This grandmother DIED weighing just three stone because the Tories LIED about reviewing benefits for the terminally ill

Christine McCluskey: when she died, after your Tory government cut her benefits, she weighed just three stone.

Christine McCluskey did not have to die in the humiliating way your Conservative government demanded.

The 61-year-old grandmother had suffered long-term health problems most of her adult life including Crohn’s disease – which left her with a colostomy bag – osteoporosis, arthritis, a stroke and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

This housebound lady had a feeding tube and a painful fistula that leaked through her abdominal wall, she was severely malnourished and was being investigated for a worrying cough at the time the Department for Work and Pensions assessed her for Personal Independence Payment.

The decision: her payments of £117.85 per week were removed and her mobility car was taken away from her.

Weeks later she was diagnosed with terminal cancer but her payments were not restored. She died four months after her benefits were stopped, weighing just three stone.

She was unable to receive fast-track access to PIP that is available for people with terminal illnesses who have less than six months to live, because she was unable to show when she was likely to die.

But doesn’t her case, along with those of Stephen Smith and Errol Graham, show that – deprived of benefits – people definitely will die within the six months stipulated?

The matter is even worse, though: The Tory government promised to review its six-month rule more than a year ago – and then forgot about it.

In the time since then, it is believed that more than 3,000 people have died in similar ways to Ms McCluskey while the Tories sat on their thumbs.

Earlier this month, motor neurone disease sufferer Lorraine Cox won a court case demanding a judicial review of the rules that demand only people with certain illnesses, who can prove they will die within six months, may claim PIP on the fast-track system.

So the Tories will have to go to court and defend their decision (albeit by omission) to cause these thousands of deaths.

Or will they just quietly announce a rule change between now and the hearing, as they have with the safeguarding rules that failed Errol Graham?

Whatever happens, it seems a rule change will happen. If so, This Writer hopes the families of the deceased – likely to number more than 20,000 over the last six years – demand compensation through the courts.

More than 300 are already doing this over a change in Universal Credit rules, after the system that deprived people of benefit because they were paid on different dates at the end of each month was condemned as “irrational” by the Court of Appeal.

Will the Tories care?

That is a good question, that cuts to the heart of Conservative policy on benefits.

It has been argued that the benefit system is heartless and kills people because the Tories want to save money and don’t care if people die as a result.

But their system of constant review and persecution is actually more expensive than simply paying the benefits – especially when one adds in the cost of appeals by all the claimants who have been denied benefits under false pretences, and now the cost of compensation claims.

Current Tory measures have done nothing to reduce benefit fraud, which remains a miniscule proportion of all claims.

So it seems we should ask the question nobody seems willing to ask:

Did the Tories impose these rules simply because they wanted to kill vulnerable people?

Source: Grandmother, 61, with terminal cancer died weighing three stone after DWP stopped her benefits

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5 thoughts on “This grandmother DIED weighing just three stone because the Tories LIED about reviewing benefits for the terminally ill

  1. kateuk

    The Tories don’t “forget” to review things, they don’t want to do the reviews because they don’t want to change anything so they just push them under the carpet.

  2. Grey Swans

    Dear Vox Political,
    This grandmother died at age 61 because of women’s pension age rise from 60 that New Labour Blair and Brown did not get rid of 1995 pension act that brought that about, and passed further pension age rise to 67 and 68 by 2007 pension act.

    She would not have had to rely on so easily withdrawn benefit.

    Her last years could have been comfortable at least, albeit not well off, as state pension is the lowest of any rich nation on earth, far below the current inadequate minimum wage.

    I campaigned throughout Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of Labour, as Grey Swans (and before then Pension 60 Now) for his policy of pension age 60 for men and women, stated in his speeches over the decades and from 1983 Labour manifesto when he was first elected MP.

    Jeremy Corbyn came, it is said, only 3000 votes from winning as Prime Minister in 2017 election.

    The 1950s ladies are about 5000 women in each constituency.

    Neither 2017 nor 2019 Labour manifestos held any meaningful pension policies, so right wing admin and MPs ensured the loss of the vital Grey Vote, who are the majority age group in vital small town marginals.

    The 1960s born women would have voted for Jeremy Corbyn, as they turned 60 from 2020 onwards, with manifesto pledge of immediate pension age 60 payment.

    The I Daniel Blake men would have escaped benefit as well, by pension age 60.

    Pension age rise for women resulted in 100 per cent rise of men and women from age 60 on benefit.

    The new socialist parties do not have pension policies, as too complex, but us 1950s and 1960s women became the state pension experts (and so the non party canvassers when such policy is in their manifestos).

    Help Grey Swans to win big the vital Grey Vote, by helping getting socialist pension policies to help men and women from 60, and get the welfare state back for everyone else, from 2024 general election.
    Please sign and widely share my Grey Swans petition –

  3. Jeffrey davDav

    Oh dear yet another that the dwp will say they ain’t bad and they had slipped through their very very thorough criteria and now they will learn a very valuable lesson they now stomp down harder but tell you they trying very hard to put it right while quietly giving aktion T4 a nudge so that more fall how quaint they are telling you they learned by their mistakes

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      I think the proper term is “cute” – in its meaning as “clever or cunning, especially in a self-seeking or superficial way”.

  4. The Toffee (597)

    Anybody who eve attempts to mitigate this needs a bloody good kicking to within an inch of their lives.

    Words fail me every bit as much as this shitty nation has failed that poor, poor woman.

Comments are closed.