Tories have wasted £120m in two years trying to tell people they’re not disabled

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…

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Covid lockdown and Tory PIP assessment cruelty made woman attempt suicide

Using an ad-blocker? PLEASE SWITCH IT OFF My ads don’t cost you anything but they do provide me the money I need to live. Using an ad-blocker on this site is as bad as stealing. The incompetent – or just plain cruel? – Tory government’s failure to make adequate provision for us all during the Covid-19 lockdown has been worst in the cases of disability benefit claimants, this story shows. Cambridgeshire Live has published the story of Katy (not her real name), who said the stress caused to her by…

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MP of the Year award attacked over harmful corporate sponsor. Time for a campaign to remove it?

It seems the only element likely to stop Jeremy Corbyn from winning the Patchwork Foundation’s MP of the Year award is the fact that it is sponsored by corporations that have contributed to the oppression of the poor and vulnerable. Mr Corbyn is on the shortlist of MPs for whom the public is asked to vote. But some supporters of the former Labour leader – including his own former Shadow Chancellor – are having nothing to do with it because it is sponsored by firms including KPMG. The controversy sprang…

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DWP crashes to another court defeat over sickness benefits

The High Court has just ruled that a rule allowing the Department for Work and Pensions to force some benefit claimants to wait – unpaid – for a mandatory reconsideration before they can appeal against refusal is unlawful. The system previously demanded that, if a claim for income-related Employment and Support Allowance was refused, claimants would have to wait for a “mandatory reconsideration” of their case to take place before they could appeal. This could take weeks, and has often taken months, in which the claimant – who is claiming…

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This grandmother DIED weighing just three stone because the Tories LIED about reviewing benefits for the terminally ill

Christine McCluskey did not have to die in the humiliating way your Conservative government demanded. The 61-year-old grandmother had suffered long-term health problems most of her adult life including Crohn’s disease – which left her with a colostomy bag – osteoporosis, arthritis, a stroke and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This housebound lady had a feeding tube and a painful fistula that leaked through her abdominal wall, she was severely malnourished and was being investigated for a worrying cough at the time the Department for Work and Pensions assessed her for…

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Now it seems DWP bosses have abandoned social distancing for boozy parties

They just can’t help themselves, can they? Bosses at the Job Centre in Greenock followed the example of their Tory bosses like Dominic Cummings and decided to hold boozy parties instead of handling the 12 per cent surge in Universal Credit claims. But their abandonment of lockdown led instead to a dressing-down, and then they were frogmarched out of the office after a whistleblower informed Department for Work and Pensions bosses in London. It seems the alleged parties took place in offices adjoining the main public ­reception areas of the…

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PIP claim rejected due to ‘good eye contact’ – in a TELEPHONE assessment

I found this on Twitter and had to share it. Apparently people working on Personal Independence Payment assessments for a private company hired by the Tory government have developed the ability to see people at the other end of telephone lines. Otherwise, how could this have happened? Someone in one of my disability groups has just got their PIP report back with a sentence of how they "kept excellent eye contact during the assessment". It was a telephone assessment. Just in case you had any lingering idea that those assessments…

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Disability benefits extended by six months if due reassessment within three months

The coronavirus crisis isn’t all bad news, it seems: The Minister for Disabled People, Justin Tomlinson MP (pictured below), has today confirmed that disability benefit awards have been automatically extended by six months for claimants due to be reassessed within the next three months. PIP (Personal Independence Payment) reassessments are notoriously harsh on claimants because these are people with serious conditions who find the demands of the assessments extremely difficult. So this is good – if it’s true. Tory government promises haven’t been wonderfully reliable so far. Source: Disability benefits…

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PIP claimants: don’t believe DWP reps – you CAN have a witness in telephone assessments

Here’s some good news – unless you’re a DWP Personal Independence Payment advisor: The Minister for Disabled People, Justin Tomlinson, has confirmed that PIP claimants have the right to have someone else sitting in on their telephone assessment. He told the Commons Work and Pensions Committee on April 23: “If you are having a telephone assessment, we are allowing your friend, family, trusted partner to be part of that process which is something we introduced a few years ago for face-to-face assessments which has made a huge difference to the…

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Propaganda: DWP sweet-talks mainstream news media about low Universal Credit pay

This is a blatant bid to manipulate the media. It’s also fixing the barn door after the horse has bolted. The DWP’s Universal Credit supremo, Neil Couling, already gave the game away to Disability News Service on April 16. So we know that the Tory government has adopted a hard line with people claiming UC because they have lost their job or their income due to the coronavirus lockdown. As This Site already reported, he told DNS firstly that there is no way he’s going to speed the automatic processing of UC…

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