So When A High-Profile Civil Servant Is Disabled, The Press Finds Its Sympathy

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By Frances Ryan in The Guardian.

 

Andrew McDonald’s case deserves attention of course, but most disabled people get a different reception when the benefits system casts them aside.

I want to tell you about two very different disabled people, both going through Britain’s benefit system.

“Disabled person 1” has Parkinson’s disease and terminal cancer. The effects of the Parkinson’s are so severe, he’s about to undergo brain surgery in attempts to mitigate them. Still, he had his benefits stopped after assessors decided he was no longer ill enough for personal independence payments.

“Disabled person 2” has fibromyalgia – “Like the Incredible Hulk grabbed me, lifted me off the floor and flung me against a brick wall” – as well as a host of other conditions. For years she has bounced round the benefit system: tested, rejected, overturned at appeal, then tested again. Now she’s about to be re-tested twice in the space of three weeks: once for PIP and then for her out-of-work sickness benefit, employment and support allowance. It means she could potentially lose all her income at once. “So what will I live on?” she says. “More to the point, where will I live? Once they cut ESA, that means rent will stop too. That means eviction and homelessness.”

 

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Link to Disability story

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