Watchdog backs DWP refusal to release 49 benefit deaths reports

The lovely wibbly wobbly old lady

Reposted from Disability News Service

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has been told by the information watchdog that it does not need to release secret reviews it carried out into the deaths of 49 benefit claimants.

Campaigners have expressed frustration and disappointment at the decision, with one MP saying it underlines the need for an independent inquiry into the use of benefit sanctions.

Disability News Service (DNS) has been trying since last autumn to discover what DWP learned from its investigations into deaths linked to the withdrawal or non-payment of disability benefits.

A series of freedom of information requests eventually revealed that DWP had carried out 49 internal peer reviews into benefit-related deaths since February 2012.

Of those 49 reviews, 33 contained recommendations for improvements in DWP procedures at either national or local level, 40 were carried out following the suicide…

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