Malcolm Graham is a 56-year-old from Romford. He was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer in September 2013 and applied for personal independence payments (PIPs) on advice from Macmillan Cancer support and his local Citizens Advice. Pips are replacing DLA and are supposed to help people, whether in or out of work, to meet the extra costs their disability causes.{jcomments on}

Graham says he has called the appropriate department almost every day in the eight months since he applied, and is still awaiting a final decision. During that period he has endured 10 weeks of chemotherapy and a 10-hour operation in which large portions of his stomach and oesophagus were removed. He has had to rely on family and friends for financial help, but is now in arrears on his electricity bills and has recently been visited by a debt recovery firm. Without the PIP mobility support he has applied for, he is struggling to get out and about and says the wait has made him feel useless and worthless. After working for more than 40 years, he can't understand why the support he needs has been so far unattainable.

Graham isn't alone in his wait for a decision. Last week, the public accounts committee report on the disastrous implementation of PIP yet again showed the cold-hearted contempt of the Department for Work and Pensions towards disabled people.

Read the article by Sharon Brennan in the comment is free section of The Guardian


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