Benefits cuts hit mum with cancer from Hemel Hempstead

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A mother of three with secondary breast cancer has been stripped of her benefits and had her car taken away.

Emma Young, 39, was first diagnosed in 2013 when she also applied to receive personal independence payments (PIP) and was given a motability car.

Her financial help was awarded for three years but she has been turned away by her GP, the hospice and several other outlets now that she has to reapply.

Emma, from Adeyfield, said: “I struggled to get any help to fill in the forms I needed to and now my independence has been taken away.

“I feel like I am being penalised for being stable and who knows the impact this will have on my health.

“If I don’t walk to where I need to be then I would end up being a recluse.”

Emma will have to make four 40 minute trips to drop and pick up her youngest daughter from school each day.

She also has to travel to Luton and Dunstable Hospital for treatment, as well as Mount Vernon Hospital in Rickmnasworth for scans.

Emma said: “I have been left with no way of getting to the hospital for treatment.

“I was initially told I’m not ill enough for patient transport and the added complication is the fact I don’t live in that health trust.”

This is not the first time she has been questioned about her cancer and health.

Emma said: “I first found a lump in 2013 but the doctor told me I was too young so I got sent away.

“For the whole of 2014 I was bleeding on and off and it got to the point where I had been signed off work.”

It was not until Emma was rushed into A&E that the condition of her cancer became clear.

She said: “I was feeling very very tired but put it down to work and looking after the kids, doing it on my own.

“I ended up in hospital for three weeks where I had 12 blood transfusions and three platelet ones.

“I had lost so much weight that the doctors kept asking me if I had always been this skinny.”

Emma worries about the future of her health as she has to wait weeks before hearing whether her application for PIP has been accepted.

She said: “I struggle to stand up for long in any place.

“Some days I can manage a trip to the shops while other days I can’t get up from the sofa.

“It is just frustrating and it’s not just about my situation but all other stage four patients.”

Emma has been raising money and awareness for cancer since being diagnosed.