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Nearly 900,000 drop benefit claims

More than a third of people who were on incapacity benefit dropped their claims rather than complete a medical assessment, according to government figures.

A massive 878,300 chose not to be checked for their fitness to work under tests brought in when the benefit was replaced by Employment Support Allowance in 2008.

Among them were people on benefits because of blisters, acne, and strains and sprains.

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps hailed the figures as evidence of the need for welfare reform as the coalition faces fire over a tough squeeze on other benefits.

"Welfare makes up a third of this country's spending - so it's our job to make sure it's getting to the people who really need it," he said.

"Our reforms are about freeing people from a system of dependency that's trapped them and their families for decades - and people are getting back into work as a result.

"These figures demonstrate how the welfare system was broken under Labour and why our reforms are so important." and Support Allowance)


From Belfast Telegraph