BRITISH SKELETON ORDERED TO WORK
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Starving, unable to stand and looking like he is about to waste away, this is a man deemed fit to find work and denied vital benefits by a cruel system. These shocking images show 64-year-old Liverpool man Stephen Smith in a hospital over Christmas when his severe health problems left him in such a poor state his weight dropped to just six stone and left him fearing for his life.
Despite his awful condition and history of serious health problems, Stephen was forced to get a pass out from hospital to go and fight a decision by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) which repeatedly denied him crucial benefits and insisted he was fit and capable of finding work. He won that appeal after a tribunal judge saw what should have been glaringly obvious to the DWP that Mr Smith can barely walk down the street let alone hold down a job.
Stephen’s story is one of many that expose the cruel and wicked welfare system in action at present in the United Kingdom, but even the hardest heart will surely be rocked by these images.
And what is even more shocking is that repeated calls to grant Stephen Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) were denied, despite written evidence from doctors stating that he couldn’t walk for 20 metres without collapsing with pain and exhaustion.
Stephen, from Kensington, has suffered with a number of serious conditions for several years. His most debilitating illness is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, an incurable respiratory problem that causes severe breathing issues and gets worse over time. But he also suffers with excruciating Osteoarthritis, has an enlarged prostate and uses a colostomy bag to go to the toilet.
Despite all of this, the 64-year-old failed a DWP work capability assessment in 2017, which meant his ESA payments were stopped and he was told to sign on for a £67 a week Jobseeker’s Allowance, visit the job centre once a week and prove he was looking for work. Throughout this period, Stephen was living alone and didn’t know where to turn as his health deteriorated.
He said: “I could only make it to the kitchen to make food once a day. I had no muscles in the back of my leg which meant I couldn’t stand up at all, and had to lean or sit down all the time, but they were telling me I was fit for work.”
Stephen believes he could have died if it wasn’t for two men, Tony Nelson, and Terry Craven. Tony runs the CASA community centre in Hope Street which offers support to people who don’t know where to turn. Tony introduced Stephen to Terry, a former city council welfare officer who works at the CASA advising people on benefit claims.
After Stephen was kicked off ESA, Terry took up his case and battled with the DWP to get him the benefits he knew he deserved. This included sending the opinions of two separate doctors who both confirmed the significant difficulty and pain experienced by Mr Smith when completing simple movements and daily activities.
One doctor’s note stated: “It is my opinion that Mr Smith could not walk 20 metres without pain or exhaustion.”
But despite this, in January last year, Mr Smith’s appeal was rejected by the DWP who told him that he hadn’t scored the required number of points to deem him as having ‘limited capability for work’.
Stephen and Terry continued to battle over the next year and eventually were granted the chance to fight the decision in a tribunal earlier this month, 12 months on from that DWP rejection. But that date almost came too late for Stephen who had been struggling to look after himself and suffering from deteriorating health in the intervening period.
He won it, with the judge stating that his mobility and health problems meant he satisfied the requirement for ESA. The ruling means Stephen will be put back on to ESA but Terry believes he is owed around £4,000 in back pay. He said Stephen’s case, while alarming, is not uncommon at present.
He said: “I have got lots of cases like Steve’s; I have a client at the moment that is actually on dialysis and has been thrown off benefits. And Stephen himself knows how different things could have been without Terry, Tony and the CASA.
He said: “Without them and this place I probably wouldn’t be here today, I had nowhere to turn, they have saved my life.”
Amber Rudd, whose moral corruption has been drawn to the attention of subscribers to The Ethnic European, is primarily responsible for the Department for Works and Benefits, upon whose desk the buck slithers to a stop. The former Home Secretary is in a long term relationship with Kwasi Kwarteng. Mainstream media and her parliamentary sidekicks go to great lengths to hide the government minister’s curious relationship with a sub Saharan born of Ghanaian parents.
Referring to the disturbing case of the skeletal Stephen Smith, ex-banker public schoolgirl Rudd says, “She is aware and ‘upset’ by the case and will look into it. We will have to wait and see whether any positive changes are enacted because of it.”
MICHAEL WALSH is a British born Irish journalist, broadcaster and the author of RISE OF THE SUN WEEL, EUROPE ARISE, TROTSKY’S WHITE NEGROES, MEGACAUST, DEATH OF A CITY, WITNESS TO HISTORY, REICH AND WRONG, THE BUSINESS BOOSTER and THE FIFTH COLUMN VOLUME I and II, and 50 other book titles.
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