Grayling: Government reforms to the Work Capability Assessment start to “show results”

More lies, damned lies and propaganda from The Grayling

The Government’s commitment to provide greater protection for the severely disabled is taking effect, with the latest figures revealing an increase in the number of people assessed for the higher rate of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

However, the figures still show that the majority of people (38 per cent) are being found fit for work.

The official statistics published today also show that 17 per cent can do some work with the right help and support and a further 36 per cent of people close their claim before the assessment process is complete.

[ This DWP Press Release in Context: ]

Ministers believe that the increase in the number of people going into the support group shows that the changes that the Government made to the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) are starting to make a difference and more people are getting long term unconditional support.

Employment Minister Chris Grayling said:

“We are seeing an increase in the number of severely disabled people being given long-term unconditional support, which shows that our reforms to the work capability assessment are starting to work.

“However, it’s clear that the majority of new claimants to sickness benefits are in fact able to return to work. For those that need additional help our new Work programme is up and running and will tailor support to people’s needs so that they can overcome whatever barriers they face.”

For all new ESA claims from 30th October 2008 to 28th February 2011, the result of the initial WCA is as follows:

  • Support Group – 7%
  • Work Related Activity Group – 17%
  • Fit for Work – 38%
  • Claim closed before assessment complete – 36%
  • Assessment still in progress – 2%

The Work Capability Assessment (WCA), which determines whether someone is fit for work, has been substantially improved. We asked Professor Harrington’s to undertake a review of the WCA and the majority of his first year recommendations are now in place. Changes have been made including making improvements to the decision making process. A second Independent Review of the WCA will be published before the end of the year.

People who are found fit for work will now be supported through the new Work Programme, which rolled out across Britain last month. The Work Programme provides tailored support for people to get into sustained employment. People who are found too sick or disabled will continue to receive unconditional support and a higher rate of benefit.

The changes we have made to the Work Capability Assessment include simplifying the language of the criteria, making greater provision for people awaiting courses of chemotherapy and people with certain communication and mental health problems, as well as taking greater account of how an individual has adapted to their condition or disability.

Notes to Editors:

  1. The full Employment and Support Allowance: Work Capability Assessments statistics are available here:
  2. The figures show that a third (36 per cent) of those who claim leave the benefit before completing the assessment.
  3. They also show that those who need ESA for a longer period get it, with 17% of new claims going into the Work Related Activity Group in ESA and 7% going into the Support Group.
  4. Professor Harrington’s first review proposed a series of recommendations to improve “its fairness and effectiveness” and we have now implemented nearly all of these recommendations.
  5. In May Professor Harrington provided an interim review of how well the Department had implemented his recommendations and concluded that “DWP have gone a long way towards implementing all the recommendations”.
  6. Professor Harrington’s second Independent Review of the WCA will be published before the end of the year.

9 thoughts on “Grayling: Government reforms to the Work Capability Assessment start to “show results”

  1. Michael Caits on Facebook says:

    They really do like to masturbate over their policies don’t they? It reads like a ‘sanitized’ version of a much less glowing report. 36% of what exactly? Out of what number? The statistics are nonesense – and as for ‘legalizing’ slavery – perhaps he’ll ‘get it’ when someone lynches him?

  2. Raymond Kelly on Facebook says:

    36% of those they call for assessment (presumably over some period of time) terminate the claim before the assessment can be done, so they haven’t been assessed but they are counted in the total.

    They are probably short-term claimants, of which there are many, so why should they be counted in the figures assessed?

  3. Joe Kane on Facebook says:

    Stalin’s ministry of statistics would have no probleem counting people who hadn’t been assessed as being assessed in order to make themselves adorable in the eyes of the great man.

    In Grayling’s case, he does it because he is a Nazi becaaue just like the Nazis, he is using his party’s power over the state to carry out a campaign of terror, abuse and mass-murder of the chronically sick and disabled.

    He even has the support of those fans of the Nazis, the Daily Mail.

  4. Joe Kane on Facebook says:

    It would be very interesting indeed, to find out the statistics and overall proportions of the chronically sick and disabled who are in the middle of the DWP-Atos assessment process or in the middle of the appeal process, or both.

    Given those on sickness and disability welfare benefits have 6 weeks to fill in their ESA50 and then have to wait 2-3 weeks to see if they qualify for ESA, that would mean that for 10-20% of their year, the sick and disabled are being assessed.

    You could easily argue, I think, that having such an uncertain status especially for those least able to cope with such uncertain personal circumstances suh as this sick and the disabled, that this is state abuse and harrassment.

    Then there is the way the ESA is administered as some kind of watch-brief over the sick and disabled by medically unqualified Jobcentre staff, who are no more than office admin support staff. I would also argue this is police state harassment of a minority group.

  5. John McArdle says:

    Remember – the key thing is to get the representation of a welfare rights worker! The success rate at appeal then rises to 70%. Of course it is this that the condems are trying to cut by cutting off government subsidies. There is a human rights issue here – the right to a fair hearing and equality of arms at court ECHR Article 6

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