The government will pursue controversial Tory plans to introduce a single welfare-to-work programme and move more people from incapacity benefit to jobseeker’s allowance, the written coalition agreement reveals.
Iain Duncan Smith will pilot the introduction of the plans as the new work and pensions secretary.
The Tories have stated previously they would find the £600m needed for the single welfare programme from savings made by reassessing people on incapacity benefit as fit to work and move them on to the lower jobseeker’s allowance. The plan was criticised by disability groups who believe they would be reassessed unfairly.
Earlier this year a Department for Work and Pensions report found that many Job Centre Plus staff felt disabled people were incorrectly being certified fit to work under the current work capability assessment.
The coalition document also committed to make unemployment benefits conditional on people’s willingness to work, assuming they are able. Last year the Tories said they would introduce a “three strikes and you’re out” rule for those turning down offers of work.