Yet another man’s death has been attributed to the work capability assessment (WCA).
Paul Donnachie was said have have had severe mental health problems. This could very well be the reason he missed four WCAs.
It seems the DWP does not have any mechanism in place to ensure people with mental illnesses are aware they need to attend the fake ‘medical’ assessments – or, if there is such a mechanism, it appears not to have been followed in Mr Donnachie’s case.
People with mental health issues who have been through the DWP’s WCA wringer are often likely to have “brown envelope phobia” – an irrational fear of government letters that means they often fail to open them and read the contents. Mr Donnachie may not have known that he was missing face-to-face interviews that were vital for the future of his benefit payments.
It is a damning indictment against Glasgow City Council and his landlord (if different) that, having cut his housing and council tax benefits, nobody checked on Mr Donnachie to find out how he was proposing to live.
Only last week, Iain Duncan Smith wrote to Commons work and pensions committee chairman Frank Field to say the DWP takes its duty of care seriously. This suggests that the DWP is guilty of neglecting that duty, laying it open to a charge of corporate manslaughter.
If Mr Donnachie’s sister is serious in her intention to demand an inquiry into the death, then it seems likely that this is the charge that Iain Duncan Smith will face.
A mentally ill man who committed suicide after his benefits were stopped was “murdered” by the Government, his sister has said.
Paul Donnachie’s disability benefit was ended in June 2015 after he missed four work capability assessments by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).
The DWP then informed Glasgow City Council that Mr Donnachie was capable of working, and that his housing and council tax benefits should also be stopped.
The welfare cuts were backdated, so by the time the 50-year-old was informed, he was already in arrears with rent and council tax.
His body was found in his Glasgow flat in January by bailiffs arriving to evict him, but he is thought to have killed himself two months earlier. He had severe mental health problems.
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