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‘Starving’ since cut in benefit

A JOB-seeking teenager who had her benefits stopped two weeks ago says she can no longer afford to eat.

A JOB-seeking teenager who had her benefits stopped two weeks ago says she can no longer afford to eat.

Natasha Bonjovi from Olton admitted she has been ‘starving’ since last Monday after Solihull Job Centre stopped her fortnightly payments.

The 19-year-old, pictured, has learning difficulties and has struggled in her long-standing attempt to find employment.

Her mother whom she lives with doesn’t work either as she is disabled.

As a result Natasha has been claiming job seekers allowance for six months but was told she would no longer receive money from the benefit.

Speaking last week, the Masons Way resident said: “I’ve had to starve for the last three days because I haven’t got enough money for food.

“I apply for the jobs that are given to me by the centre but no-one will take me on.”

The former Forest Oak School student has applied for everything from potwashing, cleaning and bread collecting but without success.

Although she has no experience Natasha believes the reason for the rejections is because she attended the special school in Castle Bromwich.

“I’m willing to work anywhere but whenever I mention my old school I get an automatic no,” she said.

“I tried going to college but I gave up because I was bullied.”

Natasha has heart problems and severe asthma but is desperate to find work after losing her £97 fortnightly benefit.

The Department for Work and Pensions(DWP) refused to explain why Natasha’s benefits had been stopped but issued this statement.

“To successfully make a claim for Jobseeker’s Allowance the customer must be available for work, actively seeking a job, and satisfy the rules for benefit entitlement.

“If a customer fails to meet the rules their benefit payments could be stopped. Following this the customer will need to make an application to have their payments reinstated “



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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