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Monday, 30 January 2012

Cart before Horse

It is certainly true to say that the Government has done nothing to create the employment opportunities that would be appropriate for many types of disabled people and this is one of the main reasons its strategy falls down – cart before horse as it were.

Like it or not, if we want to generally improve living standards ,we have to create wealth which in turn requires work. We all know about the demographic changes that have taken place and how this is changing the balance of numbers working and not working, so something has to give. As the Prof suggests, it would be nice to make the option to work purely voluntary, but until a number of other things change, this will not be enough. That does not mean to say that attitudes and motivations should not/cannot be changed, but it requires a re-education process that will take at least a generation to engineer, so the sooner it starts the better.

There is nothing wrong in principle with less than fully able people making what contribution they can given the right backdrop and there is nothing in principle wrong with suitably spaced assessments to check for changes in condition. I cannot thank everyone individually, but I am grateful for the financial support I have received and I am glad I live in a society that makes this possible – I do not believe I have an unerring, unqualified right to either and as soon as I can, I will attempt to return the generosity.

There is a very old management cliché: “if you do not measure it, you cannot manage it”, so the Prof is right to say that it is not acceptable that the Government is doing so little to accurately track the consequences of the WCA outcomes. This is particularly true as whilst DWP regularly claims substantial improvements in the WCA process, even it will not claim an improvement in right-first-time ESA decision making, which is surely what the whole thing is about.

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