7 February 2008
HemiHelp, the national charity that supports people with hemiplegia and their families, was concerned to learn about the Department for Work and Pensions' decision to stop Disability Living Allowance payments to Danny Johnson-Green, who has hemiplegia, because he took part in a charity cycling event.
While HemiHelp cannot comment on Mr Johnson-Green's individual circumstances, people with hemiplegia have a range of mobility needs and while hemiplegia can often appear to be a 'mild impairment', it can have a significant effect on a person's day-to-day life.
Hemiplegia is sometimes described as a form of cerebral palsy, caused by damage to the brain, that weakens or paralyses one side of the body. The effects are similar to those of a stroke and people with hemiplegia often have associated difficulties such as epilepsy, visual perception problems and learning difficulties.
Living with hemiplegia is not easy and many people with the condition have significant difficulties with mobility, but HemiHelp encourages people with hemiplegia to make the most of life and to participate in the same physical activities as non-disabled people. We offer sports activities at our fun days for children with hemiplegia and actively encourage cycling by hiring out bicycle stabilisers to our members. One member of HemiHelp, who has hemiplegia, is even running this year's London Marathon! Cycling 200 miles for charity is no mean feat for anyone, and Mr Johnson-Green is to be congratulated for this fantastic achievement.
We would urge anyone with hemiplegia who has similar benefits problems to call our helpline on 0845 123 2372 or visit our website at www.hemihelp.org.uk where we offer information about benefits and hemiplegia.
Notes to editors
- HemiHelp's Chief Executive, John Adams, is available for further comment. Please call 0845 120 3713.
- Background to this story can be found on the BBC website at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/leicestershire/7228611.stm