A Wigan dad has spoken of his outrage after his blind, wheelchair-bound son was refused a disabled badge because he did not have the correct paperwork.
Carl Briscoe, from Hindley, has slammed Wigan Council for refusing to issue a new blue badge without seeing the correct proof of his son’s disability, despite seeing it with their own eyes.
The dad-of-five called out the town hall after he was asked for a letter proving that 34-year-old Glyn Briscoe has the required amount of Personal Independence Payment points, even though he has been disabled for the past 20 years.
Glyn was left paralysed and blind after receiving radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment for a brain tumour, which was diagnosed when he was just 10.
Carl told the Wigan Observer that the family had to reapply for a new badge after realising that their old one had expired by a couple of days.
When Glyn and his carer went to the life centre to renew his badge, they were told that it was not possible and the family would have to submit an entirely new application.
Carl said: “When my wife and daughter went back a few days later they were told they would need everything, a passport, a utility bill - which he doesn’t have because he lives with us - and a letter from within the last 12 months detailing his PIP points.
“They told us to go back to the life centre with all the evidence they required because the letter we had with the points on wasn’t recent enough.
“He was sat in front of them in a wheelchair, he can’t see, can’t speak, can’t eat. He has been tube fed for the past 20 years.
“I asked to see a manager and was told that a manager doesn’t work the weekends. There was just no application of common sense whatsoever. I was fuming, it was the fourth visit into Wigan to sort this.”
Carl and his family are concerned that other families could be caught out by red tape and left without the a blue badge to help them with getting out and about.
After his visit, Carl contacted the Department for Work and Pensions but was told it would be seven to 10 days before he received a letter telling him what would be required so that they could send out the PIP points confirmation.
“We would have been looking at at least two weeks before we could get back there with the correct letter to get him sorted,” added Carl.
Since contacting the Wigan Observer, Carl has received a call from Wigan Council to say that a new blue badge would be issued and the fee waived.
He said that they acknowledged that there are “procedural issues” which need resolving and that a new badge will be with the family within seven to 10 days.
Wigan Council has apologised for the incident and has stressed that it is following legislation determined by the government.
Lesley O’Halloran, assistant director for customer services, said: “We have been in conversations with the customer about their experience and a blue badge has now been arranged and the fee for this badge has been waived. We acknowledge that on this occasion our service has fallen short of expected standards and apologise for any inconvenience caused.”