Sir David Crausby’s recent campaign on Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and its strain on mental health services has highlighted the devastating impact that austerity politics is having on British people and the NHS.
I condemn this Conservative Government’s record on welfare, which punishes the most vulnerable people in society by making it difficult to access their benefits or denying them outright. PIP is just the latest in this Government’s record in attacking vulnerable British people, whilst rewarding the top one percent, which is done in the name of ‘austerity’. The PIP application form needs to be simplified so that people with mental health issues are able to claim their benefits and mental health workers are not put under strain and can get on with their jobs.
The demand for mental health services is on the rise with the subject of mental health becoming a less taboo subject (although more work is needed on this area), alongside growing poverty contributes to rising levels of poor mental health. It is shameful that the Conservatives are compounding this by making application forms excessively complicated. I would like to see better levels of access to assessment, treatment and care for people to lead a better life. One major solution would be to conduct eligibility assessments in Bolton, rather than demanding that claimants travel to Manchester or Preston to be assessed. This is hugely demanding for anybody with a mobility impairment, and can be very difficult for people with mental health conditions.
This is why I am calling for the PIP application form to be simplified for everyone involved. This will enable people to access the support they need and alleviate the stress placed on the NHS, allowing mental health professionals to continue with their job. With NHS staff leaving because of long hours and Brexit, it is imperative that we make conditions easier for them to be able to work productively without worrying about work/life balance we need to take steps to alleviate their suffering.
As Sir David Crausby put it: “PIP is so complex that it risks putting people into financial and mental crisis unless they have NHS staff guiding them, the system is simply not working and is clearly in need of a overhaul to make sure it works for everyone”.
If you need advice on how to claim PIP then go to these websites: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/pip/help-with-your-claim/how-to-claim/