A PROTEST fighting for the rights of a severely disabled child will be held during the Bromsgrove Christmas light switch on.
Julia Boonnak has issued a rallying call for people to join her and take a stand against the decision to refuse her four-year-old son Finnan’s Disability Living Allowance (DLA), which seriously affects his quality of life.
So far about 20 people have confirmed they will be joining the peaceful protest starting at 3pm near the AE Housman Statue tomorrow (Saturday). The Grinch, representing the Government, will also be there to steal Christmas from Finnan.
The Standard previously reported on Finn’s story in September. While his mum was doing a two-year secondment in Thailand, with her job at Bromsgrove School, the law changed making the UK a harder target for benefit tourists – changing the length of time before people could apply for DLA from 13 weeks to two years.
Finn has an incurable Congenital Disorders of Glycosylation which leaves him unable to walk, needing 24-hour care and having to be carried everywhere – he needs a specially-adapted car, car seat, buggy and low-level toys.
Mrs Boonnak said Finnan used to be entitled to the highest level of DLA along with funding to help with a specially adapted car, free road tax and a blue badge.
She added they appealed against decision and tried to take it to a judicial review but were told they had no chance of winning.
Mrs Boonnak said she blamed Europe – because of laws allowing immigrants to take advantage of the UK’s benefit system there had been a clamp down on benefit tourists and Finnan had been caught up in the whole mess.
“I went and visited Sajid Javid with Finn and the first thing he said to me was there was nothing that could be done for Finnan,” she said.
“He then spent 20 minutes talking politics.
“I could have just left it but I just thought it was not the point – I want to raise awareness of this injustice.
“Anyone is welcome to come along to the protest – the more people the better.”
Sajid Javid said he was happy to meet Finnan and his mum and from the outset he had raised Finnan’s case with the ministers at the highest level.
But, because of EU rules, all EU residents in the UK had to be treated the same which unfortunately meant Finnan was affected too.
“I am looking to see if there is any other way of assisting Mrs Boonnack and her family before Finnan will qualify for DLA next year.”
Visit the Fight for Finnan Facebook page for more or use #fightforfinnan on Twitter.