Dwp examination

December 31, 2012

2012 in review

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 3:10 am

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

About 55,000 tourists visit Liechtenstein every year. This blog was viewed about 370,000 times in 2012. If it were Liechtenstein, it would take about 7 years for that many people to see it. Your blog had more visits than a small country in Europe!

Click here to see the complete report.

December 4, 2012

Atos Under Fire After Disabled Man Geoff Meeghan Left Stranded When Fire Alarm Sounded

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 3:41 pm

Link http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2012/12/04/atos-disability-man-abandoned-fire-alarm-_n_2236757.html?icid=maing-grid7%7Cuk%7Cdl1%7Csec3_lnk3%26pLid%3D140138

Huffington Post UK | Posted: 04/12/2012 14:20 GMT Updated: 04/12/2012 14:20 GMT

A disabled man has described his distress after being left stranded inside an Atos centre when the fire alarm went off.

Geoff Meeghan, 32, suffers from early-onset Parkinsons and was being assessed over whether he was ‘fit for work’ at a centre in Neasden, north-west London, when the fire alarm sounded.

The doctor he was with rushed out and a security guard whom he asked for help promised assistance which never came.

He was abandoned at the top of the stairs, after being told not to use the lift.

Speaking to the Independent, Mr Meeghan said that even though he can tackle stairs with help, “it was a highly stressful situation and I felt like it was far too risky.

“I was worried that flames might come up the stairs and that I might fall or something. It wasn’t a drill.

“We could see the fire engine arriving outside. I feel like there was a general lack of respect for disabled people at Atos – they make you feel as though you’ve done something wrong by being disabled – like you’re being persecuted.”

More than two million people are currently being assessed as part of a government drive to encourage people off benefits and back to work. Atos Healthcare conducts the Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) ‘fitness to work’ tests on behalf of the government, but the final decision to cut or award benefits rests with the DWP.

The company has faced widespread criticism over their assessments with anti-cuts and disability campaigners claiming that inaccurate testing is forcing disabled people to live in poverty and in some cases driving them to take their own life.

On Monday disability campaigners laid wreaths at the Cenotaph in George Square, Glasgow, claiming cuts caused 73 deaths a week.

Earlier in November employment minister Mark Hoban highlighted that 31 of 123 centres used by Atos did not have ground floor access and questioned whether they were indeed ‘fit for purpose.’

A Parkinson’s UK worker stayed with Meegham, who had attended the assessment with his sister, when he became distressed during the fire alarm.

Steve Ford, Chief Executive of Parkinson’s UK said:“It is incredible that Atos Healthcare – an organisation charged with assessing the needs of disabled people – is ill-equipped to handle even their most basic of requirements. It is unacceptable that people with progressive and incurable conditions are being hauled into assessment centres that simply aren’t fit for purpose.

“People with Parkinson’s tell us all too often that the realities of their condition are being ignored. These vulnerable people already face huge uncertainty as their condition develops, it is about time that they were spared further anxiety when asking the government for help.”

An Atos spokesperson told the Huffington Post UK: “This should never have happened and we apologise unreservedly. We will be getting in contact with Mr Meeghan directly.

“We have since reviewed this case internally with the building security and management team to ensure this doesn’t happen again.”

September 20, 2012

Clegg makes grovelling apology to students

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 9:04 am

Nick Clegg made a grovelling half apology to students yesterday. Looking haggard and with his best pathetic look he tried to placate debt ridden (and thopse poor students who just couldnt afford it and missed out all together) students.

Let me tell you this folks, the students of Great Britain are not stupid, neither are they easily led which is what this dogged grovelling apology implies. They are our future, they will remember this at the next election and neither Clegg or Cameron are likely to benefit from their votes.

Clegg reneged on a promise which got him elected, he and his party have enabled the Tories to punish everyone but the wealthiest in Britain, we must not forget this and punish them at the ballot box.

Nick Clegg ‘Sorry’ For Promising To Oppose Tuition Fee Hike, But Not For Breaking Pledge
Link to vote http://www.huffingtonpost.co.u…..97453.html
Nick Clegg has issued a surprise apology for promising to oppose any increase in tuition fees and has pledged to learn from the “mistake”.
“We made a promise before the election that we would vote against any rise in fees under any circumstances,” he said on Wednesday.
“But that was a mistake. It was a pledge made with the best of intentions – but we shouldn’t have made a promise we weren’t absolutely sure we could deliver.”
The deputy prime minister issued the apology in a party political broadcast released early on Wednesday evening and will be seen as an attempt to draw a line under the issue ahead of the Lib Dem conference this weekend.
“I’d like to take this opportunity to put a few things straight,” he says. “When I meet people around the country, it’s obvious that many of you have strong – and pretty mixed – reactions to some of the things Liberal Democrats have done in government.”
“Many of you tell me you’re glad that at a time of real economic uncertainty, we put aside our political differences to provide our country with stable leadership.
“But, I also meet people who are disappointed and angry that we couldn’t keep all our promises – above all our promise not to raise tuition fees.
He adds: “I shouldn’t have committed to a policy that was so expensive when there was no money around. Not least when the most likely way we’d end up in Government was in coalition with Labour or the Conservatives, who were both committed to put fees up.
“I also realise that isn’t the point. There’s no easy way to say this: we made a pledge, we didn’t stick to it – and for that I am sorry.
“When you’ve made a mistake you should apologise. But more importantly – most important of all – you’ve got to learn from your mistakes.
“And that’s what we will do. I will never again make a pledge unless as a party we are absolutely clear about how we can keep it.”

The Lib Dem’s 2010 election broadcast that pledged ‘no more broken promises’ was seized upon by critics
The decision by the Lib Dems to support a rise in tuition fees after coming to power severely damaged the party’s popularity among its supporters, many of whom are students, a fact Clegg recognises in his address.
“I accept that won’t be enough for everyone,” he says. “But I owe it to you to be up front about it. And I don’t believe it should cast a shadow over everything else the Liberal Democrats are achieving in government.
“When we’re wrong we hold our hands up. But when we’re right we hold our heads up too. We were right to leave the comfort of opposition to face the realities of government.
He adds: “That’s what my party believes in. That’s what I believe in. And, if we’ve lost your trust, that’s how I hope we can start to win it back.”
The apology stands in stark contrast to an interview with the BBC in 2010 when Clegg insisted he would not be saying sorry.
“To govern is to choose particularly when there is not very much money and we have chosen and I am not going to apologise for this for one minute,” he said at the time.
And the Lib Dem leader’s apology is unlikely to satisfy his critics, who will no doubt point out he has apologised for making the pledge in the first place, not for subsequently breaking it.
Labour’s deputy leader Harriet Harman said: “Instead of crying crocodile tears he should vote with Labour to bring these tuition fees down.”
“If Nick Clegg does not back his words with action it will mean he is just weak and spineless,” she added.
And Liam Burns, the president of the National Union of Students (NUS) said Clegg should be apologising to voters for breaking his pledge, not for making it in the first place.
“The Liberal Democrats’ commitment at the 2010 election was to abolish fees, a policy they’ve had for a decade. It’s what they said on the doorstep and in their leaflets, and every one of their MPs signed a pledge to back it up. It’s why many students and young people voted for the party,” he said.
Public satisfaction with Clegg has fallen from 31% to less than a quarter according to a new poll, his worst ever ratings.
Approval ratings for all three party leaders dropped in the wake of the Olympics, the survey found.
Meanwhile, Clegg’s former director of strategy Richard Reeves, said the party needed to either back the Deputy Prime Minister in Brighton or sack him.
Reeves, who quit in July after working for the Deputy Prime Minister for two years, wrote in the New Statesman: “The mutterings have been growing louder for months, certainly since another bruising round of local election results in the spring.
“The question of Clegg’s leadership has to be addressed. Indeed, given the party’s current position, it would be irresponsible not to do so.
“Cards on the table: I think the party must stick with Clegg, and that Clegg must stick with both liberalism and coalition.
“Once the party caravan packs up on 26 September and heads inland after conference, the muttering has to stop. If the party is not to sack Nick Clegg then it must back him.”
He also criticised him for not standing by a draft speech in which he called those who opposed gay marriage bigots. Mr Clegg’s office made the claim in a draft speech sent out to journalists only to recall the message and issue a second draft with the word removed.
The former aide added: “On gay marriage, the Liberal Democrats now have an open goal. Cameron is struggling to contain the harrumphing shire Tories. Labour is silent. It is a liberal cause.”

January 1, 2012

2011 in review

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 12:13 pm

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 110,000 times in 2011. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 5 days for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

January 3, 2011

2010 in review

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 5:42 pm

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

About 3 million people visit the Taj Mahal every year. This blog was viewed about 59,000 times in 2010. If it were the Taj Mahal, it would take about 7 days for that many people to see it.

In 2010, there were 3 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 5 posts.

The busiest day of the year was October 11th with 581 views. The most popular post that day was ATOS medical assessment centres.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were talktalk.co.uk, consumeractiongroup.co.uk, whywaitforever.com, mail.live.com, and search.virginmedia.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for atos medical, dwp medical examination, dwp medical assessment, dwp medical points system, and atos medical assessment.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

ATOS medical assessment centres July 2009
479 comments

2

An account of my DWP medical February 2009
191 comments

3

Hello and welcome to DWP examination January 2009
281 comments

4

DWP Score sheets or points make benefits! June 2009
40 comments

5

Questions you may be asked? February 2009
62 comments

September 21, 2010

Mission statement

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 7:37 am

This blog was created to offer support to disabled persons in receipt of Welfare Benefits. The whole ethos of the blog is to clearly identify the unfair and underhanded tactics used by the DWP and its enforcement arm ATOS Origin. The majority of disabled Benefit claimants do so because they are incapable of working and thus unable to support themselves and their families. We accept there is a minority of claimants who are abusing the system and do not condone their actions, in fact the opposite applies and we support attempts to reduce Benefit fraud as long as the methods used are fair and transparent.

In response to alleged large-scale “Welfare Benefit Fraud” the Government saw fit to introduce a medical assessment programme which was initially designed to assess the level of disability of individuals claiming sickness Benefit, and its subsequent effect upon their ability to work. This has since changed several times and is now known as “Work Capability Assessment”, this WCA is implemented and managed by a private company, ATOS Origin. It is our opinion the Assessment undertaken by Atos Healthcare Professionals is neither fair or reasonable, does not consider the effects of an individuals disability, does not meet the standards, or reflect the needs of any employer when considering prospective disabled job applicants and is simply an excuse to reduce the numbers of Sickness/Disability Benefit claimants.

ATOS Origin are a private sector company and are profit orientated. Their income is target based, as a result their alleged Healthcare Professionals are required to achieve a personal target. This often results in Benefit claimants being wrongly classed as fit for work under the standards laid down by ATOS and agreed by the DWP.

These academic standards do not take into account the individuals needs, thus the result of standardized testing is not everyone “fits” the template. Coupled with this, ATOS Origin currently employ Healthcare Professionals who are not fully qualified Doctors. These individuals have qualifications ranging from recently qualified Physiotherapists to retired specialist’s, the majority of HCP’s being made up of those with minor medical qualifications and retired G.P.’s, some of whom have a poor grasp of the English Language. These HCP’s undergo 3 days of training with ATOS Origin and are then introduced to the company via their in-house training programme. During their in-house training the HCP’s shadow existing HCP’s and are then allowed to “practice” solo.

In considering the above it is clear that ATOS Origin are the wrong “Type” of company to undertake these “assessments” as they are clearly a profit orientated private sector company. A direct result of this is that the company is profit motivated with no consideration of the rights of Welfare Benefit claimants.

ATOS Origin also train DWP Decision Makers in interpreting their HCP reports, this clearly represents a conflict of interest and simply encourages the DWP DM’s to fall on the side of the ATOS Origin HCP when awarding points to a claimants report.

With these points in mind we feel that the information given on this forum is reasonable. Whilst we do not condone Welfare Benefit Fraud we feel it is reasonable to forewarn potential Claimants of the actions of ATOS Origin and of the DWP Decision Makers and prepare them for the assessment prior to it taking place.

At present we believe the system currently in place is seriously flawed. The outcome of this is that large numbers of genuinely disabled Welfare Benefit Claimants are being classed as fit for work and put into a situation where they are forced to claim JSA just to get by. This puts genuine claimants in a difficult position as they are then required to sign a declaration which states they are fit and ready for work. This is an unacceptably biased system which clearly puts the claimant in a no win situation.

It is our intention to prepare every claimant we can prior to their assessment, we feel this action is legitimate as the system is seriously flawed from the outset. We therefore feel that any information we provide, which results in claimants gaining the required number of points to retain their Benefits is fully justified.

If and when a legitimate reform of the benefits system takes place, without prejudice we will welcome and support any input from independent Welfare Benefit Support Agencies not associated with the DWP or any other Government Department. We will also support consultation with Welfare Benefit claimants and the General Public and in taking this action hope to bring a fair and transparent system into being. It is essential to seek input from all parties in a fair and equitable manner whilst the Government develops its own reform proposal.

If and when a fair and transparent assessment system is introduced we will inform our readers accordingly.

May 1, 2010

For whom the Poll tells

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 8:21 am

Well, this is it, the time for change is upon us, and as a disabled person I’m dreading it. I have been watching the three main parties battle it out on T.V. and to date, with the exception of the occasional sound bite, not one of the major party leaders has openly discussed the methods they intend to employ in their pursuit of reducing the numbers of people claiming sickness or disability related benefits. All are quite clear that they view disability claims as a problem, all claim they will be “helping” people back to work, all claim it will improve the economy. I think not.

This is simply the spin they put on reducing the amount of money they see as wasted on people who are not contributing to society. Yes, wasted, that’s the view they take and unless we stand up to be counted they will get away with it. Just think, if we allow the present Government or the Tories back into number 10 then they will take the view that we, the people of Great Britain have given them a mandate to attack those in receipt of disability benefits. Sounds harsh, doesn’t it? but its true.

When you approach the ballot box next week, I would like you to consider thinking carefully where you place your x. If you put it against the Labour Party, you will have more of the same with the addition of further attacks on our rights to benefit. If you put it next to the Tory candidate you will have more of the same but with an unknown quantity which will put disabled people under further unnecessary stress. It is our right to claim disability benefits, whether it is long, medium or short-term. We must let them know where we stand as an influential and important group of voters, who do contribute to society. We have a vote, lets use it to our own advantage, not theirs.

They all say it is far too easy to get sickness and disability benefits. They are wrong, have they actually tried to claim benefits? have they actually had a look at the rules and regulations DWP healthcare professionals can apply to DLA claims? Have they ever had a letter from a decision maker, based hundreds of miles from their home, who has relied upon the opinion of a “Doctor” who judges your level of disability without examination, consultation or any other form of contact with you on the “balance of probability”. The balance of probability? its unreal! Its time to change the system for the better, its time to change the draconian rules used to assess a persons level of disability in this manner. Its time to say, “No, you can’t ignore the evidence from G.P.’s, Specialists and experts”. Its time to say “you as a “Doctor” are bound by the same laws governing the NHS and as such are liable to suffer the same consequences as they would under Law when you are wrong”. What about the huge number of people who battle with the DWP for a year or more for DLA or other benefits to which they are rightfully and legally entitled? ITS NOT EASY TO GET DISABILITY BENEFITS AND I DEFY ANYONE TO PROVE OTHERWISE.

So when you go to the polling station next week, think of what your Government can do for you as a disabled person. Think of the impact 3 million disabled votes against the Tories and Labour will have, think about how you will be forced to attend a  “medical” which you know you can not fail, think of the effect it will have on you, your family and even your home. You have far more to lose than the politicians do, they will still have jobs after the election, they will still have an income, they will still have access to expenses, they will still be better off than you. So why not stand up and be counted, vote for whatever party you see as being for the rights of  the disabled population. Lets stand together and put the Great back into Britain. Remember, the pen is mightier than the sword and you have the power to prove it.

 I’ll be back

March 4, 2010

Update 11/10/10 Please read

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 10:40 am

Hello again readers,

Take a look at  Aberdeen and Burnley first under the cosh.

June 9, 2009

Think before you vote

Filed under: Uncategorized — dwpexamination @ 8:01 am

Hello again readers. Check out Think before you vote, is the future truly fair for all?

January 25, 2009

Hello and welcome to DWP examination


Welcome to the first (as far as I can tell) internet blog dedicated to revealing all of the underhanded tactics and bullying techniques used by the UK Benefits Agancy against those of us who are in the unfortunate position of having to claim a benefit because of ill health.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I (and I’m sure you) know that there are many unscrupulous people out there who are making bogus and illegal claims. I don’t condone this and like other genuinely disabled people want to see an end to this practice. However, I don’t see why those genuinely disabled claimants should be tarred with the same brush.

 

What I want to do here is to create a site where people can say what they want without fear of reprisal, identify and draw attention to bad practice, name and shame unprofessional behaviour by ATOS Healthcare Doctors and DWP staff, show how inaccessible some of the buildings these so called “caring professionals” are occupying and expose the reasons why they are in such dubious locations.

 

I myself have recently fallen under the scrutiny of the DWP and fully expect my benefits to be stopped at any moment. So to set the ball rolling, I’ll post my story soon.

 

P.S. If you would like to email me directly, you can at dwpexamination@aol.com I’d be very interested in your feedback.

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