Disabled one-punch victim set to ‘lose pension’ after 22 years

A man left disabled after being the victim of a one-punch attack 22 years ago has begged Centrelink for help after his support pension was cancelled.

Paul Butler was out celebrating the birth of his son Anthony with some friends in 1995 when they had an altercation with a group of teenagers in Manly.

One of the teens called his older brother, Dominic Galati, who arrived and hit Mr Butler in a one-punch attack.

Mr Butler spent the next 12 months in hospital, and was left with severe mental and physical disabilities.

Galati served 18 months of weekend detention.

Mr Butler remains barely able to walk or talk, and requires 24-hour care.

For those 22 years, his wife Martha provided that care.

The Butlers, shortly before Paul was injured.
Paul Butler can barely walk or talk.
Paul Butler can barely walk or talk.
Dominic Galati served 18 months of weekend detention over the attack.
Dominic Galati served 18 months of weekend detention over the attack.

“It’s gone from being married to (being) a carer,” she told A Current Affair.

“It’s like I was looking after a second child at times.”

Several weeks ago, Mr Butler moved into supported accommodation in the local area.

However, Mrs Butler said, Centrelink then informed her that she and Mr Butler would no longer be receiving the welfare support they relied upon, including Mr Butler’s Disability Support Pension.

Mrs Butler said that because they owned their own home, Mr Butler would also receive no rent support assistance.

She said she had been dealing with different Centrelink representatives for the past 10 months, but had been confused by contradictory advice.

She said she didn’t believe their situation fit any criteria Centrelink catered for.

“I think it would be really helpful if I was able to sit down with somebody (to) give me advice,” she said.

A spokesperson for the Department of Human Services said Mr Butler was receiving the “correct support for his situation”.

© Nine Digital Pty Ltd 2017

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