Sunday, 30 August 2009



Responding to the UK Government's proposals to abolish attendance allowance and disability living allowance Bill Kidd MSP for Glasgow has expressed concern that this will result in many vulnerable member's of society losing out as a result of it's abolition.

Attendence allowance is a tax free benefit for people with physical or mental disabilities or who are deaf, blind or partially sighted and who need assistance, for example with personal care.

For many people Attendance Allowance has become a lifeline and has enabled them to receive the care they require, without it many people would find it hard to survive with the pressures that their condition has brought.

However the UK Government has proposed scrapping the allowances in favour of centralising the funds, a move which many say is in order to plug an ever growing funding black hole at the centre of social services in England.

As a result numerous charities such as the well respected Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) have expressed serious concern over the proposals and are actively campaigning to save the attendance allowance.

Commenting on the proposals Bill Kidd MSP said:

"As we have seen faced with the need to cut costs the UK Government has once again opted to punish those most in need of assistance. It is little surprise that this 'Labour' Government has lost the trust of the people when we see it attempt to remove the very help which so many rely upon for their health and wellbeing.

"What's more this move is spectacularly short sighted when we consider the benefits of the Attendance Allowance and the consequences of its scrapping. Many people gain independence and the ability to lead as normal a life as possible as a result of the allowance, who if denied it would require more intensive care resulting in ever increasing costs.

"In my duties as Disability Reporter for the Scottish Parliament's Equal Opportunities Committee I have seen first hand how this allowance has changed people's lives, some who had reached a point of despair in their struggle to survive were given a new lease of life, and having seen this change, the difference it had made to their lives, I was proud to have witnessed that.

"This is why I would urge the UK Government to abandon these plans and listen to the concern of the various charities and member s of the public who have expressed their concern over the effect these changes will have on some of the most vulnerable members of society."

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