Hi. My name is Andrew Doyle and I need your help to stop an unfair attack on the lives of disabled people, people with mental health conditions and other support needs in Dumfries and Galloway. The local council has started to ask people who need social care to pay between £25 and £35 more per week for their support. This is on top of any money people were paying last year so some people are now paying up to £70 per week for support out of nothing more than their ESA and disability benefits.
We are really worried that many people will stop their support because of the cost and end up being at risk of needing far more help in the future when they get into crisis. This will put more pressure on the NHS which is already stretched, affecting us all. It doesn’t make sense.
For other people, like myself and my wife, it will make life much harder. We already live on a tight budget and rarely go out. In the future, we will have to stay home all the time and have to cut back on food and heating.
The Council says it has been too generous in the past treating all disabled people the same. Now they want people under 60 to pay more. But it’s not true that our council has been the most generous. 19 out of 32 councils in Scotland charge less than Dumfries and Galloway.
I have got together with other disabled people in the area to campaign for the “Right To A Real Life”. We are asking the council to reverse its decision of February 2016 to cut the income allowance for disabled people under 60 and give us equality with people over 60.