Conservative parliamentary candidate Sally-Ann Hart, has been caught on camera telling a campaign event people with disabilities should be paid less than the minimum wage as "they don’t understand money".
The Hastings and Rye hopeful was met with jeers and boos by a scandalised audience as she defended sharing an article suggesting disabled people should be paid less on Facebook.
Hart, currently councillor for Rother District Council, said disabled people “should be given the opportunity to work because it’s to do with the happiness they have about working [sic]” but should be paid less because they “don’t understand about [sic] money”, prompting the audience to shout “shameful” and “they deserve a salary”. “It’s about them being happy at work. It’s about having a therapeutic exemption and the article was in support of employing people with learning disabilities, that is what it was,” she fumbled.
Sally Anne Hart, Conservative candidate for Hastings and Rye, condoning the underpaying of disabled workers because they get “happiness from working”— Bexhill Labour (@BexhillLabour) December 5, 2019
😱 shocking 😱@HastingsRyeLab @PeterchowneyHR @OwenJones84 @AyoCaesar @novaramedia pic.twitter.com/ynpcvVUuxX
One audience member identified themselves as autistic, and shouted that they wanted to get paid appropriately for the work they did, while another individual shouted “how patronising, how dare you”.
get this horrible woman of the Conservatives of Hastings quoted that "Learning Disabilities should be paid less than the " NORMAL " people workers" in her daily attendance for her meeting at her local village hall with the locals her name Sally Anne Heart disgusting woman is bad!— AndyJamesPalmer🏳️🌈🤗♂️♊🇬🇧❤️ (@APalme1) December 5, 2019
The article in question appeared in The Spectator in 2017 – written by Rosa Monckton, whose daughter has Downs Syndrome, it for a “therapeutic exemption” to the minimum wage, to help people with learning difficulties find and maintain work.
Hart later told the BBC she was merely "trying to emphasise more needs to be done to help those with learning disabilities into the workplace and having properly paid work".