"My support for the posting called "Health Related Benefits Reforms""
About: Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust / Adult mental health (inpatient) Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust Adult mental health (inpatient) NG3 6AA
Posted by concerned PR1 (as ),
I read with dismay the posting titled “Health Related Benefits Reforms – Your Help is Needed”
I have recently been subjected to these “reforms”, having been on Incapacity Benefit I was sent for a work assessment medical which I “passed” or “failed” depending on your point of view. Subsequently I was put on Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) and soon found myself struggling financially. Maybe, I thought, this was the kick up the proverbial I needed to get back into employment.
Soon after, I was successful in gaining employment as a Mental Health Support worker, working 16 hours a week with clients who have a mental health issue. I felt (and still feel) that I wasn’t ready to do full time hours.
Unfortunately, three weeks after starting work I contracted a severe illness which kept me off work for four and a half weeks. The organisation I work for have been very good but I was only paid statutory sick pay for the time I was off. On top of this, I did not qualify for free prescriptions and have paid, so far, over £120 in prescription and over the counter medicines which has left me in a position of getting into debt (rent, council tax, water bills etc. )
So far my mental state (I too suffer from stress, anxiety and mild depression) is holding out, and I should be able to cope (I’m looking for full-time employment which I’m not sure I’m ready for).
Over the last few months I have felt very fragile but I do realise that there are many, many people who are not able to cope with the way the Government, through its various agencies (including the DWP) are making it very difficult for people who are mentally (and physically) ill to have any hope in their roads to recovery.
Come 2013, I feel it will only get worse with the introduction of Universal Credits and the changes in the way Housing and Council Benefits are funded. It's my opinion that there will be more and more people getting into debt and ultimately having to seek professional help (at a cost to the nation) as their mental wellbeing will suffer.
I would like to offer my moral support to the person who wrote the posting.