Work and Pensions
Liam Byrne (Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions; Birmingham, Hodge Hill, Labour)
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will conduct a review of complaints made directly to providers by participants on the Work Programme.
Chris Grayling (The Minister of State, Department for Work and Pensions; Epsom and Ewell, Conservative)
We have no plans to conduct a review of complaints made directly to Work programme providers by programme participants.
Providers are required to communicate their own complaints procedure to participants when they are referred to the programme. If a provider cannot resolve a complaint to a participant's satisfaction then the participant can refer their complaint to the Independent Case Examiner, the highest level of complaint investigation in DWP. If a complaint cannot be resolved and the service provider is found to be at fault, then the provider will be required to contribute £5,000 towards the costs of investigating such complaints.
The Independent Case Examiner will provide feedback on the Work programme provider complaint investigations which have been concluded by his office during the 2011-12 reporting year, including commentary on the adequacy of their complaint processes, in his annual report, due for publication in summer 2012.