May 24, 2016
Minister for Disabled People Justin Tomlinson was presented with evidence last week, including the experiences of people with M.E., highlighting the impact of the 20 metre Personal Independence Payment (PIP) rule.
The Disability Benefits Consortium (DBC) and Disability Rights UK were invited to do so following Baroness Thomas of Winchester’s motion calling on Ministers to discuss this issue.
As a member of the DBC, Action for M.E. was able to share evidence with its Co-Chair Phil Reynolds, gathered from our surveys and consultations.
DBC Co-Chair Laura Wetherly says: “The meeting was a useful start and we will be trying to secure further meetings with officials to follow-up discussions over the coming months. The Minister asked for further case studies to demonstrate the impact of the criterion.
“The Department has also offered an opportunity to do a ‘deep-dive’ review of any existing cases that we provide to understand what has caused issues and helped determine what action may be needed.”
Share your experience
Have you, or do you expect to, lose the enhanced rate of the PIP mobility component as a result of the 20 metre rule? If you would you be willing to share your experience in detail as a case study, please get in touch.
The DBC is also gathering evidence on the reassessment process when claimants move from Disability Living Allowance (DLA) to PIP – if you have undergone this, please take part in this DBC survey.
PIP is paid in two components, one of which covers mobility (ie. moving around); the other covers personal care. Both can be paid at a standard or enhanced rate. Under DLA, the cut-off point for enhanced rate mobility component was the ability to move 50 metres. Under PIP, this was reduced to 20 metres.
Action for M.E. fully supports the DBC’s position that reducing the qualifying distance from 50 to 20 metres is wrong. We strongly reject this approach and call on the government to introduce criteria that realistically identify those that fit into this group based on the extra costs they face, not simply the amount of money deemed to be available.