Caz

Benefits Delay left me and my two teenage children with just £177 per week to live on.

I’m fifty years old and have two teenage children, aged 15 and 17. I’m currently going through a relationship separation after 18 years. I have been alcohol dependent and suffered from depression for 12 years. As I started my rehabilitation, I needed to change from JSA to ESA. At the same time, my 18 year relationship finished and I had to notify the DWP of a change in my circumstances that would affect my benefits.

I completed all the paperwork and then was left for 8 weeks with just child benefit to support me and my children whilst my claim was ‘processed’. During that time I was made to feel like a second class citizen. I ended up having to get vouchers to go to a food bank, but I was told I could only have a maximum of 3 vouchers – no one seemed to care that I had no money for 8 weeks.

I am now in recovery and I do voluntary work with Voices of Stoke to help others who need support and I’m involved with a new Recovery Coalition that aims to provide help, support and encourage people to become independent and empowered citizens of their communities.

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Caz

Benefits Delay left me and my two teenage children with just £177 per week to live on.

I’m fifty years old and have two teenage children, aged 15 and 17. I’m currently going through a relationship separation after 18 years. I have been alcohol dependent and suffered from depression for 12 years. As I started my rehabilitation, I needed to change from JSA to ESA. At the same time, my 18 year relationship finished and I had to notify the DWP of a change in my circumstances that would affect my benefits.

I completed all the paperwork and then was left for 8 weeks with just child benefit to support me and my children whilst my claim was ‘processed’. During that time I was made to feel like a second class citizen. I ended up having to get vouchers to go to a food bank, but I was told I could only have a maximum of 3 vouchers – no one seemed to care that I had no money for 8 weeks.

I am now in recovery and I do voluntary work with Voices of Stoke to help others who need support and I’m involved with a new Recovery Coalition that aims to provide help, support and encourage people to become independent and empowered citizens of their communities.

benefits delay