UK

BBC Question Time Leaders' Debate: Woman Explains Reality Of Work Assessments To Theresa May

'I have suffered so much over the past year.'

02/06/2017 21:24 BST | Updated 02/06/2017 22:41 BST

A young woman broke down in tears while explaining the shocking reality of disability work assessments to Theresa May during a live TV debate on Friday.

The woman was in the audience of the BBC Question Time Leaders Debate when she joined another person in challenging the PM over their experiences of the mandatory assessments.

She told May: “The NHS is an absolute shambles for mental health at the moment. I applied for NHS counselling at the end of 2015, my first appointment is next Tuesday.

“I have been waiting a year and a half for this and I have suffered so much over the past year - in part because of the work capability assessment.

Watch the clip, above.

The woman continued: “Let me tell you, I am partially sighted, I have mental health problems, and also I have other issues, a jaw issues, and I went into my assessment and I was asked in detail about suicide attempts and I came out crying because I was so upset by the way I was treated by that nurse.

“She came out after me and she had forgotten to measure my eyesight. I am partially sighted.

“She found time to insult me basically.”

May responded: “I’m not going to make any excuses for the experience you have had. Both of you have raised separate issues.

“We do look at improving how that assessment is taking place.”

Commentators pointed out May’s response lacked a personal assurance to help the woman.

Work capability assessments are used by the Department of Work and Pensions to determine eligibility for certain benefits, including personal independence payments which replaced disability living allowance.

[NOW READ: These Are The Real Stories Of People Affected By Disability Benefit Cuts]