Extra cash allocated to boost direct payments

All people with disabilities will have the right to buy
essential services by 2003 following an announcement by the
Scottish executive.

Malcolm Chisholm, deputy minister for community care, announced
that £530,000 is to be allocated over the next two years to
encourage uptake of direct payments. The funds will be awarded to a
consortium of user-led groups and representatives of local
authorities called UPDATE. It will run a development group prior to
the implementation of the Regulation of Care Bill, which extends
direct payments to disabled 16 and 17-year-olds.

Chisholm said: “While not all disabled people will want to
receive direct payments, we believe that the choice should be

UPDATE will develop local user-led support groups, set up a
rights based scheme, increase awareness of direct payments at a
local and national level and provide feedback to the Scottish

Jim Elder-Woodward, convenor of the Scottish Personal Assistant
Employers Network, said: “Direct payments allow disabled people to
lead a life each one of us wants to lead. By giving this grant to
UPDATE – an organisation controlled by disabled people
– the Scottish executive has entrusted us to spread the good
news as well as the know-how to establish the necessary peer
support systems.”

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