And almost 900,000 have dropped their claim to the taxpayer-funded benefits rather than undergo a new medical test as part of the Coalition welfare reforms.
We all knew that the various incapacity/invalidity benefits were being used as a way to disguise unemployment. It\’s been something of a deliberate policy since Maggie\’s day.
But the numbers do seem to be quite large, don\’t they?
And there\’s good economic reason to get them back onto Jobseekers\’ too. No, not just because it\’s a lower amount of money. Because as and when the economy starts to boom again (yes, it will, at some point) how much growth we can have before we get inflation will be, in part, determined by how long it takes to exhaust that reserve army of the unemployed. And people who are on disability, not Jobseekers\’, are not part of that reserve army.
Do note this isn\’t the analysis of some hateful neoliberal capitalist pig dog. This is M\’Lord Layard, Labour peer extraordinaire.
Having a million odd people completely removed from the labour force on disability limits growth in hte future. Having them in the labour force, even if only theoretically, will increase the growth we can have when it does return. It\’ll make out children richer that is.