DWP tells man who cannot walk or talk to prove he is disabled

A young man who cannot walk or talk and is bound to a wheelchair has been ordered by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to prove he is disabled and unable to work.

Scott Harrison, 22, has been left to live off less than £40 a week in state benefits after his mum Anya was told he was no longer eligible for Child Benefit and has to start looking for work.

Mirror Online reports that Scott was previously entitled to Child Benefit because of being in full-time education, and has been told that he’s uneligible for other top-ups apart from Personal Independence Payments (PIP).


The 22-year-old now attends Sense College in Cambridge, a specialist college for blind-deaf students, and is currently being supported by his mother who receives just £64 a week in Carer’s Allowance – £50 of which goes directly to Papworth Hospital to pay for adapted accommodation to suit his special needs.

His PIP payments are used to pay his medical costs, while the families only other source of income, in the form of Income Support, is a meagre £41 per fortnight.

They now face the prospect of their Gas and Electricy being cut off, whilst also owing £900 in unpaid water bills, and are also fearful of losing their home.

Anya said: “It’s been a nightmare trying to get [Scott] signed up for Universal Credit – they weren’t acknowledging my emails asking for help, and when I called, they kept asking to speak to Scott, despite me repeatedly pointing out that he was non-verbal.

“When we were at the job centre, the staff were confused why he was being sent there.

“It’s terrible having to take him into public spaces for this reason; transport and noisy places upset him, and cause him to self harm.

“He has to have a restraint in place at all times.

“Our bills run high at home as my 22-year-old son has a colostomy bag and needs the heating on more due to feeling cold, while our water bill is needed due to Scott frequently soiling himself, and we need to wash him and his clothes multiple times a day.

“The housing association have been seeking a possession order, and I barely have enough money to feed myself on top of my sons.

Photo: Paula Peters

“What’s going to happen to them if something happens to me?

“I don’t want to get in more debt, I just need the help to cover these costs. I don’t want to have any more sleepless nights worrying about whether we’ll still have a roof over our heads in a few weeks.”

“I feel discriminated against”, she added.

“I’ve spent the past 20 years just fighting to get the basic stuff, and it never ends. I have to apply for loans just to afford food.”

A DWP spokesperson said: “The only reason Scott was invited to a job interview was because his application form had a box ticked saying that he was available to work, despite his health condition, something which we have clarified he doesn’t need to do.

“There have been no delays to his PIP payments.

“Anya has also started completing a form to apply for Universal Credit, but hasn’t completed it fully.

“She already receives income support, so needs to make the decision as to whether she wants to make the switch to Universal Credit.”

Get News Updates!

Register to receive a notification each time we publish a new story. Don't worry, we'll never spam you and it's easy to cancel at any time. Service provided by Google Feedburner.

- Sponsored Content -

Trending Now

UK pensioners ‘suffering the worst poverty rate in western Europe’

Tories warned against further rises to the state pension age.

Nearly half of DWP staff are dependent on benefits to make ends meet

At least 40% of DWP staff are claiming benefits to top-up low wages.

Social housing tenants who damage their home ‘should face benefit sanctions’, report says

Report claims "rogue tenants" have cost taxpayers in London around £3.4million since 2014.

A homeless person dies every 19 hours in austerity Britain

Services are failing to protect homelessness people, say campaigners.

The Latest

Nearly half of DWP staff are dependent on benefits to make ends meet

At least 40% of DWP staff are claiming benefits to top-up low wages.

New DWP Secretary refuses to commit to ending the benefit freeze

Thérèse Coffey also claimed there is "no causal link" between the two-child benefit limit and rising child poverty.

Tenancy reforms leave private renters at risk of ‘revenge evictions’

Tenants who complain about or request repairs unfairly removed from their homes.

Social housing tenants who damage their home ‘should face benefit sanctions’, report says

Report claims "rogue tenants" have cost taxpayers in London around £3.4million since 2014.

New SNP childcare pledge to ‘lift families out of poverty’

Free childcare pledge to save families £4,500 per year for each child.

2.6 million mid-life workers expect to leave their job to care for a relative

Government urged to invest in long-term and sustainable social care funding so that more people can remain in work.

Follow Us

16,668FansLike
9,373FollowersFollow

More Articles Like This