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Labour MP speaks of “core visits” procedures, which are supposed to be followed when a  “vulnerable” person is sanctioned.

What: Mike Wood, the Labour MP for Batley and Spen in West Yorkshire, raises concerns about DWP safeguarding and speaks of how he took up the case of his constituent Timothy Finn, who had a mental health condition and starved to death in 2000 [see entry 2000]. A coroner at the subsequent inquest found that neglect by the Benefits Agency [now part of DWP] had contributed to his death. Wood says he visited the then Labour minister for disabled people, Maria Eagle, and persuaded her to introduce the “core visit” procedures, which DWP civil servants were supposed to follow when a “vulnerable” person was about to have their benefits sanctioned, particularly if they have learning difficulties, mental health conditions, or “health conditions which affect cognition”.

Why significant: The core visits procedures will play a significant part in future deaths of benefit claimants.


'Ministers change the story – yet again – on benefit-related deaths', Pring, 2015