We have responded to the Scottish Government's consultation on how the mobility component of the new Adult Disability Payment is working.
In addition to stressing the critical role of advice and support in improving the claimant experience and reaching everyone who needs support, the key points that we have made are:
› Adult Disability Payment is different from Personal Independence Payment in several ways. If these changes are delivered, they will have a positive impact on the lives of our clients.
› Adult Disability Payment uses the same points-based criterion to assess mobility needs. These criteria do not consider social, practical, and environmental barriers that prevent disabled people from exercising choice and control. The criteria are difficult for claimants to understand and force claimants to focus on what they can’t do.
› The 20-meter distance measure is arbitrary and not evidence based. It prevents claimants with complex mobility restrictions from accessing the level of support that they need.
› The application process needs to be modified to promote a better understanding among claimants of how the criteria apply to mental health and “invisible” conditions.
› The application process needs to be modified to encourage a complete picture account of a claimant’s mobility needs, not of “good days”, “bad days” or even “average days”. The decision makers guidance needs to be modified to better support decision makers to understand the impact of fluctuating conditions that do not follow predictable patterns.
› To minimize the risk of claimants falling through the cracks a “safety net” criteria is required.
› To identify differences in how ADP is working for people with various health circumstances, data recording the main reported condition of new processed ADP applications by award type is necessary. Similarly, data recording assessment method (telephone, video, in person) by award type is necessary to pick up on any detriment being experienced due to chosen assessment method.
› Scotland needs human rights-based disability assistance that has a clear purpose, is paid at an adequate rate, supports independent living and full participation, provides whole-of-life support, is well-connected to other services, and is resilient in the face of change.