BATA launches campaign to scrap £200 contribution for DSAs

BATA logoThe British Assistive Technology Association (BATA) has published research that shows the £200 charge faced by students who receive laptops under the Disabled Students Allowances (DSAs) is putting them off accessing assistive technology.

BATA’s report has revealed that there has been a worrying 30% drop in the number of students taking up assistive technology equipment recommended to them by professional assessors since the £200 contribution was brought in.

And other disturbing evidence gained by BATA shows that students with specific learning difficulties and mental health issues are those most affected by the charge.

As the report states, the £200 charge generates a very small amount of savings for the Government, yet it is having a negative impact on vulnerable people.

According to the report: “The direct cost saving from the introduction of the contribution is less than £5 million, out of a Higher Education budget of some £33 billion. This is roughly one hundredth of one percent - but is directly, negatively impacting some of the most vulnerable in society.”

On the back of its findings BATA has launched a campaign to persuade the Government to add the £200 charge for students to their student loan.

As part of this effort BATA has sent the report to over 650 MPs who have been asked to push the Minister for Universities, Sam Gyimah, to consider including the £200 charge in each student’s loan.