A disabled Tory peer has accused his own government of insulting disabled people by rejecting the chance to improve access to pubs, clubs and restaurants.
Lord [Kevin] Shinkwin said his party was in danger of “disowning” the laws it introduced through the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) more than 22 years ago.
He was speaking during a Lords debate – a few days before Christmas – on the recommendations made by a committee of peers that had scrutinised the impact of the Licensing Act 2003.
One of the committee’s recommendations was a call for the UK government to follow the Scottish government in adopting a measure* that would force all licensed premises to produce a “disabled access and facilities statement” when applying for a licence to serve alcohol.
The statement would include details on access provisions, and any facilities the business had for use by disabled people.
The committee said in its report: “The provision by licensees of disabled access facilities does not impose on them a new obligation or financial burden, since this is no more than what they are already required to do by law.