These PIP (Personal Independent Payment) forms really do beggar belief.
I’ve finally finished a first draft to all the questions and I am an utter wreck.
To steal (may as well, nothing to lose) a phrase from Simon Cowell, ‘it’s been an emotional journey.’ But there’s no z-list stardom and a double-page spread in ‘Heat’ magazine at the end of it.
Perhaps ‘traumatic’ would be a more adequate word, because it really is. I’m sure they probably do a similar tactic when you join the SAS; breaking you down until you’re snivelling on the ground. But then! You rise up, invincible, ready to take on the world.
However, in my case, the opposite is true. They’ve broken me down. And that’s it.
I’ve taken a week off work to fill in the forms and because I’ve got a pesky MS flare-up plus a rotten, stinking cold. I’ve got a Rudolph nose, and am running out of tissues and energy.
The more I read, both in the media and in online forums, about people with MS having to go through this unnecessary process yet again the more angry I become. To put it this way, I work, and I receive Working Tax Credit, to allow me to live above the poverty line. I fill in a fairly basic form every year, stating my wages and that’s pretty much it.
However, with PIP forms, to receive additional money to pay for the extra costs attributed to disability (one like MS, as yet incurable and as yet, degenerative) I have to literally bare my soul – and my bottom.
Yep, for those unfamiliar with these forms, there’s a whole section on going to the loo. And another about personal hygiene, i.e. how well you can wash yourself. Are disabled people really reduced to these facile benchmarks?
A single form to cover every single possible disability ever recorded is ludicrous.
According to Scope, there are 13.3 million disabled people in the UK, all filling in the same form, but all expected to depict their own unique disability experience within it.
Further, you spend £550 a month per average more if you are disabled. Which is the very reason this benefit exists. And for doubters out there, disability benefit fraud is 0.5%. The lowest level of any ‘benefit’.
Makes you wonder how much is siphoned away in tax evasion?