based approach to social security, informed by lived experience.
The ALLIANCE has responded to the health and disability green paper, published by the Department for Work and Pensions (this link will take you away from our website). The green paper explores how the welfare system can better meet the needs of disabled people and people with health conditions now and in the future, enabling people to live independently and move into work where possible.
Engagement with our members and people with lived experience of social security payments has consistently revealed that the process has been difficult and extremely stressful for many people, particularly when people are undergoing assessments for ill-health and disability payments.
With the devolution of powers over some social security payments for disabled people to the Scottish Parliament, the ALLIANCE has worked with partners to ensure that the design of the new Scottish social security system is rights based and informed by lived experience.
Our response sets out a range of recommendations to make UK social security services and support more accessible and inclusive. These include:
- Adopting a human rights based approach across the system, including paperwork and statements, assessment processes and decision making;
- Making forms, documents and guidance easily accessible, available in a range of inclusive formats, and written in plain English;
- Adopting the Scottish Independent Advocacy Alliance’s ‘Principles, Standards and Code of Best Practice’ (this link will take you away from our website) as part of the development of advocacy support.
- That the UK Government work with the Scottish Government and local authorities in Scotland to pilot local Basic Income schemes. This should complement, rather than replace additional costs social security payments for disabled people, as described above.
- That the default position should be that all disability social security payments are made in cash rather than alternative support (excluding where this may apply to Motability arrangements).
You can read the full response via the link below.