Disability rights have regressed in nine areas, says the Equality and Human Rights Commission

Disabled people’s rights have regressed in at least nine areas since the coalition government assumed power in 2010, according to a new report by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).

The report concludes that disabled people are still being treated as “second-class citizens” and that rights have regressed in many areas of society, while in others progress has stalled.

read more here: http://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/disability-rights-have-regressed-in-nine-areas-says-ehrc/

MPs hear of activists’ anger and frustration over ministers’ response to UN report

Disabled activists have told MPs and peers of their frustration at not being able to hold the government to account for its “grave or systematic” breaches of the UN disability convention.

The UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD) found in November that the UK government had discriminated against disabled people across three key parts of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD), following a lengthy inquiry sparked by disabled activists.

read more here: http://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/mps-hear-of-activists-anger-and-frustration-over-ministers-response-to-un-report/


Government criticised by EHRC over disability rights record… for second time in 12 days

The government has been criticised by the UK’s human rights watchdog over its record on protecting the rights of disabled people, for the second time in just 12 days.

Last week, Disability News Service revealed how the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) had been snubbed by the minister for disabled people after raising serious concerns about her government’s response to a report that found it guilty of “grave or systematic” violations of the UN disability convention

Read more here: http://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/government-criticised-by-ehrc-over-disability-rights-record-for-second-time-in-12-days/

Minister blames benefit claimants for delays in paying universal credit in Great Yarmouth

A government minister has defended the “disaster” of introducing universal credit to Great Yarmouth – and blamed benefit claimants for some of the problems.

Universal Credit replaced six other welfare allowances, including housing benefit, with one monthly payment in Yarmouth and Lowestoft this spring. But delays in claimants getting the money has led to some of the poorest tenants falling into rent arrears and being evicted.

Landlords and councils are owed tens of thousands of pounds in rent, while charities say it has led to more demand on soup kitchens and their services. Paul Cunningham, chairman of the Eastern Landlords’ Association, described the new system as a “disaster”.

Great Yarmouth Borough Council wrote to work and pensions secretary Damian Green in November about the problems caused by the delays in paying universal credit.

In a letter responding to the council, Mr Green wrote the roll-out of the new benefit system had been “carefully planned”, but admitted there had been problems. “We recognise that there are areas for improvement in the service,” he said.

But he said some delays were being caused by claimants “not providing the required evidence” for their claim despite “repeated requests” which meant job centre staff were having to chase them. He said the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) was dealing with this by making it clearer which information claimants needed to provide.

Mr Green also said the DWP had put extra staff into clearing the backlog of applications.And he said councils had been given £500m in what is called Discretionary Housing Payments to support people in financial difficulty.

Councillors also quizzed Mr Green in the letter about why Yarmouth was chosen as one of the first places in the country to test the new system. Norfolk County councillor Jonathon Childs, called for a meeting between the DWP, local politicians and charities to help those affected.

“The effects of universal credit are really shocking and the length of time that claimants have to wait is far too long,” he said. “What are people meant to live on while the claims are dealt with?”

An investigation by this newspaper found some tenants ran off owing landlords thousands of pounds when they were finally paid, while others were £1500 in rent arrears.

The Yarmouth soup kitchen said it had seen a 300pc rise in demand over the autumn, which it put down to people not receiving universal credit on time.

read more here:http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/politics/minister_blames_benefit_claimants_for_delays_in_paying_universal_credit_in_great_yarmouth_1_4813680

Watchdogs snubbed by minister after raising concerns over UN ‘violations’ report

Four human rights and equality watchdogs have been snubbed by the minister for disabled people after raising serious concerns about how her government dismissed a report that found it guilty of “grave or systematic” violations of the UN disability convention.

The UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD) said last month that the UK government had discriminated against disabled people across three key parts of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

But the government responded to the report by dismissing its conclusions and all 11 of its recommendations.

read more here:


Force the Government to act on the 11 recommendations of the UN report on disability in the UK – Petition

The UK is the first country to have been investigated by the UN for systematic failures in our treatment of disabled people. This has been largely ignored by the National Media

The UN published its report in the week of the US election, and the media has ignored it. The government plans to ignore it too, their only response has been to accuse the UN of being offensive!

As a result of being investigated by a United Nations committee for not fulfilling the terms of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities, the government have been found guilty of grave & systematic violations of the rights of disabled people as a direct result of austerity policies introduced into welfare & social care.

The UN committee has made 11 recommendations. Lets fight as hard as we can to stop the Government from sweeping this under the carpet. So please, all, sign and share this petition as far and wide as you can.

The petition can be found here: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/172393

A damning report to the UN reveals the truth about the UK’s human rights record [VIDEO]

A report being submitted to the UN on human rights in the UK has slammed the government’s policies and raised serious concerns about the state of human rights in the country.

The UK, like all other countries, must submit a Universal Periodic Review (UPR) every four years to the UN, to show how it is meeting its human rights obligations. The Equality and Human Rights Commission requested the British Institute for Human Rights (BIHR) to conduct the report in association with a number of civil society organisations. It was launched in parliament on the evening of 22 September, in an event chaired by Harriet Harman MP.

click here to see the video