Disabled woman left housebound as she can’t afford to charge her mobility scooter


Jacquie Dean relies heavily on her mobility equipment due to her arthritic knees and fibromyalgia, but due to the rising living costs she can no longer afford to power her scooter

Jacquie Dean at her home in Exeter, Devon

A disabled woman has been left housebound after rising living costs means she can no longer afford to power her mobility scooter.

Forced to use her disability allowance to cover her utility bills after they doubled in price, Jacquie Dean, 49, relies on food banks but still only has enough to eat one meal a day.

Jacquie, from Devon, relies heavily on her mobility equipment due to her arthritic knees and fibromyalgia – a condition that leaves her with chronic pain all over the body.

She even fears she will lose her only companion, six-year-old Border Collie Fly, as she can no longer afford to pay her dog walkers for the first time in five years.

She told the Mirror: “I’m not living, I’m not thriving. I’m just surviving. Surviving with great difficulty at the moment. It’s just been a horrible, horrible time.

Jacquie can no longer afford to charge her mobility scooter


Rowan Griffiths/Daily Mirror)

“The disabled have been left behind. We’ve been forgotten, and I’m at my wit’s end. With the electricity, gas and everything else going up, I’ve been left with nothing.

Her story comes as Boris Johnson was accused of floundering in the face of everyday hardship, as the cost of living crisis continues to bite.

Jacquie said the PM and Chancellor Rishi Sunak “have blood on their hands and should be held liable for it.”

“This government, they are absolutely the worst. You have some of the richest people in the country looking down on us, and they’re laughing.

The woman has become housebound


Rowan Griffiths/Daily Mirror)

“What they’re doing is a human rights violation. They are deliberately holding public money from the people who need it the most.

“They are deliberately causing misery, and they need to answer for that.

“If they continue down this path they will end up killing people. As far as I’m concerned, what they’re doing is criminal”, she added.

Jacquie’s life-changing mobility scooter was donated to her through a crowdfunding campaign on GoFundMe, but she’s been unable to use it since her £70 charger stopped working.

Jacquie survives on one meal a day and rarely turns the heating on


Rowan Griffiths/Daily Mirror)

“Without my scooter, I am absolutely crushed.” she said. “I’m housebound because I cannot afford to maintain the cost of my mobility equipment.

“If I buy anything, it’s always online because I can’t go into a shop physically, so I have to pay extra towards deliveries just to get milk or bread.”

The surge in her utility costs has forced her to rely on food banks and limit herself to just one meal per day.

“I’m down to one meal a day. I don’t have breakfast, I don’t have lunch and then I’ll have something in the evening to keep me warm.

“Maybe some pasta or rice if I’ve got it. I try to make sure that I have things like soup to keep me warm. It’s just insane. I’ve never known anything like it.”

Our Cost of Living team of experts are here to help YOU through a very difficult year.

They’ll be bringing you the latest money news stories and also providing specialist advice.

Whether it’s rocketing energy bills, the cost of the weekly shop or increased taxes, our team will be with you all the way.

Every Thursday at 1pm they will take part in a Facebook Live event to answer your questions and offer their advice. Visit facebook.com/dailymirror/live to watch. You can read more about our team of experts here.

If you have a question – or want to share your story – please get in touch by emailing [email protected]

Since her gas and electricity bills have more than doubled, Jacquie is now forced to cover herself with multiple blankets to keep warm in her small bedsit flat.

She said: “I can’t afford to buy new clothes so I don’t have a coat, I don’t have any woolens. I have to wrap myself in blankets just to stay warm. It’s ridiculous.”

One of the few things bringing Jacquie joy at the moment is her Border Collie Fly, but she’s worried she may have to give him up as she can’t afford her dog walker.

If you are affected by any of the issues Jaquie talks about here, visit Samaritans at samaritans.org or call 116 123.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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