A Royal Navy veteran who lost a leg says he has been turned down for more than 2,600 jobs in a year because of his disability. Former petty officer Mark Cock, 45, had his limb amputated following an horrific car accident and says that employers cannot look past the fact he is disabled. He lost the leg in 1995 and started his own business but was forced to start looking for work following the recession. But the father-of-four says since he stared looking last October he has been rejected from more than 2,600 jobs. He is trained in IT and has worked in the motorcycle industry and has applied for hundreds of different jobs directly and through work agencies.
But he says employers are scared of recruiting him because they fear it could mean paying higher insurance premiums or making expensive modifications to offices.
Mark, of Camborne, Cornwall, is calling for the Government to do more to help the disabled find work.
He said: ‘This is a nightmare because I feel I am fitter than many able-bodied people and yet the door is being slammed in my face.
‘I want to work and don’t like taking benefits because I have worked all my life. It makes me angry.
‘They want people with a disability to get back to work but if the insurance is astronomically high, how can they do that?
‘I am not blaming the companies just trying to keep their businesses in the black.’
Divorced Mark lost his right leg after being in a car crash soon after he left the Navy in 1995.
Since then he has worked in IT and most recently been running his own business importing motorcycles.
But the recession forced him to seek new employment and since October last year Mr Cock says he has been refused over 2,600 jobs.
He has applied for IT jobs nationwide and abroad with no luck and has now begun a two-year plumbing course.
But he says he has also failed to find a job as an apprentice plumber because of his disability.
He said: ‘I wanted to add another string to my bow because I had so many knockbacks.
‘Now I have been told by companies I have approached for apprenticeships that they cannot employ me because it would cost too much to insure me because of my disability.
‘Without an apprenticeship, I will fail my course.’
A spokesman for Disability Cornwall said the legality of potentially discriminating against Mr Cock should be investigated.
Mark is now urging other disabled people to lobby with him against the imminent changes in disability benefits.
He said: ‘I want the Government to step in and do something about it before the disability pension is being taken away from some people in April.
‘The more people can create noise the better so we can approach MPs and ask them to help us.’