Mike shares views about the significant problems with Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
I share concerns about this issue and I believe we should, as a society, be caring for all sick and disabled people, rather than making their lives worse through punitive assessments.
I found the Disability Benefits Consortium’s recent survey results deeply concerning that eight in every 10 of those facing PIP assessments find it makes their health worse, and two thirds feel their claim was poorly represented by the assessor. These survey results are an indictment of the harsh assessments, and the miserable effect they are having on people in our area and across the country who are trying to access much needed support.
There are clearly long-term issues with the PIP assessment process as a whole. I know that over a quarter of all assessments are challenged and referred for mandatory reconsideration, with the majority of the decisions being changed. 65% of tribunal appeals end with a ruling against the Government. The assessments should be right the first time and the statistics show the system is failing.
I believe the Work Capability and PIP assessments should be abolished and replaced with a personalised, holistic assessment process that provides each individual with a tailored plan, building on their strengths and addressing barriers. The Labour manifesto at the last General Election pledged to bring this into effect.
I hope that the Government reads the Disability Benefits Consortium’s report and their recommendations, and works with them to make improvements to PIP.