On 7th November 2016, a UN report concluded that Britain is guilty of grave and systemic violations of the human rights of disabled people. Its final report concludes, “the Committee considers that there is reliable evidence that the threshold of grave or systematic violations of the rights of persons with disabilities has been met in the State party. That conclusion is based on the following findings”
- “The State party has implemented a policy aimed at reforming its welfare system and the reforms have been justified in the context of austerity measures to achieve fiscal and budgetary policy consolidation”.
- “The assumptions made under the policy include that: taxpayers need to be treated with fairness; large numbers of persons with disabilities have been relying and dependent on social benefits; persons are better off in work than on benefits; the dependency of persons with disabilities on benefits is in itself a disincentive to move them into employment; the number of persons with disabilities relying on social benefits were to be decreased; and tightening sanctions and conditionality of social benefits is a legitimate tool for incentivizing their moving into employment”.
- “The impact assessments conducted by the State party prior to the implementation of several measures of its welfare reform expressly foresaw an adverse impact on persons with disabilities”.
- “Several measures have disproportionally and adversely affected the rights of persons with disabilities”
- “The core elements of the rights to independent living and being included in the community, an adequate standard of living and social protection and their right to employment have been affected: persons with disabilities affected by policy changes have had their freedom of choice and control over their daily activities restricted, the extra cost of disability has been set aside and income protection has been curtailed as a result of benefit cuts, while the expected policy goal of achieving decent and stable employment is far from being attained”
- “There is evidence that a large number of persons with disabilities have been affected (e.g. 13,900 persons with disabilities have lost their Motability schemes and therefore their adapted cars, upon implementation of Personal Independence Payment up to February 2016; 492,180 had been placed in the Employment and Support Allowance work-related activity group by end of 2015; 41,792 Employment and Support Allowance work-related activity group sanctions were handed out up to March 2014)”.
- “Evidence gathered nationally by the Parliament, the independent monitoring framework, universities and research institutes and centres and independent experts, has documented adverse and disproportionate effects of measures on persons with disabilities”
- “The State party has not conducted a comprehensive human rights-based cumulative impact assessment even though reliable sources have indicated it is feasible”