The Government’s emphasis on ‘rights and responsibilities’ to help move people off incapacity benefit and into jobs is fully justified, according to John Philpott, chief economist at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).
Today the Government will unveil its five-year plan to deal with rising incapacity benefit claims and the Prime Minister has emphasised that everyone would be expected to “fulfil their responsibilities” to work if they are able to do so.
Around 2.5 million people in the UK are presently on incapacity benefit.
It is likely the Government’s plan will mean that regular work-focused interviews will be compulsory for all but the most severely disabled claimants.
However, the Government has hinted that it will end the system of increasing the amount of benefit for those who claim over longer periods of time.
Philpott said the plan would get at least one in three incapacity benefit claimants back into the workplace if an appropriate mix of support and pressure is applied.
This would in turn ease recruitment difficulties in a tight labour market, he said.