December 3rd was United Nations International Day of Disabled People.
In Wales 23% of the population have some form of physical or sensory impairment, learning difficulty or mental health condition.
It is estimated that the total cuts will mean a £450m loss to disabled people in Wales over four years.
Disabled people are particularly disadvantaged by cuts to services and benefits –we are disproportionately reliant on health, social care, housing and transport services, and, also as a result of low employment rates and the additional costs associated with living with an impairment are more likely to live in poverty and/or rely on benefits for a large proportion of their incomes.
Many live in daily fear of cuts to essential benefits including Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and nowhere more so than in Wales.
As the Welsh Government’s lead partner in developing its Framework for Action on Independent Living, Disability Wales was instrumental in formulating the overarching strategic vision of “An enabling society in which disabled children and adults enjoy the right to independent living and social inclusion”.
Disability Wales is now working closely with the Welsh Government to implement the framework and to achieve a fair and just Wales, in which all citizens are empowered to determine their own lives and to shape the communities in which they live.
We need practical solutions for removing disabling barriers: It’s time to create an enabling Wales!
Disability Wales is organising two events in Cardiff Bay today. For details see our website www.disabilitywales.org.
Policy & Public Affairs Manager Disability Wales