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As seen on Twitter: but a new Conservative MP has raised concerns about the “abrasive” assessment process.

Did somebody forget to send Anthony Mangnall the memo?

Normally, Conservative MPs pay little attention – perhaps only lip-service – to complaints about employees of the private company Atos who are hired at great cost to assess claims for the disability benefit Personal Independence Payment.

But Mr Mangnall – elected as MP for Totnes last December – has actually paid attention to the concerns of benefit claimants and raised them with ministers.

Constituents’ complaints were echoed by the town’s Citizens Advice service; perhaps that’s what convinced him that the issue was important.

Mr Mangnall told Disability News Service:

“If people are complaining about the Atos service, then that is a problem and it is a problem we need to look into.”

He said Justin Tomlinson, the minister for disabled people, had assured him that PIP assessors were “experts in understanding the effects of a health condition on an individual’s daily life” and that the department continued to “monitor performance, share best practice, and work with claimants, stakeholders and charities to improve training and guidance”.

But Mr Mangnall doesn’t seem entirely convinced:

Mangnall has told Disability News Service (DNS) that he wants to ask further questions of ministers if he can secure more evidence to show that the process should be improved, because he believes it is currently “letting the side down”.

“I have got some fantastic constituents and this is a headache that they do not need.

“They need support from us and they don’t need a bureaucratic system like this holding them up, with people who don’t understand their situation.”

He has asked DNS for details of its lengthy investigation into dishonest PIP assessors.

The cynic in This Writer wants to take bets on how long it will take for Mr Tomlinson and fellow Tory ministers to get Mr Mangnall to shut up.

But hope springs eternal.

Let’s hope DNS can keep Mr Mangnall dedicated to the case. The hordes of people who have been betrayed by PIP assessors deserve it.

Source: Tory MP tells minister of jobcentre staff’s ‘grave concern’ over PIP assessors – Disability News Service

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