December 7 2013 Latest news:
Dominic Bareham, senior reporter
Thursday, January 10, 2013
A petition is being started calling on the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) not to cut the disability benefit received by a Norfolk man who lost his leg.
Toni Mba, 24, partner of Bobby Kilkenny, 29, from Diss, has launched the petition on social networking website Facebook appealing against a DWP decision to cut his Disability Living Allowance (DLA) high rate mobility and low rate care allowance following a reassessment of his needs which had deemed that his mobility had improved.
She has already sent the DWP a letter appealing against the decision and received a reply from the DWP stating they were “looking into the situation.
However, she feared an appeal decision would not be made for between eight and 12 weeks, by which time Mr Kilkenny would have lost his benefits as they are due to be cut at the end of January.
So she has also appealed for help to find a disability car as Mr Kilkenny, who works for John Doe Carpets in Diss, was hoping to use the benefit to buy a car to get him to his work and also for treatment at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, as well as other longer journeys he needs to make.
Currently, he relies on Miss Mba to drive him in her Rover Metro, while a work colleague who lives nearby also provides him with lifts into work.
She said when she called the DWP after receiving the letter, she was told Mr Kilkenny had to be completely immobile to receive the benefit, but she said although he could walk short distances, anything further than a mile away was too uncomfortable for him to walk on his prosthetic right leg, which could become sore and painful.
He has also had accidents falling over while walking on uneven ground because of his prosthetic leg and she has had to drive him to hospital for treatment for rib injuries sustained during a fall and also to get the gel sock for his prosthetic limb replaced.
Mr Kilkenny initially broke his right leg while playing football in a sunday league match for Wortham in 2008, but suffered repeated infections and the decision was made to amputate the leg.
Since then, he has endured months of rehabilitation after being fitted with a prosthetic limb, while his partner helps him around the home.
Miss Mba said: “Trying to find a car that is suitable for his needs is like trying to find a needle in a haystack. We are considering buying a standard Peugeot and having that custom made for his needs.”
To sign the petition, visit http://www.facebook.com/groups/517718691592132/?notif_t=group_r2j#!/groups/517718691592132/ or the Diss branch of Thurlow Nunn in Victoria Road.