28 April 2022
What: Imogen Day, sister of Philippa Day, Alison Burton, daughter-in-law of Errol Graham, and Joy Dove, mother of Jodey Whiting, criticise the Equality and Human Rights Commission for refusing to follow through on plans for an inquiry into benefit-related deaths, and say it has failed their families. The commission instead announces plans for a voluntary agreement (a section 23 agreement) with DWP that would commit it to follow an action plan that would force it to ‘improve its treatment of disabled benefit claimants’ and not breach its duties under the Equality Act. But DWP declines to confirm that it would be able to reach an agreement with the commission, insisting that it has ‘not so far identified any systemic unlawful action by the department’.
Why significant: Further criticism of the EHRC over its decision to pull out of an inquiry, while there is no guarantee that DWP will sign any agreement.