The Tory Work and Pensions Secretary told BBC Daily Politics that he had no knowledge of the number of benefit claimant deaths shown to be caused by suicide, despite evidence uncovered by Disability News Service (DNS) revealing that the DWP has secretly reviewed 49 benefit-related deaths since 2012. So far, the DWP has refused to publish details into at least 49 benefit related deaths it has admitted to have investigated.
Jonathan Bartley, Green Party Spokesperson for Work and Pensions, said: “It’s not enough that his Department appears to have sat on research revealing the immense damage his welfare policies are causing to families up and down the country. To deny all knowledge of the reports is heartless and blinkered…”
DWP officials have been told that they must disclose the number of Incapacity Benefit and ESA claimants who have died between November 2011 and May 2014. The ruling was made by the information commissioner following a formal complaint from the website Vox Political.