Socialist Worker

Disabled people beat a council

Issue No. 2253

Four severely disabled people have struck a blow to Birmingham City Council’s plans to slash its adult social care budget.

They took the council to court over the plan and, in a ruling that could have affect other councils too, had it declared unlawful.

The Tory-Liberal Democrat council proposed the cuts as part of a plan to save £212 million by limiting council-funded social care to those assessed as being in “critical” need.

But this would leave up to 5,000 disabled people in Birmingham denied all or part of their care packages.

The category “critical” being used by the council has been found totally inadequate to assess care needs.

The four who brought the case include a 65-year old woman with severe learning difficulties who receives 24-hour care in a home paid for by the council.

Another is a 25-year old man with a rare genetic disorder and severe learning disabilities who receives overnight respite care, also funded by the council.

Both were set to lose their council-funded care.

But the ruling reverses this decision.

The Unison union is hoping to begin balloting soon for action against the impact of the cuts on jobs, conditions and services.

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Tue 24 May 2011, 17:59 BST
Issue No. 2253
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