Actions and their consequences flow from values. Yesterday, as the government once again admitted that it had underpaid benefits, I challenged minister Sarah Newton to improve the values and culture at the heart of the Department for Work and Pensions.
The department now admits it owes more than £328 million to over 3,000 people, who were underpaid when their benefits were switched from Incapacity Benefit to Employment Support Allowance (ESA). This is after the same department admitted it had underpaid ESA by almost £1 billion in an announcement last October.
I believe this is down to the culture and values at the DWP. If the department did not have a culture of disbelief, more people might have received the support they needed much more quickly.