General Election 2015: what do the manifestos mean for disabled people?

21 April 2015

by Guy Parckar

As we get closer to the General Election on 7 May, most political parties have now published their manifestos. These set out the key policies each party would implement if they were in government.

So what do the different manifestos say about disability? Below are summaries of what the largest UK-wide political party manifestos include about disability and social care. (Presented in alphabetical order of party name.)

Conservative Party

  • Includes commitments to bring together health and social care.
  • Increase support for full-time unpaid carers.
  • Commits to halving the ‘disability employment gap’ (the difference between the percentage of disabled people in work compared to the percentage of non-disabled people in work).
  • Pledges to give powers over social care to large cities with elected mayors.
  • Proposes extending the law to cover disability hate crime.

Full Conservative Party manifesto. 

Green Party

  • Proposes providing free social care for disabled people of working age and people at the end of life.
  • Proposes increased funding for local authorities to pay for care and other public services, and increasing the budget for Personal Independence Payments (PIP).
  • Raise the profile of the Access to Work scheme.
  • Increase support for carers.

Full Green Party manifesto.

Labour Party

Full Labour Party manifesto. 

Liberal Democrats

  • Commits to a full review of health and social care, and to merge health and care at a national level.
  • Proposes additional support for carers, and that the planning system should reflect the need for ‘age-appropriate housing’.
  • Proposes raising awareness of the Access to Work scheme, and providing work experience opportunities for disabled people.
  • Includes commitments to continue to fund improvements to rail station accessibility, to set out guidelines for what would make an ‘accessible city’ and to improve monitoring of disability hate crime.

Full Liberal Democrats manifesto.


  • Proposes bringing health and social care together under the NHS, and increasing funding for social care, as well as ending the use of 15-minute care visits.
  • Commitment to maintain specific benefits for older people including free bus passes, winter fuel allowances, free TV licenses for the over 75s and free prescriptions and eye tests for the over-60s.

Full UKIP manifesto.

Plaid Cymru

  • Pledges to promote adapted housing for residents to choose to stay in their own homes or specially-built accommodation rather than move into care.
  • Commitment to ensure that Disabled Facilities Grants and adaptations are implemented efficiently.
  • Pledges not to implement Universal Credit until an independent review is carried out.
  • Prepare for the further devolution of welfare by developing a Welsh employment and benefits system.

Full Plaid Cymru manifesto.

Scottish National Party (SNP)

  • Commitment to increasing NHS spending across the UK.
  • Block cuts to Disability Living Allowance and support an increase in Carer’s Allowance so that it matches Jobseekers’ Allowance.
  • Pledges to abolish the Spare Room Subsidy (also dubbed the ‘bedroom tax’).

Full SNP manifesto (PDF).

Guy Parckar is Head of Policy at Leonard Cheshire Disability.


very informative and helpful, thank you

consevisties i would agree to if thy will give us a proper living allowance in stead of allowance the same as an unemployed person which is £85/80 a week and then having to top it up by giving us allowance to make it £185/80 all so cutting back on housing benefit which do not cover all cost i would not vote for any of the others at all don't trust them cameron has to deal with this problems of young girls having children with out any means or having a job a lot of peolpe are saying this

David Cameron has already stated that he will slash welfare if he gets back in number 10, & has stated he will not release the details of how much & which benfits will be affected untill after the election! He has no interest in the disabled or the vulnerable...provede by the number of people driven to their deaths in recent months...People being told they are fit to work & had benefits stopped when they had months to live!! As for employment - he states that the number of people in employment is up! What he fails to mention is these people have been forced onto part-time work or have benefits stopped & now have to rely on foodbanks as the wages of part time work do not cover food/bills. He also forced people into zero hours contract - this means that those people are at the discretion of the employer & that entails that the employer can give that person 1 hour per week or 40 hours at their own choice. When that employer gives the person 1 hour work or even 0 hours for that leaves that person with no money as they cannot claim benefit! But all cameron is concerned about is telling u the surface figures & hopes u don't have the intelligence to dig further down to find out what is beneath these figures! Personally being disabled - i would seriousley consider ending my life if the conservatives got in - rather that than starve to death

We will see on the day if any do what they say

Labour have always opposed the 'Bedroom Tax', as soon as they (assuming they) get in they will repeal it (get rid of it). They've said they'll also repeal the anti lobbying law or 'gagging law', which was passed recently and has had charities and organisations (many of whom campaign on behalf of disabled people, campaign for disability rights and speak out against the way welfare reforms have affected disabled people) afraid to speak out against government decisions. I think these points points are massively important and should have been included in the list of the Labour parties' pledges to the disabled community

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