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Coalition wages war on disabled with 580% increase in ESA sanctions

The coalition’s war against sick and disabled claimants is becoming ever more intense. The latest statistics show that sanctions against employment and support allowance (ESA) claimants have risen from 1,104 in the month of March 2103 to 7507 in March 2014, an increase of 580%.

The massive increase in sanctions is even more marked when looking just at the first three months of 2014, the most recent dates for which statistics are available:

January 3,750

February 4,698

March 7,507

The figures show that sanctions against the sick and disabled have doubled in the space of just three months.

Sanctions are only applied to claimants in the work-related activity group of ESA and the vast majority are aimed at sick and disabled claimants who have been forced onto the work programme and then failed to carry out a mandatory work-related activity.

In March 2014 7,108 claimants were sanctioned for failure to participate in work-related activity and 395 for failure to attend an interview.

Very often the reason for failure to participate in work-related activity is that the claimant was too unwell to carry out the activity or had not had it clearly explained in the first place. More than 60% of ESA claimants who are sanctioned have a mental health condition or learning difficulty.

There has been no explanation from the DWP for this massive rise in sanctions, but given that sanctions against ESA claimants are an easy way to cut benefits costs when the coalition is already in danger of breaching its self-imposed welfare cap, it’s not hard to understand what is driving the increase.

You can download the latest sanctions statistics from this link.

Comments  

#9 Justice 2014-12-09 19:36
There is an undeniable evil pervading through our society. We are constantly bombarded with lies and rhetoric from a ruling group of greedy sociopaths. Those who follow the current destructive path are only too aware of the consequences of their actions. The goal is to subjucate the masses by denial of income by whatever means. It matters not who complains, as deniability is their defence. They have been waiting for the opportunity to destroy the benefits that past generations of decent people have worked fought and died to defend. This attack on our country and way of life is not just an attack on the "welfare budget". It is an attack on our public sector, that should be there as a safety net when necessary for the citizens it serves. The speed and ruthlessness of the cuts are implemented by like minded individuals in councils across the country who have the same mind set of "rewards for failure", in higher office. Those who rebel are castigated and subjected to bullying and mental abuse by those above them. Behind these parasites and traitors to our country and its people are the multinationals, who control them through offers of rewards when the deed is completed. Privatisation will be used as the messiah for all our supposed financial shortcomings. We must all rise together as one to avert this disaster and recognise that those who hold power at the moment are the true "enemy within".
#8 liz 2014-09-11 14:50
who do lodge a complaint with? I'm no longer able to march to westminster but my bedroom tax help runs out at the end of this month?
#7 Dandelion 2014-09-10 20:04
You can't make this sh1t up.
#6 BrokenBritain 2014-09-08 16:48
The whole idea of the work programme is precisely that you don't go which of course the torys are banking on & your pittance (not sure if they stop your housing benefit as well) & there corrupt figures look good, a lad was on this programme twice a week & the 'teacher' laughed at him saying your stubborn as if you should have given up by now with this bullying, he has been to hundreds of programmes & now once a fortnight he has beaten the bullys for now mind you...whats next working in a charity shop etc etc? bullying into submission !
+1 #5 Paul Richards 2014-08-15 21:03
@jbug,
Your idea is probably the best that I have seen so far - one person alone cannot make much difference - but it is very possible if one fights in a focussed and determined way - the Appeals system is a notable example of this!
But, if there are many people who get together and fight as a whole, then they are even more likely to succeed in their eventual goals.
The various World Wars (however awful they are) bear this out, as do also the Suffragette movement (for women's votes) and the demonstrations and unrest to get Margaret Thatcher's idea of the Poll Tax being kicked out.
This horrible Coalition however, is different. Unfortunately, there are now so many right wing biased newspapers that the general public is being duped about to what is actually going on!
Just as in such dictatorships as North Korea & China, their countries Media are putting out the message that their respective Governments are 'right' and if anyone speaks out against them, then they are 'wrong' (and hence 'WILL NOT BE REPORTED'),
OUR BROADCAST MEDIA ARE EXACTLY THE SAME AS THIS.
To all rights and intents, our Coalition Government is not a Democracy as such, it is tantamount to an 'unelected' dictatorship,
where ordinary people in the street do not have any say at all.
#4 jbug 2014-08-15 01:43
what are we the people and their families who are having this heinous crime inflicted on us going to do about it? True we are all exhausted fighting just to survive but we all need to fight together and somehow get others to hear what is happening. Does anyone have any good ideas how we can get our cries heard? Can we all write in mass to the media for example. We cannot let this lot get back in although i have to express a certain lack of confidence in any alternative either but this lot are evil!
#3 Paul Richards 2014-08-13 22:17
Hi all,
IDS and his lies and spin are helping in no small way to producing this terribly unfair and cruel system. The DWP it seems has to follow his and his fellow Works & Pensions Minister's orders and directions. At the moment, with the right wing biased media (including the independent media also) definitely not determined to report any of this shameful situation - the vast majority of the people across this country do not realise exactly what is happening to sick and disabled people. A lot of them think that ALL people claiming benefits are workshy shirkers who are 10 times better off on benefits than working. This, again is due to the way that the media reports it all - such programmes as Benefits Street and the recent 'Life on the Dole' TV programme did nothing to help with this perception. How wrong they all are , and to cap it all - (although I have nothing in principle to helping other countries people in need,) surely, this Coalition should be concentrating upon helping genuinely sick and disabled people in this Country, not cruelly sanctioning and cutting and driving people to food banks and payday lenders. WHEN will the Media wake up and tell the TRUTH as to what is happening - how this so called major Gov't flagship 'Welfare Reform' is a sinking ship which has hit the rocks and this terrible Government who is constantly lying to the British people and is trying desperately to try to cover up the shameful waste of taxpayer's money and also the waste of those poor people who have come to the end of their own road and topped themselves. I would never have thought that I would ever see it all come to this state of affairs.
+1 #2 angela 2014-08-13 18:36
This really is now getting out of control we the sick and the disabled now need some sort of defence system in place to safe guard our rights which now seem to be just taken away
+1 #1 blue peter 2014-08-13 17:39
I have been very ill and claiming ESA for over 5yrs in that time I have been awarded WRAG then under new guide lines (Same Atos assessor as before )2ys later had WRAG denied I won my appeal and was then placed back in WRAG and more recently submitted a Supersession (change of circumstances) request and now been placed in the support group for 2yrs. Thank God my illness was not related to mental health and that through out this stressful ordeal I have had the support of a loving family otherwise I would have given up on everything long ago. My heart goes out to those that have reached this point.

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