The government's ability to keep its promises on disability has been rated as a 'D-' by the disability charity Scope. The organisation rated the coalition's performance against pledges made in the coalition agreement.
The coalition government was formed by the Conservative Party and the Liberal Democrats a year ago this week.
Scope published their assessment of various areas of government policy today (12 May), the day after thousands of disabled people took to the streets in London to campaign against the government's cuts.
Ranging from an F for its approach to welfare reform to a B+ for its consultation on how to support disabled people into public life positions, Scope has scored the government on a range of issues including respite, equality, welfare reform and personalisation.
The final grade, averaging out at a D-, was described as "dismal" by Scope.
”The coalition government could do a lot better," said Richard Hawkes, Scope's Chief Executive, "Despite David Cameron’s commitment that he would protect the vulnerable, the government has fallen far short of the hurdle on the majority of issues that affect disabled people".
Hawkes said, "There are some admirable aims in the coalition agreement but recent policy does not suggest it is making great progress in delivering on those aims".
Scope particularly wants to see the government "focus on its sums" so it can truly understand the impact of decisions it is making on disabled people and their lives. They are also calling for a more scientific-based approach with more evidence used to support reforms.
Hawkes added, “The government needs to recognise the range of barriers disabled people face in daily life and ensure it is taking positive steps in all directions to ensure disabled people have the same opportunities to live their lives and make an active contribution to society".
Also on Ekklesia: Betraying disabled people and welfare, by Karen McAndrew - http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/14675