Deaf News: NDCS says thousands of deaf children will lose out due to benefits changes

Posted on April 23, 2013


The National Deaf Children’s Society believes that thousands of vulnerable deaf children will lose out because of the Government’s planned benefit changes.

The charity say that deaf children are already losing out – with a third of councils in England cutting the services deaf children need in schools, such as Teachers of the Deaf, which has coincided with a shock drop in deaf children’s GCSE results.

But with new changes in benefits – which will come into effect in October – Disability Living Allowance (DLA) will be scrapped for young people over 16, and replaced by Personal Independence Payments (PIP).

Because of changes in the criteria, the charity believe that deaf children who don’t use sign language, which may add up to around 40,000 young deaf people, will find it much harder to get the new form of benefit. They may lose money that could have been used to support their studies, just as they finish their GCSEs and start their A-levels.

Worse, the NDCS say that young people applying for PIP will be encouraged to apply via the telephone, which immediately disadvantages deaf young people who are applying. According to the charity, the Department of Work and Pensions have so far refused to make changes that would make the claim process more accessible to deaf young people.

Susan Daniels, Chief Executive at the National Deaf Children’s Society, said: “These measures are painting an extremely bleak picture for thousands of deaf young people and we urge the Government to re-think their actions, to protect the futures of the generations to come.”

NDCS needs 100,000 signatures on its Stolen Futures petition (www.ndcs.org.uk/petition) to force the Government to take action against the cuts being made to deaf children’s services. Please sign it now.

 

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Posted in: deaf news