I would like to tell you about a family in a small town in The Netherlands. The family consists of a father, a mother, two daughters and two sons. Both sons have a severe form of Autism en due to their behavioral problems and the health of the parents, they aren’t able to live at home anymore.
The father has had a serious car accident in 1996. Because of this accident he has severe back problems en he has been declared unfit for work. The mother has been diagnosed with Fybromyalgia, with is a medical condition characterised by chronic widespread pain and a heightened pain response to pressure. Other symptoms include feeling tired to a degree that normal activities are affected, sleep problems, and troubles with memory. For a long time, she had to sit in a wheelchair, but because of her perseverance she is now able to walk again. Despite this, she isn’t able to do much and therefore the daughters are responsible for doing the household. Both parents have been declared unfit for work. Mother doens’t get a unemployment benefit because the Employee Insurance Agency (UWV) won’t acknowledge Fybromyalgia as a real disease. Even though it is submitted in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Father has started his own odd-job company in 2011 and works very hard, to keep the family financially afloat.
Unfortunately, due to their severe autism, the sons don’t recognize cause-effect situations and because of this got their parents very deep in debt. I cannot explain this further, because of their privacy.
Because of the autism of the sons, the parents received GP fundholding. Because of the crisis, the government decided that this family (and many others) had no longer the right to receive the GP Fundholding and that the family had to pay back all the years they did receive the fundholding. This is an amount of over €15.000,-.
As written above, the father has his own odd-job company, to have some financial income. To make it all even worse, he has been put aside by the police. He was driving in his bus for his work and the police took him aside because he had no business name on the bus. In the area, busses without a business name, were used for burglary. When the police checked his licence plate, they discovered a large delay in payment of road tax, so the bus has been seized. Because of the late payment and many fines on top of this late payment, there now has tob e payed €4500,-, or else the bus will be sold by the tax authorities. For the family, this is a disaster, because the bus is their only transport and their only source of income. This means, that in a short time, they won’t be able to pay their rent and so they will be set out of their house.