Oswestry housing charity had to approach food bank
A charity which runs specialist, adapted housing in Shropshire says it had to resort to asking for help from a food bank for a resident with severe disabilities after his Personal Independence Payment was held up.
The Ethos group has now set up an emergency loan fund, fearing that others may face similar delays.
The organisation is responsible for the housing in eastern Oswestry, built as short or medium care accommodation for people with spine injuries and other illnesses affecting their mobilities.
It is calling for a speeding up of processing the PIP payments, described as extra money to help with everyday life for those with an illness, disability or mental health condition.
Claire Norris, independent living advisor for Ethos, said the resident, who felt too embarrassed to be named, left the spinal injuries unit at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Hospital at the beginning of the year.
His condition means he has to have 24 hour care.
"We had expected his PIP payment to arrive when he left hospital to allow for a smooth transition. But there was hold-up after hold-up and we have only just managed to get it sorted out.
"He was unable to manage on his small universal credit and we had to resort to asking for help from the Oswestry Food Bank, the first time we have had to do this for one of our clients to ensure they had food in the house.
"We have also had to set up a new pot of money so that we can give emergency loans to residents if they have a similar problem as we fear this may be something we see again."
Claire said that the emotional toll on a man already struggling to deal with his disabilities was huge.
"It is very worrying that we are having to spend so much time trying to sort out these problems when our clients are under enough pressure as it is," she said.