VULNERABLE people having their benefits cut are being urged to fight back after a disabled woman from Cefn Mawr managed to get hers reinstated.

Cancer survivor Karen Richards, 65, had her Personal Independence Payment (PIP) slashed earlier this year.

Three months later they have been reinstated after she contacted her local Member of the Senedd, Ken Skates, for help.

Karen will also receive back-dated payments after the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) admitted to her they should never have been taken away.

She said: "I'm so relieved, I've been worried for months and I don't know what I'd have done without Ken's help. He never gave up and his support has been amazing.

"I want people to know that there are people who will help them."

After a PIP assessment on January 6, Karen immediately contacted the DWP to register her concerns.

Mr Skates said: "The Capita assessor arrived late and did not listen to Karen, rushing through the appointment in order to make her next one on time.

"Karen was extremely upset when she was notified a few weeks later that her payments have been cut significantly.

"Her worst fears about the lack of interest and empathy shown to her were realised."

Karen was left more than £80 a week worse off after her mobility support payment was cut completely.

"Karen cannot get in and out of the bath and struggles to climb the stairs," said Mr Skates.

"She has had a range of medical problems in the past few years, including battling cancer. It was an unfathomable decision."

Karen received a call on May 14 to say the DWP's decision had been reversed and has now received written confirmation that her PIP has been reinstated.

She said: "I was in tears when I got the call. It had gone on so long I didn't know what would happen.

"Ken had been in touch them regularly but I still hadn't heard anything from them.

"I'm so glad it's all over and I can stop worrying. It's such a weight off my mind."

Mr Skates added: "Since the General Election I have seen an increase in the number of people getting in touch with benefits problems. It's a real concern."

A DWP spokesman said: “We are committed to helping people get the support they are entitled to.

"Decisions are made based on all the evidence we receive at the time, but if someone disagrees they can ask us to review it and provide further evidence, as Ms Richards did.

“PIP and ESA complaints have dropped by a quarter in the last two years, indicating greater satisfaction with our services.”