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47% of incapacity benefit claimants in Caerphilly “fit to work”

Published in News at 11:00, Monday April 23rd, 2012.

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Almost half of people in Caerphilly County Borough who have had their incapacity benefits reassessed are fit to work, according to new Government figures.

Of the 720 cases reassessed between October 2010 and July 2011, 338 were not entitled to Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

The figures, from the Department of Work and Pensions, places Caerphilly 13th in a list of UK local authorities to have the highest percentage of claimants found to be fit to work

Across Wales, a total of 10,440 cases were reassessed

Four out of 10 people in Wales who have had their incapacity benefits reassessed have been judged “fit to work,” according to figures released today.

Nearly half of those reassessed in Caerphilly (47%) have been told they are fit enough to rejoin the workforce. But in Powys less than a quarter (24%) were considered ready to go into jobs.

A total of 10,440 Welsh cases were reassessed and 40% were found to be able to work.

Conservative employment minister Chris Grayling said: “These figures show how much of a waste of human life the current system has been. Too many people have been left languishing on benefits for too long.

“We are providing support to those who need it, but it is right that those who are able to work should do so. It’s much better to help people on the journey back to work than to leave them on benefits for the rest of their lives.”

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  • Jen Eburne

    You don't seem to mention that 40% of appeals overturn the original decision, or that people with terminal illness are being found fit for work because of the shambles that is the assessment.

  • Richard Williams

    I have grave reservations about the manner in which these assessments have been carried out. I am very much in favour of the ideal of getting people off incapacity benefits and in to work, so long as they really are able to perform a job that society requires and is able to pay for.

    I spoke to a local man, last week, that informed me he was now declared fit for work, despite using a white stick because of his severe visual impairment. This particular individual does do a lot of unpaid work within the community and would, I have no doubt, be extremely pleased if offered a job he could do. The chances of that happening are very slim and removing him from the incapacity statistics is merely massaging figures.

    I have a suspicion that many of those currently being paid for incapacity will merely transfer to another type of benefit. Nothing achieved apart from the government lauding the success of their programme.

  • david pring

    I agree with both comments above i was lucky enough to work in factories for 48 years but now i struggle with my health and have finished work i have seen many changes in those 48 years and in today's working environment able bodied people have a hard job to satisfy the companies demands as they push harder and harder for more production.anyone with any type of health issues would have a very hard time to keep their jobs and most of them are taken on through agencies,you will find these people whom a lot of them want to work will be passed back and forth from job to job with the agencies and on the minimum wage.anyone lucky enough to keep their jobs with any health issues will probably end up doing jobs no one else wants to do the same will happen to the remploy workers they are happy working in their own environment but will struggle if put into mainstream employment they would have a very hard time working on a production line where you are timed even going to the toilet there is someone monitoring your every move i really feel sorry for these remploy workers this government has no idea what they are asking or should i say telling them what to do.

  • john owen

    We all know that this "Fitness to Work" is a nonsense, dreamed up by two posh boys, who dont know the cost of a pint of milk. Perhaps, they dont even know that there are`nt any jobs locally, for those who are fit to work, without putting those who are`nt, on a Health and Fitness Means Test. Tories, they do what it says on the label,havent changed in a hundred years, Aneurin Bevan was right.

  • Richard Williams

    John Owen is dead right, there are no jobs for the able bodied and well qualified, if you have some health impairment you will struggle to find work. Employers have been actively encouraged by successive governments to export jobs. After working full time, from the age of 16, for 30 years I found myself on the dole for the first time. I spent 6 months on £59 per week before starting my own business.

    I am more fortunate that some as I had built up many skills during my time in work. People leaving school, or those with a degree in the Humanities will face the prospect of no possibility of employment. I work part time in a blue chip retailer and would have no problem forming a University Challenge team from my fellow workers. None of whom gets paid more than £6-50 per hour.