Mandatory Work for ESA Wrag ClaimantsPrivate sector work programme providers can now order claimants in the ESA work-related activity group to carry out work experience for the benefit of the community– although this may include working for commercial companies.  There is no time limit on how long claimants can be forced to work for, although the DWP claim that it will generally only be for two weeks.

Providers will have to take into account a claimant’s health problems and disabilities when deciding on a placement, but if this is based on an Atos assessment of their abilities this may be of little reassurance to many claimants.

The combination of potential mandatory work placements and the savage new sanction of £71 a week for ESA claimants who refuse, without good cause to do as they are ordered, gives private sector companies enormous power to threaten and bully claimants.


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