Atos Fit-For-Work Row: Carer For Bolton Amputee Who Had Benefits Cut Speaks Out

Huffington Post

Huff post uk

 

Posted: 25/03/2013 16:53 GMT  |  Updated: 25/03/2013 18:30 GMT

CASCADE NEWS PIC Mark Evans, of Bolton  who, despite having had a brain tumour and his leg amputated, has been declared fit to work and had his benefits slashed. Mark, 50, is pictured with Denise Lonsdale of the Bolton Unemployed Advice Centre.
CASCADE NEWS PIC Mark Evans, of Bolton who, despite having had a brain tumour and his leg amputated, has been declared fit to work and had his benefits slashed. Mark, 50, is pictured with Denise Lonsdale of the Bolton Unemployed Advice Centre.

 

A community worker caring for a man who was found fit for work despite previously suffering a brain tumour and having an amputated leg has described the desperate conditions of “hundreds of people” who have fallen through the net.

Denise Lonsdale, a volunteer manager at the Bolton Unemployment Advice Centre, is supporting Mark Evans with his appeal after he had his incapacity benefits cut by £440 a month.

She told the Huffington Post UK his case is one of many since the introduction of new welfare reforms and that the centre is now forced to hand out food to people coming for advice.

Mrs Lonsdale, who is a carer herself, described Mr Evan’s particular case:

“It shouldn’t be happening. I’ve been looking after him since 1993 when he became ill.

“He’s not the first one either, I’ve seen a lot more. He’s one of many that it’s been happening to. Mark just put the lid on it. We’ve got hundreds of people here who have fallen through the net.”

Mr Evans had a brain tumour in 1993 and had his left leg amputated below the knee in 2004 after contracting deep vein thrombosis. His case was first reported in the Bolton News. She said he is far from being ‘fit to work,’ despite what Atos found.

“These people [who perform the fit-for-work assessments] are the cruellest people in the world,” she said.

“How can you sit in front on someone with one leg, a speech impediment and a brain tumour and find them fit for work?

“Mark is so thin he can’t even wear a false leg, what with fitting it and everything. What kind of work could they give him?

“He tried to make a joke of it saying ‘I can stack shelves but I’ll have to only stack the bottom ones.’ It’s just so sad.”

disabled

There have been protests outside the Department of Work and Pensions over the fit-for-work assessment 

She said one person who was found fit for work later died before they had a chance to win their appeal, but she said the family are devastated and want no media attention.

“People are scared to speak out in case they lose their money but we had someone who died during the appeal process after being declared fit for work. This country is going backwards.

“I get so fed up when I see the government talking about people who are claiming benefits fraudulently on the TV when they are committing fraud by denying benefits to people who need them. I just have to turn it off. I’m disgusted and disappointed in Mr Cameron. He’s got as much economic sense as my nine-year-old niece.

“The Paralympics were phenomenal but the government are trying to portray that all people can do these things. They can’t There’s few enough jobs for the able-bodied, let alone if you’re disabled.”

dwp

Protests were held outside DWP headquarters where scuffles broke out between protesters and police earlier in 2012

 

In a damning indictment of Cameron’s big society, Mrs Lonsdale explained how they now gave out food.

“We have to give out bread and cheese to people that’s been donated to us by supermarkets, when they come to see us and peoples’ money has been stopped and they’re hungry. It’s ridiculous, you’d think we were in a third world country. The government’s taking away everything, they’ll take away our pride next.”

She said she had experienced the cuts herself adding,

“I’m a carer for my husband with Parkinsons. I get £58 a week and I have to keep the heating on all the time for him. I’m relying on the welfare state and I’m scared what change I’m going to wake up to in the morning. I paid into the system for 30 years and I always thought there would be enough to look after me in my old age but it doesn’t seem that way.”

A Department for Work and Pensions spokesman said: “The old incapacity benefits system condemned too many people to a life on benefits with little hope of moving back to work.

“Now, people who can work will be given help to find a job while those who need unconditional support will get it. Since 2010 we have considerably improved the Work Capability Assessment process.

“As a result the percentage of people getting long-term unconditional support has more than doubled in two years, but everyone has the right to appeal if they disagree with the outcome of their assessment.”

DISABILITYAtosAtos AssessmentBoltonBolton Community WorkersDenise Lonsdale,DISABILITYFit For WorkMark EvansUK NEWSUK News

The Huffington Post 

See: Bolton News: ‘Amputee in Bolton declared “fit to work” and has his benefits cut’ Posted on March 23, 2013

 

Comments
  • maureen March 26, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    I’ve been told that I cant appeal on my Disicion untill next March I have RA and I am unable to wright or type,due to the disabilty in my hands yet they are unable to suggest any training or job that I can do I now recive no benefit payment as I have a small works pension that pays my home loan -I dont see any way out here

    • John Lanigan March 27, 2013 at 12:54 am

      Maureen, there is lots of help to be found, Housing Associations, Local Authority offices, Community Advice Centres will usually have Welfare Rights people that can help. Or contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau to get help to appeal and advice on benefits entitlement. Don’t delay!

  • jeffery davies March 26, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    Maureen come across to http://www.dwpexamination.org and find help and friends it doesn’t cost and appeal their shitte jeff3

  • jay March 26, 2013 at 9:07 pm

    DWP Tory stooge says “The old incapacity benefits system condemned too many people to a life on benefits with little hope of moving back to work.”

    That’s because they were too ill to find work and those who could work a few hours were discouraged by DWP draconian rules. ie it wasn’t worth the bloody bother.

    DWP Tory stooge says “Now, people who can work will be given help to find a job while those who need unconditional support will get it.

    In reality bully and force people onto the work programme or sanction them and leave them with nowt

    DWP Tory stooge says
    “Since 2010 we have considerably improved the Work Capability Assessment process.”

    That’s why this article is about a man with a brain tumour and amputation being found fit for work by Atos, This is what the DWP call an improvement.

  • Workhouse March 26, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    An Atos Healthcare spokesman said: “While we cannot comment on individual cases, we can confirm that if our doctors or nurses detect evidence of a serious medical condition in anyone being assessed they take appropriate action such as calling an ambulance.

    Translation “Should you drop dead during the assessment we will phone for an ambulance in order to give ourselves plausible deniability and prevent litigation.”

    “The role of our doctors and nurses is to carry out work capability assessments on behalf of the DWP under their guidelines and not to conduct a thorough medical examination.

    Translation “It is not our fault, our carefully trained bedpan assistants have only done what the bad boy’s told us to do. As bedpan assistant’s we are not qualified to carry out a thorough medical examination, yet we can ignore qualified general practitioners and the opinion of other professionals.”

    “The DWP make the final decision on benefit entitlement.”

    Translation “it really is not our fault it is the other bad guys.”

    A spokeswoman for the DWP said: “A decision on whether someone is well enough to work is taken following a thorough face-to-face assessment and after consideration of all the supporting medical evidence provided by the claimant at the time.

    Translation “If you drop dead after our thorough face-to-face assessment it can only be because you did not provide enough medical evidence.”

    “If someone disagrees with the outcome of their assessment, they have the right to submit new evidence and appeal.”

    Translation “After your death we will reinstate your benefits, because after all we are the good guys and do not make mistakes”

    The Truth Is Like A Lion You Do Not Have To Defend It. Simply Set It Free And It Will Defend Itself.

    Previously posted this at http://www.dwpexamination.org

  • Kay March 26, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    i write on behalf of kay ,she as severe ms,and alot of other disabling conditions,she is classed as bilateral,she cant do out for herself ,and all this is scareing her,as she as 4 carers and 3 family carers in total,shes terrified ,

  • Laz March 27, 2013 at 12:00 am

    We already have seen the document that was leaked by a very good person about the figures that Jobcentre employees are supposed to reach from Walthamstow Jobcentre . The Politicians have continuously denied there were any quota’s and now it is confirmed they have lied . It again is obvious that the Atos Medicals are as we have always said being run to produce secret figures required as well . This Government blatantly lies to its electorate and in effect commits perjury by these actions . These criminals are in effect pushing foreword an unman-dated agenda of their own to take the rites of the people away.

  • John Lanigan March 27, 2013 at 1:06 am

    Good on Denise for highlighting this shocking treatment of a disabled man. Unfortunately, Mark is not the only one to fall victim to this inhumane benefits system, thousands are wrongly being labelled fit for work. We must fight on until the people of this country get the help that they both need and deserve in a civilised society.

  • Thomas March 27, 2013 at 4:27 am

    They are trying to wipe us out. I don’t know what we can do about it.

  • GEOFF REYNOLDS March 27, 2013 at 9:57 am

    Quite looking forward to the riots that will ensue. DWP offices and ATOS examination centres burned to the ground.

    Protestors baying like wolves as they turn on the society that failed to listen….

    Unregistered guns on the streets, battle plans drawn and people fleeing for their lives…

    Politicians leaving in a hurry as parliament comes under siege…..

    People power, an amazing cleansing tool……….

  • Humanity2012 March 27, 2013 at 10:36 am

    We Need an End to this Nazi Style Victimisation of the Poor and Vulnerable

    May the Spirit of Liberty True and Eternal go Forth and Bring a Reality of
    Decent Government and Policies through Peaceful Revolutionary Mobilisation
    of the Masses

  • Serenity March 27, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    “These people [who perform the fit-for-work assessments] are the cruellest people in the world,” she said.

    “How can you sit in front on someone with one leg, a speech impediment and a brain tumour and find them fit for work?

    http://mindinflux.wordpress.com/2010/10/26/disability-and-propaganda/

    “People are scared to speak out in case they lose their money but we had someone who died during the appeal process after being declared fit for work. This country is going backwards.

    http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/newspapers_nazi_germany.htm

  • kenneth gillion March 31, 2013 at 1:42 pm

    what would happen to us if we decided not to pay the bedroom tax, would they take us to court for the arrears because if they did then we could say, ok i will pay a pound a week, is that possible.

  • kenneth gillion April 2, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    got it from horses mouth that if you refuse to pay bedroom tax or council tax contributions you would land up in court and or get a visit from the bailifs. sorry folks it looks like they got it all covered.

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