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Rethink needed on ‘20 metre rule’, says CSP

1 August 2013 - 11:30am

The CSP has signed an open letter to prime minister David Cameron and his deputy, Nick Clegg, to express concern about the ‘20 metre rule’ – a measure of mobility impairment for disabled people seeking to claim Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

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The government is currently re-consulting on the mobility criteria for PIP assessments. The deadline for responses is 5 August

By signing the letter the society has joined forces with the Disability Benefits Consortium (DBC), a coalition of more than 50 charities committed to promoting a fair benefits system. Their letter aims to highlight the adverse impact the 20 metre rule will have on disabled people throughout the UK.

Under current proposals, 20 metres will be the distance used to determine whether PIP claimants are eligible for an enhanced rate of benefit.

The open letter states: ‘We are strongly concerned about the 20 metre rule – if disabled people can walk just 20 metres (less than the length of two buses) – even using aids such as sticks – they won't qualify for the enhanced rate of the mobility component of the benefit.’

PIP differs from its predecessor, the Disability Living Allowance, under which the qualifying distance was 50 metres.

The DBC letter calls for the 50-metre threshold to be reinstated so that large numbers of people, who can walk 20 metres but can't walk 50 metres, don’t miss out on fundamental support.

Only days to respond to the consultation

The government is currently re-consulting on the mobility criteria for PIP assessments. The deadline for responses is 5 August and CSP professional adviser Léonie Dawson says members ‘need to act fast’ to express their views.  


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