Report rejects forcing obese people to have treatment to receive benefits

A government-commissioned review has rejected the idea that obese people or those with drug or alcohol problems should be obliged to undergo treatment as a condition of receiving benefits, The Guardian reports.

The review by Dame Carol Black, a doctor and academic who is principal of Newnham College, Cambridge, was set up 18 months ago to examine the wider effects of obesity and addiction on levels of employment.

Black was tasked with looking into whether very overweight people, or those with addiction problems, could be deprived of benefits if they declined treatment.

In her report published on Monday, Black said this was impractical, in part because of ethical concerns and because of the worry that such sanctions could lead people to try to hide their problems.

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