Fibromyalgia Action UK

DWP and sick notes

I'm in the work related support group for ESA and they are trying to force me to do certain activities speaking in front of others despite my serious social anxieties.

I've resisted them so far because it just makes me upset. But I don't want to be sanctioned yet I don't see why I should be forced to do something which makes me anxious. Ive complied with all Other activities so far they so they know I'm not taking the Mick.

So I saw my GP today and she's given me a sick note to give to DWP to try and exclude me for one month from this social activities. Sounds funny giving a sick note to them I know.

I am just wondering if anyone else has had success giving them a sick note to be excluded from certain work related activities?



5 Replies

Hi Beckh

I am so genuinely sorry to read this and I have never been through anything like this myself. I have pasted an excerpt and link below pertaining to the two groups from the *CAB cache entitled: About the ESA support group and work-related activity group. Hopefully it will give you an answer there whether or not you are obliged to participate:

*The support group

If you’ve been put in the support group, it means the DWP has decided that you can’t work and that it doesn’t expect you to do anything to improve your chances of finding work.

However, if you’re in this group and decide that you want to take part in work-related activity anyway, you can do. Use the contact details on your decision letter to let the DWP know you want to do this. They’ll let you know if there’s any suitable work-related activity going on in your area that you can join.

*The work-related activity group

If you’ve been put into the work-related activity group it means the DWP has decided that your disability or health condition does limit your ability to work right now, but that there are things you can do to improve this.

You’re not expected to look for work, but you can be asked to go to a work-focused interview and then do work-related activities. These activities are things that the DWP thinks will improve your chances of working in the future.

You won’t need to go to a work-focused interview or do any work-related activities if:

you’re a single parent with a child under one year old

you’ve reached Pension Credit age

*About the ESA support group and work-related activity group

I want to sincerely wish you all the best of luck my friend, and please take care of yourself.

All my hopes and dreams for you



Yes my husband was asked to do all these work related things when he was on ESA despite him suffering from anxiety and depression so he would absolutely sympathise. I don't think the group work was actually too bad as everyone was in the same boat. None of them wanted to be there and were nervous so were very sympathetic to each other. Good luck hope the GPs note work for you.x

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It does seem harsh to make someone do something that will make them even more anxious.

Hope the sick note works for you.



Hello Beckh,,,maybe you could request that you are transferred into the support group,,so this terrible stressful situations are stopped,,,could you gp, write a letter to support you,,,and if worst case scenario happens,,just let your fear get the better of you in front of everybody,,and then they can take the blame for putting you to such distress and loss of face,,,,blame the ones who are causing you such stress,,, I hope things improve for you,,,ttfn from karen.

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No i havnt but had a sick note for the entire time i was on JSA and ESA waiting to be confirmed in support group so i suppose while i was on ESA i was on sick notes as my gp used to sign me off for 8 weeks at a time, i think that was the maximum then. I fulky understand why you want this, many people would feel anxious in those circumstances but for you that has a distinct and specific problem with it that is cruel and just like making you walk on a broken leg, you must deal with it anyway you can within the rules, im glad you have the support of your gp



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