The treatment of disabled people under the Tories is a “human catastrophe” the United Nations has said.
In a damning indictment, the UN Committee on the rights of disabled people said that during the 10 years it had been operating Britain had caused more concerns than any other country.
A report by the committee stated that the Tory’s austerity campaign had resulted in disabled people’s finances falling, forcing them into unsuitable accommodation and leaving many impoverished.
Committee chairwoman Theresia Degener branded the Conservatives’ treatment of disabled people a “human catastrophe”.
She said, “The austerity measures that they have taken – they are affecting half a million people, each disabled person is losing between £2,000 and £3,000 pounds per year, people are pushed into work situations without being recognised as vulnerable, and the evidence that we had in front of us was just overwhelming.”
Committee member Stig Langvad said, “The UK is at the moment going backwards in accordance to the information that we have received.”
The committee highlighted failures to fulfil commitments to provide inclusive education, high rates of school bullying and increasing numbers of disabled people living in poverty.
Langvad said disabled people should be included in the Brexit preparations to prevent them from losing protections secured under EU law.
‘Afraid of the future’
He said, “Persons with disabilities are afraid of the future since they do not know what is happening and since they do not feel that they are involved in the discussions on how to secure the rights of people with disabilities afterwards.”
A government spokeswoman said the UN’s report “does not accurately reflect the evidence we gave to the UN and fails to recognise all the progress we’ve made to empower disabled people in all aspects of their lives.”
Head of Unite Community Liane Groves rubbished the government’s claim.
“That the government of the fifth largest economy on earth has presided over a “human catastrophe” for disabled people is beyond disgraceful,” Groves said.
“Sadly the UN’s report, while shocking, is not surprising. For seven years the Tories have systematically attacked disabled people’s independence and living standards.
“The Tories have decimated their care, denied them dignity and set them up as scapegoats through savage welfare and public service cuts and the encouragement of a culture that seeks to harden people’s hearts towards the most vulnerable.”
She added, “Unbelievably, and despite all evidence to the contrary, the government claims it is actually helping disabled people. If they believe the current state of affairs is success, I dread to think what the Tories would count as failure.”