A MAN who ‘severely’ injured his leg in an accident has been told he must keep looking for a job – despite having a medical note saying he was unfit for work.
Neil Pennycook has been ordered to attend ‘job search exams’ by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) while he receives Universal Credit.
But 48-year-old Inverness Avenue Westcliff insists this is completely at odds with medical experts, who have ruled him unable to work.
Mr Pennycook claims that Valkyrie Surgery issued him a doctor’s note proving his inability to work due to injury.
“This whole process is making my life more stressful and causing me misery and I am out of breath,” he said.
Mr Pennycook says he badly broke his leg three years ago chasing a thief who stole his nephew’s mountain bike.
“I was running after him, jumped over a fence and broke my left shin.”
The damage was so severe that he was taken to a specialist surgeon at Royal London where he had 12 screws and two plates inserted into his leg.
A year ago, Mr Pennycook, who worked as a handyman before his injury, suffered a fall which damaged some of the screws in his leg, leaving him in severe pain.
“Walking is incredibly difficult and painful right now,” he said.
“I’m still waiting for another surgery to remove some of the screws in my leg.”
The DWP insists his “fit for duty” classification does not mean the department thinks Mr Pennycook is ready for manual labor, but rather that he may be able to work part-time in the near future.
A spokesperson said: “Mr. Pennycook attended a medical evaluation and the result was that he may be able to do work in the future. As a result, he is required to attend job search exams.
“We offered Mr. Pennycook considerable support, including training, help with resume writing and job advice, and asked what professional goals he thought he could achieve.”
. DWP says man Southend with a leg damaged he is fit work