SDLP MLA for Mid Ulster, Patsy McGlone,
has welcomed the announcement of a review of Personal Independent Payment
(PIP) cases by the Department for Communities. The review will mirror the
one announced last week by the Department of Works and Pensions in Britain
and follows on from a court ruling that said the current system was
Mr McGlone said, “I welcome the
announcement of a review of PIP cases by the Department for Communities.
“The SDLP successfully lobbied the
Department for an extension of the review announced last week by the
Department of Works and Pensions in Britain to include claimants here.
“We believed that an extension to that
review was inevitable following the court ruling that the existing system
discriminated against people with mental health conditions.
“I have sought assurances from the
Department that the necessary amendment of legislation, and review of cases
likely to have already been affected by the prior interpretation of PIP
Mobility Component, will be completed promptly.
“I have also sought clarification on
whether the Department will interpret claims currently under assessment as
if the amended legislation was already in place.
“For many people, particularly those
with mental health issues, the assessment process has often been a traumatic
experience and they should not have to go through more form-filling or
assessment on the back of this ruling.
“In the absence of a functioning
Executive the SDLP will continue to work with the Department to ensure that
the review is progressed immediately.
“We will be seeking further assurances
from the Department that no one will be left worse off as a result of this