Statistics released by the DWP following a freedom of information request show that over half a million jobseeker’s allowance (JSA) claimants – well over one in six - received a sanction in the 12 months between April 2013 and March 2014.

The shock figures demonstrate the untruthfulness of Esther McVey’s claims before the work and pensions committee earlier this month.

McVey told the committee that very few people are sanctioned. More than one in six claimants hardly sounds like very few.

McVey also stated that once claimants were sanctioned it acted as a red flag and alerted the authorities that a person was vulnerable and in need of help.

Yet the statistics show that in the year between 1 July 2013 and 30 June 2014 almost 100,000 people received two sanctions and over 35,000 received three. Astonishingly almost 2,000 claimants were sanctioned ten times or more in a one year period.

It is hard to see how this can be reconciled with the claim that claimants who receive a sanction are regarded as vulnerable.

Download the full statistics from this link

Total number of individuals who a) received Jobseeker’s s Allowance and b) received at least one JSA adverse sanction decision, at any time during April 2009 and 31 March 2014 and at any time in each year in Great Britain : April 2007 to March 2014

2007/2008  256,021  12%
2008/2009  286,694  10%
2009/2010  386,979  11%
2010/2011  523,042   15%
2011/2012  460,780   13%
2012/2013  557,858  16%
2013/2014  568,430  18%

Total number of individuals who received one or more Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) adverse sanction decisions,in Great Britain: 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014

One adverse sanction decision 372,461
Two adverse sanction decisions 99,621
Three adverse sanction decisions 35,170
Four adverse sanction decisions 14,873
Five adverse sanction decisions 7,103
Six adverse sanction decisions 3,755
Seven adverse sanction decisions 2,126
Eight adverse sanction decisions 1,381
Nine adverse sanction decisions 852
Ten adverse sanction decisions 1,881
Total 539,225


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