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Thursday, 6 October 2016

What is mentioned directly in a government 'consultation' and what is not specified?

I blogged yesterday about a Ministry of Justice 'consultation' toward scrapping disability benefits tribunals as we know them, 
and then attempted to reply to the online 'consultation' myself and found that it is about much more than was reported at 
as well as being more insidious. 

Eg, on the responses page regarding benefit tribunals, there was not a word of Employment & Support Allowance (ESA) or Personal Independence Payments (PIP) that I could see,
https://consult.justice.gov.uk/digital-communications/transforming-our-courts-and-tribunals/consultation/subpage.2016-09-12.7465746187/
and other sections of the responses pages also deal with stuff about magistrates courts and more.

Helping direct and inform people's responses to 'consultations'


With my dyspraxia and very slow reading and information processing speed, I panicked in my responding and found much of it bewildering, especially as the 'consultation' was packaged into sub-consultations and they seemed to be deliberately not mentioning relevance to ESA and PIP in the sub-section on tribunals.

With hindsight however, I become researcher with questions generated by 'consultation' recommendations.

In the earlier sub-consultations about magistrates courts, there is talk of 'digitising services'. Obvious questions there regard who stands to gain from such a transformation. Apart from Atos, it seems there are several other 'players' pulling the strings. A simple keyword search of think tank 'ReformUK' website
proves very revealing. (Go to http://www.reform.uk/?s=magistrates)

What is really behind the drive to reduce the role of judges and face-to-face tribunals?


Yet it's vital to consider what has prompted the Ministry of Justice to want to consult about 'reducing the role of magistrates'. Here, I reckon, is a vital clue — based on what I heard some months or even a year ago from a magistrate:
leads to

Decline in the staffing of the judiciary leads to greater backlogs. It's as simple as that.

And of course, while fees increased dramatically when Michael Gove was Justice Minister, so would increased poverty lead to the cause of fare dodging and other 'offences' for which there are financial penalties to compound pre-existing poverty.

On the matter of benefit tribunals, altering the process of disability benefit tribunals is inferred but not mentioned at 
Why would the Ministry of Justice not mention ESA and PIP tribunals? Perhaps the answer can be found at 
http://www.benefitsandwork.co.uk/news/3553-virtual-abolition-of-pip-dla-and-esa-appeal-tribunals-as-we-know-them ?
> ;-)

Winding up this blog post for today

With my extremely slow 'information processing speed', it is very easy for me to get timed out of things and not complete exam papers and assessment stuff on time.

Yesterday, shortage of blood sugar as I laboured beyond lunch time to attempt to complete that 'consultation' while in a dyspraxic panicked state while there was the option of continuing my responses further on-line as advertised. 
So I shall close this blog post here and invite comments and further contributions from my contacts. I need my lunch.

Dude Swheatie of Kwug

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