FOR A nation that was the birthplace of the industrial revolution, the results this week from more than one million work capability tests must rank as one of our lowest moments. It is now official.

Britain has allowed itself to become a nation of scroungers conning the system and millions of hard-working taxpayers out of enough money to help balance the national debt.

If these shifty skivers worked half as hard at getting a job instead of milking you and me they would all be running profitable companies.

Since October 2008 about 1.3 million work capability assessments have been conducted on those seeking long-term incapacity benefits. Of those, only 88,700, or just seven per cent were genuine claimants.

The others were shown to be perfectly able to work, albeit in some instances with the provision of additional support, or instead chose to abandon their application, as they possibly feared being rumbled.

Although it was the previous ­Labour administration that piloted the scheme, the current Government should be praised for baring its teeth and shaping up to get tough about this issue. It must now follow this through.

Allow me to spell out the cost to you and me of the largesse we ­display towards these wasters. Last year, £8.7billion was paid to those claiming these benefits so, if you ­apply the assessment tests’ findings, only £609,000,000 went to the genuinely needy.

That means £8.1billion was scrounged off the rest of us.

And that’s not all.closer scrutiny of the payouts shows that victims of “dizziness and giddiness” picked up £24.2million and haemorrhoid ­sufferers claimed £2million.

I’ll leave you to provide your own punch line there but if you now ­factor in that the abuse has been allowed to go on for at least 10 years (and that’s being extremely conservative) you’re looking at enough money that has been “stolen” from us that could have built battleships, hospitals and schools.

It’s important to state that those in genuine need should, and indeed will, be looked after following these changes. If you are genuinely too sick to hold down a job it is the role of a decent and mature society to help.

However, if you are part of a third-generation benefit family for whom work is just a foul four-letter word, something that the rest of us must do in order to pay the taxes that fund your ghastly lifestyle of cut-price ­lager, indolence and fast food, let’s hope this means your number will soon be up.

Each day brings another story of the exposure of someone conning the system.

There was the man on long-term benefits due to a crippling back injury who was able to run around every weekend in his role as a football referee.

There was the building worker who claimed he was so disabled he wasn’t able to dress himself. He was paid £70,000 in benefits while all the time he was humping bricks on a construction site for £22,000 a year.

Having continued down this ­correct path of closer inspection and tighter regulation, the government must make sure it does not now take time off from the job of getting ­Britain back to work.

The Express 

Please visit the Express web site and let them know of your disgust that they will publish articles like this that are so discriminatory of the disabled.





  1. Holmey says:

    For what it’s going to be worth I’m writing a complaint to the PCC about this, how come there are no regular articles like this about skiving MP’s, (how long are they on “leave” for currently), ripping off the public purse by their false expenses claims ???

  2. John Bossano on Facebook says:

    It is all very well saying disabled people shouldn’t be victimised, but what about people who aren’t disabled, but say they are? People do try to scam the system, and of course there are different levels of disability. I would say that in the vast majority of cases, the goalposts have been moved. The people concerned have not been trying to rip anyone off, but they are capable of work. How this is defined is a question of judgement, for example Stephen Hawking is clearly totally disabled, yet he works. People much less disabled are properly regarded as incapable of work, so where do you draw the line?

  3. Sasha Callaghan on Facebook says:

    @ John Bossano – Who is saying that people shouldn’t be assessed to make sure they receive the right benefits and support? Not disabled people. The issue is whether any assessment is fair, objective, and carried out in a humane way, using a process that isn’t flawed and where the driver isn’t about cuts to services. The example of Stephen Hawking is a particularly bad one. Firstly, he is without doubt a genius which obviously makes a difference to his employability. The biggest cohort of disabled people in the UK are people with global and specific learning difficulties. Secondly,Stephen Hawking was already most of the way through his time at university before his impairment was diagnosed. The vast majority of disabled young people (particularly those in special education) get very few academic qualifications and never even get into higher education. The number of disabled people studying for the same kind of post-graduate qualifications as Stephen Hawking achieved is so minimal that HEFCE and HESA don’t even record it. Lastly, Stephen Hawking is phenominally wealthy and well connected. His colleagues have designed his communication system and he can pay for more support staff than you can shake a stick at. Back in the real world, the number of employers who would take on someone with few qualifications and the kind of support needs Stephen Hawking has is probably zero. Access to Work wouldn’t pay for a fraction of those costs. And you’re either disabled or you’re not.People may have lesser or greater support needs but being ‘less disabled’ is like being ‘less pregnant’.

  4. John Bossano on Facebook says:

    People are clearly less disabled than others. Very few people are not disabled at all, since you could regard needing to wear glasses as a disability, and lots of other conditions could be regarded the same way. Most disabled people could in theory work, but are unable to not because of their disability but because of discrimination, lack of support etc. Clearly if people lose ESA and claim JSA instead, this is a bad thing since it doesn’t help them get a job, just means they get less money and more hassle. I gave the example of Stephen Hawking, because he is someone who clearly would not be expected to work with the disabilities he has, it is a sheer fluke that he does. But the question of how disabled you need to be not to be expected to work is a political one. A lot of people including amputees or terminally ill people are passed as fit for work, but it is extremely unlikely these people will actually get jobs.

  5. Sasha Callaghan on Facebook says:

    @ John Bossano – No, you’re disabled or you’re not. Some people have higher support needs due to their impairments than others do but they are not more disabled. Disability is a political and social construct.

  6. Sasha Callaghan on Facebook says:

    @ John Bossano – no, it isn’t a sheer fluke that Stephen Hawking has a job. He was already doing highly specialised post-grad work in a Russell Group University when he developed his impairment. That meant he had a huge advantage over other young people. Class, disability and impairment are all closely linked and Hawking’s background was not one of deprivation.

Leave a Reply