The Department for Work and Pensions is finally going to publish information about deaths related to benefit claimants. But it’s going to publish them quietly just before the bank holiday.

The Department’s non-disclosure and stalling of the publication caused public outrage earlier this year as more than 200,000 signed a petition – which David Cameron had to answer questions about at PMQs – calling for their release.

Now the long-awaited stats are listed for publication on the DWP’s website, just before the extended weekend.

The Department’s webpage says: “This publication will provide information on those who have died after claiming Employment and Support Allowance, Incapacity Benefit or Severe Disablement Allowance in Great Britain in response to a number of Freedom of Information requests.”


The Information Commissioner had previously ruled that the figures should be made public but the Department said it was going to contest the decision.

At the point of writing we’re currently aware of two tribunal cases that are having paperwork prepared that relate to DWP benefit stats.

The department is clearly not having a good time with FOI at the moment….

(HT Rick B) 

I am a journalist and author. I am a journalist at the UK edition of WIRED magazine. In 2015, my first book Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. My second book Reed Hastings: Building Netflix, was published in March 2020. I created FOI Directory in 2012 and have maintained it in my spare time ever since.