Letter: Whose benefit?

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The Independent Culture
Sir: David Aaronovitch is totally wrong when he states that disability groups would like the Government to spend half of the nation's budget on "the disabled" ("Helping the disabled does not mean believing all they say", 18 May). What disabled people want is a fair welfare system that doesn't perpetuate institutionalised discrimination against us.

Many disabled people who do work are only able to afford to do so because they receive benefits that help pay for the extra costs of personal assistance and transport. If the Government introduces means-testing for the so-called "well off", it will simply push disabled people out of work and back on to benefit.

To say that the main barrier to our employment is "psychological" completely ignores the discriminatory attitudes of many employers and the barriers of an inaccessible environment that many of us experience.


Director, Greater London Action on Disability

London SW9