AdvoCard provide individual and collective advocacy support to those who are being effected by Welfare Reform and changes to the new Social Security system in Scotland. If you feel that you need support to be listened to throughout the process of claiming benefits you can self refer to our service.
Individual Advocacy Support:
Employment and Support Allowance and Personal Independence Payment
The ESA and PIP application processes and assessments can be distressing and confusing for those with poor mental health and because of the difficulty that many with mental health conditions have in explaining how their condition affects them, there is a risk that they will be wrongly assessed. The responsibility for collecting medical evidence also lies with the claimant. Individuals who do not have a good relationship with their care team may have difficulty in collecting this information.
How we help with this
We will meet with you beforehand to discuss your condition with you. We will then agree what aspects of your condition need to be highlighted and what you would like to be included in the claim. We will then attend the assessment with you to make sure that you are listened to throughout the assessment and are given the chance to have your say.
For those who contact AdvoCard at a different stage in their claim we can provide support to draft a mandatory reconsideration request to have the benefit decision reconsidered, attend advice appointments with you and, if necessary, attend work focused interviews or workfare appointments with you to ensure that the you are listened to at all times.
We can also help with:
* Conditionality – sanctions and the claimant commitment
* Discretionary Housing Payments and the Scottish Welfare Fund
We are members of The Disability Benefits Consortium. The DBC are a national coalition of over 50 different charities and other organisations committed to working towards a fair benefits system. Through the DBC we can feed into any collaborations and lobbying campaigns at Westminster.
We sit on the steering group of the Scottish Campaign on Welfare Reform. Meetings are held monthly and service users can contact us with anything that they want us to take to the meetings.