Report from the Hardest Hit North-East Conference

Cuts are costing us our independence, disabled people in Newcastle tell Government

Over 200 disabled people, carers and disability campaigners gathered at Newcastle Civic Centre on Friday 1 June to discuss the impact of government cuts on disabled and older people. The conference comes after a march and rally last October which was the largest of a series across the country with over a 1000 people taking part. Continue reading

Thank you for taking action!

On 22nd October over 5,000 people took to the streets in towns and cities across the country to add their voices to the clamour for a change of direction on welfare reform and an immediate end to cuts to vital local services.

We secured national press coverage and raised awareness amongst the general public, the media and politicians of our key messages.

Together, we’ve shown the government that we’re not going away.

Key messages on the Hardest Hit

Time to take action across the UK

The Hardest Hit rally, march and lobby on 11th May was an outstanding success, bringing disabled people, their families and other campaign supporters together with one clear voice.

 But further action is needed. So the Disability Benefits Consortium (DBC) and the UK Disabled People’s Council (UKDPC) are working together to support Hardest Hit events across the UK on and around 22nd October.

Despite having promised to protect the most vulnerable, the Government is pressing ahead with swingeing cuts to benefits and services vital to the lives of disabled people. It is simply not listening to us. These events will let us come together again, across the UK to send a clear message: stop these cuts.

 The events in October will  have a local dimension, highlighting cuts to local services received by disabled people. However,  the Welfare Reform Bill continues to be a key target, since it promises deep cuts to disability benefits including DLA/PIP and ESA. The Bill will be in the House of Lords in October and a strong showing by us will lend strength to the support from sympathetic Peers. It is also important that we continue to engage with MPs who need to understand the strength of opposition to the Government’s unfair cuts agenda.

What’s happening?

Events will take place around 22nd October in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and across England.  

 As these events are confirmed, details will be posted here, so you can find out more about what is happening in your area and how to get involved.

 You can also keep in touch at or join the debate on twitter using the hashtag #hardesthit

Hardest Hit – march update

Thanks to the efforts of everyone who came to the march yesterday and protested online. This website also received over 10,000 page views, and with almost 8,000 people in attendance, the event was the largest march by disabled people in living memory. In meeting and writing to our MPs, we highlighted the necessity of support for disabled people and the extent of our concerns about the cuts to benefits and services. 

The march was covered by BBC, ITV and Channel 4 news, and received attention in the Guardian and the Independent. The Guardian’s photo gallery is available here, with the live feed of the day also available here.