AtW

    Access to Work
    So the stupidity of Access to Work (AtW) has no limits. They chose which bits of their policy they like.

    Letter 28-07-2014

    so from this letter we’re told a start date is needed. We’re then told… Help is available at an interview. Do you get a start date before an interview?

    We also told I’m not eligible because I get ESA (Employment Support Allowance) witch would stop if I went back to work, without it I can not survive.

    We also told about AtW Guidance
    It has a nice little section called “Enquiries and Complaints”

    51. You must have an appropriate and effective complaints process across
    your whole supply chain to resolve customers’ complaints. You must
    explain your complaints process to the participant in your first contact
    with them.

    The said they would respond 3 working days from my complaint. This would have been 22nd July 2014 after chasing I got this response 28th July 2014.In writing today 31st July 2014.

    54. After following all steps in your process you must include in your final
    response to the participant a standard text which signposts the customer
    to contact ICE should they wish to pursue their complaint. The text can
    be found in Annex G of this Provider Guidance.

    Is their anything in the letter about ICE? Who are ICE? What do they do? How do I contact them?

    UPDATE

    ICE are pointless I’ve to write to Director General of Operations of DWP

    UPDATE

    After asking work not to make an offer and the employment tribunal would decide work made an offer Letter 26-08-2014
    So again we are back to stage 1 fighting with Access to Work.

    UPDATE

    So AtW suck! Firstly I need to use Public Transport to get to work, then Taxi – but that’s to expensive! – it would be cheaper to keep me on benefits.

    so please they can see how working is of a real benefit to me not just money.

    I need to find a driver! Again nice to see they have a list of qualified support workers.

    UPDATE

    Email…

    I must say even by DWP standards the lack of support I’m getting is amazing.

    3. Weeks ago! I asked if the letter from work was enough to get your help, so far this question remains unanswered !

    My work have given me a date of 16th September 2014. To return to work it’s taken me 3 years to get this date – if I miss it I my well explode and I can be sure it will be your fault.

    On Friday a woman called and after a very unhelpful conversation she said she needed to talk with work – I’d like to know the outcome of that discussion.

    I would also like the email / address of the Director General – who I believe I need to complain to before I can involve the independent case examiner (ICE)

    UPDATE

    Another stupid letter from Access to Work (AtW) Letter 16-10-2014

    Again they say I’m a recipient of ESA.
    From their own guide pg-access-to-work-needs-assessment.pdf

    not be in receipt of Incapacity Benefits/ESA and/or NI credits only (or will cease to claim whilst in work) unless the customer is about to start a Work Trial. This includes Severe Disablement Allowance and Income Support (where paid as a result of incapacity for work). The only other exception to this is where the customer is on Permitted Work Higher Level, Permitted Work (PCA exempt) or Supported Permitted Work

    Have I ever stated I’ll continue to claim ESA while at work? So dose this claim render their entire letter pointless?

    They also talk about my GP. “Fit Note” my GP has given me a fit note! She also agreed I was fit in 2012. But again work chose to disregard this.
    Part of my ET claim is about work choosing which bits of advice they will accept.

    UPDATE

    http://dpac.uk.net/2014/10/dwp-work-and-pensions-committee-hearing-on-access-to-work/

    UPDATE

    So AtW published https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/448218/access-to-work-statistics-march-2015.pdf
    access-to-work-statistics-march-2015.pdf This paints a picture of a helpful, caring department…It’s a lie.

    36,760 individuals were helped through Access to Work between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015.

    These figures are totally pointless as its got no compassion. i.e. How application did AtW get in total.
    So www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/accesstowork

    UPDATE

    So today I got this https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/282999/response/690990/attach/2/3161.clarification.pdf
    The only thing this confirms is being brain dead is a job requirement for DWP.

    Dear DWP Strategy Freedom of Information,
    I’m very confused by your request to clarify!

    Your question “whether part A above relates to additional documentation provided in support of an Access to Work application;” In section a I clearly state “additional information”

    Your question “whether part B above relates to the number of people whose disabilities were physically assessed as part of the Access to Work application process; and” as being disabled is a requirement of Access to Work funding this would appear a mute point. However i use “physically” as where they examined / consulted or questioned not physically disabled.

    Your question “please clarify what is being requested in parts C and D above.”
    C. How many “review” case where launched ?
    This again seams like a simple question, however for example in my case I had to ask for a “review” of your first descision – I would like to know how many reviews where done between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015 ?
    D. How many requests did AtW receive between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015 ?
    How can this question need clarifying ?

    I have forwarded your rather bizarre request to the ICO.

    Yours sincerely,
    Daniel McMorrow

    UPDATE

    https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/accesstowork#incoming-695928

    The reason for the clarification request was because Parts A, B, C and D of your request are based on the premise that “36.760 applications [were] received by AtW (Access To Work)”.
    However, this is not the case. The 36,760 figure that you initially quoted relates to the number of people who were helped by Access to Work in 2014/15 and not the number of Access to Work applications.

    I’m confused, by AtW definition of helped.

    UPDATE

    So

    Dear Daniel McMorrow

    Thanks you for your latest reply in relation to your request.
    Information on the definitions used in the Access to Work: Official Statistics publication are provided in Annex B of the publication. It is not possible to identify the proportion of applicants who are successfully awarded Access to Work. This is explained in section 1.1.5 of the Access to Work: Official Statistics publication. The latest publication can be found at the following
    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/448218/access-to-work-statistics-march-2015.pdf

    I hope this is helpful in assisting you to clarify the information you seek.
    If you have any queries about this letter please contact me quoting the reference number above.

    Yours sincerely,
    DWP Central FoI Team

    So Annex B dose not define “help” and we learn It is not possible to identify the proportion of applicants who are successfully awarded Access to Work.
    So

    36,760 individuals were helped through Access to Work between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015.

    Is made up? For illustration purposes? Not to think of the possiable waste of public money. 

    UPDATE

    Dear Department for Work and Pensions,
    On 20th August 2015 you said “To help us provide the most appropriate response to your request, please can you clarify whether parts A, B, C and D relate to: (i) the number of people helped by Access to Work; or (ii) the number of Access to Work applications?”

    On 20th August 2015 I asked to clarify the definition of help.
    On 26th August 2015 you said “Information on the definitions used in the Access to Work: Official Statistics publication are provided in Annex B of the publication”
    However Annex B has not definition of “help”
    On 26th August 2015 you said “It is not possible to identify the proportion of applicants who are successfully awarded Access to Work. This is explained in section 1.1.5 of the Access to Work: Official Statistics publication”

    Section 1.1.5 says “There are some limitations to the data. It cannot be used to identify the proportion of applicants who are successfully awarded Access to Work. Information relating to a person’s employer or the amount their employer contributes towards an Access to Work award is also not of a publishable standard.”

    This would be a major flaw in any system. If you can’t identify applicants who are successfully awarded AtW how was the figure of 36.760 reached? How are you able to account for use of public money if you can’t identify people getting AtW awards?

    Re:https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/sy…
    In the above document you claim…
    “36,760 individuals were helped through Access to Work between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015.”

    From the 36.760 individuals were helped through AtW (Access To Work)
    A. How many had to defend their requirement for assistance, by providing additional documentation? This is form the 36,760 above.
    As no definition of “help” has been given I’m taking this to mean people who received any support for AtW.
    B. How many where physically assessed? i use “physically” as where they examined / consulted or questioned not physically disabled.
    C. How many “review” case where launched?
    I would like to know how many reviews where done between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015? By review I mean the applicant asking AtW to reconsider the original answer – not matter of the reason.
    D. How many applications did AtW receive between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015?
    For clarification I’m after figures not percentages. You’ve made a public claim I’m speaking clarification of that claim its in the public interest.

    UPDATE

    So I got a response to my FoI request (questions as above)

    The Department does not record the total number of Access to Work applications received.

    So first were told…

    There are some limitations to the data. It cannot be used to identify the proportion of applicants who are successfully awarded Access to Work….

    then….

    The Department does not record the total number of Access to Work applications received

    “36,760 individuals were helped through Access to Work between 1st April 2014 and 31st March 2015.”

    Yet no explanation of 36,760 people who where helped through Access to Work. 36,760 must have made an application to AtW, but AtW don’t record this very basic statistics. Therefor the claim of. 36,760 is pointless.
    After battling with AtW I was awarded £100.00 / day.
    Lets look at that… 100.00*5*36,760 = £18,380,00 (a year) Of public money with no record!

    1. The above figure are EXAMPLES only. Some AtW awards would be for more than £100.00 some would be for less.
    2. People don’t work Monday-Friday ever week, it also dont account for hoilday.

    Having a reliable statistics like Successful Applications helps with other stats like predicting possible growth in service requirements. Without a baseline you can’t make an assessment. This impacts budgets, staffing levels.

    The Department does not record the number of Access to Work applications which include additional supporting documentation. Any additional supporting documentation that is provided is given due consideration by specialist advisor’s as part of the application process.
    The Access to Work application process does not involve physical or medical examinations.
    The Department does not record the total number of reviews or requests for reconsideration associated with Access to Work applications.

    UPDATE

    It would appear the DWP think if the ignore me I’ll go away… good luck!

    ICO Case FSXXXXXXXX

    Two out of date internal review requests with DWP.

    On you said

    “Before accepting complaints, the Commissioner requires public authorities to be allowed the opportunity to respond to any complaints the requester may have about the way in which their request was dealt with. “

    Request 1. Access To Work

    On I asked DWP for a review
    Here
    The Access To Work (a scheme managed by DWP) published stats claiming a number of people have been helped by AtW.
    However the AtW/DWP say these my questions can’t be answered as they don’t have the data. But have not explained where the original number comes from.

    Request 2. Appeals
    On I asked DWP for a review Here There was a recent high profile case between the DWP, Disability News Service & DWP. The DWP posed many legal challenges to the ICOs original ruling. This use of public money has to be accounted for. Along with other legal challenges launched by the DWP.

    UPDATE

    So it will come as no suprise that my “review” of the DWP FoI over AtW found nothing wrong.

    As a result of this review I am satisfied that the original response was handled properly and that the outcome of your request was correct.

    Response.pdf

    The 36,760 figure referred to in your request shows the number of individuals who received help from Access to Work in 2014-15. This includes individuals who have been assessed within the year or for whom there is an element where approval has been made (including nil cost) and the element has been made available within the year. While the Department does record the number of Access to Work applications which result in an applicant receiving help from the programme, it does not record the total number of Access to Work applications and therefore it is not possible to identify the proportion of applicants who are successfully awarded Access to Work.

    Dear DWP Strategy Freedom of Information,

    Hello firstly this matter have been passed to the ICO as your response was late. On 23rd Sepember. 2015 you quotes 20 working days. This was repeated on 1st October 2015.
    On 23rd October 2015 I sent a reminded with my intention of seeaking help from the ICO.
    The response you’ve given has no explanation or apology for these delays.

    You’ve failed to understand my request you published a figure of 36,700 applications where awarded help. You have failed to quantify this with an negative figure of how many applications where rejected…For example if AtW recived 38,000 applications then AtW is extreamly beneficial, however if you recived 100,000 you’ve rejected more than half.

    Yours sincerely,
    Daniel McMorrow

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    Daniel McMorrow

    34 Year old disabled geek,

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