Jeremy Vine joins Norfolk campaigners for launch of inquiry into benefits for terminally ill
- Credit: Archant
TV presenter Jeremy Vine joined a group of Norfolk protestors in Westminister to discuss how the benefits system fails people with terminal illness.
Members of the Motor Neurone Disease (MND) Association travelled to parliament on July 3 for the launch of a new parliamentary inquiry report, which deemed the current benefits system "not fit for purpose" for dying people.
The inquiry heard how terminally ill people and their families, including those in Norfolk, face devastating and far reaching financial hardship and crippling debt, due to problems accessing benefits.
Currently, a person must have a life expectancy of six months or less to get fast access to benefits, with those who do not fit the rule sometimes being forced to prove they are looking for work.
As a result, the report recommended the UK government scraps the 'six-month rule' and adopt a new definition of terminal illness, mirroring the recent change in Scotland that allows clinicians to use their own judgement to certify if a person is terminally ill, with no arbitrary time limit.
You may also want to watch:
The inquiry found that the medical profession would support this change.
The MND Association and its local supporters have been campaigning for a change in the law under the 'Scrap 6 Months' banner for the last year.
- 1 Couple sell 'amazing' converted water mill after two-year renovation
- 2 Robbie Savage: 'Never mind Stuart Webber, it's all down to me'
- 3 Emergency services dealing with incident at inflatable on beach
- 4 Norwich pub's shock after city council refuse outdoor seating bid
- 5 Third time lucky for historic pub's reopening
- 6 Woman died after crash on way to visit mother's grave
- 7 Royal Mail postboxes stolen from villages
- 8 Extinction Rebellion protesters arrested for smashing Barclays windows
- 9 'We haven't slept': Primark shoppers queue outside city store from 3am
- 10 Dog ban on popular north Norfolk beaches extended
Sue Heal and Dianne Hepburn from Norfolk were among dozens of people attending a drop-in at Parliament this week.
Ms Heal, from Wymondham, said: "As an MND Association campaigner I have been raising awareness of the difficulty many terminally ill people face accessing benefits they desperately need for some time. It was a privilege to attend the Parliamentary drop in and heartening to hear the results of the report which add further weight to our call for a change in the law. The drop-in gave me a chance to speak to local MPs Peter Aldous and Brandon Lewis and welcome their support. I hope to be able to talk with other Norfolk MPs back in their constituencies and urge them to take action."
A petition calling on the government to scrap the six month rule has been signed by 16,832 and will be handed to the new prime minister in early August.