Amputee, John Bower
A MAN who has had both legs amputated is struggling to survive financially – because bureaucrats are still deciding if he is disabled.
For the past 20 weeks John Bower and wife Jayne say they have been living through a nightmare while officials from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) decide if he is eligible for Disability Living Allowance.
The Golcar couple claim they have had to answer numerous questions from civil servants – even though a simple check would reveal that Mr Bower has had both legs amputated below the knee.
Despite the DWP being supplied with medicals details from a consultant, the couple were then asked questions which included:
How far he could walk?
When would he be able to walk?
Was it true that he had prosthetic legs?
The couple are also waiting for a house in Kirkheaton to be adapted by Kirklees Council, which promised that it would take six weeks. That was 12 weeks ago.
The council has rehoused John, 45, and Jayne, 48, in a bedsit with twin beds in a sheltered housing scheme off Sycamore Avenue, Golcar. The couple are trying to manage on £81.61 a week sickness benefit, plus £10 a fortnight housing benefit.
Their nightmare began last October when John returned to their semi-detached Bradley council house feeling unwell after his day’s work as an installation engineer for Fujitsu.
His conditioned worsened and in the early hours of Saturday, a bruise appeared on John’s leg and he began to swell and sweat profusely. Jane called 999 and a paramedic arrived swiftly on the scene.
John was rushed to hospital where meningitis was diagnosed. Septicaemia set in and he almost died. He had to be resuscitated three times by doctors at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary and a priest was called.