Capita assessors STILL refusing to disclose qualifications


Despite the DWP informing Capita it is a “requirement” that PIP assessors must reveal qualifications, it transpires that in Leicester at least, this information has not been passed down.

Last Tuesday Nicki, one of DEAEP’s Peer Supporters went along with a customer to the local Capita Assessment centre; when she asked for the medical qualifications of Stuart the assessor, she was told it was Capita policy this information was withheld?

I’m making no suggestion this will have any influence on the decision, but it does make me wonder how much the DWP requires of assessors, is communicated to them?

I’d be interested to know if anyone else has had this experience?

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Trap for the Self Employed


Tax credits cut 100%  for self employed without children, up to 70% for a single parent and 58% for a couple with children under Universal Credit

Update: the cuts below were  in place before the election, but  more cuts were announced in the Summer Budget. The Universal Credit Work Allowance drops from up to £263 /m (single parent +1 child+ housing element) to £192 and is abolished for childless claimants. The following figures are therefore underestimated.

Hidden in plain sight – trick or mistake?

the mechanism to cut scales11100% from some self employed claimants Universal Credit claimant’s basic awards is already in the Welfare Reform Act.  An 87% reduction to the Universal Credit Work Allowance for claimants with no dependant children combined with a limit on entitlement if they earn too little, cuts their basic award by 100%. For self employed parents, the basic award could be cut by up to…

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A lose-lose situation: the DWP’s Catch 22.


2015-09-23 13.05.22Last time I wrote about having my Personal Independence Payment assessment I said it felt like an exam I had to pass. As it turns out, this time I seem to have failed.

Yep, after doing my renewal application for my PIP, I was declined. I was half expecting this anyway but it still came as a shock. So now comes the mandatory reconsideration period and the appeals process. I’ve also requested a copy of my assessment to see if it’s as comedic as the last one was.

As an ill person, the expectations the DWP have of me are a bit confusing. I’m told that in order to be a productive member of society I have to work, that working is the best option for everyone and that their aim is to get everyone working. Yet, as soon as I try and be productive and proactive, I’m…

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Work Programme continues to harm people with mental health problems

Politics and Insights

10270806_319228004894921_8005540502444686357_nThe Government’s Work Programme is making the lives of people with mental health problems worse, and having a detrimental impact on people’s ability to work, research by a leading mental health charity has found.

A report from Mind said the flagship scheme, which requires people to take unpaid work allocated by contractors or face losing their lifeline benefits, was taking entirely the wrong approach and actually damaging people’s motivation and capacity to work.

The research found that most people who are on the scheme because of their mental health problems reported worsening health issues due to their experiences of it.

83 per cent of people surveyed said the scheme’s “support” had made their mental health problems worse or much worse.

Thelatest statistics from the Department for Work and Pensions(DWP) reveal that less than 8 per cent of people being supported by Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) have moved…

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Corbyn has already won back nearly one in ten 2015 Tory voters


A poll came out yesterday which was the basis for this story in the Independent “Jeremy Corbyn ‘loses fifth of Labour voters'”. The poll found that 20% of people who voted Labour in 2015 said they were less likely to vote Labour again with Corbyn as leader. So is it fair to say that a fifth of Labour voters have already abandoned the party? Of course not!

The question asked if they would be more or less likely to vote Labour with Corbyn as leader. If you say less though, it doesn’t mean you will change the way you vote, you could just have changed from ‘absolutely will vote for them’ to ‘almost certainly will vote for them’. If the Indy’s headline was fair, then so is mine because 8% of Conservative voters said Corbyn being leader made them more likely to vote Labour. I could also have made the…

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