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Closure of Independent Living Fund

"Unsustainable" ILF to close in 2015

The Minister for Disabled People Esther McVey (MP for Wirral West) in a Written Statement confirmed plans to close the national Independent Living Fund.· From April·2015, local councils will have responsibility for meeting all the care and support needs of any current ILF users (No new ILF users have been taken on since 2010).

The consultation on this showed that the plans to close were causing wide anxiety. However the government believes that it is impossible to keep the ILF because of the complexities of combining the Fund with other support.

They also say that with the scheme as currently as it currently operates local authorities find it difficult to support disabled people in a "consistent and equitable manner". It is difficult to see how putting the cost on local authorities will help this equality - given that it is the poorer areas of the country that have the most need for support for disabled people.

The government claim that ILF is now less vital because disabled people can - through Direct Payments - "exercise enhanced choice and control through the mainstream system in all parts of the UK". This may also cause some raised eyebrows in those (many) parts of the UK where Direct Payments are still making slow progress.

Read the full statement by clicking here.