Thomas Cook staff ‘left homeless and forced to borrow money’ after benefit claims denied – The Sun

THOMAS Cook staff have been kicked out of their homes and put on antidepressants just before Christmas after having their benefits claims denied.

Others have been forced to borrow money from family and friends after being told conflicting advice on how to claim following the collapse of the holiday provider.

 Former Thomas Cook worker Ian Begg said he was left "depressed and unable to leave the house"


Former Thomas Cook worker Ian Begg said he was left “depressed and unable to leave the house”Credit: BBC

Former staff have faced problems when trying to claim benefits, according to the BBC, due to the confusion over what they should be claiming for.

Some have been told to try for job seekers allowance, which is for people who are out of work, or for Universal Credit, as the administration of Thomas Cook is still being processed.

Rebecca, who was heavily pregnant when Thomas Cook went under, was left without benefits after she was told she sent the wrong paperwork eight weeks after applying.

She told the BBC that she was “on antidepressants” and unable to enjoy Christmas with her newborn baby.

Ian Begg said he also suffered mental health problems since, where he “couldn’t even get dressed” or leave the house.

 Betty Knight, who also worked at Thomas Cook, has been reaching out to former staff


Betty Knight, who also worked at Thomas Cook, has been reaching out to former staffCredit: BBC

One couple, who both worked for Thomas Cook, said they were forced to leave their home after their landlord said they would “struggle to pay rent”.

They are now living in a B&B using their redundancy money.

Others have been left homeless, according to Betty Knight who is speaking to many of her former colleagues on social media, while others have been forced to live in shelters.

A spokesperson for the Department For Work and Pensions apologised for the delay.

 Approximately 9,000 people were left unemployed after the collapse


Approximately 9,000 people were left unemployed after the collapseCredit: PA:Press Association

They added to the BBC: “We know that losing a job is a distressing time for people. When Thomas Cook collapsed we were ready on day one to help the 11,000 people who lost their jobs.

“Our dedicated staff have helped thousands of those affected, including through home visits to those unable to reach the job centre and by fast-tracking applications so people are supported to find new work or training as soon as possible.”

Former executives have launched a fundraising page for the 9,000 employees left without work, which has raised £181,000 so far.

Around 300 Thomas Cook members of staff have been hired by BA while others have been employed by Hays Travel, who are re-opening the Thomas Cook high street branches.

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Brits who booked holidays with Thomas Cook are also still waiting for their money back, with 40 per cent still waiting for their claims.

The collapse of Thomas Cook could make package holidays more expensive, with suggestions of a £10 consumer protection fee.

Thomas Cook are not the first to go under this year – Super Break and LateRooms ceased trading in August while WOW air went into administration in March.

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