Work Capability Assessment

New Appointment to Work Capability Group

New Appointment to Work Capability Group

Simon Gillespie, chief executive of the MS Society, has been appointed to the independent scrutiny group overseeing improvements to the Work Capability Assessment (WCA).

He will provide a voice for the charity sector on the scrutiny group overseeing Professor Malcolm Harrington’s third independent review of the WCA. The review is helping ensure the assessment – a vital part of the Government’s reforms of incapacity benefit – becomes fairer and more effective.

Mr Gillespie, who has been chief executive of the MS Society since 2006, replaces Paul Farmer, chief executive of Mind, who left the group last month.

Employment Minister Chris Grayling said:

“I’m delighted Simon has agreed to join the scrutiny group, which plays a really important role in improving the Work Capability Assessment.

“We’ve already acted on the recommendations from our independent reviewer Professor Harrington, and are continually striving to make the process better and fairer. I look forward to Simon helping us in that process.”

One and a half million incapacity benefit claimants are currently undergoing a WCA to find whether they are fit to work or entitled to Employment and Support Allowance. People applying for ESA for the first time also go through the assessment.

The Department for Work and Pensions has already accepted the recommendations made in two reviews by Professor Harrington to improve the assessment. A third review to suggest further improvements is currently being undertaken.

See the review here

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