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The End of Our Illusions


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Talk given at event on Supported Living in London describing the cuts that are reducing social care and the incomes of disabled people.

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The End of Our Illusions

  1. 1. The End of Our Illusions what is really going on Dr Simon Duffy ■ The Centre for Welfare Reform ■ Supported Living Conference ■ 28th June 2012
  2. 2. Key points1.We are at a new stage in the history of disabled people in the UK2.We need to come to face the facts3.We need to learn lessons and move on to do something better
  3. 3. Simon Duffy of The Centre for Welfare Reform• In 1990 began to work alongside people with learning difficulties• Part of the original Supported Living team set up by Peter Kinsella in 1992• Invented Individual (personal) Budgets and Self-Directed Support in Scotland in late 1990s• Led In Control from 2003-09 to test and develop these ideas in England• In 2009 began The Centre for Welfare Reform
  4. 4. Our recent history - some key events• 1970s - growth in institutions finally stops• 1980s - ‘Board & Lodging’ programme unleashes growth in residential care• 1996 - Direct payments finally legalised• 2007 - Putting People First commits social care system to individual budgets• 2010 - Spending Review marks end of financial growth in social care 25% cut by 2015
  5. 5. So what is really happening?
  6. 6. Biggest growth: central funding[Source: HM Treasury, 2010 October Spending Review]
  7. 7. Biggest cuts: benefits & social care[Source: HM Treasury, 2010 October Spending Review]
  8. 8. • English local government - cut by £11.3 billion• Benefits (excluding pensions) - cut by £18 billion [Source: Manifesto for a Fair Society]
  9. 9. • 58% of all cuts target disabled people and people in poverty• 36% of all cuts target disabled people• 24% of all cuts target the 1.9% of the population who need social care - those with the most severe impairments [Source: Manifesto for a Fair Society]
  10. 10. • Unfair - target those who are most disadvantaged• Unfair - make an unequal society even more unequal• Unfair - target the very groups that didn’t benefit from the economic bubble
  11. 11. Why did this happen?
  12. 12. • Prejudice against and fear of disabled people• Political weakness of disabled people - fragmented into many groups• Complexity of social care and benefit systems• Confusion about the welfare system and our shared rights• Corruption of political systems that must pander to key electoral groups
  13. 13. Did you know?Tax Fraud is 15 timesgreater than Benefit FraudTax Avoidance is 70 timesgreater than Benefit Fraud
  14. 14. [Sources: Various - see Manifesto for a Fair Society]
  15. 15. Did you know?The poorest 10% of familieslive on £9.70 per dayAnd pay the highest level oftax of 47%
  16. 16. [Source: Office of National Statistics]
  17. 17. And all this has happened DESPITE
  18. 18. • DDA and Equalities legislation• UN Convention on Rights of Disabled People• Office of Disability Issues at the heart of government• Disabled People in the Commons and Lords• Personalisation and Direct Payments
  19. 19. What will this mean?
  20. 20. • End of Disability Living Allowance• Cuts in Housing Benefit• Reductions in Access to Work• Reduced eligibility for ESA• Increasingly intrusive testing - ATOS• Increased poverty traps - e.g. saving caps• Benefits reindexed to increase poverty• End of ILF• Increased eligibility for social care• Increasing bureaucracy in social care• Reducing budget levels in social care• Return to institutions and care homes• Increasing social care charges• Increased taxes on the poor - e.g. VAT• and many other measures
  21. 21. What should we do?
  22. 22. Grieve
  23. 23. Grief is the emotional process by which weface terrible facts - but then try and move on
  24. 24. 1. Shock & Denial - “It can’t be that bad... just let me concentrate on my job...”2. Pain & Guilt - “This is my fault - look at what people are doing with the RAS I invented...”3. Anger & Bargaining - “We’ve got to fight... Oh no, what will this mean for my job, my funding... I’d better behave or what might happen”4. Depression - “This is hopeless... we will never win.”5. Calmer - “Okay I realise this isn’t going to go away”6. Reconstruction - “What do we need to do differently”7. Hope - “What can we learn and build towards”
  25. 25. 1. Protect and improve
  26. 26.
  27. 27. 2. Innovate
  28. 28. 3. Get organised
  29. 29. Lots of different organisations:DH DWP ODI DCLG CQC SCIE TLAPDisability Rights UK Carers UK ASL ECCA NAAPS ARC NCVOACEVO Carers Trust Mind NCBAge UK Mencap Scope Housing OptionsCommunity Groups People First ULOs Representing lot of different groups
  30. 30. How do we build thestrongest possible alliance?
  31. 31. 4. Rebuild our vision
  32. 32. Everyone is equal, no matter their age, differences or disabilities.A fair society sees each of its members as a fullcitizen - a unique person with a life of their own.A fair society is organised to support everyone to live a full life, with meaning and respect.
  33. 33. 1.Human rights - not services2.Clear entitlements - not confusion3.Early support - not crisis4.Equal access - not institutional care5.Choice and control - not dependence6.Fair incomes - not insecurity7.Fair taxes - not targeted8.Financial reform - sustainable
  34. 34. For more information go please join These slides are © Simon Duffy 2012 ■ Publisher is The Centre for Welfare Reform ■ Slides can be distributed subject to conditions set out at ■