Work Programme Not Doing Enough for Sick and Disabled

According to the providers of the government’s flagship Work Programme, the scheme does not have so incomes so that to take care of the sick and disabled jobseekers into employment.

Figures of the BBC show that only a third of those who have been on the scheme, for at least a year, have later found a permanent job.

However the percentage of those from the most challenging group who have found work is only 10%.

The association representing the providers announced that people receiving ESA have complex health and skills requirements so the Work Programme can not manage to solve all their problems.

“The costs of helping jobseekers on ESA back into work are significant and cannot all be met by the Work Programme,” says the Association’s chief executive, Kirsty McHugh.

The Department for Work and Pensions stated it had already agreed with Work Programme providers to support them financially.

These jobseekers have many barriers in front of them which was proved by the figures of ERSA pointing out that about a quarter of them have been unemployed for at least 11 years.

However, the opinion of the Labour Party is that the fact the Work Programme asked for so much money meant there was something wrong with it.

Liam Byrne, the Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, said this in fact showed that the system was not working properly and the government did not make any efforts in order to fix it: “Three quarters of unemployed on the scheme haven’t even started a job, and half of young people still haven’t found their way into a single day’s employment.”

The 58 years old Julia Page, who had not worked for more than 30 years because of her clinical depression and anxiety, and has now spent more than 12 months learning how to attend an interview.

“It takes a heck of a lot of time to get through it but unless the government is willing to help, people like me and others aren’t going to have that support and I will end up back on the dole.”