Can you take this survey to help design a better system for sickness, disability and work?
Forget lifting empty cardboard boxes or picking up pound coins from the floor.
What are the real life factors that limit or prevent you working with a long term health condition?
And what are the adjustments, or forms of support you would need to improve your chances of getting and holding down paid work?
Do you need a compulsory course in motivation building, for example? Or do you need an understanding employer who can tailor a job description to your capabilities?
An important consultation is taking place about the future of Employment Support Allowance (ESA) and the hated Work Capability Assessment (WCA) and your views are urgently needed to shape recommendations for what a better incapacity benefit and employment support should look like.
The Work and Pensions Committee published its report on the future of welfare to work this week. Its key message is that the government must focus employment support on people with complex needs, in particular expanding provision for people with substantial disability.
There is an obvious solution to the flaws identified in the design of the existing specialist disability employment scheme, Work Choice. And it is the same solution to some of the legendary flaws in the Work Capability Assessment, especially the vexing issue of the work-related activity group (WRAG), where people with severe ill health are put through a punishing back to work regime incapable of addressing their needs. Yet no one seems to have had the insight or will to name it. Continue reading →
As widely trailed in the general election campaign and in the run-up to budget day, the Chancellor’s Summer 2015 budget included devastating cuts to social security and tax credits, effectively summarised by Disability Rights UK. Despite Osborne’s oft-repeated assurances, in both this and the last Parliament, that disability benefits would be excluded from cuts, there is much in the budget to cause deep concern for disabled people. As in previous rounds of cuts, this is because disabled people rely as much, if not more than non-disabled people, on “mainstream” benefits – such as housing benefit and tax credits. Continue reading →