Case study

  • Date:
    February 2024
  • Category:
    Dignity and respect


C applied for a community care grant for clothing, bedding, a waterproof mattress protector, and pillows. C explained that they were in remission for cancer, had been left with several lasting symptoms, including weight gain, muscle weakness and incontinence. As a result of these issues, C advised their clothing was in poor condition and they were unable to afford new clothing. They also requested replacement bedding items due to their health issues. 

The Council initially assessed that C’s request for clothing was an excluded item under Annex A (15) of the SWF Guidance. They awarded bedding, a waterproof mattress protector and pillows as they assessed these met the conditions. 

C asked us to carry out an independent review into their request for clothing. We contacted C for further information. While we were sympathetic towards C’s conditions and accepted that this created an increased ongoing need for clothing, we determined that the application was still excluded under the guidance. This is because they had not encountered a one-off need for clothing, and instead, deemed that their need for clothing was an ongoing expense. 

We provided feedback to the Council as we assessed that their decision letters did not contain sufficient information and that their case notes were not in line with the requirements of the guidance. 

C asked for a reconsideration of our decision. The new decision maker did not change the case reviewer’s decision as they too agreed that the application for clothing was an ongoing expense and excluded on this basis. However, they provided the Council with additional feedback concerning their lack of sensitivity surrounding the impact of the applicant’s illness in their correspondence and case notes. We assessed that their approach lacked dignity and respect.

Updated: February 20, 2024