A radical shake-up of the way disabled people use state funding, allowing them to buy their own support services or equipment, is due to be launched in parts of Britain.
Under the so-called Right to Control programme, disabled people will be able to combine money from different schemes, giving them a more personalised service, joining up housing, employment and community care.
The Department for Work and Pensions said advice will be available to help people choose services and decide how to spend their money if they want to change the support they currently receive.
Maria Miller, Minister for Disabled People, said: “This is about increasing personalisation and putting disabled people in charge of their own decision making, instead of telling them what they can and can’t spend their money on.
“Disabled people should have the same choices and opportunities as everyone else and I am convinced that this will help to deliver the greater independence that disabled people tell me they want.
“I need to make it clear that Right to Control does not change eligibility for these services, but means that disabled people can use their funding more flexibly.”
Campaign group Trailblazers, partnerships between local authorities, Jobcentre Plus and disabled people’s organisations will work with disabled people to develop individual support plans. Each plan will make effective use of all the funding available to an individual, to meet their goals.
Around £7 million will be spent making changes to deliver the Right to Control programme, which will be launched on Monday by Essex County Council, Leicester City Council, the London Boroughs of Barnet and Newham, Epsom and Ewell Borough Council and Reigate and Banstead Borough Council in Surrey.