Coventry City council set to back housing adaption access policy for people with disabilities - The Coventry Observer

12th Aug, 2022

Coventry City council set to back housing adaption access policy for people with disabilities

Ryan Smith 11th Jul, 2022

COVENTRY councillors look set to back a new updated policy to give more people with disabilities access to funding for housing adaptions.

The Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) funds equipment such as stair lifts or more accessible showers which give people better accessibility around their home.

Awards through the grant scheme are currently mandatory but agreeing to the new updated Housing Assistance Policy would allow Coventry City Council to take a more discretionary approach to awarding grants.

The proposed changes to the policy will be considered by councillors at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, July 12.

The council deals with around 400 referrals each year but around 15 per cent of these don’t progress or are delayed due to financial assessments.

A new policy will mean grants under £6,000 would no longer need a financial assessment.

There will also be a new option to top-up grants over £30,000.

It would also include discretionary use of the grant for heating, insulation and funding respite care when adaptations are being made.

Cabinet member for adult services Coun Mal Mutton said: “The change is important as we will be able to take a more flexible approach to help more people who apply to us for funds. When people live independently it is so much better for their health and wellbeing.

“In the current scheme people who are working in the household, and therefore have a regular income, are disadvantaged because it is assumed they have the capacity to fund a loan.

“This doesn’t take into account their outgoings and their ability to repay the loan – we want to be able to recognise this in our assessments. The discretionary approach will help reduce hospital admissions and also allow earlier discharges.

“We will also be able to support more people who are not eligible for standard DFG assistance.”

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