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Found 2 results

  1. Too fat to work: The 30st man doctors say is a risk in case he topples over and crushes his colleagues Last updated at 7:03 PM on 6th September 2010 * Obese father fights for benefits after being laid off A morbidly obese father has been diagnosed as too fat to work by doctors who fear his weight may cause him to fall over and crush his colleagues. Barry Fowers, 51, who weighs a life-threatening 30 stone, worked until October last year assembling industrial power source equipment. But insurance analysts decided he was too big a risk to himself and to others and Mr Fowers reluctantly accepted voluntary redundancy. Mr Fowers - who had a heart attack when he was 30 and has been warned another would kill him - is furious that he is still classified as fit to work despite his poor state of health. Among his ailments are angina and other heart problems, diabetes, back trouble and irritable bowel syndrome. He was initially granted incapacity benefit and has a doctor’s sick note, but does not qualify for Employment and Support Allowance worth around £75 a week. Instead, he receives Jobseeker’s Allowance, which has just been reduced to £21.65 a week. Mr Fowers, who worked for ten years at Crestchic in Burton-upon-Trent, Staffordshire, said: 'I had to climb onto platforms about a metre from the ground to get to the equipment and install parts. 'They were worried I might pass out through my diabetes and have a hypothyroidism, or have a heart attack. 'The insurance people came in and did an assessment after I had a little incident. I tripped and fell over and I was off work for a few weeks. 'I had an interview with a medical person and I told them about all my different ailments. They sent a report back to work, and I had a meeting with the managing director while I was still off work. 'They said my weight was a danger to myself and to others in case I fell off a platform while I was working. 'Because I was having a lot of time off for medical reasons, I was edged towards voluntary redundancy.' Both Mr Fowers's parents were diabetic and his mother suffered serious heart problems. For the past six months, Mr Fowers has been getting by on £65.45 a week in Jobseeker’s Allowance. However, as of August 24 he was informed his allowance was reduced to £21.65, as he is only entitled to 186 days of National Insurance . 'I’m having to accept that I may never work again,' he said, 'but I’ve paid tax and National Insurance for 34 years and I think the country should do something in return.' Mr Fowers's wife Shirley works as a part-time carer and their income is jointly assessed. His unemployed son Peter, 29, lives at the family home in Hatton, Staffordshire. Mrs Fowers said: 'One of the main reasons he volunteered to take the pay-off was because he was classed as a potential danger to himself. Also, he was a potential risk to his work colleagues in case he fell on them. 'Some days, his IBS can be so severe he can’t make it upstairs and I have to stand my husband in the shower and wash him down.' She added: 'I can’t afford to keep him. I may as well pack my husband’s bags and chuck him on the street.' Mr Fowers is currently seeking work, but has had no response from the job applications he has filled in. He said: 'Some of the applications asked "Have you got medical conditions?" and I’ve filled it in that I’ve got a heart condition and diabetes, and that does go against me. 'It does get you down. I have tried dieting, exercising and lifestyle changes. 'I have been offered the possibility of having a gastric band or bypass fitted but I’m a bit dubious about surgery. With my heart condition I think if I went under the knife I might not wake up. 'I may only live another three years.' http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1309407/The-30st-man-work-case-topples-crushes-colleagues.html
  2. Jay Baruchel flew the flag at a Just for Laughs gala in 2013, but the longtime Montrealer now admits that part of the reason behind his move to Toronto is that "Quebec’s politics did my head in." Peter McCabe / Montreal Gazette files SHARE ADJUST COMMENT PRINT Jay Baruchel has been a relentless booster of his hometown in general and his ‘hood of N.D.G. in particular, for years telling anyone who would listen that he would never move to L.A. even though so much of his work brought him to Tinseltown. Well, things have changed, as Bob Dylan so succinctly put it. Baruchel has moved to Toronto, for work and personal reasons. Here he talks about what prompted him to do what so many anglo Montrealers have done in the past four decades and make the move down the 401. RELATED Jay Baruchel will roll with the punches in Goon sequel Montreal Gazette: So you’ve made the move to Toronto? Jay Baruchel: I’ll be perfectly honest: I’ve kind of moved here for a while. MG: I did hear rumours. Advertisement JB: I just bought a house here. There’s a few contributing reasons, not the least of which is between the movie (Goon: Last of the Enforcers, Baruchel’s upcoming feature directorial debut) and my TV show (Man Seeking Woman), I was here as of September, then shot to Christmas, went home (to Montreal) for about a month and a half, and then I’ve been here since. There’s going to be basically a month between the end of the shoot of our movie and the start of Season 2 of Man Seeking Woman, so I’m going to be here a s—load. And I won’t lie — Quebec’s politics did my head in. My mom calls it a five-year plan. I’m giving it five years to try to live somewhere else. I’ve never done it, really. MG: Yeah, because we’ve talked about this for years, ever since we’ve known each other. You were basically couch-surfing when working in Los Angeles and you always said you didn’t want to move to L.A. JB: And I didn’t. MG: So what happened? JB: A few things happened. I realized that not only did I not hate it in Toronto, but I quite like it here. I was bred to hate it. My parents fed me with all the Montreal anglo stuff — the “it’s where we go to die” stuff. But I also realized I had never spent that much time here. It was when I was here two or three winters ago doing RoboCop, I had a lot of time off and I realized I’d never spent more than five days in a row here. Between that and doing the TV show and a lot of my friends living here, I won’t lie — I fell in love with it a bit here. It’s just a bit of an easier place to live than back home. The last election was very traumatic in a way. MG: Why? JB: I was faced with a truth: I either will just swallow it and make peace with it, like I always have, that this is part and parcel of what it is to live in Montreal, the political climate as it is. It was either shut up or move. It was untenable. It was my fault if I keep living someplace that keeps giving me a headache. MG: Well, obviously the Liberals won that provincial election. So what I take from that is that separation, the referendum, was one of the big issues in that election, and it’ll be a big issue in the next provincial campaign, and you can’t deal with that anymore. JB: And it always will be. Aside from that silly stuff, which I wish would just go away but it won’t, it was less that than the kind of poisonous ethnic dialogue, which really, really left a sour taste in my mouth. It didn’t feel like the place that Mom wanted me to live in. She wanted me to grow up in someplace multicultural and to see every complexion of the world on the street, and to hear all the languages, and for that not to be a defeat or a sacrifice, but a good thing and a strength. You come here and it really is a pretty diverse place. Just some of the issues, some of the editorial subject matter in Quebec — it’s from 100 years in the past, man. I wake up here and I’m just a dude in a city. And when I go outside and speak English, it’s not a loaded or political deed of any kind. I’m just living. There’s just way less headaches here. Everything is a bit easier here. MG: I realized after spending a fair bit of time in Toronto myself that it’s not such a bad place, and I came to the conclusion that the Montrealers complaining the most about Toronto are people who haven’t been there since 1974. JB: That’s it. It’s not Toronto the Good anymore. It hasn’t been that for a long time. Also, the other thing is, if I want to put my money where my mouth is and be a filmmaker in Canada, as opposed to the States, I gotta be honest and realize that the vast majority of the ideas I have are in English, and that’s why it makes much more sense for me to be here. That being said, I still have my house in Montreal, and so I’ll always keep one foot in N.D.G. It might just turn into a pied-à-terre, but I’ll always have one foot there. That’s the other thing I realized: I don’t have a particular (passion) for the province of Quebec. I have a great deal of love for Montreal, but really, more than anything, it’s just my neighbourhood — it’s just N.D.G. So I miss that, but it happens to be located in a pretty difficult part of the world. MG: Obviously you’re a Leafs fan now? JB: Oh, f— you. That’s part of the fun of being here — being part of the Habs expat scene. It’s massive. Once upon a time you were scared to wear Habs s— in Toronto, and we just run this town now. There’s just nothing they can say. Very sad. :mtl:
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