Merseyside dad whose son died six weeks after wrongly being stripped of benefits wins tribunal appeal

Cliff Scott holding a photo of son Mark, with Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson

 

A DAD whose son died just six weeks after wrongly being stripped of his  incapacity benefits today said he blamed the government for his death.

Mark Scott, 46, was deemed fit to work by job centre doctors despite GP  records showing he suffered severe anxiety, panic attacks and alcoholism.

He died in his Southport flat in January from pneumonia.

Cliff Scott with son Mark,who died in October 2010

Yesterday, an independent tribunal ruled the department of work and pensions’ (DWP) decision to stop Mr Scott’s employment support allowance was  incorrect.

His dad Cliff, 74, who brought the appeal on behalf of his son, branded the  benefits system “a shambles”.

He told the ECHO: “I know Mark would still be alive today if he had kept his  benefits, as it was proved he should have.

“I detest people who cheat the system but my son relied on the state because  he could not work. He was unemployable.

“The government, the DWP, failed my son. The system is not fit for  purpose.”

Mark was deprived of oxygen as a baby which left him prone to panic attacks.  The anxiety led him to drink heavily and, in a Catch-22, when he tried to quit  alcohol he suffered crippling seizures.

Like thousands of other claimants Mark was called for a work capability  assessment last year where he was determined to be fit for work.

The report described his general health as “well” and him being of “average  build” – despite weighing eight stone.

But GP records stated that Mark had suffered a dozen withdrawal seizures from  alcohol in the past 10 years.

Mr Scott told how his son sank into a “deep depression” after being stripped  of ESA and housing benefit in December.

His family tried to help him when they learned of the decision, but Mr Scott  said: “I think the stress of not knowing what was going to happen in the future  killed him.”

A DWP spokesperson said: “Mr Scott’s family continue to have our  sympathy.

“The work capability assessment is in place to determine what, if any, work a  person could undertake, as this can change over time.”

 

Liverpool Echo

 

Comments
  • jeffrey davies (@jeffrey33333) July 7, 2012 at 11:29 am

    mark you are another not being treated perfectly by our so called goverment with our sicknesses and disablements they get atos to do their dirty work for them saying we are fit for where apone they take away our benefit thus no money no job because no one will eemploy you so stuck between the devit of our goverment and the deep blue sea which is death as no money no no money no house and they got to the dwp to say your illness could change The work capability assessment is in place to determine what, if any, work a person could undertake, as this can change over time.”well its not for most and are being treated by atos and dwp who inturn our glorious goverment who do nothing to change this and we got more we lose along this long road we are traveling without our so called goverments help its god have mercy on us im afraid mark you had to endure this shitte of our mps who still do nothing for us but for you the long road is over rest in piece mark ps you got to laugh i been placed in wrag by atos and dwp and again find myself back in hospital this wk with heart stopping again so another three days in hospital but find im still fit for work unbeleavible are our gloroius mps who fail us daily jeff3

  • Jane Russell July 7, 2012 at 11:30 am

    Another disgusting case of death caused by Camerscum! When will this vile creature be hauled up in court for corporate manslaughter where he belongs, like a company owner would be if he forced seriously sick/disabled people to work when they are unfit to? My heart goes out to this poor man and his family, as it does with all the other disgraceful cases that have caused the deaths of people at the hands of this evil toad!

    A friend I helped win an appeal less than a year ago is being hounded yet again. Without my help she would have been stitched up too. She has a serious deteriorating condition of the spine as well as other things – some days she can barely move & is always in severe pain. They fraudently declared her fit to work too & finally she won her appeal as her condition will never “change over time” to make her fit for work – she has every scan & test under the sun to prove it, but yet she is being hounded to go through the WCA farce again, to prove what she has already proven. Such a massive waste of time, money & resources.

    She called the DWP obviously worried & was told it’s just a formality & to take in the proof she gave them less than a year ago & she would be fine – we all know that’s a standard phrase just to get people off the DWP phone lines & is actually not what will probably happen. I expect she’ll be declared fit for work again & will have to appeal again.

    I was diagnosed with MS 2 weeks before last Christmas – haven’t been able to write my own name for 10 months – am unlikely to be able to ever again. As a trained touch typist since age 15, I am now stabbing at the keyboard with 2 fingers & a thumb – can’t even do the washing up most days, can barely move my legs, let alone walk much of the time. Can’t even make it to my local shop less than 5 mins away – had no choice but to this morning, now I’m suffering for it – 1st time I’ve made it out the door in 3 weeks. Have lost all feeling in right hand & most in my left & dexterity too. Have only claimed ESA so far – £18.34 a week & still waiting the WCA farce – 5 months and counting so far! I get a Civil Service pension of £230 a month. Should be claiming DLA too, but am not up to the fight – claiming ESA was bad enough! As an ex employee of the DWP as is – no one dreads having to claim more than me, or knows how to spot a true faker. But I am expecting to be declared fit for work, despite knowing that I will not even be employable as a shelf staker & no employer would EVER take me on, I’d be a liability to any company. Would be too disabled to even turn up, let alone do anything much of the time.

    As an ex employee of this shambles I am doubly disgusted that people like me & others in even worse state, including cancer sufferers are being declared fit for work or are being struck off benefits. Up until Cameron got in, it was a given & common sense that certain illness/disability would prevent a person from working – backed up by proper in depth medicall reports & not an ATOS button presser who’s main aim was to get themself a bonus for pressing buttons that ruin people’s lives in the most underhand ways.Now we have ATOS aka Lourdes & Cameron aka the evil one thinking they are a higher authority than the top specialists in the land.

    And how strange that for patients with private doctors – they don’t get so much as a form to fill in to renew their claim, let alone be constantly badgered to go through WCA’s time and time again. What a complete mockery this is, especially as private doctors are more likely to say what they are told to say, because as a private patient, you are paying them to.

    When they finally deem to call me up to this farcicle WCA – despite having had MRI’s,CT’s, X rays, more blood tests than I’ve had in my entire life put together, motor function tests etc – they will rue the day they ever got me sitting in front of them!

  • Georgette Orwell July 7, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    Jane, good write up….. you are right regarding your observation of DWP targeting particular groups of patients – CORPORATE COLLUSION. The ME/CFS campaign has an excellent write up, you can find on the right of their website, among many of their campaign reports.

    http://www.meactionuk.org.uk/index.html

    DWP has mistreating various groups of sick and vulnerable people and it has been going on for a couple od decades eg. ME/CFS and Gulf War Vets across governments, Labour and Condems, leaving them destitute and dependent on charity of relatives and friends, MPs are an utter disgrace in allowing this to happen and pretending it doesn’t !

  • owen meharry July 7, 2012 at 1:06 pm

    This is a very sad case, but worse is the fact it’s happened before. A friend of mine was declared fit for work a few years ago while suffering lung cancer, we fought for him and won but what shocked me was the letter that came to confirm it. It started of with…
    Dear mr. … …. We are pleased to inform you that you will now get £loads for the REST OF YOUR LIFE…..He only lived long enough to collect One week

  • kasbah July 7, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    Another utterly heartbreaking story- on and on the killing goes. it makes me so sick and angry there are not words to express how I feel about this Condem- led euthanasia programme. It has the sinister undertones of how the Nazi party started their killing orgy- the sick and disabled were the first to be targeted, with almost identical rhetoric and propaganda in the press. i started looking into it recently- and my jaw dropped at the type of language used by the Nazi party to decry and de-humanise the disabled- because it is virtually the SAME language Camoron and his cronies are using. if you are interested in looking this up to it is on the New York Holocaust Museum website (just google it).

    Like you Jeffrey and Jane I have had fraudulent WCA “assessments”. I am in the exhausting process of appealing ESA (wrongly placed yet again in WRAG Gp- had this money cut by 100% anyway, because I have had payments for more than a year) with my general health being described as “well”- in fact the “nurse”never asked a question about my “general health” which is actually dreadful. The medical report is full of assumptions, missing info that I gave, and two blatant lies. I am also having to appeal DLA- still in low rate care group- based solely on the fraudulent ESA WCA. my GP is fantastic and said virtually no-one gets the right group in these tests and she wan’t surprised there were lies on it! Have managed to get an advocacay worker who says the same as my GP. With their invaluable support I intend to fight and fight.

    So why aren’t the architects of this horror being prosecuted? What can we do to bring them before the courts? We have to do something. Don’t know how much more of this I can bear. Courage all!

    • Jane Russell July 7, 2012 at 2:23 pm

      Thank you Kasbah. I shall look up the NYHM you speak of.

      1 little piece of advice to hopefully help you with your appeal, the ATOS button presser who assessed you as fit for work will be far less qualified (if at all) than your specialist, if you have one, or even your GP. It is important to find out what qualification this person has – could be a nurse, could be a doctor, though is unlikely to be a doctor – if it’s either of those it’s worth bringing up the fact in the appeal that a nurse or midwife knows it is a serious offence to misrepresent their qualifications as equivalent to that of a doctor. Doctors know it is a serious offence to misrepresent their qualifications to cover specialities outside their knowledge and experience – The BMC aren’t too happy at their profession being brought into disrepute. If they are not qualified as a nurse or doctor – they have no authority to judge your illness at all.

      This small piece of advice has helped some of the people that I have helped fight appeals – in all cases where it has been stated to the ‘appeal’ representatives – their faces have been shocked, because they dont expect you to know that & these people have won their appeals.

      If you are successful in your appeal, it is worth making a note of the assesors name who’s report fraudulently classed you as fit for work & making a complaint about their incompetence. If they are a doctor/nurse, you should then make a complaint – send copies to the BMA, GMC, ATOS & the DWP. The more complaints made, the more likely change will be forced upon this nazi dictator.

      If they are an unqualified button presser – complaints should be sent to the DWP & ATOS – I know that if an ATOS assesor, even a nurse or doctor gets so many complaints against them, they are often given the boot.

      The best of luck to you – glad you have some help with it as something like 65% of appeals are won if you have an official help along with you. Such a massive stressful thing to have to keep going through, which according to Doctors, is causing people to become more ill or to develop depression they’ve never suffered before.

      • kasbah July 7, 2012 at 5:36 pm

        Dear Jane

        Thank you so much for your advice and knowledge. Your kindness has given me a lift! I have the name of the button pusher and she described herself as a nurse. Do you know how I find out her actual qualification? luckily I have a witness – my partner came with me to the assessment so can testify to the lies. It took me 5 weeks and exhausting hassling of the DWP to get my medical report, when iIwas told originally that it would take only two. Wonder why that is?

        If I win my appeals I will make a complaint to the bodies you suggest. Very good idea.

        Finally I send my heartfelt condolences and support to Mark’s family. RIP Mark- you will not be forgotten.

  • james July 7, 2012 at 2:53 pm

    I cannot add to the excellent comments above we are now fully aware how evil this and the previous government was to implement such heinous welfare reforms
    RIP Mark my heartfelt sincere condolences to your Family and friends

  • DAVID A SHAW July 8, 2012 at 8:50 am

    Yet another tragedy, and another name to be added to the memory of all those who have died at the hands of this fascist government and their profit before people philosophy. The people will not take this forever, a proper investigation into the banking scandal will bring down this government, either that or the next election where they will cease to exist as a political party along with their chums the lib-dems.

  • Ron July 10, 2012 at 10:57 am

    why hasn’t / doesn’t this case go to the EU Court of Human Rights?
    isn’t it about time this government reaped the rewards of it’s nazi ponzi scheme?
    how many more have to die?

  • kasbah July 10, 2012 at 5:00 pm

    We just need the money to bring a case- any idea about how we could start looking at the case we want to bring and fundraising to get the dosh????

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