McGrath Calls For Review Of PIP System

South Down SDLP MLA McGrath has met with Directors from the Department of Communities who have responsibility for PIP (Personal Independence PIP, which is facing significant roll-out issues in Northern Ireland.

Colin McGrath said: “My office has been inundated with people who are very fearful of the transition from DLA to PIP.

South Down MLA has called for a review of PIP in Northern Ireland.

“The recent edition of Spotlight exposed some of the shocking decisions that have been made.  Decisions which affect the livelihoods of people within our community.

“At my meeting I highlighted many issues but specifically relating to those who suffer from MS who have good days and bad days. I have been assured that those carrying out the assessments should be aware of conditions which fluctuate and their assessment should be tailored accordingly.

“Have you had your assessment for Personal Independence Payment? How was your experience?

“In the absence of a working government at Stormont, the SDLP wants to bring cases of mistreatment directly to the Permanent Secretary of the Department for Communities for investigation. We are calling on him to instigate an urgent review of the PIP assessment process.

I support a reform of our welfare system, but reform has to take place in the appropriate manner – on the floor of the Assembly.

“That is where a bill should be tabled, scrutinised and amended. This is how proper fit-for-purpose legislation is created and not by a Tory government who were given a free run of our welfare system and society generally by the DUP and Sinn Fein.

“We have to stand up and protect those with very real physical and mental disabilities,” said Colin McGrath.