Work and Pensions
Esther McVey (Wirral West, Conservative)
I am pleased to announce that later today we will publish two documents as part of our disability strategy, Fulfilling Potential. These set out how the Government will work in partnership with others to enable disabled people to achieve their aspirations and play a full role in society.
The London 2012 Paralympic games have challenged outdated perceptions of disabled people. They have provided a platform for greater understanding and inclusion, and a stronger focus on ability rather than disability. Fulfilling Potential will build on this and is about making the UN Convention on the Rights of Disabled People a living reality for disabled people in Britain today.
Last December we invited disabled people to help shape a new cross-Government disability strategy. We received an overwhelming response. “Fulfilling Potential—the Discussions So Far” summarises the issues raised, and shows how actions are already being taken across Government to address many of the issues.
We will also publish “Fulfilling Potential—Next Steps” which will take us further forward. It sets out our vision and principles; outlines further public sector reforms; and announces a new disability action alliance, involving organisations from across the private, public and voluntary and community sectors.
Convened by Disability Rights UK and supported by the Office for Disability Issues, the alliance will put disabled people and their organisations in influential roles. It will lead the way in promoting local communities which include disabled people, and identify action to change attitudes and behaviours, increase choice and control and encourage early interventions to support independent living.
We will continue to work with disabled people and publish in the autumn, an analysis of the latest statistics and research, to help build a deeper understanding of disability in our society today; and in 2013 a further strategic document and action plan.
I will place a copy of both documents in the House Library later today.