Injured Tom Rigby watches the medical bills pile up / Pic: Stephen Cooper Source: The Daily Telegraph
IT'S hardest for Tom Rigby when his young boys want to go out and kick around the footy with him.
Four years ago he was working on the Kurnell desalination plant when he was crushed by a 300 tonne crane. Today he is missing half a foot, muscles from his thigh and half his abdomen.
He doubts he could get a job in the same industry again. While he waits, the medical costs pile up, and he watches his five kids grow up.
"My boys are at the age where they are starting to play rugby and it is hard not being able to get out there with them - when they want their dad to go out and play football it's not possible," he said.
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Recommended CoverageTHOUSANDS of injured NSW workers will have injury payments axed under tough workers compensation laws expected to pass state parliament today.
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His regular medical bills include compression stockings, medication and prosthetics for his foot.
With the new caps on weekly benefits and medical costs, the future is uncertain.
"If I had my accident now it would be devastating. I would have lost everything if I lost medical payments," he said.
"There is no hope for injured workers now, and you are already treated like a criminal just because you are injured."
Wendy Lark from the Workplace Tragedy Group was at state parliament yesterday protesting against the changes to the entitlements of families of injured workers who will no longer be eligible to claim compensation for nervous shock or pain and suffering.
She said this was cruel - and would leave many families suffering.
"Politicians are blind to the tragedies that families actually undergo," she said.