This is from Michelle at Fightback, posted onto facebook.
I see Pall Mall Manchester Atos PIP centre have their lift out of order yet again, and are then allegedly penalising claimants for attempting the 7 or 8 steps into the assessment centre and so called 100 metres to the furthest room from the front door, and stating on their reports that a claimant appears to have no problems with mobility as they managed the stairs, didn’t use the lift, and walked into the building over 100 metres.
Even if someone is shaking/crying and sweating profusely from the effort of trying, as my client showed in May, they may be penalised. My client was told by staff that her claim would be sent back to DWP if she couldn’t get up the stairs, she half crawled them and they witnessed her doing so. This is against The Equality Act 2010 and should be reported as it is direct disability discrimination to hold an assessment for a disability benefit in a centre with no active disabled access.
Sadly the HCP report came this week and voila her 6 year higher rate DLA mobility and car are no more and she is cured, after 2 failing hip replacements 16 yr old ago that desperately need redoing, a partial ankle replacement and severed nerves in her foot from this, and despite being on the list for an urgent right knee replacement, not to mention her spine curvature and scoliosis which also all appear to have apparently been cured. Best of all her left leg has grown miraculously 4 inches in order to match her right, all of which were causing severe walking difficulties for her. This is on top of her serious heart condition which causes her to faint when it races and bursitis of the hip and shoulder. She is a walking miracle!
All of this was because the lift was broken, yet again at the centre, or was it?
Come on ATOS after seemingly improving your practices you are seriously deteriorating fast with these cheap tricks and ridiculous reports. 10 minute reports are also being reported in some areas, how on earth can all the claimants disabilities and needs be discussed in this time adequately?
Anyone else experiencing a sharp influx in “broken lifts” anywhere else in the UK at the moment? We are very interested to hear your stories of disabled access problems and failing equipment so we can help compile a report.
There are some excellent centres out there, one in the centre of Manchester, the purpose of this post is to try and establish if these are isolated incidents, or common practice in this centre or elsewhere. If we establish if it is the latter then we can begin gathering evidence for a more serious complaint than the few relating to this we have.
Michelle Cardno, LLB hons
Disability buddy advocate