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Equalities and Rights Equalities and Rights

Review disabled people’s access and amend regulations

Last updated: 10:58pm 27 November 2018

So we will review disabled people’s access and amend regulations if necessary to improve disabled access to licensed premises, parking and housing.

Conservative Party Manifesto 2017, p.58

Our verdict

19% of working age adults are estimated to have a disability, as defined in the Equality Act 2010. The Equality Act places a legal duty on certain people or organisations to make “reasonable adjustments” to remove barriers faced because of a disability.

This policy promises broadly to “review disabled people’s access” and specifically with reference to “licensed premises, parking and housing“. Where the reviews suggest the need to amend regulations for disability access, we will be looking for changes in the law to be made too.

Since the election, we haven’t seen evidence of a broad review of disabled people’s access such as, for example, extensive consultation and scrutiny of the Equality Act and related legislation. This pledge was not included in the 2017 Queen’s Speech or associated briefing notes.

In November 2017, the government published its response to a report by the Select Committee on the Licensing Act 2003. Despite claiming government was “sympathetic to the issues”, it rejected a proposed change to the law around disabled access statements in licensed premises applications. The response promised further consultation.

In January 2018, the government undertook a consultation on a proposal to extend the Blue Badge (disabled parking) scheme to people with non-physical conditions. It published its response and proposed changes on 29 July 2018.

We haven’t found evidence of action on regulations regarding disabled access to housing.

As there is evidence of some scrutiny of regulations relating to disabled people’s access to licensed premises and parking, this pledge is ‘in progress’. To move it to ‘done’, we would need to see something similar with regard to housing, and then consult with independent organisations in the sector on whether these actions constitute the promised “review of disabled people’s access”. Follow this policy for updates.

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