Family of man who starved to death consider tribunal

thisisoxfordshire: Mark Wood Mark Wood

THE family of a man who starved to death after his benefits were cut are looking at appealing against the decision made by the Government.

Mark Wood, 44, was assessed by Atos Healthcare and a decision was made by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) which ruled he was fit to work.

Mr Wood had obsessive compulsive disorder, Aspergers syndrome, phobias of food, pollution, paint fumes and social situations and cognitive behavioural problems.

Mr Wood, of Bampton, died of malnutrition in August last year.

He had been left with just £40 a week to live on, Oxfordshire Coroner’s Court heard on Wednesday.

His sister Cathie Wood said yesterday the family were in touch with Barton’s Oxfordshire Welfare Rights (OWR).

She said: “It could be that we go down the line of taking this through a tribunal.”

Tom Pollard, of Oxfordshire Mind, said: “Unfortunately this tragic case is not an isolated incident. We hear too often how changes to benefits are negatively impacting vulnerable individuals, who struggle to navigate a complex, and increasingly punitive, system.”

Atos Healthcare spokeswoman Tessa David said: “Nobody has contacted us about the case.”

DWP spokesman Steve Milne said: “We wouldn’t comment on individual cases.”

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