And, here's my follow up question :-
I read with interest your response to the constituent, who was concerned about the PIP/DLA re-assessment for people with MS.
Primarily, I agree that all disability benefits need to be reassessed, as there does seem to be some questionable situations. An across-the-board reassessment is the only equitable way forward.
But, as an MS sufferer myself, I have heard horror stories of ESA re-assessments, where a 12 month decision on MS sufferers has been made. Now, MS is incurable and, with the present budgetary deficit, will stay that way for some considerable time.
So, if ATOS believe MS will improve, or be cured in 12 months, what hope do we have for a reasonable re-assessment for PIP awards?
It's good to hear that assessors "will be required to have a broad training in disability analysis as well as access to information on specific impairments and conditions". I would suggest that this an absolute minimum requirement and appears to have been lacking in some ESA re-assessments. Having the right people in the right places in private contracts is always a challenge. Look at G4S and the Olympics!
You should be aware that stress is a major contributory factor in the progression of MS. This impending DLA/PIP situation, following on from the ESA re-assessments, is already negatively affecting MS sufferers, making their lives even more challenging.
I'd really like some categoric assurances that myself and my fellow MS sufferers will be dealt with professionally, courteously and compassionately. We have enough on our plates already!
I can't wait for the reply.