Campaigns. It is important that I continue to know the strength of feeling on an issue and I prefer to respond to every inquiry, but the sheer size of campaign correspondence means that it is hard to justify to the tax payer the cost and time taken for individual written replies, so regrettably I will no longer reply to every item of campaign correspondence.  I will  post a response to the campaign on the "Responses to campaigns" page of my website.

I am sorry to do this, as it is rather impersonal, but can see no other way of maintaining a good service for all my constituents unless I approach campaigns this way.

14 MAY 2018

Cancer and Young People

Thank you very much for taking the time to email me about Personal Independence Payments and young people with cancer.

I understand your concern on this matter and hope the following information on this topic from the Department for Work and Pensions is of interest:

Cancer can affect all areas of a person's life, including finances. 83 per cent of people say they are financially impacted by cancer. It is a long standing principle of disability support that it is payable after a person satisfies the disability eligibility conditions for three months. This is to ensure that PIP supports those with long term disabilities which fall under the definition used in the Equality Act 2010. Before it was replaced by PIP, Disability Living Allowance also had this rule. It affects all claimants, not just young people, and there are exceptions such as in the case of terminal cancer.
People over the age of 16 who are unable to work due to an illness or disability can claim Employment and Support Allowance which has both contributory and an income-related strands. For cancer sufferers, a light touch evidence gathering process exists, to help determine eligibility. There is also a presumption that claimants receiving or recovering from cancer treatment will be placed in the Support Group.
More broadly, the Government spends over £50 billion a year supporting people with disabilities and health conditions, more than ever before; this is around 2.5 per cent of GDP and over 6 per cent of all Government spending.

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