DWP Sends ESA Work Capability Questionnaire To Terminally Ill Former Soldier
A Southport woman has spoken of her shock after her terminally ill Dad was sent a Capability For Work questionnaire.
Libby Howells revealed the distress the government’s Department for Work and Pensions has caused her family as they struggle to care for Desmond O’Toole, who served his country in the Army.
Libby said: “I’m beyond being shocked, or saddened. I’m angry. I’m fed up.
“Today my mum received a Capability For Work questionnaire for my terminally ill dad.
“He’s pictured here, because dementia doesn’t make you lose your marbles like you all think, this is what dementia does to you.
“Look. Look hard. My dad is 63, has served his country, as a Royal Engineer, has worked his whole life, he is now bed ridden and suffers from Alzheimer’s.”
Desmond O’Toole is currently being cared for at the Birch Abbey care home on Alexandra Road in Southport, where Libby says he is receiving “fantastic care”.
The proud Sandgrounder was born and bred in Southport, going to school at Stanley High.
Married to Barbara, he is a doting grandfather to George, age six, and Ella, age one.
But while the former soldier is being cared for by his family, he is being shown little care by the DWP.
Libby is now asking people to share her story so people can see just how badly her Dad, and his family, are being treated.
She said: “He has had the disease for 10 years. He’s in the end stages, he cannot do anything for himself.
“He cannot talk, walk, remember his family, chew food, wash himself. Nothing. He is cared for 24/7 in a NURSING HOME.
“The DWP have on file and know he has Alzheimer’s, they’ve been told on numerous occasions.
“However yet again they must think that somehow his brain has miraculously healed itself.
“I’m sick to death of The DWP and Iain Duncan Smith and his fat cat Tory cronies treating our terminally ill population like fraudsters.
“So yet again my Mum has to fill in another 20 page form so my Dad can get the benefits he needs.
“Please share. Please get this out there. Something needs to change. It needs to change now.”
A Department for Work and Pensions spokesman said: “We owe the men and women who have served their country a huge debt of gratitude and will do everything we can to support them.
“It’s important that people claiming Employment Support Allowance receive all the support and benefits they are entitled to, which is why on occasion we ask for questionnaires to be completed by the claimant or their next of kin.”