CHARLOTTE, N.C. – It’s a story that left a lot of people shaking their heads in disbelief: so much so, that many of you went to NBC Charlotte’s Facebook page out of frustration.
A Charlotte mother of five and triple amputee who narrowly survived sepsis was denied disability payments because she’s a stay-at-home mom.
Want to get people mad? Get them talking? Tell them Kristan Seaford’s story. She’s the mom who almost died from the flu. Doctors had to amputate one leg, the other foot, and both arms just to save her life.
But when the stay-at-home mom tried to get help from the government?
“It made me feel like I was worthless, that I wasn’t worth anything,” Seaford said.
Her lawyer says she was denied Social Security disability because she only worked and paid into the system for nine years before choosing to stay at home with her kids for the last 10 years.
He’s worked thousands of cases and even he was stunned.
“There’s got to be a way to help stay-at-home parents who are not the primary breadwinners to benefit from it,” he said.
Viewers were shocked. Hundreds commented on the story.
One woman said, “A foot, leg and arm…how much more disabled must she be?! My god! Is this what we’ve come to as a society?!”
Danielle said, “Oh this burns me up. There are so many people on disability that can easily get off their lazy butts and work. What a screwed up system we have.”
You’ve heard the stories of people that get on disability that shouldn’t be or aren’t on and should be. A lot of people identify with it, they look at Kristan’s story and say that shouldn’t have happened and absolutely that should not have happened.
Her lawyer says the system overall needs an overhaul. Most of the laws governing Social Security — including the one dealing with stay-at-home moms — have been in place for decades. Part of the problem, though, is that ever-looming threat that the money could run out. Just last year, Congress had to rob Peter to pay Paul, taking money away from Social Security retirement fund to help make Social Security disability payments.
“I think you read Kristan’s story and it hits you,” he said. “You say, ‘wait a second, I know someone in that situation,’ or I have a spouse at home working.”
In fact, many comments on our Facebook page were like Marrisa’s, who wrote, “I was denied for the same reason! I stayed at home for eight years to raise my children. Now I have fibromyalgia and applied for disability and was denied. It isn’t fair.”
Copyright 2016 WCNC