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500,000 'fit To Work' Sick Pay Claimants Will Be Forced Back Into Employment

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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1319568/Benefits-crackdown-quarter-claiming-sick-pay-fit-work-says-Iain-Duncan-Smith.html

Almost 500,000 people claiming long-term sick pay will be forced to work or risk losing their benefit, it was revealed today.

The move comes as Iain Duncan Smith introduces medical assessment tests on people receiving incapacity benefit.

The Work And Pensions Secretary is seeking to slash £4billion from his department's costs.

Mr Duncan Smith made the announcement in an article in The Times today, in which he revealed 'shocking' figures showing that £135billion has been spent on more than 2million people who are or have been 'on the sick' over the last ten years.

'This is not about forcing sick and disabled people who cannot work into employment, but about giving thousands of people the opportunity and support to move from the margins of society into mainstream employment,' said Mr Duncan Smith.

'While taxpayers rightly bemoan the wasted money, which they worked so hard to earn, the human tragedy is the lost potential of so many people who have been dumped to languish at the bottom of society.

'We estimate we will find around 23 per cent of people fit for work immediately, with more needing just a bit of extra support to get into a position where they can look for a job.

The failure to tackle incapacity benefit has trapped whole communities in dependency; it has robbed people of their dignity and left them feeling like second-class citizens.

'As the former Labour Work And Pensions Secretary Alan Hutton once said, after two years on IB [incapacity benefit], you're more likely to die than ever move into work.'

His programme of cuts has already begun with new medical assessments beginning today, in Burnley and Aberdeen, to determine who among the people currently receiving incapacity benefit are fit for work.

By re-drawing the boundaries on who is fit to work via the new Work Capability Assessment, Mr Duncan Smith expects to save half of his target, around £2 billion a year.

People who pass the medical tests and prove fit for work will either move straight into work or will be shifted from incapacity benefit onto Job Seekers Allowance, saving the Government around £1,500 per year per claimant.

To save the other half of his £4billion target, Mr Duncan Smith has outlined a series of measures.

Those who are prove too sick or disabled to work face having a time-limit imposed on their benefits, allowing them to claim for six months or a year only.

The better-off are likely to have their benefits removed altogether, while others will switch to means-tested benefits, further reducing the amount the government has to pay out.

Ministers said the most severely disabled and people who were terminally ill will not be expected to look for work and will get extra help through Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

Employment Minister Chris Grayling said: 'It's nothing short of a scandal that so many people were simply cast aside to a lifetime on benefits, wasting their talents and potential and costing the taxpayer almost £135billion.

'While some of these people will be genuinely too sick to work, there will be others who through no fault of their own were told by the state that they were better off on the sick and then left behind - this stops now.

'We are taking immediate action by starting the process of reassessing everyone on incapacity benefit to see if they can work, and for those that can we will be bringing in new support to get them into jobs.'

But one charity voiced concern that the new assessment tests are not able to adequately establish whether mental health can affect someone's ability to work.

Mental health charity Mind called for a revision of the test before it is rolled out to over 1.5million claimants nationwide.

Sophie Corlett, Mind's director of external relations, said: 'The benefit test being used in the pilots starting today has a fundamental problem when it comes to people with mental health problems - it does not do what it's set up for, which is to distinguish accurately which people can work and which people can't.

'Over half of all benefit claimants have a mental health problem, so it should go without saying that any fitness to work test should thoroughly assess mental health and whether it presents a barrier to work and coping in the workplace.

'However, many people with mental health issues have found that the impact of their condition on their ability to work is barely recognised.'

The revelation on sick pay comes a week after Chancellor George Osborne sparked outrage with plans to scrap child benefit for millions of middle-class families in order to fund the biggest shake-up of welfare in 60 years.

The payments to parents, worth £1,055, are to be axed for all higher-rate taxpayers from 2013 and benefits payouts will be capped for every family for the first time ever to ensure it pays more to work than to stay at home.

When he made the speech at the Conservative conference last week, Mr Osborne told delegates there would be 'no more open-ended cheque book... no family on out-of-work benefits will get more than the average family gets by going out to work'.

Don't forget to vote in the poll, 'Is the Government's crackdown on long-term sick pay too draconian?'

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The point is they won't be "forced back into jobs" as there ain't many! :blink:

They may be forced into "going through the motions" of applying for jobs, and I have been there too! :huh:

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The point is they won't be "forced back into jobs" as there ain't many! :blink:

They may be forced into "going through the motions" of applying for jobs, and I have been there too! :huh:

More competition and muddying the waters though. Will force down wages nicely...

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More competition and muddying the waters though. Will force down wages nicely...

Thought that today - not worth getting upset about the long term unemployed - less competition for all.

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It's hard to pass judgement here, unless you can read the minds of 500,000 people. Uh, use a lie detector ?

Feel bad for those who are truly sick.

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23% of new claimants fail the test...

I think people should be thrown off the sick and if they manage to claim a benefit afterwards then they were fit for work...

If they die because they have no care/money then maybe they needed the money.

I know lots of people who are or have been on the sick. Whether or not they are capable of work - virtually all of them lead normal lives.

Two people on my street have free cars. They are no more sick than me!

We have bought people up to think being on the sick forever is fine. It's not. We're skint and I don't want people to be having a brand new car every three years at MY EXPENSE.

ALL sick claimants need to take rehabilitation steps to keep their benefits.

junkies need to be clean, alkies, sober, depressives need to have counselling and meds, broken people need mending.

If they don't want their treatment they should get no money.

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lThe point is they won't be "forced back into jobs" as there ain't many! :bink:

They may be forced into "going through the motions" of applying for jobs, and I have been there too! :huh:

As i have said before, all this talk about cutting benefits, getting people off the dole, getting invalidity claiments back to work is just a load of tosh, there ain't the jobs. And yet they want the working sector to retire later which will make the job market even worse.

It is all a smoke screen to apease the working people who will have to work longer, take wage cuts(in the term) pay more taxes.

Going back to the eighties it was the conservatives who allowed thousands of workers including redundant steel workers and miners to go onto invalidity to make the unemployment figures look attractive.

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Even if there are no jobs for those who fail the test and these people sign on instead, it will still save a lot of money as JSA is about £30 per week less than Incapacity Benefit for a single person, more for a couple.

I've no problem with this as long as the test is fair.

I've often wonderd if it's right that ICB claimants should get more than JSA claimants. Maybe this will eb equalsied in the CSR next week.

Edited by oldsport

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ALL sick claimants need to take rehabilitation steps to keep their benefits.

junkies need to be clean, alkies, sober, depressives need to have counselling and meds, broken people need mending.

If they don't want their treatment they should get no money.

You have to be pretty twisted to believe people would rather remain ill than get better just to claim beneits

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As i have said before, all this talk about cutting benefits, getting people off the dole, getting invalidity claiments back to work is just a load of tosh, there ain't the jobs. And yet they want the working sector to retire later which will make the job market even worse.

It is all a smoke screen to apease the working people who will have to work longer, take wage cuts(in the term) pay more taxes.

Going back to the eighties it was the conservatives who allowed thousands of workers including redundant steel workers and miners to go onto invalidity to make the unemployment figures look attractive.

If house prices were lower, people would not need as high a salary to maintain the same standard of living, so employers could afford to take on more workers

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The Government's position on this (and I include the last one) is completely disconnected and cynical.

The culprit is Lord Fraud, sorry, Freud. He said that the Disability legisaltion had removed the barriers to people with disabilities, getting into work.

It just is not true. The NHS is a case in point, although they are under extra legislation to make employing disabled people happen, they have a terrible record of employing them.

There are not enough jobs. Despite the legislation, it is the disabled who will be overlooked everytime a job is there to be filled.

Disability iI should point out, is not an absolute. People with mental health issues for example, do get significantly better, but until employers are prepared to give them a chance, their employment prospects, because of their illness, are nil.

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The point is they won't be "forced back into jobs" as there ain't many! :blink:

They may be forced into "going through the motions" of applying for jobs, and I have been there too! :huh:

Spot on, they will save some money as JSA is not as much, won't look to pretty mind.

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One thing which has yet to appear mentioned is CRIME.

Just what do you think some of these able bodied previously claiming sickie benefits are going to do?

Yes, they will team up with one another and go pinching property. If it isn't chained, bolted, locked, concreted in expect to lose it.

So there is big money to be made in home security whether it be electronic gates, PIR lighting, burglar alarms etc etc

Don't worry, put your aged relatives in your home whilst you are away at work to stop them breaking and entering or better still get a very large dog!

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Spot on, they will save some money as JSA is not as much, won't look to pretty mind.

but which is more damaging politically?

having 2.5 million unemplyed and 2.5 million on sick as now

or, having 3.5 million unemployed and 1.5 million on sick

Surely it's got to be the second of these, which is presumably why the Tories encouraged so many on to the sick in the first place in the 1980s

Edited by oldsport

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but which is more damaging politically?

having 2.5 million unemplyed and 2.5 million on sick as now

or, having 3.5 million unemployed and 1.5 million on sick

Surely it's got to be the second of these, which is presumably why the Tories encouraged so many on to the sick in the first place in the 1980s

What you say may or may not be true.

What I do know is that the exercise to whittle down the sick numbers began 3 years ago under Labour. Even they knew it couldn't continue. The Coalition have just picked up the package from the Civil Service and run with it. There is no way in a month of Sundays any newly installed Govt could begin this exercise so quickly.

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I know lots of people who are or have been on the sick. Whether or not they are capable of work - virtually all of them lead normal lives.

Two people on my street have free cars. They are no more sick than me!

We have bought people up to think being on the sick forever is fine. It's not. We're skint and I don't want people to be having a brand new car every three years at MY EXPENSE.

...who are entitled to this...?....the very least they should be restricted to buying 'Made in UK'...... :rolleyes:

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IB is a scandal that will not easily be undone.

  • The people who have been on it have even less chance of getting a new job than the unemployed.
  • In order to disqualify claimants, Doctors are going to have to declare that previously mentally ill people have in fact got better, even though the patient himself will claim that they are still incapacitated by mental illness.
  • Your average IB claimant is actually quite tenacious and adept at the benefits system.
  • If you cut their benefit there will hundreds of sob stories of poverty, malnourished children etc.

I don't think welfare reform is going to succeed.

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...who are entitled to this...?....the very least they should be restricted to buying 'Made in UK'...... :rolleyes:

I think if you get High Rate DLA Mobiltiy Component you can choose to have a free lease car instead of your cash benefits.

It's got nothing to do with Incapacity Benefit though

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Where are all these jobs?

Look around you. Does your local environment look as if nothing needs doing to it?

If one set of people didn't have money handed to them on a plate, and another set of people didn't have so much of their money taken away from them, a whole range of productive economic activity would become viable.

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Look around you. Does your local environment look as if nothing needs doing to it?

If one set of people didn't have money handed to them on a plate, and another set of people didn't have so much of their money taken away from them, a whole range of productive economic activity would become viable.

:lol::lol:

You say that Like taxes are going to come down and regulation is going to reduce. not so. The state is going to take more and give less out.

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I think people should be thrown off the sick and if they manage to claim a benefit afterwards then they were fit for work...

If they die because they have no care/money then maybe they needed the money.

I hope for your sake you are trolling - what a ridiculous statement to make!

I know lots of people who are or have been on the sick. Whether or not they are capable of work - virtually all of them lead normal lives.

Two people on my street have free cars. They are no more sick than me!

You have seen their medical records?

ALL sick claimants need to take rehabilitation steps to keep their benefits.

Newsflash brainac - not all conditions are cureable! You seriously think that someone with multiple sclerosis or cystic fibrosis is sitting there with their fingers crossed that no cure is found so they can live it up on the 80 odd quid a week that they get?

.

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You have to be pretty twisted to believe people would rather remain ill than get better just to claim beneits

No, you just have to understand human nature.

Yes, a lot of people on ICB are truly ill and cannot work. However, a lot are not.

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No, you just have to understand human nature.

Yes, a lot of people on ICB are truly ill and cannot work. However, a lot are no

It is human nature to wish to be ill so that you can claim a few quid in benefits? I haven't seen people desperate to develop cancer or purposely making themselves blind to escape the 9 - 5 - have you?

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It is human nature to wish to be ill so that you can claim a few quid in benefits? I haven't seen people desperate to develop cancer or purposely making themselves blind to escape the 9 - 5 - have you?

You are missing the point entirely. No one begrudges the truly unwell from receiving support from the state. We know there is a whole class of people in the UK who chose (in some sense) to live on unemployment benefits. Why would you not get onto ICB if you were of that mindset and you could?

Look at it another way. If the skivers, and I have met quite a few imo, weren't on incapacity benefit, then there would be more money in the pot for truly sick to receive a higher, more liveable, rate of benefit.

Edited by Tiger Woods?

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