The SNP are very concerned about the impact of these changes on disabled people. It has been estimated that these changes will negatively affect the financial support that some 160,000 people rely upon.
We reject arguments that these amendments to the regulations are necessary and I understand the strength of feeling in Scotland against these changes given their far reaching impact on disabled people. My SNP colleagues and I are particularly concerned by some of the comments made in relation to these changes to PIP by UK Government Ministers. Those comments showed a real misunderstanding of mental ill-health and the serious impact it can have on people’s lives. We have further concerns that these amendments have been introduced without any consultation.
The SNP have joined with other cross-party MPs to prevent these changes by signing EDM 985. We continue to call on the Secretary of State to abandon these changes and to act urgently to bring the regulations before Parliament to allow real scrutiny of their impact to take place. The SNP know the real value of PIP and how it is needed to help cover the extra costs that disabled people face every day.
My SNP colleagues and I will continue to press the Tory UK Government to reconsider the changes that will result from these amendments to the PIP regulations so that disabled people can be guaranteed the support that they need to live independent lives and to ensure they are treated with dignity and respect.