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PIP U-turn grants higher mobility rate for people with mental health conditions

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The government has reversed its decision to block around 164,000 people from receiving disability benefits and now payments will be backdated meaning thousands are owed money to help keep them mobile.

Last March Ministers decided that people who could not travel independently because of psychological distress should not be entitled to PIP’s enhanced mobility rate.

The government’s plans were met with deep criticism from campaigners and a High Court ruling stated that the proposals were discriminatory.

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And now ministers have backed down from the ruling and will not challenge it.

Esther McVey, who heads up the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) wrote a letter to Parliament stating that the DWP will take steps to backdate payments for each claimant.

It read: “Although I and my department accept the High Court’s judgement, we do not agree with some of the detail contained therein.

“Our intention has always been to deliver the policy intent of the original regulations, as approved by Parliament, and to provide the best support to claimants with mental health conditions.”

Mark Atkinson, chief executive of disability charity Scope, said the original proposals were discriminatory and that the government was right to accept the High Court’s ruling.

“The regulations introduced last March made crude and unfair distinctions between those with physical impairments and mental health conditions.

“Thousands of disabled people rely on PIP to live independently and meet the often substantial extra costs they face related to their condition or impairment.

“While those affected by these misguided changes will now receive the payments they are entitled to, the fundamentally flawed PIP assessment process still needs radically overhauling so it accurately identifies the extra costs disabled people face.”

Tags : benefitsdwpesther mcveyFundingpersonal independence paymentpip
Joe Peskett

The author Joe Peskett

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