The fact is on a direct comparison between the older incapacity benefits with 2006; half as many made new claims (comparing a sample quarter/year) as they did for Employment & Support Allowance in 2012.
In August 2006 148,430 flowed on to incapacity and 151,470 flowed off in the same quarter
In 'defence' IDS might say....
Ah, but what about all those scroungers on the cushy older incapacity benefits now being tested?
(A Daily Mail Actor playing the part of a scrounger)
On the face of it IDS may think he's on to a really good thing simply by adding two sets of figures together he can claim marvellous results
when added to the ESA off flows for the same quarter
169,810 incapacity + 138,120 ESA
>> 307,930 <<
September 2005 - August 2006
September 2011 - August 2012
A decrease of
>> 571,780 <<
IDS would make it sound fantastic!
This is how they get away with this kind of grossly misleading headline.....
You can see how the figures can be easily manipulated. The real figures to watch are the 287,50 ESA 'on flows' in August 2012 compared with the 307,930 combined 'off flows' in the same quarter.
The annual 'off flow' figure of 571,780 is greatly negated by the 'on flow' figure of 507,160. that's why IDS always says
"We're getting people off benefits"
(Remember there are no significant incapacity benefit 'on flows' from 2008)
A real time 'flow' reduction of just 20,430 in the August 2012 quarter The 2nd flaw The DWP claims victory by focussing on higher 'off flows' without making it clear that double the number of claimants are claiming as 'on flows' More coming up in the next post
The 878,300 who decided not to have an official assessment of whether they were fit for work was more than a third of the total number of people claiming sickness-related benefits.
The statistics also revealed that some claimants cited conditions such as “blisters”, “sprains and strains” and “acne” as preventing them from having a job.
More than 46,120 people claimed incapacity benefit because of “behavioural disorders due to the use of alcohol” while 29,130 claimants cited drug use.
Ministers said the figures showed the full extent of how millions had been “trapped on welfare” for decades.
Grant Shapps, the Conservative Party chairman, said the old system was “evil” and accused Labour of using sickness benefits to “hide the unemployed” when the party was in power.
Why understate the figures?
Yes that's right, IDS in the above Daily Telegraph article wasn't exaggerating or overstating the figures, he was very much understating them. The question you need to ask yourself is why?
In the Telegraph article you will note how the figure of 878,300 was quoted for the number who apparently decided not to have an assessment. Leaving aside the misplaced assumption as to why the claim was closed; the fact is the figure is wrong.
The correct figure is 982,400
Why would IDS understate the figure?
The same Telegraph article goes on to say '837,000 had been found fit for work immediately'. Again this was wrong.
The correct figure is 1,215,200
Why would IDS understate the figure?
Further in to the article you will note a reference to 367,300 who 'were judged able to some level of work'. Again this was wrong
The correct figure is 894,600
Why would IDS understate the figure?
982,400 + 1,215,200 + 894,600 = 3,092,200
Are you following this?
Why would IDS not have capitalised on a golden opportunity to say this?
Daily Factualgraph _______________________ April 4th 2013
3.1 million either fit for work, able to do some work, or choose to come off sickness benefit ahead of tests
Nearly 3,100,000 off the sick or able to do some work, latest government figures show.
The Government's latest statistics show that 982,400 claimants ended their claims before being called for a tough new test which works out how many on the sick are really just lazy scroungers. A staggering 1,215, 200 of those who decided to try their luck at an Atos assessment were found fit for work immediately. Of those who scraped through the tough incapacity tests 894,600 were found to be able to do some work. Needless to say government ministers are delighted with these results and say they justify their hard hitting reforms which are exposing nearly 3.1 million who under Labour have been on the sick for years with no attempt being made to check up on claimants who clearly can do some work or who are completely fit for work and not entitled to sickness benefit at all.
Opposition ministers have questioned the claims made by Duncan Smith and have asked for an enquiry in to the statistics. A spokesman said " whilst the government claims to have got such a huge proportion off the sick, our concern is over where 3.1 million people are. Did they all sign on? Find work? We wonder if the minister is up to his old tricks again and has massaged the statistics because something isn't adding up here"
Whilst the above article may be fake (to illustrate the point), I can assure you that all of the figures quoted are indeed 100% factually accurate in so far as they are sourced from the DWP data relating to the reassessment programme. The question is with the DWP being so toxic of late, why would they not use an opportunity to boost their beloved headlines further by more effectively vilifying the shirking benefit claimant?
What this exposes is yet another flaw. You then need to ask why are they hiding what on the face of it would appear to be information which could have given their dubious claims a further and more hard hitting headline?
This is important because table (B) is the one for New Employment & Support claims statistics.
Whilst it is a very sizeable chunk of the reassessment programme with a total 'case load' up to May 2012 of no less than 2,415,400 cases, the complete omission of tables (A) relating to a total case load of 603,600 incapacity benefit conversion claimants and table (C) relating a case load of 816,500 claimants subject to the 'repeat' reassessment of new ESA claims means that data relating to 1,420,100 cases is being completely left out of the statistics.
You simply cannot leave approaching 1.5 million case results out of the statistics and pretend to the public that they are being provided with accurate information relating to all claimants undergoing sickness testing.
One has to question why the DWP and IDS along with Grant Shapps went along with what was grossly incomplete data. I suspect I know why they reverted to using the one set of data and in the next post you will the kind of 'headline' which IDS could find himself reading if all the statistics were to come out as they properly should.
I rather suspect IDS would end up reading it with a well deserved P45 firmly on its way to him for his increasingly questionable management of this disastrous reassessment programme.
If the 'real' headlines in the second article appeared the obvious question everyone would be asking is quite simply; where the heck have 3 .1 million claimants ended up?
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on Apr 3, 2013 22:50:34 GMT
If the true facts got out this is what you should end up reading....
Daily Factualgraph ________________________ April 4th 2013 (Late Edition)
Latest government statistics have revealed a costly and chaotic 'back to work' sickness benefit scheme which has caused uproar within Parliament. Angry politicians are calling for immediate suspension of the programme and want a full enquiry in to why ministers have allowed huge numbers of sick people to be unnecessarily exposed to harsh assessment.
"3,140,810 sickness claims made during reassessment programme"
Iain Duncan Smith is unable to explain and must face parliamentary enquiry.
The Government's latest statistics show that a staggering 3,835,500 thousand sickness cases have been handled up to May 2012 by the DWP with 2,685,900 work capability assessment results being recorded at huge cost to the tax payer by the Department for Work and Pensions in conjunction with its controversial private contractor French IT firm Atos.
The latest figures reveal that government has justified the scheme by continuing to only promote limited data showing the large numbers who have been assessed as fit for work or able to do some work.
The government statistics show that whilst large numbers are coming off the sick, very nearly just as many are either going straight back on to it or a greater number are claiming for the first time. The revelation has sent a shock wave through Parliament.
What has been hidden from the public is that between November 2008 and August 2012 the numbers claiming sickness benefits has rocketed to 3,140,810 over the four year period. Under the the older incapacity benefits in a period between November 2004 and August 2008 the number of claims was 2,349,230. Iain Duncan Smith has been asked to explain why the numbers coming back on to the sick had increased by 791,580.
An angry House of Commons saw politicians from all sides heckle Duncan Smith over the rising number of claims; a furious spokesman accused him of "butchering the statistics when really what they showed was that under the older incapacity benefit; the figures had come down to 138,440 in the February 2007 quarter whereas under the chaotic reassessment programme launched nationwide in May 2011 the figure had shot up to 287,520 for the August 2012 quarter".
Duncan Smith tried to defend his reassessment plans by saying he was setting out to transform the lives of 2.6 million who had been parked on incapacity benefit for ten years with no help, the minister had to be forcibly removed to loud jeers in what became one of the noisiest sessions in the house for decades; as he was restrained by Parliamentary security guards Smith was shouting " but I just wanted to show everyone how work pays".
The house reconvened once the minister had been safely led away and went on to hear how the disastrous reassessment programme had "caused untold misery for many thousands of claimants; sadly some having died after being declared 'fit for work' by a system which looks as though it has now been manipulated in to setting up claimants to fail".
The House of Commons nearly exploded when it was revealed that the Government's 'flag ship' Work Programme had resulted in only 1,290 claimants with an incapacity claim related history ending up with a 'job outcome'.
One minister demanded the immediate suspension of Duncan Smith saying " it is simply shocking and beyond belief that government ministers have vilified the claimants with stringent and prohibitively expensive testing aimed at showing them up as scroungers when in reality many more claimants are in some way being either encouraged or advised to take up a much greater number of sick claims than we've ever seen in the past and to end up with just 1,290 of them in a job is absolutely deplorable".
The heated debate went on in to the late hours with enraged ministers accusing the government of "wilfully entering in to an orgy of assessment where claimant upon claimant was being spun around a badly managed programme which needs to come to an end now before any further harm is inflicted upon people merely because government is out to prove people are fit when many are obviously far from fit".
A fierce attack was launched upon ministers responsible for the DWP with an allegation being inflicted upon Duncan Smith after he had departed. " He has misled the public by continually prompting the media to spin stories that 75% are faking their illnesses knowing the claimant numbers had hardly fallen, that's why they stood at 2,632.000 in August 2008 before this programme started and in August 2012 the figure stands at 2,552,340 - a reduction of just 79,660, it's less than your incapacity department deals with in a month. "
The attack continued " The minister can't say it's down to large numbers coming off incapacity and going on to Employment & Support Allowance because these figures show that of the 1,946.200 on incapacity in May 2011 at the start of their national roll out, by August 2012 only 426,480 have made their way on to ESA and 89,180 of those are still appealing to get proper support in the main phases. Perhaps this explains why in August 2012 there are a staggering number of 488,440 claimants still awaiting assessment?"
The debate went on until nearly midnight, large numbers of parliamentarians had stayed on in the packed chamber because they considered it a matter of 'national importance affecting thousands of sick people. Towards the winding up, a minster accused the government of " deliberately and wilfully winding back the clock on incapacity claimants to show that they have been only claiming a few months when transferred over to ESA, it helps in the way you cheat the ONS statistics by reducing the numbers of those who are long term sick and shown as economically inactive - helping your unemployment figures no end"
A further accusation was made over the introduction of a new mandatory reconsideration before appeal system; " we know the real reason you want claimants appealing for the sick to make short term claims for unemployment benefit - it helps butcher the ONS figures even further and with over 640,000 recorded appeals at the Tribunal and many more waiting at the DWP there's plenty of scope for hiding many thousands from the figures there as well, heads must roll over this outrageous abuse of claimants, many of them who regardless of the findings of these tests are genuinely sick. The real test of whether people are fit for work or not isn't at the assessment, it's after when the claimant tries to claim as actively available for work. The fact this government has only been able find 1,290 jobs from its multi billion Work Programme speaks volumes of its success and clearly shows us that claimants are ending up back on this allowance. It's either that or this government is making many more people sick than any previous government did"
The session ended with calls for an urgent investigation. Duncan Smith is still restrained and can still be heard crying " I keep telling you that work pays, why does no one believe me any more.....?"
With effect from the 30 April 2013 this publication will be combined with the Employment and Support Allowance - Work Capability Assessments, Great Britain - new claims publication. The publications shall continue to be released as one on a quarterly basis. There will be no further publication published via this page. The publication can be accessed here.
This is the link for New ESA claims and New ESA claims which have been reassessed following the initial assessment. Use it to download the table marked esa_wca_jan2013 then use sub table 1(a) for the data shown in row (b). Use the same table but use sub table 1(b) for New ESA claims which have been reassessed after the initial assessment - this is the information shown above in row (C).
Note the Work Capability Assessment figures are complete to May 2012
The Claimant Count
For the claimant count and off flows you must combine both the incapacity data (which includes Incapacity Benefit, Severe Disablement Allowance and Incapacity Credit (Income Support claimed on grounds of incapacity cases) because the reassessment programme is one where from October 2008 Employment & Support Allowance was introduced and incapacity benefit claimants would gradually be converted (where qualifying) over to Employment & Support Allowance up until the conversion programme is completed. Both sets must be added together to get an accurate picture as to how the reassessment programme is progressing.
The case load figure shown in the WCA statistics (3,835,500 for August) is considerably higher than the claimant count because it includes 816,500 claimants who have been repeatedly assessed. As they are duplicates of claimants who have already been counted as an on flow they will not appear in the on flows because that would would distort the claimant count.
The claimant count and the case load shown in the WCA figures are different because the claimant count and on and off flows refers to both incapacity benefits and Employment and Support Allowance whereas the WCA case load only refers to claimants who have 'on flowed' on to ESA. The WCA tables are adjusted at intervals to reflect the results of appeals.
How does the the number of on and off flows differ from the claimant count?
The claimant count figure relates to how many claimants had a live claim on the payments system over 3 months preceding the quarterly release. For the August 2012 figures will be a count of the claimants in June, July and the August.
Whereas the on and off flows, whilst still referring to a quarterly set, refer to the number of claimants who flow on to the benefit and off it in the same quarter (they are rarely the same claimants as most will on flow in one quarter and off flow in another according to the duration of their claim. The number of on flows for instance will increase the claimant count according to how many are already claiming and how many exit.
* Under the ib/ESA regime between 2008 and 2012 there were 168,240 more off flows than on flows
* Under ib as a 'stand alone' regime between 2004 and 2008 there were 206,710 more off flows than on flows
* The number of on flows has increased in the period 2008 to 2012 by 791,581 when compared with 2004 to 2008
* The number of off flows has increased in the period 2008 to 2012 by 753,110 when compared with 2004 to 2008
Therefore when comparing incapacity benefits as a stand alone range of benefits with Employment and Support Allowance there is an increase of in excess of three quarter or a million claimants under the Employment & Support Allowance. This represents an increase of around three quarter of a million NEW claimants over the four year period
The increase cannot be attributed to repeat assessments as these are only counted once as an on flow unless they off flow and then make a new claim.
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on Apr 8, 2013 23:18:49 GMT
It seems I'm not alone in my suspicions over Government's dubious claims to be getting thousands off the sick with no apparent rise in unemployment. Sheila Gilmore MP article.
'The disappearing fit for work'
It was written a while back and the numbers have greatly swelled since then. Once again there is an inherent failure in misunderstanding the need to consider the whole programme rather than that which relates to new claims only.