Obese unemployed woman living off the state wants more benefits; says she “can’t afford to eat healthy” and won’t get a job

Obese unemployed woman living off the state wants more benefits; says she “can’t afford to eat healthy” and won’t get a job

It sounds too outrageous to be true, but thankfully we haven’t fallen this far into moonbattery yet. No, this horror story comes from — where else? — Britain. Laura Ripley is a 25-year-old British woman who literally has no shame. Morbidly obese, at about 532 lbs, she was granted a gastric bypass operation from NHS. Her taxpayer-funded benefits have now decreased, and she’s complaining that she now no longer can afford to eat healthy. Neither she nor her live-in boyfriend are employed, and they apparently have no plans to find jobs, either. Read and be horrified:

A 25-year-old unemployed woman who was given an £8,000 operation to help her lose 16 stone is complaining because, as well as her weight loss, her benefits have been reduced.

Laura Ripley, who has never worked, was given the operation on the NHS to help her slim down from 38 to 22 stone.

But the 25-year-old, who receives £600 a month in benefits, is unhappy because as a result of losing weight she can no longer claim disability allowance amounting to an extra £340 a month.

This, she says, means she cannot afford to eat healthily – causing her to pile the weight back on.

‘I can’t afford to buy WeightWatchers crisps and cereal bars any more so I eat Tesco’s chocolate bars and packets of Space Invaders crisps, sometimes four of each a day’, says Laura, who spends seven hours a day watching TV.

‘People ask why I don’t snack on an apple – they’re cheap, but emotionally I don’t always feel like an apple.’

The disability allowance money she used to receive was spent on gym workouts, healthy food and having her hair highlighted.

She adds: ‘Without my disability allowance I’m left with just £210 incapacity benefit which I get because of my depression, and £100 income support I receive every two weeks and out of that I have to give them back £70 towards the cost of the £500-a-month flat I’m living in.’

Since the extra allowance stopped Laura has put on a stone in just three weeks and claims she is being treated unfairly.

‘It’s heartbreaking that after all my hard work losing this weight someone’s come along and ruined it.’

Laura has been offered another operation on the NHS, which would normally cost £12,000, to remove the saggy skin left behind after the dramatic weight loss, but only if she sheds a further five stone, and until then she has no plans to find a job.

… Speaking from the two-bedroom flat she shares with unemployed boyfriend Simon Hawkins, Laura describes how she was shocked into embarking on the weight loss plan after her mother Doreen died of obesity-related complications on Christmas Eve 2005.

… ‘I sometimes feel guilty about all the taxpayers’ money that’s been spent on me but I only want an extra £100 a month, that’s all’, says Laura.

As I said — the woman literally has no shame. Someone came along and ruined it? It’s not her fault, of course.

Here is Laura before her operation:


And here is Laura after:

Images International Limited

She now weighs a “mere” 308 lbs. And rather than getting a job, staying physically active, and eating healthy foods, she sits around the house all day watching TV. I feel no sympathy for her whatsoever, although I do feel very sorry for the poor British taxpayers who have to subsidize this lazy, selfish woman. She says she can’t “afford” to eat healthy, but that’s simply because, as she says herself, she refuses to eat inexpensive, healthy things like apples… because she doesn’t feel like eating apples. If she gains the weight back, then why should taxpayers continue to have to fund her treatment? By her own admission, she was morbidly obese because of her eating habits, not because of a medical condition that was beyond her control. There’s no reason the government should be giving her disability benefits and paying for her operations, yet, thanks to the government-run health care system in the UK, taxpayers get the happy task of funding the lazy, entitled slob.

Is this kind of government run health care far behind for us in the United States? Will we be subsidizing lazy, fat slobs who refuse to work and expect everything for free? One might think we couldn’t stoop so low, but never say never. If Obama has his way, these kinds of nightmares might be right around the corner.

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  • Dave says:

    Hi, as an Englishman, I’d like to point out that her embarrassing position isn’t catered for by socialised healthcare, but by the ludicrous benefits system in place which has only ever grown worse under our ‘Labour’ governments.

    Think ‘Bread & Circuses’ and you’ll be close.

  • Bob says:

    We’re already subsidizing fat lazy slobs and we have been for years. It’s called welfare. And they can’t drug test them because it’s a ‘violation of their privacy.’ 🙁

  • Rob Farrington says:

    You know, I only had to read halfway through the first sentence to guess that it was Britain.

    I missed this in the UK newspapers because I generally don’t bother reading them any more – if it isn’t a story about ‘Jordan’ and Peter Andre, it’ll only be something else that’s bound to annoy me.

  • mj says:

    Aw, poor kid. She isn’t regarded as disabled, now that she’s lost some weight. And, she can’t afford to eat expensive chips (crisps) and cereal bars, so she’s forced to snack on lesser quality items.

    As I’ve recently reminded myself, you stop craving junkfood when you stop eating it.

  • Chris M-G says:

    Aw… poor baby…

  • If you’ve read Atlas Shrugged, this basically comes right out of there… except that it’s actually happening.

    No one told her to stop watching TV (please, at least read a book! make a blog! do something with your mind) and Britain makes it easier to be fat and lazy than to be healthy and productive. Obviously, nothing against personal responsibility, but it’s easier to get people to be responsible for themselves when we set up a system that rewards such things, rather than one which enables people to get their hair dyed courtesy of the government when they are morbidly obese but not somewhat obese.

    I don’t feel sorry for her, really, nor the taxpayers; they sign on to this government and this system. Elections have consequences. Against supporting Laura Ripley? Ditch the rainbows and unicorns platform and vote in politicians who aren’t going to make you support Laura Ripley.

  • Chris Jvr says:

    I have to say that sadly, living in the UK, this is far from a terribly unusual case…
    Faarrrr to many people Wont get a job simply because claiming unemployment benifits as well as disability and an array of other ho*se sh*t claims avaliable make them more money at the end of the day than they are likely to earn full stop. So its not neccisarily just lazyness… although that no doubt plays a large part in it…
    Iligally working getting cash inder the counter is another problem, people get paied bad wages for long hours because the “employers” know that its under the counter and just subsidises their benifits *sighs*.

    At the end of the day we need to bring back corpral punnishment, take the TV, PS3’s, Gyms and all these luxuries out of jails that many hard working folk cant even afford because jail is more of an incentive than a deterrant for many.

    We need to put two fingers up to the EU human rights bill, since when does a man who murdered TWO people deserve priority COSMETIC surgery to alter a 56 year old birth mark over inmates who need medical care?!

    How can an iligal imigrant who came here, rapeed a woman, then complained their human rights are being violated when they are forced to sit handcuffed next to a police officer in a hospital waiting room to receive FREE top notch cancer treatment because they are considered to much of a risk to the public?

    Human rights focuses on a single persons rights and ignores everyone else in the equasion, and as soon as the government sees that this means the general public will always come second in these rediculous cases the sooner this country can get back on track…

    I hate it, i hate all of this political BS and this country is getting utterly PATHETIC!
    God save our queen and this pittiful sham of a country the government has turned it into…


  • CaptDMO says:

    It sounds too outrageous to be true, but thankfully we haven’t fallen this far into moonbattery yet.

    SEE: Provisions enabling the gaming of “safety nets”-
    Single mothers
    “Disabled” Americans
    “DV” shelter
    “Childrens” health extensions
    Divorce “settlement”
    Personal Injury
    Foster children
    “Mail order” brides (VAWA)
    Workplace “environment”
    Class Action suits
    Americans with Disabilities
    Social Security
    Auto/Home/”Business” insurance

    Golly, that spiffy “welfare to work” program seems to have given way to “extended” unemployment payoffs. Anyone STILL getting “FEMA” cash
    for hurricane Katrina “recovery”?

    Now, let’s chat about all-expenses-paid, “community activists” that have a one trick pony called “reparations”.

    Who’s REALLY getting the “Money, for nuthin’, and chicks for free”?

  • BobV says:

    Only in the western world can people be too poor to be thin.

    Some kid in Bangladesh is reading this and seething.

    Maybe instead of subsidizing this behavior that money can go towards swapping a lazy, useless, “entitled” westerner for a grateful, hardworking third worlder who is willing to learn the language, get an education and become a full citizen.

    You’d have to pay their home country to take our welfare deadbeats, but I think it would work out to be a net gain in the long run. Not in the least because they aren’t staying here, breeding more deadbeats.

  • Cousin Dave says:

    CaptDMO has a great point… those of us in the USA shouldn’t get too smug. Our system is not much better, and it’s rapidly moving in Britian’s direction.

  • slamdunk says:

    Working around socialists who dream of everyone in the US working for the government, redistributing income, and sharing all green spaces, this is the type of story that exemplifies why their approach is doomed from the start. Leeches, government thievery, and the lack of care that most anyone treats “public property” with should be evidence enough for my colleagues–but it is not.

  • Mat says:

    It comes down to responsibility. In a free society, people have the right to wolf down three-dozen donuts (among other things) at a time. They also have the right to fall over with a massive heart attack as a result. I don’t see why I should, under Obamacare, have to pay for someone who’s irresponsible (and constantly so) with their lifestyle. Personally, I think it would be good to cull the herd of some of the stupids out there. Then the rest of us can get along with our lives.

  • Alex Birch says:

    Party for everyone = no partying for anyone. Europe is seeing an increase in cases like these simply because it’s afraid of placing demands upon individuals instead of bureaucratic institutions.

  • Stephen J. says:

    The paradox that no social service has ever been able to overcome: Building a safety net for those who genuinely need it that won’t also serve as a hammock for those too lazy to get up from it.

    I won’t say I have no sympathy for Ms. Ripley (even self-inflicted suffering is still suffering), but sympathy is not the same as indulgence. Sometimes the most genuinely compassionate action is that which also appears to be the harshest and most ruthless. Western institutions are simply getting more and more afraid of taking that approach for fear of being sued.

    (Which is hardly their fault, to be ruthlessly fair. Even groundless lawsuits are a pain and expense sometimes better avoided than fought.)

  • Anna Bananna says:

    I’m afraid that I have to agree with Dave. It is the benefits system (rather than our, clearly evil, system of SOCIALISED medicine) that is responsible for Laura. It is also true that Britain is a grotesque society in terms of it’s inequalities. The benefits system is used cynically by politicians to increase the number of people classed as disabled rather than admit that they are either unemployed or unemployable. The reasons for this are complex and are borne of grotesque inequality.
    I am deeply ashamed of Laura but feel at pains to point out that the NHS is fantastic and admirable (without it I would not be here, no fault of my own, I just would have died in the States in the same circumstances. The surgery would have been inaffordable, even on my graduate wage)All societies have parasites both rich and poor and just ‘cos you’re rich might not mean that you earned it either.
    I would rather have the NHS than the US system of private insurances as I have always received excellent care within it.

    Laura is an abomination, true but she is not the product of the NHS.

  • sonja says:

    I’ll add to those who say this is not due to a national health scheme. I’m from Australia, and while I don’t doubt that NHS has its downsides, this isn’t so much one of them.

    Heck, here we had a rash of “plasma babies” – children born purely because the mother/parents wanted the baby bonus payment.

    It’s the systems which support those less fortunate that do it. We have welfare mums and the like, but it’s sure not because of the NHS.

  • Miguelito says:

    “As I’ve recently reminded myself, you stop craving junkfood when you stop eating it.”

    Exactly. As someone who, just 2 years ago, weighed 461 and now weighs 250, I can attest to this statement. Yep, I was frickin huge.. and it was all my fault. I’m lazy and I ate a lot of crap and a lot of fast food. I paid my own money to go through a medically supervised program (I did NOT want to go the surgery route) and after spending about 20 months working my ass off (figuratively and literally) I’ve been on the “maintenance” phase for another 6 months.

    I’m still amazed at how good healthy stuff tastes if you just try new things and put forth a little effort in trying simple recipes. Lazy really isn’t a true excuse anymore either.. with all the pre-packaged, nukable fairly healthy food, ready to open and eat salads/fruit/vegetable trays, steam in the bag vegetables and such.. even a lazy bastard like me can eat healthy most days with very little effort. I’m also pretty surprised to find that I really just don’t crave burgers, pizza or any of the other things I used to eat a lot of much, if at all.

    Of course, exercise is important too.. I walk my dog twice every day. Having a dog to guilt you if you try to skip any walks helps. 🙂 I toss in other activities to keep it interesting too.

    Anyway… I do think the NHS system is a part of this.. no such system should subsidize people’s sedentary life-styles. But I think people are right in saying the overall issue is the welfare systems that pay people to sit on their asses. Unfortunately we have plenty of that here ourselves in the states.

  • Peggy George says:

    This story would be very believable if it happened in the United States.
    Here, people who get Food Stamps do not get very much money to buy groceries. The average for a family of four, is about $211.00 a month.
    The average cost of a gallon of 2 percent milk is $3.50. The average cost of a pound of 85 percent lean ground beef is $4.50. Apples cost about $1.00 each. Cereal is around $5.00 a small box. To feed a family of 4 on $211.00 a month 3 meals a day, you end up eating a lot of bread, peanut butter, pasta, tomato sauce, rice, and dry beans. Lots of carbs which isn’t healthy at all. Candy, chips, crackers and ice cream and all that stuff are so expensive here people who get food stamps can’t afford to buy any or they will go without a meal or 2, if they do. Most people who get food stamps can’t afford to go out to eat at McDonalds because all of the income they have is spent on rent and utilities and car payment and gas.
    Here is the USA, Medicaid programs which are health insurance for the low income will not pay for gastric bypass surgury period – even if it is a life or death situation. Medicaid doesn’t cover dental or vision care either, unless you are under 18.

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