It is quite apparent to me that for whatever reason people are not grasping how the incapacity benefit and ESA claimant count runs in parallel throughout the duration of the DWP reassessment programme and therefore needs to be added together to get the right number.
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on Apr 14, 2013 11:50:45 GMT
Yet another flaw unearthed....
This time it's appeal results
Continuing in our dig for the truth...
It's not so much that IDS and the DWP tell you lies, they just hold back an awful lot of the truth....
They may tell you for instance:
'Majority of DWP decisions against 'unfair' fit for work decisions are upheld by Tribunals'
What they won't tell you is this:
"680,500 appeals lodged with Tribunal - only 108,400 of results logged by the DWP in figures because of 14 months backlog"
This is quite complicated but it's worth reading if you're one of the growing army who doubt the DWP and their dubious use of statistics.
We know and hear a lot about how the statistics relating to the numbers of ESA appeals heard up and down the country in our Tribunals, independently of the DWP, but what happens to the results? Is the DWP dutifully updating the tribunal outcomes when the results come in?
Are they heck....
We know from research in to the rising number of benefit appeals that since 2008, around 680,500 ESA appeals have been received by the Tribunals, a fair number of these cases will have been disposed of with around 40% succeeding; with proper help the success rate shoots up to around 80%.
But as a stand alone set of statistics the Tribunal figures are of little value unless we can see some firm evidence that the results are being fed back to the DWP who should then update their figures so the right results show up in the Work Capability Assessment data statistics.
The only affirmative evidence of the number of appeals which are 'overturned' in the claimant's favour and then recorded by the DWP can be found in one data table where it can be seen that just 108,400 overturns have been identified in figures released in January of this year which confirm the appeal results back on the DWP system. The figures are months behind and only apply to new claimants up to November 2011.
As always government ministers and the DWP are shy when it comes to promoting all of the relevant figures.
(1) If you look at the link to the appeal outcome table (table D) and download it you will note that the data only relates to new ESA claims (these are all the cases shown in my table B). Even when using the new claim data it may come as a surprise to learn that as of November 2011 there were 452,600 cases where NO data existed relating to the appeal outcomes - 452,600 cases where many appeals exist; but where no outcome is known by November 2011 despite the figures being reported in January of this year - 14 months on.
(2) We can also identify 197,700 cases with 'fit for work' decisions in the 'repeat assessment group' (separately identified as table C) where there is no evidence that any of them have been subject to 'appeal adjustment' because there is a lack of data from the DWP showing that the outcomes have been updated to reflect the results from the Tribunal - a further 197,700 cases where there is no data which shows appeal results being updated by the DWP after an HMCTS Tribunal appeal.
(3) There is no definitive data which shows how 179,900 incapacity benefit to Employment & Support Allowance conversion cases (where a fit for work decision have been made) have been adjusted to reflect the outcome of an appeal. The data relating to the number of fit for work decisions is captured in what I have referred to as table (A) but the DWP does not identify any figures showing how they have adjusted the appeal outcomes. What we can however say with absolute certainty is that as of August 2012 there were 89,180 claimants appealing a conversion case against a fit for work decision (this is because all claimants appealing a 'fit for work' conversion decision end up in the assessment phase - there will be even more appealing a placement in the Work Related Activity Group). We can get this data from a separate table relating to DWP payments.
(4) What we know is that none of the outcomes in conversion cases can have been adjusted beyond November 2011 because of the 14 month time delay which exists between the DWP and the HMCTS Tribunals - a further 179,900 cases where there is no definitive data showing showing where appeal results have been updated by the DWP after an HMCTS appeal Tribunal.
(5) What we also know from DWP data up to August 2012 is there are 488,40 ESA claimants in the assessment phase out of which only 170,530 had been in the phase for 3 months. The vast majority had been waiting longer than the optimum 13 week assessment phase with 112,20 waiting 3 to 6 months, 117,030 waiting 6 months to one year, 55,180 between 1 and 2 years and 33,430 waiting over 2 years. the longer the wait the more likely the case is to be one relating to an appeal - this is because the rules allow the assessment phase to be extended in appeal cases or where Atos have not carried out an assessment.
(6) When you consider that an almighty 1,215,200 'fit for work' and 894,600 'Work Related Activity Group' decisions have been made between October 2008 and May 2012 you would expect a very large number of appeals. Remember claimants will appeal both the fit for work decisions made by the DWP and to a lesser extent a smaller number will make an appeal against being placed in the Work Related Activity Group believing they should be placed in the Support Group instead. The outcomes of the 680,500 appeals lodged with the Tribunal have only been adjusted back at the DWP by 108,400 (up to November 2011) according to the most recent data from the DWP released in January 2013.
Why does this matter?
Which percentage do you think represents
the number of claimants
entitled to ESA?
According to the
Is all 3
The DWP only likes to shout about answer (B) !!
Throughout this article I have referred to and provided you with download links to what I refer to as tables (A) (B) and (C). More recently I have added in table (D). You may start to get why IDS and the DWP are only keen to over promote table (B). They don't hide tables (A) or (C); but they don't exactly go shouting about them either. With claim success rates of 71% and 68% you will get why IDS et all loves quoting from the table which gives everyone the lowest figure of all - table (B) with a 42% success rate.
By omitting to mention table (A) the DWP do not have to tell you all about the 386,900 people (68%) who passed the Work Capability Assessment out of the 566,800 claimants who had been assessed for conversion from incapacity benefit to ESA. Nor do they say too much about the 483,000 (71%) who passed the WCA out of 681,500 repeatedly assessed after their very first assessment (table C).
There are obvious reasons why you would if, in IDS's shoes, want to 'play down' 869,900 claimants being perfectly entitled to their ESA by consistently keeping the vast majority of public focus on the figures for new claims only.
The key point raised in this post isn't just over hiding results.
It's over the fact that so few of the Tribunal outcomes are being fed back to the DWP because of the 14 month time delay (which is all there in the DWP's statistical notes) where results are only complete up to November 2011. The Tribunal statistics relate to a period up to September 2012 and the most recent DWP WCA figures are up to May 2012.
Read back over points (1) to (6) and you get an idea about how much data should have been updated by the DWP, there are thousands of appeal outcomes which have not yet been fed back from the HMCTS Tribunal on to the DWP's data records which ultimately have now extended to an earth shattering 2,685,900 (2.6 million) assessments up to May 2012.
Imagine if all the right appeal results were updated? How would that change the 71%, 68% and 42% claim success rates? They would be even higher:
The real problem
'Thousands of DWP claimants denied true appeal results as soaring number of appeals lead to huge delays in updating success rates!'
"Success rates buried in mountains of paperwork which DWP can't handle!"
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on Apr 24, 2013 19:08:59 GMT
Guardian article draws attention to DWP inconsistency
A recent article in the Guardian has highlighted inconsistencies with right wing media headlines. However I also think it has helped to identify an inconsistency in between two sets of DWP figures and forms further evidence of 'clocking' the time a person has spent on longer term incapacity benefits back to zero when going through highly controversial testing to see if they qualify to be transferred on to Employment & Support Allowance.
The article in the Guardian questioned yet more outrageous headlines by the right wing tabloids:
"Is Britain a nation of lazy scroungers?"
"Welfare secretary says there are 1 million people capable of getting on their bike and finding work - but are not bothering to do so. Is he right?"
Randeep Ramesh guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 24 April 2013
"Headline writers in the Daily Mail, the Telegraph and the Daily Express all agree: a million Brits are fit to work but choose to live on benefits......."
The articles takes a look at various claims made in the media and pushed by the DWP.....
"Around 1 million people have been stuck on a working-age benefit for at least three out of the past four years, despite being judged capable of preparing or looking for work."
But most importantly, as far as this article is concerned, the Guardian printed a DWP table which it asks you to consider.
But lets take a look at that table in closer detail....
When taking a closer look at the DWP table appearing in the Guardian and after working from the percentages figures you can work out the numbers of claimants who the DWP say were on the Employment & Support Allowance in the 'Assessment Phase' as of March 31st 2012, the numbers are broken down in to how long claimants had been claiming benefits for.
"Table 2: JSA, ESA (assessment phase and WRAG) and lone parent IS claimants on 31 March 2012, by proportion of time spent on one of the main DWP working-age benefits from 1 April 2008 to 31 March 2012, GB"
The table is a snapshot of claimants (with my emphasis on the ESA Assessment group) who on the 31st March 2012 were on the main working age benefits at any time between 1 April 2008 and 31 March 2012
Now lets narrow down the DWP's separate records for payment claim related data for the quarters which appears either side of March 2012; these being for February 2012 and May 2012:
These are all ESA Assessment Phase figures
Up to 3 month
3 to 6 months
6 months to 1 year
1 to 2 years
2 to 5 years
5 years and over
Previous incapacity claims to ESA (below)
The DWP claim payment data accessible here produces quarterly figures for Employment & Support Allowance going right the way back to November 2008 (just after ESA started). Although the quarterly releases don't quite align with the March figure used in the DWP table by the Guardian we are able to home in on data either side of it by looking at February and May 2012.
The numbers in the assessment phase shown in separate tables relate to the same set of claimants and therefore should tally by being somewhere in between the figures for February and May. However there are substantial differences. .
The Guardian article details the numbers of claimants on ESA in the assessment phase as being 12% of the total claimant count (2,325,000) used by the DWP.
12% of 2,325,000 works out at 279,000 as the numbers in ESA assessment as of March 2012
whereas the actual payment data shows:
424,170 for February 2012
455,860 for May 2012
There's a huge difference between 279,000 and somewhere between the figures of 424,170 and 455,860. There is no reason why the figures should be this different.
Look also at the differences in the two differing sets according to the duration of claim. The DWP table in the Guardian and DWP ad hoc analysis are totally different. The ad hoc version is clearly tracking previous claim durations yet they can't possibly be tracking the same numbers in the assessment phase otherwise the numbers would tally. There's clearly a major statistical differences in these figures.
If you use this narrowed search link of the total 424,170 ESA claimants in the assessment phase as of February 2012. It is also worth pointing out that only 206,210 in total had made their way from incapacity benefits; - of which 53,700 end up in the ESA Assessment Phase. You can use this search to identify the numbers of incapacitated claimants who have undergone conversion to ESA. Conversion is the only process by which claimants get transferred from the one benefit to the other; it is the only 'gateway' on to ESA for a pre-existing claimant.
Clocking older claims
What's interesting is that of all the conversions as of the February 2012 quarter only 60 of all those coming off incapacity and ending up on ESA had claims of 1 year or more in duration. It's much lower when compared with the data in the DWP table in the Guardian.
Why such a difference?
It would be almost impossible for only 60 incapacity benefit claimant cases to have existed with a claim history of a year or more. We are after al looking at claimants who will predominantly have long term sick claims so the chances of only 60 of them having claimed for over a year is very minimal, the vast majority before conversion to ESA have much longer claims so why are claims being zeroed when they end up on ESA?
A conversion on to ESA from incapacity is not a new claim, it should be treated as continuous. This is the inconsistency; one set of data shows different numbers but details the continuity, whereas the higher numbers shown in the payment data show conversions are being treated as new claims. It is the payment data tables from which the DWP publish much of their media releases.
It is also worth pointing out that any ex incapacity benefit claimant can only be placed in the assessment phase if they are appealing against a decision to allow them on to the 'main phases' of ESA.
I suspect we are homing in a little closer to where a data misalignment exists with the ONS figures for the long term sick. I have made enquiries in to this and will post more when I've clarified the true definition of 'long term sick'.
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on May 1, 2013 21:33:54 GMT
The big question
Why is the right wing keeping this so quiet?
They could be telling everyone how they have 'identified' 3. 4 million 'shirkers'
* Why aren't they quoting the 1.3+ million who have been 'swinging the lead' after being found 'fit for work' by the DWP?
* Why aren't they quoting the 1+ million who seemingly 'avoided their assessments' for fear of being 'caught out' by the DWP & Atos Healthcare?
* Why aren't they quoting over 1+ million who have been found to able to 'some' work by the DWP?
Why not quote the full figure of 3.4 million?
These are the astonishing figures made available by the DWP on the 30th April 2013 which highlight real figures which the press do not want to print. All of the above statistics can be verified with the DWP using links on this site which takes you to where the information came from.
The DWP knows these figures and so do its ministers. Iain Duncan Smith consistently misrepresents the figures but one has to wonder why he is not getting maximum exposure from the media when he could be using far higher numbers which in the eyes of the mistaken media highlight 3.4 million who should either be in work or looking for work instead of claiming the sick.
Why avoid the big number?
3.4 million is the total number which the DWP avoids like the plague. It does so by only referring to singular sets of claimants rather than all of the claims involved in the monster Employment & Support Allowance programme which is meant to be about reassessing the sick.
Here's how the 3.4 million is made up (the figures represent the total numbers of claimants placed in the following groups in the programme from October 2008 to August 2012:
1,028,800 claimants in the Work Related Activity Group, the press continually misrepresents this group by telling the public that claimants have been found able to do some work and should find employment. My question is why doesn't the press ask the DWP to tell them the proper rules and find out just how many have been supported back in to work?
1,308,700 claimants seemingly found 'Fit for Work', again widely misrepresented by the press who never say how strict a test is applied in working out whether a claimant is fit or not. If they've been found fit for work the obvious question is where 1.3 million have ended up; in a job? On the dole?
1,074,200 claimants who allegedly closed their sick claims once they realised how they would be assessed to see if they were sick or not; again I ask where have over a million claimants disappeared to?
Why is the right wing media and the DWP avoiding the big number?
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on May 8, 2013 13:21:01 GMT
Clearing up some common confusion
Helping you to understand
Lots of people are interested in the DWP's reassessment of the sick programme but there's a great deal of misunderstanding over some of the keys facts. These posts looks at these in an attempt to improve your understanding.
2,552,340 claimants explained
There are still many thousands on the older incapacity benefits, contribution based Incapacity Benefit, Income Support and Severe Disablement Allowance. Incapacity benefits are different to disability benefits such as Disability Living Allowance although these can be paid in addition. Incapacity Benefits are a 'work replacement' benefit and are paid to those who are incapable of work. DWP latest figures confirms 1,265,930 on incapacity benefits
Employment & Support Allowance
Strangely enough the many thousands claiming the newer Employment & Support Allowance are just the same kind of claimants who claim the older incapacity benefits. DWP latest figures show there are 1,286,410 on the Employment & Support Allowance. Under the new allowance introduced in 2008 those who have a recognised incapacity are placed in either the Work Related Activity Group or the Support Group. Those in the Work Related Activity Group are meant to be getting government support to improve their prospects of getting in to work. Calling people like the chap shown in the wheelchair picture 'work shy' does nothing to help people back in to work, it just puts employers off from employing them.
Employment & Support Allowance claim groups
Just as those claiming the older incapacity benefit, those claiming the newer allowance may be in a wheelchair, they may be in perfect physical health yet suffer mental health problems which are undetectable to the human eye, they may have suffered a heart attack, have cancer, suffered any number of conditions which can affect any one of us. It's quite possible for somebody to be in perfect health and in all of five minutes end up badly injured in a car crash. People who have worked for years in the caring profession or who have been involved in occupations involving heavy lifting strangely enough develop chronic back problems. There are all kind of reasons why people claim so best quit judging them and leave it to the professionals because almost every new claimant needs a medical certificate stating they are not fully fit for work before they can claim.
Since October 2008, people claiming on the grounds of incapacity have to make a claim for the more recent Employment & Support Allowance. It's a very different benefit to the older incapacity benefits introduced back in the mid 1990's. Claimants have been subject to assessments carried out independently of their own doctors for many years. Under the older incapacity benefits, claimants were assessed under the 'All Work Test' which was later modified to the Personal Capability Assessment. Under the older benefit a decision was made as to whether the claimant was 'fit for work' or 'not fit for work'.
In Employment & Support Allowance a newer 'Work Capability Assessment' is carried out to see if the claimant is (a) 'fit for work', (b) could be helped towards doing some work with the appropriate support in the 'Work Related Activity Group' or (c) has limited capability for work related activity and gets placed in the 'Support Group'. Support Group claimants have the most severe level of limitation and are not expected to take part in activities related to helping them in to work. Here's the numbers of new claimants who the DWP has handled as new claims from October 2008 to August 2012; 43% of new claims pass the assessment:
Work Related Activity Group 398,300 Support Group 270,400 Both Groups 668,800 Fit For Work 890,300 All above outcomes 1,559,100 Closed before assessment 950,500
(2) Repeat assessments
Yes, it's time for you to be looked at again! ....
A lot of people looking at the DWP reassessment programme omit to include the group of claimants who, following their initial assessment after making a new claim go on to be reassessed by the DWP for a second, third, fourth or more time. The DWP said from the outset that they would do this to monitor whether the claimant's condition has improved after say 3, 6, 9 or 12 months. The number of repeat assessments is reducing but none the less the numbers assessed between October 2008 and August 2012 is very substantial. Of those repeatedly assessed 73% pass their assessment:
Work Related Activity Group 340,300 Support Group 238,500 Both Groups 578,800 Fit For Work 215,100 All above outcomes 793,900 Closed before assessment 99,000
(3) Longer term incapacity benefit claims
The DWP and the press continually mix up the longer term sick with the assessment results for new claims to fool you in to thinking that those who have been claiming for quite a few years should never have been claiming at all. What the DWP won't of course tell you is of when assessed in this group, even under the much tighter Employment & Support Allowance rules, 71% still qualify for ongoing benefit which means they carry on claiming as their claim gets converted from the older incapacity benefit to the more recent Employment & Support Allowance. The press have come up with all kinds of stories that 75% in this group are faking their illnesses or even in one absurd article how only 1 in every 14 qualifies.
Work Related Activity Group 290,200 Support Group 206,600 Both Groups 496,800 Fit For Work 203,300 All above outcomes 700,200 Closed before assessment 24,700
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on May 15, 2013 12:00:06 GMT
Latest ONS release
Here's the latest release of National statistics, it's the third release which has been collected on this post. One of reasons why I'm focussing a potential 'serious flaw' on these statistics is because of the way the long term sick figures factor in the 'economically inactive figures'. These have risen by 47,000 from January to March 2013 making a total of 9 million in the 'not in labour force' figures. I'm looking to see if this corresponds with a rise or reduction in the long term sick figures relating to those who are transferring from older incapacity benefits to the newer Employment & Support Allowance (ESA) figures. It is very clear that the ESA figures are being 'zeroed' every time a claimant transfers from their previous benefits, I want to see if this is being mirrored in the ONS figures - it could potentially affect the unemployment figures.
I also want to look at how those placed in the ESA Work Related Activity Group figures are represented in the ONS labour force survey.
It's tricky to align these figures with the DWP claimant counts because, even though they were also released today, they are only dated to November 2012.
Here are the DWP figures (partly) updated to November 2012
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on May 20, 2013 10:11:38 GMT
Jobseekers and benefits data release postponed by DWP
Work and pensions department's figures to show how many people have lost benefits under new sanctions regime
Patrick Wintour, political editor The Guardian, Sunday 19 May 2013 1
Critics say the public needs independent figures to compare with claims by the government. Photograph: Oli Scarff/Getty
The Department for Work and Pensions has delayed publication of the first set of official statistics detailing the extra number of jobless claimants losing benefits as a result of a tougher sanctions regime introduced by the coalition in October.
The DWP said there were "some significant doubts about the quality of the new regime statistics" due to have been published this week, adding it was not possible to give a date when they would be in a form fit to print.
Ministers have also suspended publication of figures relating to employment and support allowance.
The DWP introduced the tougher benefits regime last October, including longer periods off benefits for failing to be fully available for work.
The delayed publication of the figures, which cover the period from 22 October 2012 to the end of February 2013, means the public has no independent way of judging the effects of tighter sanctions.
It also means it is impossible to discern the effect of the tougher regime on the falling number of jobseeker's allowance (JSA) claimants. The DWP has been repeatedly criticised for its use of statistics.
David Webster, a senior research fellow at Glasgow University, said: "It is a matter of concern that these statistics have been delayed. JSA sanctions and disallowances were already rising markedly under the coalition, from about 3% of claimants per month, which they inherited, to over 4%, but the most recently published figures run only to October 2012.
"Since then there has been a big increase in the length of the most commonly occurring types of sanction, and the internal DWP 'score chart', published in the Guardian on 28 March, implied that there was a big further rise in the rate of sanctions per month in December and January, to over 7%.
"There is evidence that the increase in sanctions has led to the DWP failing to achieve its promised timescales for dealing with appeals.
"Administrative overload with increased sanctions may indeed be why there are problems with the statistics. Given the damage that it's known these sanctions can do, the public need to know as soon as possible what is happening."
The government introduced a new three-tier sanctions regime in October 2012 for JSA and in December 2012 for employment and support allowance.
Comment It's good to see the DWP and the government taking a well deserved hammering over the way they've been pumping out their grossly distorted statistics. It's to no one's advantage to push ahead with reforms on the basis of nothing more than government led spin. I've been waiting to see the publication of the sanctions related to Employment & Support Allowance for sometime as they have an obvious bearing on the claimant reduction. They also provide the evidence as to exactly why it is that an incapacitated claimant, often with considerable limitation, would find themselves sanctioned in the first place, it's just a shame it seems we are going to have to wait for these figures a while longer.
It's also notable that the DWP Press Office was remarkably shy in making the usual meat out of last weeks Fraud & Error figures and the latest updates to the claimant count, not enough meat on the bones to make a headline in the Daily Mail - how extraordinary?
Truth is there wasn't too much for them to shout about.
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on May 22, 2013 21:43:26 GMT
Duncan Smith to face grilling from MPs over misuse of statistics
The work and pensions select committee launches an inquiry after Duncan Smith was rebuked by the UK Statistics Authority for misrepresenting figures on the benefit cap. BY GEORGE EATON PUBLISHED 22 MAY 2013 15:28
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith arrives to attend the government's weekly cabinet meeting at Number 10 Downing Street. Photograph: Getty Images. With deceptively little fanfare, the work and pensions select committee has announced that it intends to question Iain Duncan Smith over his misuse of statistics. After IDS was rebuked by the UK Statistics Authority for falsely claiming that 8,000 people had moved into work as a result of the introduction of the benefit cap, the committee has "decided to examine the way DWP releases benefit statistics to the media".
The inquiry into Duncan Smith's behaviour will be carried out as part of its annual assessment of the DWP Annual Report and Accounts (ARA), which is due to be published at the end of June. Since the Work and Pensions Secretary always appears before the committee once the assessment has been published, he is now certain to face questions over his statistical chicanery. The Change.org petition calling for Duncan Smith to be held to account by parliament has now received 96,271 signatures. Let us now hope he is.
In the past month, the Work and Pensions Secretary has claimed that 878,000 people dropped their claims for sickness benefits rather than face a new medical assessment; that thousands deliberately registered for the Disability Living Allowance before it was replaced with the more “rigorous” Personal Independence Payment; and that 8,000 people moved into work as a result of the introduction of the coalition’s benefit cap. Not one of these assertions was supported by the official statistics.
Thousands of people move on and off benefits each month as their health, housing and employment circumstances change but there is no evidence that they do so for the reasons ascribed by Duncan Smith. Read more in the New Statesman
Comment: I am absolutely delighted to see Iain Duncan Smith getting hauled over the coals for his despicable twisting of statistics, or as Steve 'Pleb' Walker from the excellent Swawkbox puts it; "IDS FACES TWO CANINGS FOR STATISTICS ABUSE". Sorry IDS but you really do deserve a fair few lashings:
I'm not sadistic IDS, but I really hope it hurts.
Long before all this hit the fan, I formed a view that IDS was going to head us towards the perfect 'Welfare Reform Car Crash' not because his reforms are wrong in their objective but because of the way he has consistently misled the public over large numbers of incapacitated claimants being fit for work rather than entitled to their sickness benefits. His dodgiest statistic was this:
75% on the sick are 'fit for work'
IDS set himself up to fail before he so much as started his wreckage of the welfare state, it's absolutely sinful that he based his reforms on a rhetoric aimed purposely at poisoning the public against those who claim to be sick. He's used a special blend of poison which isn't actually based on fact.
IDS also made a dodgy assertion over "900,000 claimants closing their claims before being assessed"
Both claims are equally wicked lies. The facts are these:
(1) 57% of people making new & often short term claims are found fit for work by the time they end up being assessed.
(2) 27% of people who are assessed for the second or third time are found fit for work
(3) 29% of the long term sick (previously having been on the older incapacity benefits) are found fit for work
(4) The DWP has only collated proper appeal data from 312,100 claimants (approximately 13%) out of a total number of 2,337,500 found 'fit for work' and placed in the 'work related activity group'. Due to chronic delays in the DWP updating their data they cannot say with any degree of certainty how many of the remaining 2,025,400 (approximately 87%) may or may not have appealed. We can however be certain that up to December 2012 no less than 765,764 ESA appeals have been lodged with the Tribunals.
Here's some of the questions I'd like to see IDS 'grilled' over:
(a) How many more appeals remain clogging up the offices of the DWP as it buckles under the strain?
(b) Where did 1,308,700 claimants found fit for work actually end up?
(c) How many of the 1,028,800 allegedly found able to do some work get support to help them in to work?
(d) Of the (real) number of 1,074,200 claimants who closed their claims before assessment how many were assessed within 13 weeks and how many went on to claim as unemployed or found work?
(e) With so many thousands allegedly being ready to go to work, how many have ended up up with a 'real' (rather than fake) job via IDS's infamous Work Programme?
Or is it that the real test of 'fitness for work' isn't what Atos say but what the Jobcentre says when people attempt to sign on as able to work, or what a Work provider makes of their realistic prospects of finding work?
I hope IDS gets a good caning, he's certainly deserves it - it's about time he felt some pain!
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on May 24, 2013 8:43:56 GMT
SPOTLIGHT ON HOLYROOD — BY TFNADMIN ON 23/05/2013
The benefits numbers that just don’t add up
Sheila Gilmore MP
SINCE the coalition government took office in 2010 I’ve become increasingly concerned about the misuse of figures on benefits by ministers and the press. In recent months this has become particularly pronounced, with a number of striking examples of statistical foul play.
Take a recent story from the Sunday Telegraph as an example. The headline read “900,000 choose to come off sickness benefit ahead of tests” and the copy was punctuated with quotes from Tory chairman Grant Shapps. The implication was clearly that people receiving such benefits aren’t really ill or disabled and are, in some way, playing the system.
But a quick fact check reveals that this simply isn’t the case.
The benefit in question is Employment and Support Allowance (ESA). People have been able to make new claims for ESA since October 2008, but those in receipt of the benefits it replaced – Incapacity Benefit, Severe Disablement Allowance, and Income Support on the grounds of disability – only started migrating across in April 2011. It was this latter group that the article implied were dropping their claim rather than go through a face to face assessment.
Post by nickd (Mylegal) on Jun 4, 2013 14:55:54 GMT
If the true facts got out this is what you should be reading....
Daily Factualgraph ________________________ 4th June 2013
Government minister is now in peril of wrecking welfare reforms and must be sacked immediately
"4,320,600 Employment & Support Allowance cases spun through IDS's chaotic Department of Work & Pensions & only 1,290 end up in a job - this deplorable minister must be next in line to queue up at the Jobcentre"
Ministers are furious & are demanding that Iain Duncan Smith be dismissed immediately.
Since the Daily Factual last reported in April, Iain Duncan Smith reign of terror on welfare has gone from 'bad to worse' say furious ministers calling for his immediate sacking.
The heat of the debate reached boiling point as Smith unsuccessfully tried
In April of this year the Daily Factualgraph exposed yet more blundering at the chaotic Department of Work & Pensions headed by Iain Duncan Smith. There have been many developments since but a recent debate in Parliament may well mark the point at which many will say: IDS's days are well & truly numbered.
The heat of the debate reached boiling point as Smith unsuccessfully tried to defend his catalogue of disastrous welfare reforms. Within seconds of Smith's opening address, he was under siege from almost every MP in the House; all angrily firing questions at the minister 'with no answers'.
Smith stood accused of telling lie after lie. "You've shamelessly sold welfare reforms by pretending that 75% fraudulently claim their sickness benefits whilst faking their illnesses. Then you accused 15,000 people of which 10,000 were pensioners & children of rushing to get their disability benefits months before they were even due to be phased out and replaced by the new Personal Independence Payment. You made out that 8,000 claimants were forced in to work under the threat of your wretched benefit cap, you completely misled everyone by saying nearly a million benefit claimants gave up their claims for fear of being exposed by a ridiculously stringent medical test" - shouted an angry opposition minister for the War on Welfare party.
Red faced and angry, Smith was relentlessly taunted over his inability to tell the truth. "Why on why can't the minister just for once tell the truth? Why does he have to resort to a continual pack of untruths? Is he someone affected by some underlying disorder where his mind simply cannot connect with the truth?" asked another spokesman.
Unusually, the House called for Smith to appear on the Jeremy Kyle show where his lies could at long last be put to the test. In proposing the motion the speaker said;
"Perhaps, rare though it is to make such a request, what we need is to hear how the minister's answers match up with the truth using a lie - detector such at they use to catch people out on the the Jeremy Kyle show?"
The House quickly indicated their mass approval and passed the motion for Smith to be subjected to a lie - test. The motion was carried overwhelmingly in favour. Jeremy Kyle is said to be 'happy to cooperate". Kyle said " I hate liars and I'm only too happy to have another exposed on my show".
Smith struggled to string a single coherent sentence together in response to the torrent of fast flowing questions which were thrown his way. Repeatedly sipping from a glass of water, Smith continually coughed and spluttered as the speaker carefully marshalled more and more questions, nearly every single angry MP demanded to have their say.
The most difficult questions faced by Smith focussed on his fast failing sickness reassessment programme. Smith was grilled intently; " Can the minister explain how it is that to date 1,308,700 have been supposedly found fit for work, 1,074,200 have closed their claims before being assessed, 1,028,800 have been found able to do some work, with so many being misquoted as 'job ready' how is it then he has only helped just 1,290 in to a job?"
There was loud jeering & laughter and it came from all sides of the house.
"These are his department's figures, a grand total of 3,411,700 that he makes out are ready to take a job. Over 3.4 million who you are quite happy to mislead the papers in to thinking are ready for work and yet under your disastrous Work Programme only 1,290 with an incapacity benefit history have ended up with a job?" "Why so few in a job when you claim to have found so many ready to take them?"
"What the minister hides from is his own numbers, he knows the farcical reality, he knows fine well that if over 3.4 million were really job ready we would be looking at the same ridiculously high numbers on the dole as last seen under his government back in the 80's & 90's, that's the truth isn't it? We would all be wondering where the fit for work actually end up? They won't be in a job under this government would they? They would be down at the Jobcentre, but strangely he claims to have fixed unemployment as well".
The jeering ministers continued " If anyone deserves to be in the dole queue it is the minister himself, he should be next in the queue & he knows it" - taunted the spokesman.
"Hear, hear" roared the House. " Whilst the minister is keen to tell everyone how he's getting so many off sickness benefits, he's rather reluctant to tell the other side of the story. The side of the story which tells us that whilst 3,653,070 have come off sickness benefits, 3,459,150 have also come on to the Employment & Support Allowance since it was introduced"
" Why is he not see keen to tell everyone how just as many claim these benefits as come off them? He isn't keen to share this with the public because everyone would then start to ask why the numbers on the sick aren't coming down, it ridicules his attempts to smear the sick and disabled especially after he spent so much time shooting his mouth off with his wild claims that 75% on the sick are fakers".
"We know his secret. We know how he keeps unemployment and the numbers on the sick look as though they are coming down. He craftily keeps around half a million constantly in assessment and also makes sure around the same number have to come back and claim again after being turned down for their ESA. He's craftily cooking the books by recycling half a million who never flag up as long term sick or long term unemployed. We know your game and we thinks it's absolutely deplorable that the minister runs off to the tabloids and feeds them with stories over the high numbers being booted off his benefits without telling them they can silently re-claim"
" Now who's the fraudster?" asked yet another angry MP
The questions increasingly rattled Smith who looked on enraged as he stood in the firing line. More questions followed: "How is that the tax payer has had to fund 3,053,200 Work Capability Assessments, why has the DWP had to wade through 4,320,600 ESA cases to get such deplorable results such as these - just 1,290 in a job?"
The relentless taunting continued with IDS looking more and more worn out. He pitifully begged the speaker for more time to answer his critics, it took some time before the House calmed down sufficiently for the sitting duck to plead a defence: "I'm proud of what I've done, let me tell you this, I learnt all about welfare in Glasgow on the Easterhouse estate and I said I would do something right in my life, that something was to stop lives being ruined by benefit dependency. That's why my Universal Credit is so good because it simplifies the benefits system and makes work pay, what's more it's on time, on track and on budget, I'm getting this right because Labour made it so much worse, I'll take no lessons from a party which tripled sickness claims, I'm here to get this right...."
At which the speaker had to intervene " The Minister knows the rules about telling more fairy tales & he's at it again, we all know it was the Conservatives who increased incapacity claims threefold back in the wild 80's & 90's, if the minister can't stop telling lies we'll all need to call an immediate vote of no confidence"
"Here, here, I've no confidence in him" shouted the Prime Minister. "Ha, ha" jeered the house, "even the Prime Minister has no confidence in his minister". The House broke in to near disarray as it became apparent that every single MP from all parties had declared no confidence in the minister for the DWP. It was at this point that Smith flew off in to a rage and stormed out of the house knocking over his big bottle of water as he leapt over the ministerial benches. Ministers jeered as he made his way to the door marked 'exit'. The House concluded with a final vote, there was massive agreement that IDS must face the lie - detector on the Jeremy Kyle show before he is allowed to speak in Parliament again. Smith was also banned from contacting anyone from the national media and faced a warning that he would be expelled from Parliament if the Jeremy Kyle tests proved positive.