ROLE network

Relating Outcomes to Lived Experience

Category Archives: benefits

WCA – another Harrington review

Excellent to see that Harrington is emphasising the importance of information from ‘stakeholders’. Please do send in your views – see link below for contact details.

“As you may know, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions has asked me to undertake a second independent review of the Work Capability Assessment (WCA). This is an important part of the Employment and Support Allowance claim process, designed to determine which claimants
are capable of undertaking work, or work-related activity.

As part of this process, I have today (14th July 2011) launched a call for evidence to gather information from a wide variety of stakeholders on the WCA. I strongly invite you to contribute to the call for evidence by submitting evidence relevant to the questions asked in the document.

The call for evidence and can be found at:

This e-mail is being sent to a large number of people and organisations who have already been involved in this work or who have expressed an interest. Please do share this e-mail with, or tell us about, anyone you think will want to be involved in this consultation. I apologise if this means you receive this message more than once, but stakeholder views really are important to the process.

The closing date for the call for evidence is 16 September 2011 ……

Kind regards,

Prof. Malcolm Harrington CBE”

Views needed for PIP assessment criteria

Broken of Britain are pulling together a response about the draft assessment criteria for PIP. They are looking for details from anyone with any health condition, including people who are affected by mental health problems and their supporters. Please do reply to them directly – see their webpage here.

You can also respond directly to the DWP or send in responses from your own group.

We think it is important that views around mental health are included. Our view is that the indicators are very simple and do not take into account how seriously people can be affected by fluctuating conditions.

one month before heartbreak

One month before the end of the consulation on DLA reforms.

“The consultation about DLA reform ends on 14th February 2011, Valentines Day. Though traditionally a day for love, this day could adversely affect disabled people should the reforms be adjusted incorrectly. We are holding this event a month before the consultation ends to raise awareness and give anyone who wishes to the opportunity to respond.”

They’ve had a fantastic response with many many eloquent postings about how people will be affected by changes to DLA.

Read full details on the OMBH blog. It includes links to the postings, some of which are distressing to read.

DLA consultation

The DWP are now consulting on changes to DLA (closes 14th February). It is essential that they include views from people with lived experience of distress including service users/survivors and carers.

The consultation is lengthy – there are 22 questions you can answer, and much of it is relevant to people experiencing distress.

We highlight that people who could be in hospital for more than 28 days may want to comment specifically on the removal of DLA mobility component.

Question 7 is  also important  – “How can we best ensure that the new assessment appropriately takes account of variable and fluctuating conditions?”

And also Question 9 which is about how to make the form itself easier to fill in.

Link to the DWP’s site for the consultation on benefits.
It includes an easy read version.

For this consultation they are actually producing a hard copy – but you have to pay £14.75 for it. Available from The Stationery Office which provides the following information about the changes:

Disability Living Allowance Reform
Cm. 7984
Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)
TSO (The Stationery Office)

‘Disability Living Allowance Reform (Cm. 7984)’ explains the Government’s committment to maintaining an extra-costs, non-means-tested disability benefit to support disabled people.

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) has become confusing and complex and the Government proposes to introduce a new benefit, Personal Independence Payment (PIP), in 2013/14 when it will begin reassessing the working age (16-64 year olds) caseload.

PIP will consider the impact an individual’s impairment or health condition has on their daily lives. Support will be prioritised for those who face the greatest day-to-day challenges.

PIP will have two components:

(i) ‘Mobility’ – based on ability to get around.

(ii) ‘Daily Living’ – based on ability to carry out other key activities necessary to participate in daily life.

The benefit will only be available to those with a long-term health condition or impairment: individuals will have to qualify for a period of six months, and will be expected to continue to qualify for a further six months before an award can be made.

There will be an objective assessment of individual need, with no automatic entitlement.

The assessment is being developed in collaboration with a group of independent specialists in health, social care and disability, including disabled people.

The Government is considering how best to take account of use of aids and adaptations, and how they are used and paid for. Awards will be reviewed periodically, but individuals will still be responsible for reporting any changes in circumstances.

The feature of DLA entitling the individual to other help and support will be retained.

Letter re ATOS

Here’s a copy of the letter to Ian Duncan Smith sent by a member of the ROLE Network. We await their reply.

If you have other information for us to use, please do get in touch.

Dear Mr.Duncan Smith

Re: ATOS – Medical Assessments – Read more of this post

21st century welfare

Another consultation – this time for the DWP.

“Through this consultation the Department for Work and Pensions seeks views to inform our thinking on reforms to the benefits and Tax Credits system, including the idea of a single integrated Universal Credit.”

Responses needed by 1st October 2010.