Too little too late, but it’s the best that I can do. The ideals and actions that exacerbated a disabled man’s suffering and eventually resulted in his death have no place in a civilised society. If this affects you, even just emotionally, please ask your representative to make it stop.
The coverage of Mark Wood’s death in the media…
Witney Gazette, The Independent, The Guardian, Mirror
A letter to Mark’s MP…
I knew Mark Wood. Not well by any means, but well enough to understand the extent to which he struggled with his mental health and as a result his physical wellbeing too. He was your constituent.
I’m ashamed to say I didn’t know Mark had died until I read the news about the inquest into his death yesterday. I can’t imagine how his family must feel about being unable to help him. It appears that for Mark the desire to maintain his independence and remain in control over that which he could control contributed to his death. A desperately sad irony.
I’m also deeply ashamed to find myself part of a society that withdrew its support from Mark. Support that up until last year had enabled him to cope with life and even to contribute to the community he lived in. That was a shockingly cruel act.
I have some questions.
1. Why was Mark’s GP, the person best placed to assess his mental and physical health, not consulted about the life changing decision that led to his death?
2. Why is your government allowing the assessment of disabled people to be so poorly conducted when there is clear and mounting evidence of the scale of the mistakes and the harm that they do?
3. Why is your government intending to effectively remove from many disabled people the right of appeal against these decisions by charging them to do so?
I read your piece in the Telegraph, “Why the Archbishop of Westminster is wrong about welfare“. I have to say the evidence doesn’t support your view. Persecuting people because of a few bad apples isn’t fair nor is it cost effective. Your government has put in motion changes to disabled people’s lives which are unnecessarily cruel. Please make it