DWP letter asking me to attend a meeting. — Scope | Disability forum
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DWP letter asking me to attend a meeting.

rosscolfc
rosscolfc Member Posts: 26 Courageous
So I was born with a muscle condition that causes chronic pain, I can't make a fist my arm and legs aren't flexible like they should be, the condions got worse over time and I'm now on morphine. I walk mainly with a stick, although when I shop I use a trolly etc as it helps. But my conditions not 100% visible. I have good days and bad. The last two days for example I've been lying flat with hot water bottles but some days I feel ok (for me) so may do some gardening, go fishing and I've even started playing walking football 1hr a week as my consultants said it could help with muscle strength as a form of Physio, but I know that when ever I do any of the above for my own sanity, I'm them layer up in pain for two/three days at best, sometimes a week or more.

anyway today I received aletter asking me to attend a meeting at the job centre, I called the man on the letter who advised me that they needed to check my information as "a member of the public has made them aware of something"

so basically someone has told Dwp I'm not disabled or I'm a benefit cheat!
How can this be, surely being disabled from birth and seeing many doctors over the years counts for more than a "nosy neughbour" who dosent know the first thing about me?

imagine if I'd accused someone of a crime and it was proved I'd made it up, I'd then be prosecuted. But I'll guess I'll never be able to discover who's done this to me?

id just about come to terms with life, I was very depressed after finishing work, I had to seek help From the GP, the irony is I even posted a mini story here yesterday describing how I'd over come my own stigma, but today I found myself as depressed as ever, I can honestly understand now why people, do the unthinkable, if it wasn't for my children and fiancé, if I was single I think today could have been the day I gave up. 

Do people really think I enjoy being disabled? Is it sour grapes? I'd give up every penny to be healthy! 

Comments

  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,682 Disability Gamechanger
    Oh @rosscolfc that is a really difficult situation.  

    I have an 'invisible disability' and I speak out publicly about it and Ive had mean emails before saying how can I manage to go to another city and have a photo smiling on facebook yet I complain about fatigue and joint pain! They don't know that it takes all I have to lead the life I do and just because I dont post photos of me crying in pain on the bathroom floor doesnt make my illness any less real!

    Let us know how you get on.
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • rosscolfc
    rosscolfc Member Posts: 26 Courageous
    edited January 2017
    Cheers, it's shocking isn't it, the whole culture is flawed. 
    I mean benifit fraud is suposed to cost the country around £1bn yet our local councils are asking people to "be vigilant" and "report annomasly" yet tax fraud of the super rich is supposed to be £14bn and yet we see nothing. 

    I even read this week that there are 2000 employees at DWP hunting benefit fraud and only 400 at inland revenue hunting tax fraud? 

    dont get me wrong fakers should be caught, but I feel more harms being done by this vilifying of invisible disability. It's already bad enough being 34 and using a blue badge, the looks I get are shocking, without the government then publicly asking for "information" 

    thought inthe the news today it stated that any hate crime has to be recorded? If this is the case why aren't "false reports" filed as hate crime?
    maybe when I see DWP at my interview I'll mention that I'd like the police to investigate it as a hate crime? 
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,610 Disability Gamechanger
    I have heard good advice that people should not post anything on the net that they would not shout from the rooftops - in any context.
  • rosscolfc
    rosscolfc Member Posts: 26 Courageous
    That's all well and good, but if you have nothing to hide why should you live in shadows? 

    Are te you surgesting disabled people should not do anything have hobbies or interests. Disabled or not life is about living, not just existing!
  • Matilda
    Matilda Member Posts: 2,610 Disability Gamechanger
    Yes, of course they should have hobbies and interests.  But, the DWP have been known to spy on disabled people on Facebook for photos of them being active which the DWP, rightly or wrongly, think indicate that they are not as disabled as they say they are.  And therefore are fit for work, although signed off, or not eligible for the PIP which they are currently in receipt of.  The DWP will look for any excuse to reduce or remove benefit.
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,628 Pioneering
    Hi rosscolfc

    I think this is one of the hardest things and no doubt it has got a lot worse over the last number of years.

    We can't address the underlying issue being discussed on this thread but as benefits advisers we can help with the technical side of things. If you'd like our help please let us know which benefit has been affected and we will make sure you are aware of the assessment criteria.

    David
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland
  • rosscolfc
    rosscolfc Member Posts: 26 Courageous
    Over the phone I was told ESA. 
    Cheers David. 
  • BenefitsTrainingCo
    BenefitsTrainingCo Member Posts: 2,628 Pioneering
    In ESA, generally it is your ability to perform a task "most of the time". And so for example if you cannot perform a task on 4 days out of 7 then you should meet the requirement for the benefit.

    Whether you can do things repeatedly, reliably and safely should also be taken into account, together with the effects of pain. Where a descriptor refers to 'always' this does not mean 'at all times', and so intermittent disablement may still lead to a decision that a descriptor is satisfied 'always'.

    Here is a link to the DWP's opinion of how decision makers should arrive at these decisions, which can sometimes be helpful. It is paragraphs 42270 to 42281 that you are likely to find most helpful.

    David
    The Benefits Training Co:
    Paul Bradley
    Michael Chambers
    Will Hadwen
    Sarah Hayle
    Maria Solomon
    David Stickland

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