13 December 2010 – Government safeguards funding for ILF recipients
Maria Miller, the Minister for Disabled People, said in a written statement today that the Government will "fully protect the programme budget for existing recipients of the ILF within DWP" and "support the ILF to continue to administer existing awards" throughout this Parliament.
Stephen Jack, Chair of the ILF Trustees said:
"The ILF board of Trustees has worked closely with the Government over the last few months to help it consider options for the future of the ILF. We are pleased that the Government shares our first priority in committing to safeguarding the position of existing recipients of the fund."
The Government has reviewed the role of the ILF and informally consulted with disability organisations, local government, and the Department of Health and concluded that there is a "strong and principled case for reform". In safeguarding the position of existing ILF recipients the Minister has also confirmed that the ILF is permanently closed to new applicants.
A full consultation will take place with disabled people, particularly ILF recipients and their families, local authorities and other interested parties including the devolved administrations on the future of the ILF. The consultation will begin following the publication of a report by the Commission on the Funding of Care and Support in England next Summer.
In further support of the Minister’s statement Stephen Jack said:
"We understand the position in relation to new applications in the current financial climate and welcome the Government’s commitment to full consultation. The views of ILF recipients, and their families and carers, will be extremely important and we will assist Government to ensure they are fully considered."
For more information contact David Smith, Head of Communications, on 0115 9450730 or 07779 083493.
Notes to editors
- The Independent Living Fund (ILF) is an Executive Non-Departmental Public Body of the Department for Work and Pensions. Working in close partnership with Local Authorities across the UK it awards cash payments directly to severely disabled people who receive the care component of higher rate DLA to support the cost of their personal assistance, enabling them to live fully inclusive independent lives in their communities. To get payments from the ILF you have to meet certain conditions.
- The ILF provides financial assistance under the terms of a single publicly financed discretionary Trust Deed – The Independent Living Fund (2006), governed by a board of nine Trustees.
- The ILF currently provides financial support to over 20,000 disabled people in the UK, and has supported over 46,500 disabled people during the last 22 years.
- The ILF’s allocated budget for 2010-11 is £348m for Great Britain and £11.2m for Northern Ireland.
- The ILF is a funding stream within the DWP programme to develop the Right to Control, which is testing new ways of working together to better combine support arrangements for disabled people, through seven Trailblazer sites across England
- Visit www.dwp.gov.uk/ilf for more information about the Independent Living Fund.