ESA WRAG proposal to scrap it, leaked document.

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neurochick

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The devil will be in the detail - as yet not released.  There is likely to be a huge incentive to get people off ESA WRAG and then when they have to make a new claim, they are re-assessed at the new, lower rate because it will constitute a new claim.

Given the budget announcement would otherwise create a perverse incentive to stay on WRAG making it an even more "passive" benefit, I can't believe that they won't step up the interventions so that there can be no allegation of people being left 'languishing' on the high ESA WRAG rate. Much as I truly don't want to upset anyone, I think there is more to come with this change otherwise it goes against everything the government have claimed they intend to do.   

Fiz

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This question isn't related to the op or title thread but, will the benefit cap be for everyone or are people on ir esa or dla/pip exempt? 

KizzyKazaer

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Even though I am currently working I am scared too because I feel that my safety net is being taken away.  I am only just fit enough to work and don't know how long that may continue. 

And how exactly does the new ESA WRAG policy 'incentivise' people on the brink of ill-health to stay in work with that constant underlying pressure thrumming away? A fundamental aspect of human nature/responses has been totally missed by the policy makers here  >doh<

Mr Osborne said during his Budget speech that "61% of WRAG claimants say they want to work".  Oh yeah?  Of course, now I am wondering what the mandatory 'work-focused interviews' are going to hold in the future - harder pushing and guilt-tripping to get us off our currently higher-paid ESA as soon as possible? 

The Support Group seems to have been left alone for now, that's something anyway.

Monic1511

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Fiz
the benefit cap doesn't apply if you get DLA/PIP or working tax credits
 >hugs<

Fiz

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Thank you Monic. Very relieved.

DeusExMacintosh

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I dare say 61% of those of us in the SUPPORT group would say we "want" to work as well if asked... whether we are in any condition to do so is the question.
If you think reality makes sense, you're just not paying attention!

Monic1511

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To pick up somethnig further up the board - if you are found fit for work and appeal against the decision (after doing the mandatory reconsiderations  >doh<) and your case goes to tribunal, as long as you win the tribunal it won't be a new claim.  To me it just increases the need to get people to do the mandatory reconsideration and when or if that is refused you MUST complete the SSCS1 form and take it to appeal.
 >hugs<
Monic

KizzyKazaer

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I was wondering about that scenario yesterday as it happens, so  >tah< Monic for that info (I expect you could do with some  >chocolate< yourself...)

Fizzbw

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Thought you'd like to see the response from my new Tory MP....no I've not written back....(question at bottom, by my dad not me)





Dear

Thank you for contacting me about Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

I believe it is important to increase employment among those who have health challenges but are capable of taking steps back to work.

The ESA was supposed to end some of the perverse incentives in the old Incapacity Benefit, but instead it has introduced new ones. The number of incapacity benefits claimants remains high despite 61 per cent of claimants in the ESA Work Related Activity Group (WRAG) benefit saying they want to work.

At the same time, those who are placed in the WRAG receive more money a week than those on JSA, but get nothing like the help to find suitable employment. That is why I welcome, that for future claimants only, the Government will align the ESA WRAG rate with the rate of JSA.

That said, I do recognise that it is especially important to support people with mental health conditions. Importantly, the Access to Work Mental Health Support Service offers support to individuals with a mental health condition who are absent from work or finding work difficult. A Fit for Work service has also been launched to support people off sick for four weeks or more, including many with a mental health condition, to help them return to work.

Alongside these measures, over 43 million will be made available in the next three years to pilot services which will support people with common mental health conditions to get into, and stay in, work.

I do hope this is helpful and thank you, once again, for taking the time to contact me.

Kind regards,


Chris Davies MP






Message: i would very much like to know if you will blindly follow the whip on any of the budget proposals, or will you first consider the adverse effects on those you have been electe to represent. I am particularly concerned for the proposed changes to ESA and housing benefit. Additionally, I would like to ask what your view is for those currently in the support group who are unable to work due to their disability or medical condition.
Are you aware of the constant stress that they are suffering from as they await further "brown envelopes" from the DWP, a Department that is completely unsympathetic to those in constant pain?

Monic1511

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So there you have it - according to this MP if your in the wrag group you really are fit for work but you need aids and adaptations to get there - never mind finding an employer willing to provide the adjustments >steam< >steam< >angry<

Tell your dad to write back and ask if the ejit will emply you in his office since he obviously needs someone to use common sense and answer letters for him.

 >doh<
 >bighugs<
Monic

KizzyKazaer

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Ah, so we don't have sickness/disability now - we have... 'health challenges'  >doh<  And this 'alignment' with JSA not only sounds like less money, but increased pressure to look for work, ie ESA WRAG has now become JSA Lite...

Part of me wishes I'd originally pushed for the Support Group now, but because I was given a generous 2 years in WRAG, I decided I'd rather have the time than the SG award, which may have been shorter.  At the beginning of this year, they gave me another 2 years in WRAG - without me even having to re-apply for it - effective until February 2017, so seems as well to just suck it up as things stand currently.  Unless I end up getting sanctioned or something for not doing more work-related activity... I have the (6-monthly at present) work-focused interview next week, will be interested to see if the personal adviser is more pushy as a result of these latest reforms.  Hey ho.

Well done for contacting the MP, Fizzbw, by the way!

Fizzbw

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My dad did in this case, but I shall certainly help him write the reply ( he's in a ship in the Baltic right now...)

There are so many holes in the email I cant actually believe anyone wrote it, it's meaningless. I'm just going to ask him to find out how many people in the WRAG a have prognosis of "not working in the longer term" (which was 8,500 last time I asked) and in fact anything more than a year is pertinent in this case....

It would be almost fun answering the letter if it wasn't so serious

I wrote to Mr Camoron recently, I asked him whether people who didn't (couldnt) work were of any value to him at all, carers, disabled, sick, etc and of course I got a stock answer from a minion. However I put at the end of the letter "please don't pass this letter on to the DWP I don't want to hear from them" guess who I got a(nother stock) letter from a few weeks later.....I was furious.

Fxxx

Offworld

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There are so many holes in the email I cant actually believe anyone wrote it, it's meaningless.

Unfortunately, it isn't meaningless.
It is that MP's mindlessly knee-jerk endorsement of the Unum "work cures all ailments" cultism.

Perhaps in vague hope that IDS or 'Lord' Freud might ask Cameron to give their good doggy a biscuit....