9 Aug 2011

Fit to work tests are not fit for purpose

It is not news to many of us that many vulnerable people are living in "fear and anxiety" over facing "fit to work tests" - see my letter last year here. However I welcome that the cross party MPs in the Work and Pensions Select Committee have now also concluded this - see here.  

The MPs report concluded that it is "widely accepted" that the Work Capability Assessment introduced in 2008 was "flawed" especially since many seriously ill people have been refused support. The cost of appeals to the public purse is some £50 Million each year. The committee also highlights that there have been failings in the service Atos Healthcare has provided in carrying out the test.  The Government at least admits more refinements are needed but I fear these will not go far enough. Indeed with news yesterday that charities face £3bn in cuts over the next 5 years things cannot get easier.

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