Archives for posts with tag: ESA

Disabled campaigners have criticised new Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) rules that explain which benefit claimants will no longer have to be repeatedly put through the much-criticised “fitness for work” test. DWP announced last month, on the eve of the Conservative party conference in Manchester, that some claimants in the support group of employment and support allowance (ESA) – and the equivalent universal credit group – would no longer need to attend “routine reassessments”. Only those with “the most severe and lifelong health conditions or disabilities” will be exempt from reassessments, and they will be told of their exemption when they receive the results of their next work capability assessment (WCA), the test which assesses ESA eligibility. Although DWP declined to release the eligibility criteria for exemptions, the guidelines have now been published by Disability Rights UK, one of the disability organisations that took part in discussions with the government as it

Source: Concerns over criteria for ‘fitness for work’ reassessment exemptions | DisabledGo News and Blog

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The ramblings of a former DWP Civil Servant ...

Ken Loach’s fictional Daniel Blake was claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance.  In the real world, JSA has been frozen since April 2015.  On Planet Corbyn, Daniel no longer exists.

On the Friday before the August Bank Holiday 2017, Labour sneaked out a press release in the name of Jeremy Corbyn, stating that Labour would not end the benefits freeze on taking up office.

JSA for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Income Support for lone parent Daniella Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Employment and Support Allowance for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015.

Labour will, however, enact free university tuition for mostly white, mostly middle and upper class youth on its first day in office.

Labour will make Daniel Blake, a real victim of austerity, foot the bill for free university tuition.

View original post 972 more words


The ramblings of a former DWP Civil Servant ...

Ken Loach’s fictional Daniel Blake was claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance.  In the real world, JSA has been frozen since April 2015.  On Planet Corbyn, Daniel no longer exists.

On the Friday before the August Bank Holiday 2017, Labour sneaked out a press release in the name of Jeremy Corbyn, stating that Labour would not end the benefits freeze on taking up office.

JSA for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Income Support for lone parent Daniella Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Employment and Support Allowance for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015.

Labour will, however, enact free university tuition for mostly white, mostly middle and upper class youth on its first day in office.

Labour will make Daniel Blake, a real victim of austerity, foot the bill for free university tuition.

View original post 782 more words


Julie Rodger had her benefits stopped after her husband mistakenly forgot to attend a mandatory Jobcentre meeting.

Source: Paralysed woman told to find work after husband forgot Jobcentre appointment


A UN committee has told the UK government to produce an annual progress report on how it is implementing the recommendations of a damning inquiry that found it guilty of “grave and systematic violations” of key parts of the disability convention. The committee of disabled human rights experts concluded last November that the government had violated the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) under the articles on independent living, work and employment, and social protection. But the committee on the rights of persons with disabilities has now made clear that it is not satisfied with the way the UK has responded to that inquiry. In its “concluding observations” on the progress the UK has made across the entire convention, the committee said the government should co-operate closely with disabled people’s organisations on implementing the recommendations made by last November’s inquiry report. And it said the government should provide information to the committee

Source: UN demands annual UK progress report on correcting ‘grave and systematic violations’ | DisabledGo News and Blog


A Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) whistleblower has described how a “mismanaged” and under-funded social security system is leaving many disability benefit claimants penniless and helpless. George* works on DWP’s employment and support allowance (ESA) helpline and has told Disability News Service (DNS) that the experience has left him shocked and frustrated at the deeply flawed system. And he also says he believes – although he does not have direct evidence of this – that DWP decision-makers do have targets for the proportion of claimants that they need to find “fit for work”, and so ineligible for ESA. A colleague in another part of DWP, who works with a decision-maker, told him that this member of staff “hates his job” because he has to “disallow people” and had been “struggling to hit his disallowance targets”. Although DNS has been unable to verify this claim, disabled activists have been warning for years that they believe DWP decision-makers, and the healthcare

Source: DWP whistleblower from ESA helpline exposes ‘obscene’ system | DisabledGo News and Blog


The poor side of life

Today’s demo started rather hurriedly and to be honest I didn’t know if I was coming or going. This feeling was amplified because it was cold, rainy and my daughter was a bit fed up. understandable of course. But she soon settled down into our usual routine and all was well.

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We are seeing a lot of new faces due to Stalybridge Jobcentre shutting. They don’t know us and what we are doing, and we don’t know them or their situations either. So we have to start from scratch, which at times isn’t easy.  But it’s a whole lot harder for them.

I started a conversation with a man who had been previously attending Stalybridge Jobcentre for his appointments. The first thing that he said to me was that he couldn’t believe how rude the front desk staff are at  Ashton Jobcentre, and how rude some of the advisors are also…

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Sensible logic from Poppy, but do Governments do logic let alone sensible.

Poppy's Place

I am so happy.

Saturday was a good news day for me.

After several weeks of waiting, I finally received the two brown envelopes through the letterbox which told me how I’d done with my enforced PIP (Personal Independence Payment) application and my ESA (Employment Support Allowance) reassessment and I was successful for both Benefits.

And, further to that, a very good family friend also received her brown envelope for PIP on Sarurday as well and she’s been successful as too. Virtual High Fives all over our social media pages let me tell you – we were delerious. We both got to sleep properly for the first time in quite a while that night and we can now both breathe freely once more because we know that our finances are guaranteed for at least the next few years at any rate.

Brilliant!

But, there is something we both want to…

View original post 727 more words


This current Tory Government and probably the previous Tory Governments and New Labour are promoting Government euthanasia. By this I mean they are and were creating policies that remove benefits from persons with disabilities so that they cannot survive. Therefore they are creating situations where their death is almost inevitable. In doing so they are reducing those on benefits because on death the benefits cease, if not before due the benefits for their existence being wrongly withdrawn.

Euthanasia by Government policies.

Same Difference

Scope, the charity for disabled people, tweeted an interesting number when the general election was announced. There are, it said, 13 million disabled people in Britain. Some 89 per cent have said they will vote. 

The reason that number is worth paying attention to is that if the 89 per cent are true to their word, and if they use their franchise to hold the Government to account for its brutal treatment of disabled people, it might just spell trouble for Theresa May’s dreams of a three-figure majority. 

Now, let me make one thing clear at the outset. I’m not about to say who you should vote for. Journalists too often do that. I would simply invite you to consider the Government’s record when it comes to disability.

If I were to take on the role of prosecuting ministers over that, I would struggle to find somewhere to start. So long would…

View original post 857 more words


Alice Kirby tells Ruth Hunt how DWP benefit assessment practices contribute to the deterioration of claimants’ mental health, causing an increase in suicidal feelings

Of late, there have been great strides made regarding the understanding of mental illness and suicide, attempted suicide and suicidal feelings. Unfortunately, this hasn’t reached the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), despite its “disability-confident” slogans.

You would think it would want to avoid any more bad press but this dysfunctional and dangerous department can’t seem to help it, especially with regard to the now-notorious Work Capability Assessment (WCA) for Employment Support Allowance (ESA) and the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessment.

Recent research conducted by Jemina Napier from Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University has found that the ESA assessment process “caused a deterioration in people’s mental health, which individuals did not recover from. In the worst case, the WCA experience led to thoughts of suicide.”

Debbie Abrahams, shadow secretary for Work and Pensions, said this proved the system is “not only unfit for purpose but is causing harm to some disabled people.”

The despair and suicidal feelings some people experience are hardly surprising as they live for months with the threat of financial insecurity hanging over them. Once on such benefit, they still face arbitrary and bewildering decisions to sanction them by removing their benefit for a period of time.

A freedom of information request in 2013 showed that six out of 10 sanctions were given to those with a mental health condition and/or a learning disability — so when Tories talk about the “safety net’ for the vulnerable, those affected know it’s so threadbare many fall through.

Suicide and suicidal feelings are complex — often there is more than a single reason why someone takes their own life. Research has pointed to various indicators that would alert a nurse or doctor. Financial insecurity or the threat of financial insecurity — the brown envelope on the doormat — and previous suicide attempts should be an automatic red flag.

Thankfully, most organisations and mental health professionals have moved on from the days where suicidal feelings or attempted suicide were seen as just “attention seeking.”

However, the DWP is one of those organisations still stuck in the past. Its WCA and PIP assessments are based on an outdated medical model of disability, with little interest being shown in what actually disables someone.

It takes a lot of courage for someone to reply to questions about suicidal feelings and/or suicide attempts especially in the high-pressured environment of a benefits assessment, but we have to ask why these questions are asked at all.

Source: Pushed to the Brink – Black Triangle Campaign

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