Dodgy -v- Defensible ?

This is a list of posts that illustrate instances where dodgy or defensible decision making has taken place.   Click on the link to read the full post.


2 thoughts on “Dodgy -v- Defensible ?”

  1. Fred Bloggs

    Our LA are “reviewing” eligibility for Freedom Passes.
    They are considering withdrawing some from people with learning disabilities.
    They say they can use their DLA instead.
    Is this lawful? If not, why not?

    1. Belinda SchwehrBelinda Schwehr

      It’s a difficult question because Freedom Passes are not necessarily adult social care services. Very often they are something that the council pays for, or grant funds, as a targeted service for the good of the community in general, and not just people with eligible needs. So, their existence is what makes it possible for councils NOT to fund specialist transport for people with disabilities. What IS clear is that it is not open to an adult social care council to treat someone’s financial means – and their DLA, and especially the mobility component – is part of their means – as relevant to eligibility, under the Care Act. So a canny council will not say to a person ‘you are no longer eligible under the Care Act for a Freedom Pass’. They will say instead: we are allowed to charge you for transport that we provide, even if it takes you below the Minimum Income Guarantee – because there are special rules allowing us to do so for NON-CARE services – one of which is transport. In a convoluted way, that seems to me to be a way of forcing people to spend their mobility component on services that ARE provided to people with issues, without it looking as if the council is taking the mobility component into account for the purposes of charging. If your council is doing something else, and genuinely saying that the person is not eligible because they could PAY the full cost of the transport that is not being provided as a social care service, that is definitely dodgy. Finances are not relevant to the eligibility criteria at all; and a person cannot just be told to go and buy something for themselves!

      Hope that is helpful! L

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