Disability issues and social care have been in the news a lot recently. After being eclipsed by discussion of tax credits, the disability elements of the Welfare Reform and Work Bill finally came to the fore last week.

Welfare Reform Minister Lord Freud announced that the Government would amend the Bill to exclude people who receive Carer's Allowance from the Benefit Cap, two months after a court found it unlawfully discriminated against disabled people.

This was welcome news for carers and the disabled adults they support.

The announcement was closely followed by Members of the House of Lords voting overwhelmingly against the Government’s plans to cut £30 per week from disabled jobseekers’ benefits.

Their Lordships didn’t agree with the Government’s argument that this cut would help to achieve their manifesto commitment of halving the disability employment gap.

Latest on the bedroom tax

In other news last week, the Court of Appeal found the Government’s Spare Room Tax or 'bedroom tax' to be discriminatory against disabled people and victims of domestic violence, and in breach of the European Convention on Human Rights.

The Government is appealing this decision in the Supreme Court. But many commentators and media reports suggest that, in light of all these events, the Government has lost credibility with the public as a result of the way that some of its policies seem to be adversely affecting disabled people.

The future of social care

Also last week, MPs took part in a debate relating to the NHS and a social care commission in the House of Commons. This debate was scheduled by the Backbench Business Committee following a bid from the Liberal Democrats' health spokesperson, Norman Lamb.

As a member of the Care and Support Alliance, United Response has been campaigning to raise awareness about the mounting crisis in health and social care for a number of years.

The number of people requiring treatment for health problems and long-term care is rising, whilst capacity to provide treatment and care is increasingly stretched.

John JC Cooper, campaigns and public affairs manager.

Read more about the Government's plans for health & social care funding