#SENDABetterMessage Parliamentary Pledge

The Disabled Children’s Partnership (DCP) is calling on MPs and Peers from all parties to publicly back the rights of disabled children by signing the #SENDABetterMessage pledge.


As the government looks to change disabled children’s services through its Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) reform programme, it’s important that the existing rights of families with disabled children are protected.  

Ongoing research from the DCP has revealed that over 4 in 10 families with disabled children are waiting over a year for basic services like therapies, respite care and appointments with education psychologists.  

Thousands of parent carers are having to take local authorities to tribunal over not receiving the right support – and 96% of the time the hearings side with parents, showcasing how dysfunctional the system is.  

We need a system that removes bureaucracy, increases accountability of service providers and ensures families with disabled children get the support they deserve, without having to fight for it.  

We are therefore calling on parliamentarians from across the political spectrum to sign the #SENDABetterMessage pledge and show their support to families with disabled children in their area, and to highlight the cross-party support that exists for a fairer system of support for disabled children and families to the government. 

If you are a parliamentarian and would like to sign the pledge, please email the DCP team at disabledchildrens.partnership@mencap.org.uk


The #SENDABetterMessage pledge:

“I’m backing cross-party calls for a fairer system of support for every disabled child, young person, parent carer and family member. Too many families with disabled children are having to fight through a bureaucratic and red tape filled system to get services they need, like therapies and respite care. 

The government should use its wide-reaching SEND reform programme to reduce the administrative burden for families, address backlogs in services, streamline the process of obtaining support, and increase accountability in the system when service providers don’t meet legal deadline. 

New policy proposals from the government must be carefully thought through, with families consulted in detail, to ensure they do not reduce any of the existing rights and entitlements that families with disabled children have.” 



MPs and Peers that have signed the pledge so far include:


Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle

Baroness Brinton

Baroness Ritchie

Baroness Scott

Barry Sheerman

Ben Lake

Caroline Lucas

Daisy Cooper

Damien Moore

Derek Twigg

Emma Hardy

Emma Lewell-Buck

Henry Smith

Jeffrey Donaldson

John McNally

Kerry McCarthy

Kim Johnson

Lord Addington

Lord Hunt

Lord Storey

Lord Touhig

Mary Foy

Ian Byrne

Ian Lavery

Sarah Champion

Sarah Olney

Siobhan Baillie

Steve Baker

Virendra Sharma