The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has apologised for a series of failings made in the weeks leading to the death of a disabled mother-of-nine, but it has failed to explain how it will prevent further tragedies in the future.A seniorcivil servant has written to the mother of Jodey Whiting, whotook her own life in February 2017, 15 days after her out-of-workdisability benefits were stopped for missing a work capability assessment(WCA).Emma Haddad,DWP’s director of working age benefits, apologised in the letter both forsafeguarding errors made by the department in the weeks before her death, andfailings that took place afterwards.But therewas nothing in Haddad’s letter to suggest how DWP will prevent further deaths,despite years of evidence of the institutional failure of DWP to guarantee thesafety of disabled people – and particularly those with a history of mentaldistress – withinthe “fitness for work” system.Haddad’sletter was written following the completion of a report by the Independent CaseExaminer (ICE), which concluded that DWP had been guilty of “multiple” and“significant” failings in handling the case, and that it had failed five times to follow its ownsafeguarding rules in the weeks leading up to Whiting’s suicide.Haddad told Whiting’s mother, Joy Dove, that when her daughter failed toattend her WCA appointment DWP “should have attempted further contact withJodey before closing her claim”. She added: “We do have guidelines in place to try and safeguard customersand regrettably our procedures were not followed.”Haddad alsoapologised for failing to update the department’s IT systems following herdeath and for sending “unnecessary” letters and phone calls after beingnotified that she had died, which she said was “clearly unacceptable”.She alsoapologised for DWP failing to respond to letters sent by Whiting and thoseacting on her behalf, and for failing to carry out a full investigation until Dovecontacted ICE with a complaint.Haddad saidthe department’s customer service standards were “clearly not achieved”.Dove toldDNS: “When I read the letter it upset me, thinking, ‘Yes, my daughter couldhave been alive if they have done everything they should have done.’”And she saidthe letter failed to explain how DWP would prevent further deaths.Asked whyHaddad had not stated what measures the department would take to preventfurther deaths, a DWP spokesperson said the department was “reviewing ourprocedures to ensure this doesn’t happen again”, but she declined to commentfurther.Samaritans can be contacted free, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, by calling 116 123 or emailing [email protected] note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…
WIGAN Scholarship U16s 42 v 4 St Helens Scholarship U16sA strangely lethargic Saints were taught a lesson by their hosts at Wigan RUFC on Saturday.Poor one-on-one tackling prevailed for most of the game and allowed the hosts to pull out to an 18 – 0 lead in even time.But the Saints could and should have score twice. Firstly Josh Crehan knocked on with the line at his mercy after a home error and minutes later Scott Harrison also fumbled with a try begging after a neat scrum move again from a home error.The second quarter of the game belonged to the Saints as they struggled to retrieve the deficit.Spurred on by big Ross McCauley off the bench, a Dan Abram break was ended when the supporting Mathew Whitely was caught from behind.McCauley announced his presence even further with a massive hit and the saints got on a bit of a roll.Three times blind side moves started by Tom Davies and carried on by Dave Hewitt caught the home side unawares down the left side. Twice they almost brought tries only for the last pass to drift forward, but once it succeeded as Scott Harrison took Hewitt’s pass to score on the corner.The second half was a different story as the home side scored a steady stream of tries against a dispirited Saints.There were glimmers of the usual 16s as first McCauley and then Liam Knowles were held up over the line but that’s as good as it got.Olly Davies and Robbie Hand had decent second halves, Abram and Hewitt tried hard behind a beaten pack but head and shoulders above everyone, quite literally in his case, was Ross McCauley for his efforts in a beaten team.Match Summary:Wigan Scholarship U16s:Tries: Gabriel Fell 2, Sam Baggaley 2, Jake Shorrocks, Tyler Whittaker, Joe Bretherton.Goals: Jake Shorrocks 5, Nick Gregson 2.St Helens Scholarship U16s:Tries: Scott Harrison.Goals:Half Time: 4-18Full Time: 4-42Teams:Wigan:1. Gabriel Fell; 2. Sam Baggaley, 3. Oliver Geldart, 4. Liam Forsythe, 5. Kieran Murphy; 6. Jake Shorrocks, 7. Tyler Whittaker; 8. Joe Bretherton, 9. Luke Waterworth, 10. Jordan Curtis, 11. Bradley Lawrence, 12. Connor Fairhurst, 13. Nick Gregson. Subs: 14. Dave Rothwell, 15. Oliver Murray, 16. Nathan Seddon, 17. Nathan Sharratt, 18. Danny Dakin.Saints: 1. Adam Saunders; 5. Liam Knowles, 3. Jordan Wakefield, 4. Will Weir, 2. Scott Harrison; 6. David Hewitt, 7. Dan Abram; 8. Tom Calland, 9. Josh Crehan, 10. Olly Davies, 11. Rob Hamon, 12. Matthew Whiteley, 13. Joe Ryan. Subs: 14. Tom Davies, 15. Connor Smith, 16. Scott Oakes, 17. Robbie Hand, 18. Josh Swift, 19. Ross McCauley.
SAINTS effectively secured third place in the league table with an efficient 30-10 win over an as usual difficult to beat Wildcats team, writes Graham Henthorne.Building on last week’s better defensive display the Saints up and at ‘em defence ultimately proved too much for the home team even though they took the lead in the tenth minute.From that moment on the Saints pressure forced error after error as the home side tried to come away from their line.Ben Parry got the Saints underway stepping back inside the cover after quick hands had stretched the defence.The Wildcats coughed up the ball on their own 30 metre line but Dom Speakman’s try scoring pass to Connor Dwyer was ruled forward.The second row didn’t let it affect him, however, as he charged over the line minutes later after yet another home knock on. Matty Fleming was held short but from the play the ball good offloading between Adam Saunders and Jack Ashworth put Dwyer in.The Saints increased their lead on the half hour getting the best reward for their best defensive effort of the half. Tigerish tackling had restricted the home side to kicking from their own 20 giving the Saints great field position. Dwyer broke through the line too it to the full back then put the supporting Matty Fozard in at the side of the posts.The Saints have been guilty of starting some second periods slowly giving the opposition encouragement but not this time as they continue where they left off in the first.Great drives from the forwards resulted in Dwyer being held up over the line but from the play the ball Adam Hesketh continued his rich vein of from charging onto the pass and scoring an easy try.The Wildcats stand-off took advantage of a succession of penalties and a momentary lapse of concentration to close the gap, side stepping inside the Saints line to score.But that was it for the home side as the Saints turned the screw scoring twice more but being held over the line on three other occasions.Parry got his second of the afternoon as the home defence finally succumbed on the Saints third repeat set. Dom Speakman was held up, James Tilley held short but quick hands finally produced the overlap for the winger to score.Great final tackle grubber kicking from Dave Hewitt and Dan Abram coupled with fine support tackling forced the Wildcats deeper into their own half.The icing was firmly put on the cake with minutes left as Greg Richards showed remarkable pace to burst through the line striding around a decidedly stationery full back from 40 metres out.Richards, Tilley and Chris Webster again set the platform but the stand out player, continuing his run of good form, was Connor Dwyer.The Saints finish their regular season with the home derby against the fourth placed Wolves before entering the play offs.Match Summary:Wakefield:Tries: Jamahl Hunte, Scott Lee.Goals: Josh Kittrick.Saints:Tries: Ben Parry 2, Greg Richards, Connor Dwyer, Matty Fozard, Adam Hesketh.Goals: Dave Hewitt 3.Half Time: 22-4Full Time: 30-10Teams:Wakefield:1. Brandon Conway; 2. Jamahl Hunte, 3. Curtis MacDonald, 4. Sam Doherty, 5. Tom Johnson; 6. Scott Lee, 7. Josh Kittrick; 8. Ben Shulver, 9. Josh Murphy, 10. Reece Trout, 11. Brad Day, 12. Jack Walton, 13. Corbyn Kilday.Subs: 14. Dan Maskill, 15. James Healy, 16. Tom Rogers, 17. Jack Teanby.Saints:1. Adam Saunders; 2. Lewis Galbraith, 4. Jack Ashworth, 3. Matty Fleming, 5. Ben Parry; 6. Dave Hewitt, 7. Dan Abram; 8. Greg Richards, 9. Dom Speakman, 10. Chris Webster, 11. Olly Davies, 12. Connor Dwyer, 13. James Tilley.Subs: 14. Matty Fozard, 15. Adam Hesketh, 16. Tom Calland, 17. Joe Ryan.
All proceeds from the auction go to St Helens Autism Support.We will now be in contact with all those who made winning bids.The shirts are signed on both sides by the player!Bids Now Closed: Tommy Makinson – £430 Ryan Morgan – £190 Mark Percival – £300 Adam Swift – £330 Theo Fages – £450 Matty Smith – £301 Alex Walmsley – £280 James Roby – £375 Kyle Amor – £230 Jon Wilkin – £390 Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook – £400 Luke Douglas – £200 Luke Thompson – £266 Tommy Lee – £475 Morgan Knowles – £315 Regan Grace – £240 Zeb Taia – £200Non-Playing Squad Members:Greg Richards – £111 Dom Peyroux – £95 Jack Ashworth – £85