What a waste of time and money.
Over the last two years, Conservative governments have spent more than £120 million in taxpayers’ money fighting disability benefit claims – despite losing three-quarters of tribunal appeals.
That means automatic wastage of £90 million – but it is likely that the quarter of claimants who lost their appeals also had valid grounds to claim Personal Independence Payment and/or Employment and Support Allowance but were outflanked by a prejudiced system.
The increase in expenditure is far greater than the 13 per cent increase in applications would suggest. And it is happening at a time when the country can ill-afford to waste any cash at all. There can only be one reason for it: sick cruelty – the Tories are enjoying torturing sick and disabled people to death.
And why are there so many applications for disability and sickness benefits in the UK? Do conditions here – especially working conditions – cause illness and disability?
The new figures are further proof that the Tories’ convoluted appeal process has nothing to do with saving money from fraudsters and everything to do with starving people with disabilities – to death, if possible.
It is now well-documented that claimants initially have to go through an internal appeal process within the Department for Work and Pensions called mandatory reconsideration.
The courts only recently ruled that a Tory regulation forcing claimants to go without any benefit payments, and therefore without any income, for the period of a mandatory reconsideration – no matter how long that may be – was illegal.
Only after the DWP rules that a claim should be rejected can the sick or disabled person take their case to a tribunal.
And it is at tribunals that 76 per cent of PIP claims, and 75 per cent of ESA claims, are upheld.
This means the Tories have needlessly and cruelly deprived these people of their means of survival for the number of months – years in some cases – that these claims have been disputed.
We all know that there is hardly any fraud in disability benefit claims – the last recorded number This Writer saw was somewhere in the region of one or two per cent of claims.
So the huge proportion that the Tories refuse – and the amount of time and money wasted in the appeal process – can only mean one thing:
The Tories hate disabled people and want them to die.
Why isn’t this a national – if not international – scandal?
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