Voluntary Sector: Taking Action

Disabled People's Council/Disability Benefits Consortium vs DWP.

Protesters: The UK Disabled People's Council and Disability Benefits Consortium

Target: The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)

Location: Central London

Date: 11 May

The lowdown

Thousands of people took part in The Hardest Hit March through central London to protest against the Government's spending cuts and benefit reforms for the disabled. Waving placards with slogans such as 'Easy target: cuts to disabled disgraceful', many of the protesters were severely disabled and were surrounded by supporters and relatives on the march.

Why the protests?

The demonstrators object to cuts in disability living allowance, benefit changes and local service cutbacks. They point to recent research by the Demos think-tank, which found that 1.48 million disabled people are set to be worse off by a total of £374m in 2011.

How did the Government respond?

A spokesman for the DWP said: 'The system we have at the moment is not fit for purpose and is failing disabled people. We are reforming welfare to make sure the billions we spend on benefits goes to those who need it and that for the first time disabled people get proper help and support to live independent lives and work in the mainstream jobs they want.'

How did the media cover it?

The size of the protest secured widespread coverage in the nationals, including The Guardian, along with broadcast coverage on BBC News and Channel 4 News.

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