DWP will pay £150 million in arrears… but your prescription charges? No chance!!

18/07/2018
Esther-McVey

Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey said that the poor could eat cake.  The last woman in a position of authority to make a comment like that got her head chopped off.  An act that I in no way endorse!

The British Department of Work and Pensions has given in to pressure from anti-poverty charities and will pay arrears owed to sick and disabled benefit claimants who were cheated out of thousands of pounds after what is described as “a series of bureaucratic errors.”

The under-payments, some of which date back to 2011, happened when claimants of contribution-based Employment and Support Allowance were not told they would be better off if they claimed income-based ESA.  This “mistake” resulted in at least 70,000 claimants missing out on up to £20,000 each.

Child Poverty Action Group challenged the under-payments in a judicial review, but the DWP has accepted that it was in the wrong and will not contest the review.  A CPAG lawyer welcomed the DWP’s change of heart but added it “shouldn’t be necessary to take a government department to court to achieve justice for people who have been failed by officials making errors.”

The decision quickly followed the publication of a report by cross-bench public accounts committee.  The report said there was a “culture of indifference” at the DWP, and criticised its failure to obtain legal advice when transferring claimants to ESA, failed to make basic checks and ignored evidence and complaints that the process was flawed.

Committee chair, Meg Hillier MP, welcomed the U-turn, saying she had been appalled by the DWP’s failure to correct its errors.

But the DWP still refuses to pay compensation to claimants who were wrongly denied related benefits such free prescriptions as a result of the “error”.  Big surprise!

 
bmc-orange


Iain Duncan Smith vs Reality

26/02/2016

A recent comment of mine on Facebook has set myself a challenge: to show people in general what our glorious DWP destroyer, sorry I meant leader, Iain Duncan Smith is really like.  Peel away at his fabricated facade and the truth begins to be revealed.  And that truth is pretty nasty.

On Facebook, a user called Shawn Power shared a web page: “The IDS Files: Iain Duncan Smith vs Reality”.  I urge you to have a look – it places his lies against the truth – and there are a lot of lies.  Here are a few:

The IDS Files - The Truth is Out ThereLong Description

 

Iain Duncan Smith

vs

Reality

While Tory Leader, Iain Duncan Smith’s biography on the Conservative Party website, his entry in Who’s Who, and various other places, stated that he went to the Universita di Perugia in Italy.

BBC Newsnight:

This is not true: his office now admit that he went to the Universita per Stranieri, which is also in Perugia.

Mr Duncan Smith’s office has now admitted to Newsnight that he didn’t get any qualifications in Perugia or even finish his exams.

Source: BBC Newsnight

Again, while Tory Leader, the first line of Iain Duncan Smith’s biography, on the Conservative Party website, claimed he was “educated at Dunchurch College of Management”.

Mr Duncan Smith’s office has now confirmed to Newsnight that he did not get any qualifications there either, but that he completed six separate courses lasting a few days each, adding up to about a month in total.

Source: BBC Newsnight

When IDS was Tory Party Leader, his Conservative Party Biography claimed he had been a Director at GEC Marconi.

This was not true, he was a junior marketing executive.

Source: The Independent 

[With thanks to The Klaxon for this one]

Debbie Abrahams MP: “Why does he [IDS] refuse to publish the details of the number of people who have died within six weeks of their claims for incapacity benefit and employment and support allowance, including those who have been found fit for work?”

Iain Duncan Smith: She knows very well that theDepartment does not collate numbers on people in that circumstance.”

Work and Pensions Questions, House of Commons 22nd June 2015 Hansard

On August 28th 2015, just over one month after IDSclaimed they didn’t exist, the DWP released into the public domain the statistics on deaths of ESA claimants.

Source: The Department For Work and Pensions

“Britain has the highest rate of jobless households in Europe.” Iain Duncan Smith, House of Commons

Daily Telegraph

Britain did not have the highest number of jobless households in Europe.

IDS later admitted the ‘error’ and has corrected the Commons Record

Source: Fullfact.org

The Centre for Social Justice estimates, the cost of family breakdown is £20-24 billion. And the Relationships Foundation puts the figure at nearer £40 billion.

……… The costs to society as a whole …. are very difficult to quantify – but research suggests they could be up to £100 billion.”Iain Duncan Smith

Daily Mail

“…….. we can see no reason to accept the claim now in circulation that “broken homes” cost Britain £100 billion.

…….the very CSJ report from which the lower estimate is extracted warns against certainty in this area: “it is impossible to quantify with any accuracy the cost of family breakdown to the Exchequer”.

Source: FullFact.Org

“in 13 years of Labour rule, 70 per cent of the four million jobs created were taken by people from overseas” Iain Duncan Smith, reported in The Sun and the Daily Mail

there are no figures to back up any claimregarding the number of ‘jobs created’ that were taken by workers of any nationality.”

Source: FullFact.Org

In a parliamentary debate, Iain Duncan Smith claimed that the Office for National Statistics (ONS) found that private sector rents had fallen by 5 per cent last year.

The private sector rent figures came from the website FindaProperty.com, not the Office for National Statistics as originally claimed in the House of Commons by Iain Duncan Smith. Source: Inside Housing

What the EU is now trying to do is get us to provide benefits for those who come to this country with no intention to work and no other means of supporting themselves, with the sole purpose of accessing a more generous benefit system.” Iain Duncan Smith

Channel 4 FactCheck asked the government for estimates of how big the problem of benefit tourism actually is, and whether it had got better or worse since the introduction of “right to reside” in 2004.

A DWP spokesman said the department had “no information available”.

Source: Channel 4 FactCheck

The public thinks that homelessness is about not having any reasonable accommodation to go to, that’s not what the definition is. The definition inside government and places like Shelter is that children have to share rooms… Nobody, and I can guarantee this, nobody will be made homeless in the sense of the public’s view of it – without a home to go to – as a result of this.” Iain Duncan Smith

Shelter’s chief executive Campbell Robb said: “The Secretary of State said that, according to Shelter, families where children share a bedroom would be defined as homeless. This is simply not true. Shelter uses the same definition of homelessness as the government, as set out in the Housing Act 1996, passed by the last Conservative government.” Source: Channel 4 FactCheck

We are creating a new benefit, because the last benefit [Disability Living Allowance] grew by something like 30 per cent in the past few years. It’s been rising well ahead of any other gauge you might make about illness, sickness, disability or, for that matter, general trends in society.”

Something like 70 per cent [of DLA claimants] had lifetime awards, [which] meant that once they got it you never looked at them again.” Iain Duncan Smith,

While there has been a 30 per cent growth in the raw number of claimants, this is significantly lower once demographic changes are accounted for.

Similarly, while it is true that over 70 per cent of DLA claimants are on indefinite awards, it isn’t necessarily true that these people are ‘never looked at again’.  Source: FullFact.Org

On average, every week there are about half a million new jobs coming through at the Jobcentre” Iain Duncan Smith on LBC Radio

“After contacting the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), they could not verify what Mr Duncan-Smith may have said this morning. However, they did confirm:

On average Jobcentre Plus continues to add 10,000 jobs to its books every working day.”

10,000 jobs per working day is certainly not half a million per week.” Source:FullFact.Org

These figures show the benefit cap is already a success and is actively encouraging people back to work.” Iain Duncan Smith

With the information Mr Duncan Smith has put before us, his figures don’t show the benefits cap is already successful at getting people back into work.

A spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions said: “The Secretary of State believes that the benefits cap is having an effect.”  Source: Channel 4 FactCheck

Of those who are looking for full-time jobs, 4/5 of them are finding them, so about 1/5 of those looking for full-time work are not finding full-time work and settling for part time work.” Iain Duncan Smith

“...there does not appear to be any data by which the Work and Pensions Secretary can substantiate his claim. ” Source:FullFact.Org

Where you see the clustering of the large families is really down at the very lowest incomes, with those on significant numbers of welfare…and those at the very top level of incomes.”

We have paid rents on houses in London in some cases of over £100,000 to families are too large to house anywhere else.” Iain Duncan Smith

DWP figures show that some 160 claimants out of more than 3 million were getting the equivalent of £50,000 a year or more in 2010.That’s 0.0004 per cent of cases.

The Daily Telegraph researched how many families were getting over £100,000 in 2010 and found only three, all in the London borough of Westminster. Source: Channel4 FactCheck

Tax credit payments rose by some 58 per cent ahead of the 2005 general election, and in the two years prior to the 2010 election, spending increased by about 20 per cent.” Iain Duncan Smith. Daily Telegraph

[[HMRC] said that in 2003-04, £16.4bn was paid, and the following year £17.7bn.

That’s an increase of 8%, not 58%.

And in 2008-9, HMRC said, some £25.1bn was paid. In the following year, it was £27.3bn. Which means that in the two years prior to the 2010 general election, spending on tax credits increased by 8.8 per cent, not 20.
Source: Channel 4 FactCheck

It will come as no surprise therefore that fraudsters from around the world targeted this [tax credit] benefit for personal gain. Iain Duncan Smith. Daily Telegraph

when we asked HMRC how many non-UK nationals were responsible for tax credit fraud, it said: “The tax credit system doesn’t record nationalities of claimants, so we don’t have those figures.” Source:Channel 4 FactCheck

A radical welfare reform programme designed to tackle entrenched poverty and end the curse of intergenerational worklessness is set out today by new Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith.

DWP Press Release: Reforms will tacklepoverty and get Britain working again

and

Department for Work and Pensions – European Social Fund in England

“Researchers in deprived neighbourhoods in Glasgow and Middlesbrough found that worklessness was not the result of a culture of worklessness, held in families and passed down the generations…..

There was no evidence of ‘a culture of worklessness’

Despite strenuous efforts, the researchers were unable to locate any such families.

Even two generations of complete worklessness in the same family was a very rare phenomenon, which is consistent with recent quantitative surveys of this issue.”

Source: Joseph Rowntree Foundation: Are ‘cultures of worklessness’ passed down the generations?

The Image at the top of this page was created by the awesome Mr Brian Hilton.Further reading:

Sorry about the poor contrast between the text and background.  Go to the site to see it more clearly

If you live in Chingford and Woodford Green, I’d love to hear from you.  If you have had benefits or tax credits stopped or “sanctioned” I’d love to hear your story.  If you depend on Food Banks and charity because of this government’s policies I’d love to hear from you.  You can leave messages in the Comments section.  Or if you want anonymity you can use the Contact Form – link at the top of the page – and I will absolutely protect your anonymity.  IDS needs to meet the truth.  Please help me make that meeting happen soon.  Help me make sure that it hurts him.  We do not need a character like that in government.  In fact we don’t need a party like the Tories to be anywhere near the levers of power.  The longer they cling to office, the rich  will get richer, at the expense of the poor.  The rich get richer, the poor get poorer – you’ve heard that saying before.  But how about “The rich get richer, the poor get angrier“?  Let’s use that anger to get rid of IDS and all of his kind!


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