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Identifying claimants' vulnerabilities

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Human Rights Watch

Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

We are writing to submit the following request under the Freedom of Information Act.

On 15 June 2018, the National Audit Office (NAO) published a report entitled “Rolling Out Universal Credit.” The report discusses the Department’s efforts to identify vulnerable claimants, and states on page 32 that:

“In 2017 the Department issued guidance to staff, instructing them to record information on a claimants’ needs using a text box in their journal … The Department is developing an approach to allow work coaches to pin this text to the top of a claimant’s journal, so it is more obvious to staff picking up a claimant’s case … The Department has told us it is developing a text-mining approach to allow it to identify different vulnerability groups within the pinned information.”


In light of the report above, we specifically request copies of the following:

1) All privacy impact assessments, data protection impact assessments, data sharing agreements, or Memoranda of Understanding of or related to the “text-mining approach” described on page 32 of the NAO report; and

2) All training manuals or operational guidance materials provided to DWP staff for recording, pinning and text-mining information about claimants’ vulnerabilities as described on page 32 of the NAO report.

Per Section 10(1) of the Act, please respond no later than the twentieth working day following the date of receipt of this request.

If you refuse our request in whole or in part, or redact or withhold from disclosure specific items in your response, please explain the reason for the refusal of each withheld item with reference to exemptions of the Act, as per Section 17 of the Act.

Where you have relied on a qualified exemption to withhold disclosure, please explain which exemption applies and why the public interest arguments against disclosure outweigh the public interest in disclosure.

Thank you for your time and consideration, and we look forward to hearing from you soon.

Yours sincerely,
Human Rights Watch

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no-reply@dwp.ecase.co.uk on behalf of DWP Strategy Freedom of Information, Department for Work and Pensions

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Dear ,

I am writing in response to your request for information, received 24th

Yours sincerely,

DWP Central FoI Team

taryn taylor left an annotation ()

I am sure that the information sent , was an interesting read?
Did anyone have a "Laugh"?
I would hazard a guess, that probably 4/5 th's of the DWP budget goes on administration , investigations & court costs.
The remaining 1/5th, is probably the ONLY amount that is "ACTUAL" cost of payments to claimants.
The government & DWP , assisted by the judiciary . Do a good job of covering up , yet ANOTHER one of this nations disgraceful scandals!
Propaganda fuelled across the media , is indeed a powerful tool!

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