Confirmation of Facts?

Paul Smith made this Freedom of Information request to Department for Work and Pensions

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

Ref : VTR 3115 - 1502

On the 2nd May 2012 I had a reply to a FOI Request from yourselves.

One of the questions I asked was

5)Can you confirm or deny that claimants who have requested a home
assessment have also been granted the request to have their home
assessment audio recorded?

Your answer was

In reply to Q5, I can confirm that a Work Capability Assessment has
never been recorded by Atos Healthcare during a home assessment

The reason I am contacting you again over this particular response is the fact that your answer was untrue, whether you gave me the wrong information because of a slip up I don't know, but I thought I'd give the DWP the opportunity to rectify this mistake?

Paul Smith

DWP Adelphi Freedom-of-Information-Request, Department for Work and Pensions

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DWP Adelphi Freedom-of-Information-Request, Department for Work and Pensions

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Smith

Please see attached response to your FoI request.

Kind regards

DWP Central FoI Team

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Jim Otram left an annotation ()

Cracker, Paul. I note that CAG and others picked this up within minutes.

How dare, how flaming dare, the DWP and its toe-rag seek blatantly to discriminate against those of us unable to get to 'medical assessment centres'.

As has been said said elsewhere, 'simply insist'.

J Newman left an annotation ()

Paul, from the info you have, is this IR response true?

Paul Smith left an annotation ()

Hi J Newman

I have information that more than twp home assessments have so far been carried out and were recorded, the DWP state that only two have been conducted, my whole point about this was to get them to admit Audio Recording of home asssessments had been carried out.

I believe it sets a precedent for the future...

Basically they lied in the first instance, they tried to get away without confirming to me the true facts..

J Newman left an annotation ()

Sure Paul, I understand. As a matter of interest, were the 2 you know about before or after 2nd May?

Paul Smith left an annotation ()


John Slater left an annotation ()


I wonder if what the DWP have done here falls within the scope of Misconduct in Public Office (Criminal Offence). The offence is committed when a public officer acting as such wilfully neglects to perform his duty and/or wilfully misconducts himself to such a degree as to amount to an abuse of the public's trust in the office holder without reasonable excuse or justification.

Examples of behaviour that have in the past fallen within the offence include:
• wilful excesses of official authority;
• 'malicious' exercises of official authority;
• wilful neglect of a public duty;
• intentional infliction of bodily harm, imprisonment, or other injury upon a person;
• frauds and deceits.

I would have thought that deliberately lying about something such as this qualifies for a number of the above? I wonder how the DWP would react if this was reported to the Police? Given the public interest element I don’t think the police could reasonably refuse to investigate.

John of left an annotation ()

Paul thank you for pursing this issue I have posted this information on our website.

J Newman left an annotation ()

As DWP's activities become more and more underhand and dishonest, they have to increasingly try to hide behind the letter of FoI rather than its spirit, so here I guess they would argue they were correct at time of asking.

Same theme from a different angle and trying to bring the issues together, I have been referencing requests to the Civil Service Code, which as you can imagine is all about honesty & integrity. Trouble is compliance with it is never formally checked and documented, so cannot be pursued easily through FoI.