DWP HQ, Caxton House, London. Photo: Paul Billanie for Welfare Weekly.

More than 200,000 people suffering with mental health conditions are set to see their incomes reduced due to draconian social security cuts, it has emerged today.

A Freedom of Information response published today by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) reveals that over 200,000 people with mental health conditions will have their Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) payments reduced, due to cruel cuts which came into force in April this year.

The £345 million cut will be taken from the pockets of new claimants placed in the Work Related Activity Group of ESA, reducing the benefit they receive to the same level as Jobseeker’s Allowance, despite acceptance by the DWP that these people are unfit for work.

Labour says the new data contradicts Theresa May’s commitment to end the “burning injustice” of the treatment of people with mental health conditions.

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Responding to the new data, Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Debbie Abrahams said:

“These cuts to people with mental health conditions just go to show that you cannot trust a word the Tories say.

“They have boasted about offering ‘parity of esteem’ to mental and physical health. In reality this just means equal austerity for all.

“Labour is committed to reversing the Conservatives’ pernicious cuts to Employment and Support Allowance, as well as the cuts to Personal Independence Payments introduced by emergency legislation in March also affecting people with chronic mental health conditions.

“We want to transform the social security system so that it is there for anyone of us in our time of need.”