A TENANTS’ champion who has been told he must go back to work despite having four heart attacks says he has been left “financially destitute” and shivering cold with only a duvet to keep him warm.
The 61-year-old man – a longstanding District Management Committee activist who did not want to be named – has been fighting for his Employment Support Assessment (ESA) benefits to be reinstated after they were removed following a “work capability assessment” on September 9.
The man has been diagnosed with pancreatitis, heart disease and suffers from “anxiety and stress”, according to his appeal letter, which adds that his condition has “deteriorated considerably” since the test.
“I am financially destitute after this decision was made,” the man said in his letter, seen by the New Journal. “I am unable to heat my home and pay for my heating costs, and because of this my health has been affected. I have received no social security benefit since the decision was made and I am living in a home where my only form of warmth is a duvet cover.”
On Tuesday, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) dismissed his appeal saying they did not have to take this into consideration and are satisfied that his condition is not “uncontrollable or life-threatening”.