Benefit-related deaths: Why can the Tories provide SOME death counts but not others?

Government minister Justin Tomlinson raised more questions than he answered when he responded to questions on benefit-related deaths last week.

Labour MP Madeleine Moon asked how many claimants of the disability benefit Personal Independence Payment had died within six months of their claim being refused – under normal rules.

His reply: 10,380 between April 2013 and July 31, 2018.

Firstly, that’s 2,390 more than Ms Moon was told on February 1, when the government stated that 7,990 claimants had died between June 2013 and July 2018.

Did they all die during April and May 2013? That would be an appalling death count if so!

But it seems the toll may actually be worse.

You see, Ms Moon’s original request was for the total number of claimants who had died. Her request last week was only for those who died under normal rules – excluding those who had applied under special rules because they had a terminal condition.

So these figures relate to people who would not be expected to die because of their health condition.

The government’s caveat – “There is no evidence in this data to suggest someone’s reason for claiming PIP was the cause of their death and it would be misleading to suggest otherwise” – doesn’t get it out of possible responsibility for these deaths. We have no reason to believe that their reason for claiming PIP was the cause of their death. Therefore was must assume that something else was responsible – possibly related to the lack of money due to the government ignoring a justified benefit claim?

Ah, but the government never carries out that kind of research and always refuses permission for anybody else to do so. Doesn’t it?

Here’s the record.

But the plot thickens!

It seems that, while the Department for Work and Pensions was entirely capable of providing the statistics on PIP within its own cost limits, it is unable to do the same for deaths of people on Attendance Allowance, Employment Support Allowance or even Universal Credit.

Why not? What’s so special about these benefits that it would be too expensive to reveal the total number of deaths? Is it because that number is embarrassingly large?

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1 thought on “Benefit-related deaths: Why can the Tories provide SOME death counts but not others?

  1. Jeffrey Davies

    Truth hay funny enough if that truth got out about how many deaths by benefits denial be told there would be outcry how many people asking twice three times not realising that this number is beyond comprehension has this number is way way way passed that count of but will the people realise that culling the stock through benefits denial has been done under their noses

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