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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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WHITEFORD WARNING ON CHANCELLOR’S INCAPACITY CUTS

Monday, 28 June 2010

SNP Work and Pensions spokesperson, Dr Eilidh Whiteford, has warned that coalition government plans to cut sickness benefits must be based on genuine medical evidence.

Dr Whiteford said:

“George Osborne’s language suggests he is only concerned with reducing the number of claimants, regardless of the needs of individuals, or of the medical evidence.

“While supporting benefit reform, genuinely vulnerable individuals must not become an easy target for Con/Dem cuts.

“There are already huge questions over the assessment process with people undergoing chemotherapy, in some cases terminally ill people, being ordered to attend back-to-work interviews.

“Return-to-work initiatives can benefit both the economy and the individual, but people should only return to the workplace when they are genuinely able and when correct support measures are available.

“Existing safeguards are not working and, with major reforms in the pipeline, we need real guarantees to ensure that that people living with genuine incapacity and ill health are spared added stress and uncertainty.”

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