Earlier this week LDAS published an report from a Whistleblower that said there was a developing of a new approach in the assessment of current applications for the Personal Independence Payment. This centred around instructions being given to ATOS Health Professionals about how they should carry out face to face interviews.
LDAS is an independent campaigning organisation that believes information should lead to action. Our intention in publishing this article was to inform people so that they could help change the approach of ATOS to this. It is always better to stop things before they become entrenched.
A number of people have been in contact to say they have felt scared as a result of the information and blamed LDAS for making it available. As a result of this, we have taken the original down.
We did speak to the author and felt that they were genuine in promoting this article. They are a well respected disability activist known to two leading disabled person’s organisations.
A number of things about the context for the article are important to think about. The government’s flagship problem of welfare reform is in a difficult place. With a general election only a year away, Universal Credit has stalled and PIP is drowning in a huge backlog of claims that cannot be processed because of the length of time assessments are taking. In this it strikes us that it is reasonable to suppose ATOS management to be looking at ways they can speed up assessments of the backlog. It is in this context that we think there was merit in this article.
We will be making no further comment on this matter.