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Injured after years working in heavy industry and only get ESA for a year

Location: UK » Scotland » AB
Injured after years working in heavy industry and only get ESA for a year

I was a painter and worker in the shipbuilding industry in Liverpool for years. I’ve always worked on the industrial side, which is a lot heavier with shotblasting and paintspraying. I used needleguns and chipping hammers and all the vibrations come through your hands and arms. Now I have terrible pain in my hands and arms, which I manageswith sleeping pills and morphine. The symptoms range from numbness to tingling to shooting pains.

I first went sick from work in February 2010, with the pain in my hands. Probably before that I was earning between £480 and £520 a week after tax. When I come onto the sick in February, I’ve gone from £480 a week down to £67 a week on statutory sick pay. By the time September come, when my statutory was due to run out, you’ve lost a lot of money. You’re losing over £400 a week, which put more pressure on my wife.

When my statutory sick pay ran out in September 2010, I contacted my local benefits office.

The benefits office told me not to apply for employment and support allowance until January 2011, because I didn’t have enough recent national insurance.

I said what do I do now? I’ve got no statutory sick pay from work. The benefits officer said your wife works and you’re just going to have to try and get crisis loans.

I had an Atos face-to-face assessment in January 2011 and got ESA then got zero points on another assessment. I appealed and got an ESA payment – at the reduced rate people get when they’re appealing that Atos decision. I was placed in the ESA work related activity group. I got a back-payment which covered the months when I received the reduced-rate ESA but then the payments suddenly stopped. The new 365-days time-limit rule on contributions-based ESA meant I only got ESA for a year. That’s my repayment for working

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