Cuts to Disabled Students Allowances halted after opposition from Labour MPs

September 19, 2014

140606 DSA CutsA campaign by the National Union of Students together with Emma and other Labour MPs has succeeded in delaying Government plans to cut support for disabled students.

Emma had warned, together with the NUS and disability campaigners, that changes to Disabled Students Allowances would leave many students without much needed support and could block some from going into higher education altogether.

The Government had planned to dramatically reduce the level of support available to people with disabilities and learning difficulties.

Last week the Universities Minister Greg Clark MP admitted in a Ministerial Statement that there were real concerns about the plans, and announced that he would agree delaying the changes until the 2016/17 academic year.

The concession came after a number of MPs raised the risks of the Government’s policy in Parliament.  Emma questioned the Universities Minister in the House of Commons and warned about the impact on disabled students in a debate on the plans.

Emma also joined NUS students on their national day of action to protest against the cuts.

Speaking after the announcement, Emma said:

“I am pleased that campaigners and Labour MPs have been able to make the Government think again about these plans.  Disabled students already struggle financially, and the cuts the Government were proposing risked shutting some of them out of higher education entirely.

“This delay is welcome, and will give campaigners more time to convince the Coalition to drop these plans altogether.”

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