PIP assessor terrorises household. What kind of people is Capita hiring?

This should concern anybody who has a long-term illness or disability, who has a family member with one, or may develop one in the future.

Disability News Service has reported that an assessor working for Capita, the sub-contractor hired by the Depatment for Work and Pensions to assess claims for Personal Independence Payment, basically terrorised a household.

The man, believed to be in his 50s, was carrying out the assessment at the home of Cheryl Matthews, in Cardiff.

Ms Matthews works as a customer service agent and has several long-term health conditions, including one that could cause a fatal aneurysm if she becomes anxious.

She already receives the PIP standard rates for daily living and mobility, but had requested a new assessment after her health worsened in recent months.

But the assessor seems to have been determined to ignore her information about recent events, describing them as “irrelevant”.

His attitude angered Ms Matthews’ 22-year-old son, who asked for the assessment to be ended.

On his way out, it seems the assessor shoved her son so hard that he fell against a door – then challenged him to a fight before leaving the front door open and kicking the safety gate – that protects their three dogs – off its hinges, damaging the wall of the house.

He made off, saying that he would be back to fight Ms Matthews’s son.

She has struggled to sleep since the incident, according to the report. Considering her health condition, it seems that – rather than helping Ms Matthews meet the challenges of life with a disability – the assessment put her life in danger.

We are told Capita has suspended the assessor and offered Ms Matthews £600 in compensation. South Wales Police has launched an investigation into allegations of criminal damage.

To This Writer, that seems right and proper – but what about other people facing assessment?

I should say that Mrs Mike had her PIP assessment at home, and the Capita assessor in that instance behaved in an exemplary manner. She was polite and considerate, and paid attention to everything Mrs Mike had to say.

But the incident in Cardiff suggests that others may not be so lucky.

It certainly seems appropriate to raise questions about the standards under which private companies, working for the government, hire people to carry out this work.

While the policy of privatising this task may be attractive – it allows the Conservative government to distance itself from incidents like this – it does suggest that the government is also putting people at risk.

Is this incident not an argument for these assessments to be brought back in-house – under the auspices of the public service, with higher, public-service standards?

Source: PIP assessor told claimant to ignore her ‘irrelevant’ suicide attempt… then challenged her son to a fight – Disability News Service

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  1. Dez October 26, 2019 at 3:29 pm - Reply

    In the early days of this site the DWP and Social Services were affectionately know as the SS because of the behaviour and attitude of some of their employees in dealing with those less fortunate. With Contractors obviously getting low on good quality employees, or more likely sub-contractors, we are scraping the rent-a-thug barrel to accomplish their goal by any means possible. Not good enough by a long way but also good to hear there are still some good and fair assessors out there.

  2. hugosmum70 October 26, 2019 at 3:41 pm - Reply

    lucky the son didnt fight him there and then. he might have been hospitalised if the lad was angry enough.( wonder if he was a lot younger than the assessor.? at 50 the assessor is not going to be the fittest i would say.). maybe he challenged the son so he could say he ended the assessment because the son assaulted him.? wouldnt be the first time someone had tried that on. to save face with his bosses.glad the lad kept his cool. so he cant be wrong footed.

  3. Mark allinson October 26, 2019 at 6:01 pm - Reply

    The people who do the assessments are not fit to do the job it’s a well known fact that they get a bonus for every person they fail it makes no difference if it’s a home assessment or at a centre they treat you the same way but a home assessment will be far worse because non of the other people who work in the centre would be able to hear or see what’s happening the only real way of the person who is asking for the assessment to take place in there own home would be to record it without even the assessment person knowing about it so if they did fail and it ended up in court to see if a judge says the person should get pip could play the recording in the court so it proves the lies the assessment person does on the claim and how the person was speaking.

  4. Jeffrey Davies October 26, 2019 at 6:08 pm - Reply

    Oh Eck crapita strikes again

  5. Tony Dean October 26, 2019 at 6:16 pm - Reply

    At least the BBC have it as a news item.

  6. Joanna October 27, 2019 at 3:33 am - Reply

    Where I live, Hull East Yorkshire Atos runs t PIP I have just been denied having scored 0 on everything.

    • Mike Sivier October 27, 2019 at 4:40 pm - Reply


      • Joanna October 27, 2019 at 6:52 pm - Reply

        I Will, when I got the letter Weds I was ready to give up, but my best friend told me.to appeal and now you have helped cement the determination to so, thank you!!!

        • Mike Sivier October 27, 2019 at 7:26 pm - Reply

          You’re welcome – I hope it goes your way.

    • John David Ingleson October 28, 2019 at 11:50 am - Reply

      Joana – that is by design! You must immediately apply for a mandatory re-consideration – within one month, then when they decide by quota that you are still denied – then you must appeal within the next month.

      ‘Good news – there has never been a better time to WIN an appeal with ~80% success rate! I myself, was also awarded 0 points at PIP that climbed to 8 on appeal – a severe disablement award that gave me more than my DLA Orwellian ‘indefinite’ award that they stopped!

      ‘Keep smiling and don’t give up – just keep thinking of the thousands they will backdate you with! You’ll just need to wait a year. Stay patient.

      • Joanna October 28, 2019 at 6:21 pm - Reply

        Thank you so much for your supportive words, you have brightened my day!!
        Thank you too Mike! ♡

  7. random bloke October 27, 2019 at 9:10 am - Reply

    All the more reason for all assessments to be recorded,

    The family should be properly compensated as well – if this had gone another direction and the son had actually been forced to stand their ground/defend themself they would be in prison because we all know how the “their word vs yours” game works. Could had completely ruined a person/families life.

    Kudos to the son for keeping a cool head


  8. J yemm October 27, 2019 at 4:38 pm - Reply

    No justice with these people Atos and Capita they don’t listen or look at the doctors report not interested waited almost a year for granddaughters tribunal won the case with enhancement but what we went through in that time so much worry and stress this shouldn’t be happening to sick people, shame on this government who ever decided these decisions in the first place is not in my opinion fit for government.

  9. Maxine Davies October 27, 2019 at 11:32 pm - Reply

    I’m behind you jess
    Go girl xx

  10. hugosmum70 October 28, 2019 at 1:14 am - Reply

    we all know,at least should know, that none of those in this govt is fit to be in the jobs they hold. thats why people live in fear , why the country is in the s**t state it is. and why we need an election with hopefully a labour govt in . we then stand a chance of everyone being able to lead some sort of decent life with no scraping for food, fr money to [pay bills and hopefully without the fear so many live with as a matter of course. be they homeless or with a home.

  11. John David Ingleson October 29, 2019 at 3:47 pm - Reply

    Why is my comment about my WCA still ‘awaiting moderation’, Mike?

    • Mike Sivier October 29, 2019 at 11:10 pm - Reply

      You know the rule: Don’t demand to know why a comment is in moderation, on pain of having it deleted.

      I’m extremely busy and cannot always moderate comments the instant they come in. As a matter of courtesy, I expect commenters to be patient.

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