THE foreign firm will pocket a cool £206m for the criticised tests, aimed to get the needy off benefits.
THERE was fury yesterday after it emerged the controversial Atos contract to axe benefits would have covered the cost of helping more than 55,000 disabled Scots.
The French firm are being handed a massive wad of taxpayers’ cash to carry out humiliating assessments on the disabled, which are designed to drive down the benefits bill.
They will receive an eye-watering £206million from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) for testing if people in receipt of disability living allowance (DLA) should still receive financial help when it is replaced by personal independence payments.
As the average weekly payment for DLA is £71.84, the money would be enough to pay 55,332 people the benefit for a whole year.
The figures were revealed by SNP MSP Kevin Stewart at the parliament yesterday.
The issue blew up this week after the Record exposed the true impact of the UK Government’s devastating reforms of the welfare state.
Henry Sherlock, 50, a blind man from Falkirk, told MSPs on Tuesday that Atos made disabled people “feel like criminals” during the assessments.
The Record has since been inundated by calls from readers to say they too suffering intimidation while undergoing the tests.
With Atos now scheduled to carry out the similar assessments on all disabled people, there are growing calls for the contract to be scrapped.
Stewart yesterday branded the assessments a “waste of money”.
Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon also voiced her fears over the reforms.
“Some of the concerns underline just why it would be so preferable if the Scottish Parliament was the decision maker on all matters.”
Labour health spokeswoman Jackie Baillie said:
“We need a welfare system that supports people back to work.”
We need a welfare system that doesn’t KILL, Jackie!