Government admits it did not consider impact of welfare changes to disabled people

8:47 am - April 10th 2013

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by Rick B

The community of sick and disabled people behind the WOW petition have now considered the official response given when you pass 10,000 signatures (we are now a third of the way to 100,000) from the Department of Work and Pensions.

Initially, we were shocked at the cursory nature and limited scope of the response. On reflection, we are disappointed and angry.

Our petition calls for a cumulative impact assessment (CIA) of welfare reforms as they affect sick and disabled people. The government says, to paraphrase, that they did not, indeed could not, do a CIA because the changes involved were too numerous and too complex.

The DWP is saying that it embarked upon a programme of changes, which it acknowledges are the biggest changes to welfare in sixty years, without knowing what the effect would be on the most vulnerable people in society.

For a government department the size of the DWP to say that a CIA would have been too difficult is, frankly, risible. It has also been proved to be incorrect by the cross-party think tank Demos, which has carried out its own CIA. Demos has concluded that 3.7million sick and disabled people will be negatively affected by welfare reform, with a total loss of income up to 2018 of £28.3billion.

As Demos is comparatively a small organisation with limited resources, the fact that it was able to do this CIA makes the DWP’s failure to do so remarkable, to say the least.

The issue of a Cumulative Impact Assessment was addressed in the first sentence of the e-petition, but it is the only aspect of the petition that the government has responded to. There is no response to the request for an immediate halt to the Work Capability Assessment, as demanded by the British Medical Association in 2012 because it was harming patients.

Our call for an end to ‘forced work under threat of sanctions for people on disability benefits’ and various other measures, all of which are ignored in the government response.

The response makes clear the government’s total and reckless lack of regard for the health, safety, wellbeing, and human rights of sick and disabled people in the UK. Consequently the Human Rights of sick and disabled people in the UK will be on the agenda for discussion at the Annual General Meeting of Amnesty International on 13/14 April 2013.

For more information and to sign the WOW Petition please go to

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Reader comments


The likelihood of this Government backtracking doesn’t seem likely on their record, however if in 2015 its a labour victory would Ed reverse , I think on the evidence , that’s unlikely too. Court actions, Direct Actions seems the only options open.

2. Johny Ruskin

The Government admits it did not consider impact of welfare changes to disabled people.

Very questionable considering the fact that David Cameron the now prime minister said/promised during the Final televised 2010 Electoral Campaign Debate live before the entire nation the following : I believe that a good test for any Government is judged upon how it cares for it’s most vulnerable in society in good times as well as bad times. He (David Cameron) then goes on to say : If you are sick, disabled, frail, vulnerable or the POOREST in society you have nothing to FEAR if I become prime minister because if I (David Cameron) get into Downing Street as prime minister I will protect that group of vulnerable people in society.

Once in Downing Street as prime minister he and other ministers embarked on Policies to financially slaughter those very vulnerable people that he promised to protect.

They knew full well what the consequences for the sick and disabled because Cameron promised them one thing and done the complete opposite within weeks of getting into Downing Street as prime minister.

This is all about money otherwise they would not have lied and deceived.

Blair became renowned for secret meetings without Cabinet .Thatcher in her day started negotiations with UNUM an International Disability Insurer (banned in several USA States) to be advised upon the Welfare State in Britain .Blair carried on those negotiations also implementing ATOS as a key figure in shaking up the system .The Welfare REFORM ACT was started under Thatcher continued under Blair passed and implemented under Cameron .Those who voted for Blair the Chameleon were actually voting for Thatcher Policies .If Labour had won the last Election the implementations would have still taken place .Thatcher Quote “there is no such thing as Society only Individuals responsible for themselves “ Blair has appeared on the scene lately as though he’d not been away .It makes one wonder why under his ‘Watch’ there is a 100 year gaging order in place over many unexplained circumstances implicating his Governments involvement .

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