By John Siddle, Liverpool Echo
May 21 2012
A YOUNG girl whose disabled mum was stripped of her benefits and ordered to work wrote a heart-wrenching letter to David Cameron, telling him: “I hate the government for what it’s done to my mum.”
Wendy Young, 44, was declared fit to work by Jobcentre doctors, despite suffering from a severe spinal condition which often renders her unable to walk, arthritis and heart problems.
The Kirkdale mum, who was a field archaeologist before being struck down by ill health 14 years ago, was reliant on disability living allowance (DLA) benefits to support herself and Poppy, her 13-year-old daughter.
She is often left bed-bound and no longer has the strength to use her own wheelchair.
But, under the Government’s wholesale review of DLA, Mrs Young was deemed fit and healthy and told she is not eligible for Employment and Support Allowances (ESA) payments made to those unable to work because of illness or disability.
She was told the only payment she can receive is Jobseekers’ Allowance – which demands that she finds work.
It was only after the ECHO intervened that the Department for Work and Pensions agreed to reinstate her benefits.
Mrs Young said: “I am between a rock and a hard place. I would love nothing more than to be able to work but I simply cannot. I would not be able to manage a part-time job – some days I cannot walk up the stairs.
“The last time I ventured out on a ‘good’ day, I went to the corner shop, lost my balance and fractured my skull.
“I have been left suicidal by this disability. Taking away my benefit would be to take away our lifeline.”
Alsop high school pupil Poppy wrote to Mr Cameron after two appeals against her mum’s ESA assessment were dismissed.