WCA - Audio recording and consent form (Part 2)

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Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

In cases where arrangements have been made for an assessment to be recorded, claimants are asked by Atos to sign a consent form which includes stipulations on how the audio-recording can be used. For the sake of clarity and transparency, please answer the following questions in relation to the audio-recording and state reasons.

1. Can the audio-recording be placed in the public domain if it is in the public interest?

2. Can it be used as evidence
2a. for tribunal appeals?
2b. in any other legal context (eg court, police)?

3. Can it be used as evidence in support of a complaint to the HCP's regulatory body (GMC, NMC, HPC etc)?

4. In a written response on recording assessments (http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa...), Mr Hoban stated that the DWP has the right to impose reasonable conditions on recordings.

4a. Who is imposing these conditions? Atos or the DWP?

4b. With regards to reasonable conditions, I can't see how a condition, which infringes on the civil liberties of others, can be reasonable. What criteria are used to determine what condition is reasonable?

4c. Please provide any documentation/legislation that gives the entity (in Q4a) the right to impose these conditions on the claimant and to impose benefit sanctions should a claimant refuse to agree to some, or all the conditions, set in the consent form.

Yours faithfully,

A C Smithson

DWP freedom-of-information-requests, Department for Work and Pensions

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Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Department for Work and Pensions's handling of my FOI request 'WCA - Audio recording and consent form (Part 2)'.

The DWP has failed to provide a response to my FoI request by 11 October 2012, as required by law.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/wc...

Yours faithfully,

A C Smithson

Duffy Janette DWP OPS CCSD MEDICAL SERVICES, Department for Work and Pensions

1 Attachment

Dear A C Smithson,

Please find attached response to your Freedom of Information request.

<<3828-3538 Smithson A Response.pdf>>

Thank you

Correspondence Team

Business Management Team | Department for Work and Pensions | DWP
Contracted Customer Services Directorate | 306, Block 3 | North Fylde
Central Office | Norcross | FY5 3TA| www.dwp.gov.uk | Please consider the
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Jim Otram left an annotation ()

The bare-faced medacity of the DWP knows few bounds. In response to Q4c of this query, the Department says:-

"In response to Q4c, the law states that if a medical assessment is needed to decide entitlement to benefit, then the claimant must take part in that assessment. If the claimant does not take part, without good reason, he or she will be disallowed benefit. Refusal to take part in an assessment because it cannot be recorded is not 'good reason'.

Refusal to take part in assessment because it could not be recorded was exactly what took place 5 years ago, in the case which became CIB\3117\2008.

The claimant whose benefits were stopped in the first instance, won the appeal and had his benefits re-instated. And 'the law' told the DWP to make sure that it told benefits claimants in writing of the circumstances in which a WCA CAN INDEED be recorded.

'Refusal unless recorded' can therefore, absolutely and explicitly, be 'good reason' not to agree to proceed with a WCA.

For many years the DWP has been trying to mislead the public on the law relating to recordings, and this response show that its propensity to do so is entirely undiminished by the passage of time.

DWP DWP Medical Services Correspondence, Department for Work and Pensions

1 Attachment

Dear A C Smithson,

Please find attached response to your Freedom of Information Internal
Review request dated 14 October.

<<3999-IR683 Mr Smithson Response.pdf>>

Thank you

Correspondence Team

Business Management Team | Department for Work and Pensions | DWP
Contracted Customer Services Directorate | 306, Block 3 | North Fylde
Central Office | Norcross | FY5 3TA|  www.dwp.gov.uk | Please consider the
environment before printing

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