Call for changes to fitness assessments
Date published: 27 August 2013
OLDHAM Council has made nine recommendations to the Government over the controversial Work Capability Assessment (WCA) scheme.
The fourth independent review of the system invited local authorities to submit views.
The assessment, introduced in 2008, is used to evaluate disabled claimants moving from incapacity benefit to employment support allowance, and has faced severe criticism since its introduction.
The recommendations include support for those declared fit for work, assessment over more than one meeting, reducing the stress under which assessments take place and reducing the time taken for appeals.
The Chronicle has recently featured several Oldham residents who have suffered because of assessments.
Councillor Derek Heffernan said: “The Assessment continues to be controversial. The recommendations made by the board represent common sense, practical measures the Government should adopt.
“Disabled people undergoing assessment find the process inhumane, stressful and often distressing, and the appeals process is also overly slow and complicated.”.
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