Login FormClose

Free ESA, PIP and DLA Updates

With over 140,000 subscribers our fortnightly updates bulletin is the UK's leading source of benefits news. Get the facts about what's changing, how it affects you and how to prepare.   Get your free benefits updates now.

Professional Members

We support both claimants and professionals.  These are just some of the organisations who have subscribed to Benefits and Work:

  • Royal College of Nursing
  • Spinal Injuries Association
  • Chesterfield Law Centre
  • Coventry Mind
  • Birmingham Citizens Advice Bureau
  • Colchester Borough Council Welfare Rights

Read more

Five more years of IDS

Iain Duncan Smith is to remain as secretary of state for work and pensions, David Cameron has confirmed today. His first job will be to decide where £12 billion in benefits cuts are to come from

As David Cameron began announcing who would be in his post-election cabinet, it was made clear that not only is IDS to remain in post, but that he is expected to see universal credit through to full roll-out and to decide where the axe falls as promised benefits cuts are imposed.

The reality that almost everything IDS has touched so far has turned to chaos – the massive backlogs caused by the incapacity benefit to employment and support allowance transfer, the huge personal independence payment backlogs, the endless delays in universal credit roll-out – mean nothing when set against his popularity with Conservative voters.

IDS told reporters:

“It is a privilege to serve in the government, and I am delighted to have the opportunity to complete the vital welfare reforms that have already helped so many people back into work. The completion of Universal Credit will ensure work always pays, and will improve the incomes of those on low salaries."

The £12 billion cuts to benefits are due to be set out in the Autumn statement, but there is a possibility of an announcement within the next month saying in broad terms where the cuts will be made.

For many claimants, news cannot come too soon – it is the waiting to hear if they will be hit that is almost unbearable.

In other news, employment minister Esther Mcvey who lost her seat, has been replaced by hard-right treasury minister Priti Patel. Mark Harper, minister for disabled people since July 2014 has been made chief whip. His replacement has not yet been announced.

Comments  

#34 carruthers 2015-05-23 06:31
Quoting Mrs Helen Fraser:
IDS is poison,he was rubbish as a prime minister
Just as a matter of fact: IDS was never Prime Minister. He was a failure as Leader of the Conservative Party, but they got rid of him as he was not only unelectable but a figure of ridicule within his own party.

That is part of the reason why he likes the job he has - he has much more power over more people than the PM actually has. IDS says, "Suffer!" and they have to suffer. It's very soothing to his damaged vanity.
#33 Mrs Helen Fraser 2015-05-20 22:09
IDS is poison,he was rubbish as a prime minister and in his
position now he is deadly,uncaring ,cruel the list is endless,but
as everybody knows another five years of him and his idea's are
going to leave a lot of poor and disabled people with a lot of
problems,not of their own making either.There is nothing fair
about a Tory government!!!
#32 ken 2015-05-15 01:12
Quoting Bill:
Quoting Ken

Quote:
A member posted on the forum recently that IDS would be leaving as a tory majority would mean whatever he had over cameron was no longer relavent. Can they please explain what they meant, they said they could not say anything at the time.


Ken, we have also asked this question more than once but nobody has replied to us.

We clearly read it and we know who wrote it too but it appears he does not wish to come back to explain himself.

Perhaps now he will now others are asking?

Mr & Mrs Bill
Up to them, dont want to force anyone to say anything they are not comfortable with saying in public.
Maybe they could pm in private on a confidential basis if they feel like it...
#31 Bill 2015-05-14 18:32
Quoting Ken

Quote:
A member posted on the forum recently that IDS would be leaving as a tory majority would mean whatever he had over cameron was no longer relavent. Can they please explain what they meant, they said they could not say anything at the time.
Ken, we have also asked this question more than once but nobody has replied to us.

We clearly read it and we know who wrote it too but it appears he does not wish to come back to explain himself.

Perhaps now he will now others are asking?

Mr & Mrs Bill
+3 #30 ken 2015-05-14 01:37
A member posted on the forum recently that IDS would be leaving as a tory majority would mean whatever he had over cameron was no longer relavent.
Can they please explain what they meant, they said they could not say anything at the time.
+1 #29 tintack 2015-05-13 23:39
Quoting carruthers:
Always providing that anyone outside of our community sees that report. DM et al are too busy congratulating themselves on having created a new Tory government.

We can always hope.


Yes, there's no point in trying to get the likes of the Mail interested. Their only complaint would be that the number of deaths isn't high enough. That's why I think it might be worth e-mailing the broadcasters and the more potentially sympathetic parts of the press to draw their attention to it if it looks as though they aren't going to cover it.

I know it's easy to just assume that they won't take any notice of us, but if enough people contact them there's just a chance they might do something. And let's face it, if we do nothing, we know for sure there is no chance of our voice being heard.
#28 carruthers 2015-05-13 21:29
Quote:
My last post should of course have said "within six weeks or less of being found fit for work".

The B & W article on the information commissioner's decision says that: "ESA ‘death statistics’ cover the number of ESA claimants who have died soon after being found fit for work, as well as those who died after being placed in the work-related activity group."

They are being ordered to say how many ESA claimants have died soon after being found fit for work or placed in the WRAG, whether those deaths have been proven to be the result of DWP processes or not.

For that reason, it seems unlikely that they can find much wriggle room when it comes to publishing the headline figure.
Point taken.
Quote:
That headline figure still won't look good though.
Always providing that anyone outside of our community sees that report. DM et al are too busy congratulating themselves on having created a new Tory government.

We can always hope.
+2 #27 tintack 2015-05-13 18:53
Quoting Paul Richards:
Why, oh Why has not Cameron kicked this murderous man out of office? Is it indeed that IDS has something on him and he cannot?


I don't think IDS has "something on" Cameron, not in the sense of knowing something specific which would be highly damaging to Cameron if it were made public.

Cameron hasn't sacked him because the Tory Right loves IDS. Why? Because slashing benefits, regardless of the human cost, is something that hits their political g-spot like few other subjects, and IDS is only too happy to oblige. If he were sacked, Cameron's right wing backbenchers would go ballistic, and they're going to be hard enough to handle when the EU referendum campaign gets going, so he stays in place. In any other department, any minister with a track record of such staggering incompetence would have been sent packing long ago.
#26 tintack 2015-05-13 18:34
My last post should of course have said "within six weeks or less of being found fit for work".

The B & W article on the information commissioner's decision says that: "ESA ‘death statistics’ cover the number of ESA claimants who have died soon after being found fit for work, as well as those who died after being placed in the work-related activity group."

Assuming this is correct - and personally I trust information put out by B & W - there is nothing here that says the DWP only has to reveal the number of deaths which can be proven to be the result of DWP processes. They are being ordered to say how many ESA claimants have died soon after being found fit for work or placed in the WRAG, whether those deaths have been proven to be the result of DWP processes or not.

For that reason, it seems unlikely that they can find much wriggle room when it comes to publishing the headline figure. They will have to do that, as they did for the January-August 2012 figure. The most they can do is engage in damage limitation by trying to come up with a list of excuses to explain most of the deaths in a way that doesn't implicate the DWP. That headline figure still won't look good though.
+2 #25 carruthers 2015-05-13 17:50
Quoting Paul Richards:
Why, oh Why has not Cameron kicked this murderous man out of office? Is it indeed that IDS has something on him and he cannot?

Why?
1] What IDS is doing is POPULAR. This is the point that those of us at the sharp end have to remember - we know that he is smug, vain and incompetent. Even his cabinet colleagues know that, but they also believe that he is right to want to remove as much as possible from all the welfare budget. Enough voters believe that as well.

2] Cameron is going to have serious problems with his right-wing MPs - they are sure that he didn't listen to them last parliament and - now that the Lib Dems are gone - they think he can do what they tell him they want. And IDS is especially popular with them - remember the right wing made him party leader once. Cameron can't afford to alienate IDS or any anti-Cameron faction he would support - or even lead - if he left the cabinet.

3] IDS is determined to stay at the DWP, licking the poor into shape with a bit of real discipline and getting Universal Credit so bedded in that no one can reverse it. He thinks he's creating a grand legacy for which history (and the Tory press) will remember him with gratitude. Seriously.
#24 tintack 2015-05-13 17:43
Quoting carruthers:
Don't bet on it. The DWP has managed to announce all sorts of false figures and can probably manage to put together a set of results which will show that the DWP is almost entirely blameless.
For example (from the top of my head) - they can exclude any suicide by someone who had existing mental health problems (on the grounds that they might have done it anyway). They can exclude anyone who died of heart failure ("no one can tell when that might happen"). ETC

In a word, I'm betting that this report will show that only a very few people can be proved to have died as a direct result of DWP processes. And those few were "deeply regretted", that they were largely the fault of a contractor, not the DWP and that guidelines have been issued to prevent this in future.

Add in the phrase that "Work is good for you" and that people who have been got back into the workplace may therefore have had their lives saved or enhanced.

IDS comes out smelling of roses - or at least that's what the DM will say. IF they bother to notice this report at all.


While this is possible, the DWP did admit that over 10000 people died from their illness within six weeks or less between January and August 2012. There is a limit to what even they can get away with, and the fact that they're only publishing these stats because the information commissioner has ordered them to suggests they know the figures aren't going to look good.
+1 #23 carruthers 2015-05-13 16:31
Quote:
To have the DWP being forced to reveal the brutal effects of its own actions should be very embarrassing for them if the figures are anywhere near as bad as we suspect.
Don't bet on it. The DWP has managed to announce all sorts of false figures and can probably manage to put together a set of results which will show that the DWP is almost entirely blameless.
For example (from the top of my head) - they can exclude any suicide by someone who had existing mental health problems (on the grounds that they might have done it anyway). They can exclude anyone who died of heart failure ("no one can tell when that might happen"). ETC

In a word, I'm betting that this report will show that only a very few people can be proved to have died as a direct result of DWP processes. And those few were "deeply regretted", that they were largely the fault of a contractor, not the DWP and that guidelines have been issued to prevent this in future.

Add in the phrase that "Work is good for you" and that people who have been got back into the workplace may therefore have had their lives saved or enhanced.

IDS comes out smelling of roses - or at least that's what the DM will say. IF they bother to notice this report at all.
+2 #22 vision 2015-05-13 16:28
IDS and the tories rule by instilling fear in the sick and disabled on a daily basis, and IDS enjoys it. What does that tell us about him????
He must spend every day trying to think of ways to make us suffer.
God help us for the next 5 years, we are in for a real fight for our lives.
+2 #21 ceejay 2015-05-13 11:42
Quoting grumpyrat:
Hi all. Try not to worry too much. Informed political opinion is the cuts will be no-where be close to the Tory £12 Million pre-election pledge. In fact we may well be better off without the Coalition, instead having a back-lead Government (albeit tory government).

'Try not to worry' - of course people are going to worry if their meagre income is threatened.They not only have to cope with illness and disability that sets them apart from 'normal society' but also always being labelled as takers from the 'hardworking' so beloved by the tories. By the way it's £12 billion of cuts not £12 million.
+2 #20 Paul Richards 2015-05-12 11:35
Hi wobblin,
Yes - exactly so!
I asked the same question on here a number of weeks ago now and had no response whatsoever!
Surely, someone somewhere must know what the final total should be - otherwise - why launch an online petition into total thin air?
It would at the very least, be good to know what the exact number of signatories to this particular petition are, so that there would be the possibility of some action being taken against this cruel monster IDS. Perhaps someone now would be kind enough to let us all know!
+2 #19 Eli48 2015-05-12 11:20
Quoting grumpyrat101@yahoo.co.uk:
Hi all. Try not to worry too much. Informed political opinion is the cuts will be no-where be close to the Tory £12 Million pre-election pledge. In fact we may well be better off without the Coalition, instead having a back-lead Government (albeit tory government).


Where did you get that from? We will be worse off, period. Is there something you know that we do not know?
+4 #18 wobblin 2015-05-12 05:10
I asked this question on 38 degrees about the IDS petition and got no response, so I'll ask again here: Does anyone know why the required number of signatories jumped from 6000 to 7000 once the original target of 6000 was finally reached?

Also, anyone in any doubt about how 'The Great British Public' now perceive all benefit claimants need read no further than this thread on Digital Spy about that peerless piece of telejournalism 'Benefit Street' which made a triumphant return to our screens on Monday. http://forums.digitalspy.co.uk/showthread.php?t=2071163
See how much of it you can stomach. A few isolated voices of reason surrounded by irate taxpayers who'd think nothing of denying a dying child welfare because he's being cared for by a single mother.

I've been ashamed to be English for a few years. Now, however, the majority of my countrymen fill me with disgust, plain and simple.
+2 #17 tintack 2015-05-12 00:09
Quoting tazman:
I just wish there was a way we could make the general public aware of the cruelty they voted in. I'm sure most decent people don't have any idea about how evil IDS is. Maybe we could find a way of starting a record of every detail of the tory 'solution' before it becomes 'final'. I think that from now on we should all keep a record and find a way to collate them. Five years of torture should be enough of a reason to keep it going. Maybe it's just wishful thinking but I'm so frightened of the future and need something to hope for.


Remember, the information commissioner recently ordered the DWP to publish its statistics on ESA claimant deaths. It should have been released before the election but it wasn't. However, the DWP has to publish the figures within the next few weeks. To have the DWP being forced to reveal the brutal effects of its own actions should be very embarrassing for them if the figures are anywhere near as bad as we suspect.

It's exactly the sort of thing that should be prominently covered in the media, and if it isn't, that's the time to start contacting the broadcasters and those parts of the press that may be sympathetic in order to draw their attention to it, and hopefully get them to cover the story. After all, if the Tories try to make the WCA even harsher, it will be much harder for them to do so if the public has been informed by the media about ESA claimant deaths that have taken place under the system as it currently is. This is definitely a story to keep a close eye on.
-1 #16 grumpyrat 2015-05-11 23:15
Hi all. Try not to worry too much. Informed political opinion is the cuts will be no-where be close to the Tory £12 Million pre-election pledge. In fact we may well be better off without the Coalition, instead having a back-lead Government (albeit tory government).
+3 #15 Paul Richards 2015-05-11 22:29
Hi all,
You have all made some very good comments.
With the terrible news that not only have we got in a Government that the vast majority did not vote for, we also have, disgracefully remaining in his seat, one of the most cruel and heartless ministers that one could ever imagine.
Why, oh Why has not Cameron kicked this murderous man out of office? Is it indeed that IDS has something on him and he cannot?
Not only has he presided over innumerable unnecessary deaths due to his own policies and orders given by him to the DWP, but he is also running the so-called 'Welfare Reform' program that is just not delivering, is vastly behind and over-budget and is simply not fit for purpose. Of course, the general public do not know any of this (and what's even worse, a lot of the richer ones do not care!).
I truly hope that the Tory voters in this country who lose their jobs or who are a heart-beat away from disablement have to cope with what may happen to them if they have to fill in the forms etc.
They totally deserve what gets thrown back at them.
Meanwhile, I have a gut feeling that Cameron may well have an increasing fight on his hands, both from within and without of his Government. A lot of Major/Thatcher effects could be on the way for him. The cheated electorate are seething that all this has happened and I think that much civil unrest may well be on the way.
His own Government defeated Major and both her own Government and her hated 'Poll Tax' and the Miners defeated Thatcher.
The main thought here is ALL IS NOT LOST - DO NOT GIVE UP!

You need to be logged in to comment