How did I end up on the Work Programme??

I was on DSL and then got moved to ESA on the work related group. I did question it at the time as my condition was so bad at the time and was assured by the advisor that it was just supportive and to keep people "in the loop". I only had 3 interviews in 2 years. I have M.E and Fibromyalgia, carpol tunnel, arthritis, bad joints (EDS suspected), Severe Migraines and on top of that care for my disabled daughter and hard of hearing son. I also care for my elderly uncle with dementia. Then suddenly a month ago I was asked to go in. Very short conversation and told I was being placed on the "work programme" and told I had no choice and to sign I understood. I did protest and ask who would employ me currently but it was just repeated to me. I had an appointment with Ingeus but had to cancel as my knee had given way and I had torn the cartilage and hamstring. However, even though I explained I was on crutches and awating an MRI they insisted I had to attend the next appointment tomorrow (16th May) and if there was a problem getting there to get a cab.

My question is where do I stand? I have never made a claim for support re. my daughters disability and only last August finally sent in a PIP form (which I still haven't heard back from) for both her and myself. I don't claim any other support i.e carers.

How is the decision made? Who makes/made it? Is there anything more I can do?

2 Replies

  • I am also a carer with chronic daily migraines. For me to be able to stay at home and care for my son I applied for Carers Allowance which then helps you apply for Income Support, then you will not be expected to work whilst the person you are caring for is on at least the middle rate of care element of dla. The system is crap for carers and the disabled at the mo and I really hope it improves.

  • If you think you're in the wrong group - if you think you should be in the support group rather than the work-related activity group - you can ask to be reassessed. This may mean having to put in a whole new ESA application. I'd suggest speaking to someone at Citizen's Advice or another benefits agency for advice on what to do, and help with filling in the forms.

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