Severely Disabled Ellie McDonald, 19, Mental Age 5, Must Have Fit For Work Test Says DWP

Same Difference

The family of a severely disabled teenager who has the mental age of a five-year-old have been left furious after benefits officers demanded the girl be put through a fitness-to-work assessment.

Ellie McDonald, 19, suffers from the extremely rare genetic disorder called Chromosome 7 Deletion, which means she is unable to eat, sleep or walk without the help of mother Louise.

In preparation for Ellie leaving her special needs school, her mother and her full-time carer applied for employment support allowance (ESA) to replace their child benefit payments.

But the family were shocked to be told Ellie would need to be tested to rule out her being fit for work – a process Miss McDonald branded ‘bureaucracy gone mad’.

Louise McDonald is angry that her daughter Ellie who has a mental age of five and cannot walk or eat without help – has been told she will have to…

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