Monday, 30 May 2011

Cuts to disabled services ruled ‘unlawful’ | Liberal Conspiracy

Third Sector magazine reports:

Disability charities might receive better than expected grants from local authorities after a ruling by the High Court that the process used to make cuts to disabled people’s services by Birmingham City Council was unlawful, according to a charity for blind people.

The Royal London Society for the Blind said councils should ensure that any cuts they made were lawful following a decision by the High Court last week that Birmingham City Council had breached the Disability Discrimination Act by proposing to limit council-funded social care to those deemed to be in critical need.

Birmingham’s proposed cuts were part of reductions totalling £212m across all sectors. According to the RLSB, £51m of the reductions affected disabled people’s services.

A spokesman for the RLSB said it was “almost inevitable” that the High Court ruling would mean many other councils would have to reduce the cuts they were making to disabled people’s services.

“All councils will have to revisit their plans to ensure that they are complying with the court judgement,” he said. “We think many councils will not be in compliance and will have to make sure that they conform with the Disability Discrimination Act.

“This is likely to mean that disability charities receive more generous grant settlements than they had previously been promised from local councils.”