MPs heavily criticise Work Capability Assessments and call for an overhaul of disability benefits system

A “fundamental redesign” is needed of the disability benefits system, because flaws in the process are so “grave”, says a report published by the Work and Pensions Select Committee. The report argues that replacing Atos will not address the problems in the system, and urges ministers to take the withdrawal of Atos as an opportunity to fundamentally redesign Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

An extract from the report argues:
“The WCA itself is flawed in that it frequently fails to provide an accurate assessment of the impact of the claimant's condition on their fitness for work or work-related activity. However, the problems with ESA are wider than this: it is also failing to fulfil its intended purpose of helping those claimants who can do so to "achieve their full potential through work" through an accurate assessment of the health-related employment barriers which an individual faces and, crucially, linking this directly to tailored employment support.”

ERSA, the sector body for the employment support sector, has welcomed the report reccomendations.

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