CANCER patients and Down’s Syndrome sufferers are just some of the cases being turned down for vital benefits in Solihull.
And the boss of DIAL (Disability Information and Advice Line), Alice Singleton says the Kingshurst charity has been ‘‘swamped’’ in recent months by clients who have been turned down for support.
“We are seeing a lot of cases where vulnerable people are being turned down for the Education and Support Allowance (ESA), which replaced the Incapacity Benefit.
‘‘We are swamped and I can’t see the load lightening soon.
“People are going to find themselves in a very similar situation when the transition from the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) to the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) comes in.
“I am attending around five tribunals a month for people who have had their claims turned down and this is after their appeal has been turned down.
“I have not lost a single case yet, which begs the question, why are they at this stage in the first place?”
Hordes of readers recently contacted the Solihull News with fears their DLA would be cut following the changes next year.
Mrs Singleton added: “People are scared about what will happen when these changes come in.
‘‘We are advised that the new process will be a ‘points-scoring’ exercise.
‘‘The experience we have just had with the change over from Incapacity Benefit to Employment and Support has been farcical, with very disabled people being awarded zero points.”
Mrs Singleton has urged anyone who is undergoing the transfer from DLA to PIP to get in touch with DIAL as soon as they receive their new PIP claim pack by calling 0121 770 0333.