Clause 51 — Period of entitlement to contributory allowance

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister – in the House of Commons at 1:15 pm on 1st February 2012.

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Photo of Stephen Timms Stephen Timms Shadow Minister (Work and Pensions) 1:15 pm, 1st February 2012

My hon. Friend is absolutely right. A woman with Parkinson’s disease also makes exactly that point:

“There’s no guarantee that I’ll find a job in 12 months. It could take me much longer. I’ve worked all my life and paid for decades into the system on the understanding that there will be support if I need it. To be told that all this support could have a… time limit is…unfair and stressful.”

The charity Sense points out that for some people in the work-related activity group, once their health has stabilised, they will need to retrain to get back into work. It will be impossible for them to do that within the 12-month period that is being proposed.