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Following the launch of Reform‘s report “Employment and Support Allowance: the case for change”, Researcher Hannah Titley wrote an article for Conservative Home. She argued the problems that plagued IB have been “replicated” in ESA with “higher financial awards, little conditionality, and limited health and employment support”. With the number of people claiming out-of-work sickness benefits higher than the OECD average, the UK has to address the issue. Reform‘s research has shown that the caseload is increasingly young and mental health-related:
“Almost 60 per cent of under 24s are claiming due to mental health problems. Across all ages almost half of the caseload is due to mental illness. This is a growing issue, and one for which the drivers are poorly understood. Unless the appalling lack of join up between health and welfare services is addressed – something the Work and Pensions Ministers at least are prioritising – this is unlikely to change. Health ministers must also show the same commitment to integrating services. Given the well evidenced benefits of work on people’s health, the prize of fewer ESA claimants is great for them too.”
Click here to read the entire article.