Scope responds to leaked plans to cut ESA

The BBC has reported that the DWP is considering removing part of Employment and Support Allowance.

Mark Atkinson, chief executive at disability charity Scope, said: 
 
“The government has pledged to get a million more disabled people into work.
 
But lowering ESA is not the answer. The bigger picture is that the number of disabled people finding jobs through government back to work schemes like the Work Programme is still far too low.
 
The programme doesn’t provide disabled people with the specialist, personalised support that they need to find work.
 
ESA is not a ‘passive benefit’ - disabled people are required to take active steps to move closer to work, such as work placements or training, or their benefits will be stopped.
If disabled people are out-of-work, reducing their incomes won’t incentivise them to find a job. It will just make life harder at a time when disabled people are already struggling to make ends meet.
 
Disabled people are pushing hard to find jobs and get on at work, but they continue to face huge barriers.
 
We need the support that disabled people get while using this benefit to be more effective. Disabled people should receive specialist, personalised support that is appropriate to the kind of work they're looking for.
 
“We strongly urge the government not to cut financial support for disabled people but to radically reform and improve its back to work schemes.”

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