Grayling: We'll force half a million back into work

Taking the test: 1.6 million claimants will be assessed over the next three years
Taking the test: 1.6 million claimants will be assessed over the next three years

By staff

Chris Grayling has promised to force half a million people off incapacity benefit and into work ahead of a massive upheaval in the welfare system.

The minister for employment said trials of the upcoming incapacity test showed that a third of current claimants were found to be able to work and that 40% of the remaining claimants could be found some form of work if they had specialist help.

The Burnley and Aberdeen trial appears to have fixed minister's minds on the task and suggest half a million people could be forced back into work.

"When we started the process we thought that fewer than a quarter of claimants would be found fit for work. In reality it's almost a third," Mr Grayling wrote in the Sunday Telegraph.

"Of the rest, 40 percent more have the potential to return to some form of work, in time or with the right specialist help.

"The trial results show that, if replicated nationally, we could expect around half a million people to be found fit for work over the next three years as the reassessment exercise is completed."

Some 1.6 million people will be assessed over the next three years, with around 10,000 people a week taking the test each week.

Claimants are assessed for their physical suitability for work but also for their 'mood'.

"Refusal to take part is not an option. If claimants refuse that help, they will lose their benefits," Mr Grayling said.

But claimants will be able to submit evidence from their own GP in support of their claim.


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