Five disabled people are in court today, seeking to take the government's decision to scrap the independent living fund to judicial review.
I have a good feeling about it; I can picture Iain Duncan Smith, stomping away from reporters in a fortnight's time, looking like he has a mouthful of ash, clarifying huffily: "We haven't lost, we merely didn't win."On 24/4/2013:
In court 28 of the Royal Courts of Justice this morning, a decision was reached about the independent living fund… No matter, concluded the judge; the consultation didn't breach the equality duty requirement. The decision to close the fund doesn't breach it. The minister for disabled people had been made aware of her obligations – and therefore her duty had been met.Oh dear! Zoe concealed her discomfiture with an incredible attack of hyperbole:
But getting back to court 28. It's an inaccessible courtroom, so the people who brought the action couldn't get into the room to hear the verdict.
I know, yet more leftie bleating – when am I going to just face the fact that this country is out of money and we can no longer afford for disabled people to be pandered to with their ceaseless demands for ramps and handrails and other apparatus which, in fact, already exists elsewhere in the Royal Courts of Justice.So it's not a dastardly plot to snub disabled people, it's just a lack of space or a calendar clash within the court?
No. Can't possibly be that.
The message, very clearly, is that disabled people have no right to open justice. Adam Lotun, a 50-year-old wheelchair user outside the courts, had a fractionally kinder interpretation: "I don't think the judge wanted to see any disabled faces in court – with the verdict he was giving."Oh, for...!
The claimants have announced their decision to appeal.But she’s not making any predictions about that…