The government is planning social experiments to ‘nudge’ sick and disabled people into work

Illustration by Jack Hudson.

Illustration by Jack Hudson.

The government’s Nudge Unit team is currently working with the Department for Work and Pensions and the Department of Health to trial social experiments aimed at finding ways of: “preventing people from falling out of the jobs market and going onto Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).”

“These include GPs prescribing a work coach, and a health and work passport to collate employment and health information. These emerged from research with people on ESA, and are now being tested with local teams of Jobcentres, GPs and employers.”

This is a crass state intrusion on the private and confidential patient-doctor relationship, which ought to be about addressing medical health problems, and supporting people who are ill, not about creating yet another space for an overextension of the coercive arm of the state to “help”people into work.

Read more: The government plan social experiments to “nudge” sick and disabled people into work | Politics and Insights

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14 thoughts on “The government is planning social experiments to ‘nudge’ sick and disabled people into work

  1. Rupert Mitchell (@rupert_rrl)

    What this country really needs in not any NUDGE but HARD ACTION to get rid of this most despicable of all governments this country has ever known; a government which comprises mainly the most privileged in society and the most greedy.

  2. Steve Chapman

    If they want to co-operate with the medical profession, why don’t they train them up with medical degrees, then make them work as junior doctors for 10 years, and then actually trust their opinion when they judge that someone is too ill to work? I know it’s a very ideological notion, obviously we find it easier to trust the judgement of an unvetted sociopath sat behind a desk convinced that every claimant is out to screw the system…

  3. Dez

    The disabled used to have workshops, promoted and supported by local government, specifically designed to take on contract work suitalble for the disabled/handicapped. But alas these units were easy targets for the first cuts as they were usually funded because the contract productivity was not sufficient to cover the costs. The units were meant to encourage the disabled into work environments and socialise etc ie the human stuff that governments lost tract many moons ago.

    1. Florence

      Some of the Remploy units were profit-making businesses. The best known was an office- furniture making business that had supply contracts for government offices across the UK. These are now either in private hands, or closed. No doubt the furniture now comes from somewhere half way round the world.

      It as utterly disgusting that IDS described Remploy as Non-jobs making tea all day. This breath-taking display of prejudice affects not just the disabled it was aimed at, but many unskilled jobs. I actually used to work in a cafe making tea all day, while I was working on my PhD! It’s a job, like any other, and not limited to Remploy.

      1. ian725

        In the 70’s Remploy made Donkey Jackets and such of which I purchased 100’s for the Company I worked for and resold to the Construction Industry and the GLC. All parties were content and each happy to pay the price which WAS competitive. This was initiated specifically to award contracts to Remploy as we all knew their set up and their struggle for survival. Remploy was an excellent idea …. all businessmen are not greedy. however this present Government sets new perimeters each day, each worse than the other.

    2. wildswimmerpete

      More of the family silver flogged off to our corrupt private sector. While Remploy is technically an employee-managed co-operative, 70% of Remploy is owned by the American outfit Maximus. The Tories can’t even manage to flog off our assets to our own outfits.

    3. Barry Davies

      Unfortunately the liberal elite decided that it was slave labour and rallied against it, which meant that disabled people have to now find jobs in competition with the able, and not surprisingly find this difficult. Of course this isn’t the way that the government in general and the slimy IDS in particular want people to look at the situation they want everyone to believe that anyone not in work is idle and living it up on benefits, so that they turn against them, not unlike how the nazi party dealt with this group prior to using the same tactic on the jews and gypsies.

  4. roybeiley

    Blimey!That’s a good idea. Doctors don’t seem to be doing much these days except whingeing about the state of the NHS so lets give them something to take their minds off being obstructive all the time.

    Another LaLa land idea from the No 10 policy wonks. Why do they continue to regard anyone who, for good humanitarian reasons, is not able to undertake “productive” work?

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