Another access problem at an Atos assessment centre

  • 24 Replies
  • 4894 Views

Sunshine Meadows

  • *
  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8009
Quote
I am feeling upset about this now. DS being a young man videod part of the argument and put it on utube

I looked up the video and just watched it  >thumbsup< if you want to post the link here please do. Also if you would like the Ouch Too volunteers to write out a transcript I am sure they would be willing to help.
 >bighugs< to the Gorbut household.

Btw I have cp , TN and Menieres + Fibro so the consequences of me deciding to crawl - if I did would be much less than someone with CFS/ME

devine63

  • *
  • Guest
Hi Sunshine

the consequences of crawling for you (in terms of energy loss and so on) might be less than for some others and of course if you are willing to crawl that is your choice.   My point was that a government mandated WCA process planned and intended for disabled adults  should always be conducted in such place and such a fashion that the dignity of all participants is maintained - i.e. the assessor should have a ground floor office in a building with level access and wide enough doors, corridors and doorways that no one has to get out of their wheelchair at any point.    Someone else might feel absolutely mortified by having to crawl from their wheelchair into the assessor's office  in front of (potentially) a waiting room full of total strangers ....
regards, Deb

Sunshine Meadows

  • *
  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8009
Deb,

I should have been clearer in that I understand the dignity issues and I do agree with what you posted. I was just posting my thoughts about one approach to take because it is what I might have done. The stress and anxiety of waiting for the day of assessment and getting there on the day would mean for me crawling would be an option to consider if it got the assessment over and done with. There is a difference in what I think should happen and the DWP should do and my potential actions under difficult circumstances. I suppose maybe me crawling (if I did) would have the DWP employees thinking it was okay for a claimant to have to crawl but I doubt it.

The DWP do have some accessible assessment centres, I went to the one in Derby and claimants are told they need to travel to one of those centres if the need access issues met. The problem with that has already been illustrated in Gorbut posts. Also if a person was 'seen' manage to travel for over an hour and a half to get to a centre it could negatively impact their assessment process and outcome.

It is apparent that the people going to Romford are allowed to use the lift once health and safety issues are resolved eg ability to evacuate the building is confirmed, however this gives a false impression about the accessibility of the rest of the building. It is good that we are hearing about this because it means people reading the thread will know access issues go beyond the front door and stairs.

Note: I think my experiences when working in the call centre influenced my views and opinions of what I might or might not do.


ATurtle

  • *
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1504
    • The Awesome Turtle Blog
I am starting to wonder whether the DWP and Atos have colluded in the positioning of the WCA so that if you can reach them they can tick the box that says "Got here! Sign them off!", I am fortunate in that I live in a town with an Atos centre, an Atos centre that is on the level to approach, has no stairs to get to the examination rooms, all in all ideal.  Except, it is in the middle of a pedestrian only precinct.  The nearest Blue Badge parking bay is 60 metres away.  The path to the door of the centre itself, is 15 metres.  That with the 10 to 15 metres in to the assessment room has you shot down in flames. 

As I keep saying, they do a 15 minute snapshot of you and don't see you for the rest of the day or even the next day when you are curled up in a ball of pain in bed.
Tony.

"I choose not to place "DIS", in my ability." - Robert M. Hensel

devine63

  • *
  • Guest

hi

"I suppose maybe me crawling (if I did) would have the DWP employees thinking it was okay for a claimant to have to crawl but I doubt it. "

that's one possibility.  The other is that other clients, seeing you having to crawl, might feel obliged to do the same, when perhaps they are not up to it, or are less willing than you may be.
regards, Deb

gorbut

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Gold Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 140
This is obviously going to go on for some time. He can't make another appt for a medical as Atos won't until the complaint is sorted out. This means this will be hanging over him for possibly weeks and another medical appt could interfere with his start at university at the end of September. The stress is making him feel worse and making me cross.

Atos complaints procedure seems very one sided although I can't say we are surprised. In a way I wish he wasn't so keen on everything being done as it should be as it can make life difficult but I suppose this must be down to his upbringing so I only have myself to blame  >biggrin<


Sunshine Meadows

  • *
  • Global Moderator
  • Super Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 8009
Quote
In a way I wish he wasn't so keen on everything being done as it should be as it can make life difficult but I suppose this must be down to his upbringing so I only have myself to blame  >biggrin<

I know what you mean and my Mum who was disabled and an electric wheelchair user pushed allsorts of boundaries which was good but I also saw the personal cost to herself, wellbeing and health.

 >hugs<

Debs,

I reckon we are now getting more into a discussion about personal responsibility, ethics and also the way social interactions work. I dont want to overloaded the thread with that, we should really start a new thread in Talk. I was going to do it today but completely konked out  :-(

NeuralgicNeurotic

  • *
  • Charter Member and Volunteer
  • Super Hero Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 7373
Quote
I am feeling upset about this now. DS being a young man videod part of the argument and put it on utube

I looked up the video and just watched it  >thumbsup< if you want to post the link here please do. Also if you would like the Ouch Too volunteers to write out a transcript I am sure they would be willing to help.

I'd be happy enough to oblige. Can't promise it'd be quick, but still, the offer is there.  >spoonarmy<

gorbut

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Gold Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 140
Thanks for the offers of transcript writing but he has kept a copy .He has taken it off utube for now out of respect for the receptionist it shows as she probably doesn't have much option other than to spout the Atos line.. He has made a copy to give to our MP too with the letter he has written that I shall deliver to his constituency office tomorrow. He has also sent the letter by email to his parliamentary office.  I am sure IDS will be thrilled as he is so proud of his welfare reforms >biggrin<

gorbut

  • *
  • Charter Member
  • Gold Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 140
My son had the  answer to his complaint today and surprise surprise it is factually incorrect >biggrin<
What the HCP says she said is not what we heard but as usual in these organisations the word of the employee is taken at the expense of two others.

I am trying to persuade him to drop this now as it is having a detrimental effect on his health. He is worried about going for a medical now as he trusts Atos even less than he did before. He has emailed our MP again as he has had no response to his previous email and letter. I did think the the summer recess was the  time MPs were supposed to deal with constituents but maybe it is different for ministers.

 As C is starting a part time uni course at the end of September  I don't think it will be worth him exhausting himself fighting Atos although he would like to. I would like to take up the fight as regards the assessment centres not being accessible but not quite sure how yet while caring for two adult offspring and my two elderly fast deteriorating parents.

I wish life was fair and just as he expects it to be.
« Last Edit: 23 Aug 2013 11:44AM by gorbut »