Medway Citizens Advice

Advice for Medway

Citizens Advice Medway is a registered charity that offers free, independent and impartial advice to the whole of Medway on a range of issues including Housing, Welfare Benefits, Employment, Debt, Family Law and many others.

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Make ESA Fit For Work

17th February 2014

Make ESA Fit For Work

Citizens Advice has launched a national campaign to run throughout 2014, aimed at improving the Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) work capability assessment process.

We need your help to make sure ESA decisions are right first time. In the last year Citizens Advice received around 500,000 enquiries about problems with ESA and we want to do something about it. The number of people who are falling into difficulties due to problems with ESA are increasing and we are hoping that this campaign will help to bring those numbers down.

We are calling on the Government to make fundamental reforms to how ESA works:

  • The DWP should listen to evidence from the medical professionals who know the clients best.
  • The medical evidence required should be provided free of charge.
  • The companies running the work capability assessments should be held accountable for poor quality assessments or bad customer service.
  • The DWP should continue to pay people ESA while a mandatory reconsideration is undertaken.

How can you get involved?

We want to make it is simple as possible for you to get involved with the campaign. And just like the DWP we love an acronym. However, our ESA stands for

Evidence, Support and Action.

Many of the problems with ESA are because DWP rules are applied unevenly across the country. We want to understand, and hear from those involved in every stage of the process and bring them together to identify, discuss and solve the problems in the system.

We want to hear from advisers, Job Centre Plus staff , GPs WCA assessors or any other person involved in the process to help highlight the experiences of ESA claimants. If you would like to tell us about your own experience, or know someone who has an interesting side of the story to tell please visit http://blogs.citizensadvice.org.uk/blog/topics/fit-for-work/ or get in touch with campaigns@citizensadvice.org.uk and well give you a hand.

Sign the Petition!

Citizens Advice is advertising a new petition that is aimed to encourage the government to stop withholding ESA payments during the Mandatory Reconsideration stage. At present, if an ESA claim is stopped, a person must ask for a Mandatory Reconsideration before they can appeal. A person won't be paid any money during the Mandatory Reconsideration period and will then get a reduced rate during the appeal if the Reconsideration fails. Click here if you want to sign.

Medway Citizens Advice

Contact us

Telephone: 01634 383760
Fax: 01634 383767
info@medwayadvice.org.uk

3rd Floor Kingsley House
37-39 Balmoral Road
Gillingham
Kent
ME7 4PF