I AM WRITING as a recipient of the Welsh Independent Living Grant (WILG) and a disability activist who intends on asking Welsh Labour to reconsider their decision to close WILG as of April 2019. This payment was introduced to help people who previously claimed from the UK government’s Independent Living Fund (ILF), which closed in 2015.

WILG was due to run until the end of March 2017, but social services minister Rebecca Evans said in November that funding would continue for another year. 

The annual £27m fund will then transfer directly to local authorities during 2018-19 so they can meet the support needs of all former ILF recipients by 31 March 2019. Something needs to be done as our disabled friends in England have suffered under a similar system that has seen local authorities being solely responsible for their care and support since 2015. 

This cannot be allowed to happen in Wales as well. Disabled people must organise themselves and demand to be listened to. 

There are a number of ways that WILG recipients, family members and personal assistants can help to make a difference. Those concerned can sign the petition that has currently received almost 250 signatures, take part in the postcard campaign that is being orchestrated across social media and put pen to paper to their local AM. 

To find out more about these projects, please contact Nathan Lee Davies at nathandavies01@hotmail.com or search Facebook for the Save the Welsh Independent Living Grant (WILG) page. 

Twitter users can find me on @nathanleedavies or visit my blog at nathanleedavies.wordpress.com/

Nathan Lee Davies