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Thread: WRAG to Support Group Help/Advice

  1. #1

    Angry WRAG to Support Group Help/Advice

    Hi everyone, I've just joined and this is a really long post, so my apologies. Any help/advice would be very appreciated.

    I am looking (hoping) for some urgent help regarding my ESA claim. I've been on Income Related ESA for the past three/four years because of my depression and severe anxiety. Last year I was forced to sign up to go to Avanta Work Program and I stupidly did not realise at the time I could have said I wasn't ready to do it, but job centre advisor said is was madatory. Anyway because of my anxiety I cannot use buses (something traumatic happened to me a few years back on one) and the advisor at job centre said Avanta would refund my only means of transport Taxi's, so I signed the form and that was that. A few weeks later I attended Avanta for the first time and they simply outright refused to refund taxix although I had the tickets etc. Since then (almost 8 months) they have not refunded a single penny to me. So clearly DWP and Avanta are breaking their own rules.

    So over the past 3/4 months I'd noticed a severe deterioration in my depression and anxiety and obviously sought help via my GP and was given new medication etc. The medication works to a certain extent but makes me so tired and dizzy all the time. My GP was concerned with me attending the work program and basically told me outright she did not think I should be going to it especially when I told her they tried to force me to attend a three day course and I can't be in groups with people. The advisor at Avanta basically said to me when I told her, that I should be more concerned with my money being sanctioned than my own mental health (nice huh?). My GP recoomended I ask DWP to put me in the support group, so called them in Jan of this year, then wrote a letter with a letter/report from my GP. Two weeks later I call DWP they say they have not received it, so I wrote another letter and they arranged appointment with job centre (last Thursday) to scan it over alongside copy of GP letter. The second letter I wrote (that got scanned over on 27-2-2015) was more detailed than the first one so in a strange way it was a good thing the first got lost.

    So this morning I get the brown envelope of doom and the DWP have declined to move me into the support group. On the letter they say they received the letter I originally was told had been lost on 12.02.2015, which as I said before was not as detailed as my second letter, but when I called them they wouldn't admit to this, basically said they had no record of the letter they sent me this morning on their system? Which means I will have to continue to attend the work program and be forced to apply for jobs they want me to apply for because they get brownie points (as we know) and to force me onto courses that I simply can't do. I'm torn between my health (attending work program and setting me back even further), and money (threat of being sanctioned if I don;t attend). I should also mention that two weeks ago I passed my claim for 'Personal Independence Payment' and was awarded 'Standard Daily Living' which I'm happy about and won;t be appealing that.

    Is there anything I can do to get myself out of this situation because I have reached a brick wall. So any help would be very much appreciated. Thank you.

  2. #2
    Please can someone help me. It would be such a relief to me, Thanks

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Hello james25252525

    Sorry to read your post - cannot offer much advice and I am sure someone will come along and do that soon. But it maybe that professional advice form a welfare benefits advisor would be the best route.

    Just a thought - did your letter say you could have a mandatory reconsideration? if so then that may be the way to go. Potentially getting your GP to help you fit in the effects your medical condition has on your life, ability to work and safety of yourself. It appears by what you have said in your post you may fit into Exceptional Circumstances but I am unsure how you go about this process of change.

    (see link)

    You seem like you have your GP on your side which is good but I am not sure what else to advise. Maybe contact your MP.

    Sorry I couldn't be more help but as I say I am sure that someone will be ome along soon and advise.

    Good Luck PB

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