Petition opposes plan to scrap Attendance Allowance for new claimants

Posted on January 28th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Petition opposes plan to scrap Attendance Allowance for new claimants

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Michael Vaughan, managing director of the Red Rocks nursing home in The Wirral, has set up an online petition calling on the Government to abandon its plans to scrap Attendance Allowance (AA) for new claimants.

Mr Vaughan said the plan to scrap the allowance was very quietly announced just before Christmas in the Government’s Local Government Finance Settlement (see link below).

“The plan involves passing any saved monies on to local councils under plans for devolution, (as I understand it, without the money being ring-fenced) and many people who currently qualify for Attendance Allowance will then not meet local authority’s increasingly strict qualifying criteria for assistance,” said Mr Vaughan.

“AA is a non-means tested benefit for people aged over 65 needing help with personal care because they are physically or mentally disabled. It helps people to remain at home for longer and enables them to decide how, where and when their care is delivered; removing pressure on an already overstretched NHS.

“Abolishing AA would remove valuable financial support from people who may not meet the increasingly substantial criteria that social services use when deciding if a person is entitled to their support. It would remove people’s choice, diminish their independence, and have a hugely negative impact on elderly people’s health. AA can make all the difference between living and existing – without it people will suffer.”

Mr Vaughan said Attendance Allowance was vital in helping elderly and disabled people to maintain some form of independence in how and where they are cared for, and could help people to remain at home longer before needing long term residential or nursing care.

“This obviously reduces the burden in overall terms to the NHS,” he said. “Each and every one of us is likely to be severely affected by this plan if it goes ahead, either directly or indirectly, as we or an elderly/disabled relative would more than likely qualify for this at some stage. “In an attempt to get this overturned I have set up an online petition on the Government’s petition website. I urge all Caring Times readers to sign the petition at the link below.”

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