A year long independent inquiry has been launched to understand the scale of regular extra costs which are faced by disabled people and families of children with disabilities in England and Wales.
The Scope Extra Costs Commission aims to find solutions to drive down the extra costs disabled people experience completing everyday tasks, which research from disability charity Scope has estimated at £550 per disabled person.
These extra costs include the added expense of paying for accessible modes of transport to and from work or the costs of running an electronic wheelchair. Costs such as higher energy costs and greater insurance costs also force disabled people to pay more to live independently.
Writing on Scope’s blog, Inside Scope, for the launch of the commission, Scope’s public policy adviser, Ellie Brawn said: “Disabled people and their families should be able to learn, work and get involved in the community without extra costs.
“The Extra Costs Commission means a real opportunity to drive down the extra costs disabled people and their families face. But they need your evidence and experiences to make a difference. Please get involved.”
The commission has called for people who are disabled and families of people with disabilities to come forward to talk about their experiences of extra costs and how this affects their daily living.
Experts, researchers and policy makers are also being encouraged to submit any formal evidence they have surrounding the issue to contribute and establish why disabled people are experiencing higher costs, and how to ensure these costs can be reduced in the future.