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Thread: ATOS and Capita bosses questioned by the Commons Public Accounts Committee

  1. #1
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    ATOS and Capita bosses questioned by the Commons Public Accounts Committee

    Some of the best coverage so far is at the Guardian's live blog of the session.

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    Would you say it is the assessment providers at fault for delays on medicals or is it actually our government that are using them as an excuse for their own incompetence. I believe that DWP are equally to blame.

    They have to "look" like they are fighting for us don't they!

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    The Public Accounts Committee will continue to investigate what is happening, and will ultimately produce a report, which I expect will be quite hard hitting. It's a cross party committee chaired by Labour's Margaret Hodge MP, who has shown herself willing to ask difficult questions when they are justified.

    My view is that there's failure on both sides. As I explained in a recent post, the competitive tendering process tends to result in contract awards to one of a handful of large suspects, with the price beaten down so low that the contractors can't find people to do the work at the price they're prepared to pay.

    Ultimately, no politician wants to be left holding the blame. These large Government tenders provide massive benefits for the politicians - they get the work done cheaply, they have someone else to blame for the problems, and they don't have to employ people directly to do the work. The Government often seems unwilling to impose penalties on the contractors or take legal action for breach of contract, probably because the contracts are so beneficial to ministers. This leads to a cosy cartel of failure, with minister's positions approximately being "we all know it's not working, but we're so happy at the cheap price and that we are not directly to blame that we'll leave it to you to sort out so long as you're happy for us to blame you in public".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flymo View Post
    The Public Accounts Committee will continue to investigate what is happening, and will ultimately produce a report, which I expect will be quite hard hitting. It's a cross party committee chaired by Labour's Margaret Hodge MP, who has shown herself willing to ask difficult questions when they are justified.

    My view is that there's failure on both sides. As I explained in a recent post, the competitive tendering process tends to result in contract awards to one of a handful of large suspects, with the price beaten down so low that the contractors can't find people to do the work at the price they're prepared to pay.

    Ultimately, no politician wants to be left holding the blame. These large Government tenders provide massive benefits for the politicians - they get the work done cheaply, they have someone else to blame for the problems, and they don't have to employ people directly to do the work. The Government often seems unwilling to impose penalties on the contractors or take legal action for breach of contract, probably because the contracts are so beneficial to ministers. This leads to a cosy cartel of failure, with minister's positions approximately being "we all know it's not working, but we're so happy at the cheap price and that we are not directly to blame that we'll leave it to you to sort out so long as you're happy for us to blame you in public".
    So very true flymo.

    It happens in other sectors too with farming out contracts. I have my MP supposedly helping with my ESA claim and my PIP claim but as yet neither have "happened". I think she is just humouring me at times.

    What they do not realise is that all this does not help with people that already have "illness" and "disabilities". Just because they don't go running off to their doctors for help does not mean they are not suffering in silence. Our government just does not care. Only about money that is and as you say, cheap labour. God help the next government in taking all this on. They will then be blamed for all of this when all they will be doing is trying to pick up the pieces.

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