Jodey Whiting: Mum says she will 'never give up' as she prepares for next court hearing

  • Video report by Rachel Bullock

The mother of a housebound disabled woman who took her own life after her benefits were stopped will have her case heard in the Court of Appeal.

Joy Dove has been campaigning for a second inquest into the death of her daughter Jodey Whiting to investigate the role the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) may have played.

She has now been given dates for a hearing at the end of this month, where lawyers will put her case to a judge.

Ms Dove told ITV Tyne Tees: "I've had so many people tell me how they have been treated. It's my daughter and so everybody else's daughters, sons, fathers, you know.

"We were so close and we could talk to each other and were a proper mother and daughter.

"I can't bring her back but I can only try, for her sake and her memory. I won't give up, I'll never give up, until the day I die."

Ms Whiting, from Stockton, died after her disability benefit was stopped when she missed a work capability assessment.

The DWP wrote to her asking for a face-to-face meeting in December 2016. The 42-year-old had pneumonia and was receiving treatment for a cyst on her brain at the time.

She did not open the letter, and two months later was told her benefits were being terminated.

On 21 February 2017, Ms Whiting took her own life.

Jodey Whiting took her own life in February 2017. Credit: Family handout

An inquest into Ms Whiting's death lasted 37 minutes, and determined she had taken her own life.

But Ms Dove has concerns about the way the DWP handled her daughter's claim for employment and support allowance.

She told ITV Tyne Tees: "Hopefully a second inquest will get me what I want - to get the DWP face to face in court."

Permission was granted to apply to the High Court for a second inquest in 2020 to investigate the DWP's role in Ms Whiting's suicide.

It was then dismissed following a two-day hearing in September 2021.

Ms Dove then applied to the High Court for permission to appeal that decision in October that year, but this was refused.

She then made an application to the Court of Appeal, which was granted in October 2022.

The two-day hearing will take place on 31 January and 1 February 2023.

A spokesperson for the DWP said: "This is an incredibly tragic case and our condolences remain with Ms Whiting’s family. We cannot comment on active legal proceedings."

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