I’m all right Jack, Sod the rest

homelessThe title says it all does it not because that is were we are heading as a nation and this and similar images I will put here is a snap shot of what lies ahead all because of a few millionaire in parliament who cannot see the wood from the tress.

There was a debate in the commons today about bedroom tax only many Conservative and Liberal Democrats will be none the wiser because they were not there, you quite rightly would have thought on a subject so important to many they would have been doing the job they was elected to do by us and be their filling the commons to the brim but no it will not effect them so they believe they can be excused and that is an all to similar senorio that happens time and time again.

111021_rich_poor_gap_reut_328We already have two many citizens destitute and homeless often and if not in all cases through no fault of their own, it could be through lack of money and thus being evicted, it could be due to a marriage break up, it could even be because of an illness and/or mental health and having no family indeed the reasons are endless and as I said above in nearly all cases it is a circumstance not of their choosing and you would think this only happens in a 3rd world nations well think again because it is wide spread and happens in every major town and city in the UK.

There is no sign of it abating either and Government policy and legislation will just make a bad and embarrassing situation for the UK a lot worse.

Most of us do not want the riches and luxury lifestyle many aspire too all many of us want is a life that is moderately comfortable, a home and enough money to meet the ever rising cost of energy surely that is not too much to ask.work-with-homeless-people

We in the UK have this “I’m all right jack sod the rest attitude” and that HAS to change as David Cameron PM very recently said in India “The UK is the 6th largest economy in the world” now just think a moment….. if that is the case why are their so many homeless citizens and if that is the case just where exactly is all this money going? make any sense to you I hope not because it does not to me and the fact remains if that is the case there would be no need for anyone to live without a home.

Many more WILL be homeless in the coming months due to the bedroom tax all because a few MP’s wanted to snatch a miserly £14 per vacant room out of citizens already tight budgets and that is the most ill thought out piece of legislation I have ever come across.

On Friday 28th February 2013 I will be sleeping rough that night in Salisbury Cathedral I am doing it for a few reasons, to help raise funds for a very important homeless charity, to support a very good friend Jessica Mccarnun who has been campaigning on the bedroom tax issues, but more importantly because I have empathy with everyone who does not have a home.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/bedroomtaxtellusyourstory/542823809081333/?notif_t=group_activity

https://www.facebook.com/groups/453691884690427/

Jessica’s Donation Page is below please if you can afford it help her in our efforts even if only 50p it all helps.

http://www.charitygiving.co.uk/jessica2013

 

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Are we missing something…… MP’s Code of Conduct

Ethics

We all rant and rave about press ethics, but are MP’s not under the same principal of conduct? indeed they have to maintain and work within the code of conduct so why are we not holding them to account after all the price for breaking it can be high as this article shows.

http://www.taxpayersalliance.com/campaign/2009/02/suing-your-mp.html

While MPs have no statutory obligation to voters, the Commons code of conduct says they have a “general duty to act in the interests of the nation as a whole and a special duty to their constituents”.

MP’s are after all elected to office by us the electorate and thus work for us and the better good of our nation so we really should be pressing this home and holding them to account when legislation is not working because the way I see it they are getting a free ride into parliament and showing no accountability at all.

So many policies have been rushed through the commons, the lords and onto royal assent with very little if any public consultation or risk assessment this has to stop.

There is no better example than the Welfare Reform Act 2013, it is an absolute shambles as is the bedroom tax both unfair and unjust and too many citizens are suffering. It is like I have been encased in a bubble and passported back to the year 1913.

I am like many of you a disillusioned voter always been labour but now believe they are sitting on the fence and if they will not rise up to the challenge and end this barbarism we must play our part.

We can do that by challenging our MP’s at local level , we must kick up a stink in every MP’s surgery across our land what ever you are not happy with write to them it costs you nothing by going here:

http://www.writetothem.com/ 

By flooding them with our grievances and holding our MP’s to account so they are inundated and thus making them work for there money perhaps we can bring change and show that we will not stand for this abuse of power and corruption anymore.

Your MP may not have had a hand in the legislation you are complaining about, but they are complicit and have a duty to follow due process to your satisfaction.

I have started here but hope you will follow:

https://diaryofansahstrokesurvivor.wordpress.com/2013/02/23/david-willetts-who-fails-his-first-obligation-to-his-constituent-duty-of-care/

David Willetts …who FAILS his FIRST obligation to his constituent …DUTY OF CARE..

On Friday 15th February I had an appointment with my MP David Willetts to try and get an explanation and some understanding of why the department of Works and Pensions are treating me like they are. I wanted to know why they put me straight into the WRAG group without an assessment because given my health conditions an assessment would have been highly likely and as much as I hate ATOS I still should have been given an assessment to put my case across.

The only reason I can think off as to why I was put straight into WRAG group from Incapacity Benefit is because they knew an appeal was unlikely due to the difficulty I have explaining my medical conditions and would miss the 30 day time limit in returning the appeal form after all my ESA 50 went back late and I had to grovel to get them to reinstate my benefit which they stopped due to the lateness in returning the forms.

This 30 day time limit is a grey area for those with mental health conditions as they struggle with compiling the evidence, filling in the forms and returning it all in that time span.

Mr Willetts letter to me is below:

David Willetts letter 22-02-03 1

In this letter he totally gets the facts of the appointment wrong but more importantly seems fit to judge me medically in an appointment that took no longer than 5 minutes, indeed one wonders where he got his medical qualification from….

My reply:

Saturday 23 February 2013

Dear David Willetts,

I received your letter this morning dated the 22nd February 2013 and
feel I need to respond to it as I was not impressed with the contents.

I left our meeting very disheartened as you came across totally clueless
and felt you could not wait to get rid of me indeed the meeting was
only a few minutes hardly enough time to put the issues across to you
and more so because of my clinical mental health.

You even had the gaul to ask me what the WRAG Group was, I appreciate
that that you will not know all legislation indeed their is so much no
MP will know it all, but you knew I was coming so should have
researched the legislation connected to the issues I was raising which
clearly you did not do so as my MP you have failed me greatly.

You also have a duty of care as per the code of conduct I saw no duty
of care what so ever and a bit of compassion and empathy would not have
hurt anyone.

In your letter you state a lie and one which I hope you will not repeat
to the job centre plus because it is far from the truth and I would
like to ask you when you was medically qualified to judge me as and I
quote “medically stable condition” just how can you come to that
conclusion in a meeting that took less than 5 minutes.

The letter you said you would send to jobcentre plus is also going to
the wrong place as I do not have an issue with them but do with the
Department of Work and Pensions of which it was their decision maker
that took it upon themselves to place me in WRAG group.

I will now make it clear to you what my medical conditions are but more
importantly how these conditions impact on me because since April 1990
I have spend a good part of my life trying to explain it to many people
because they do not understand and in many cases do not care and that
is a sad reflection of life.

I have for a long-time been stuck between a rock and a hard place
because of people who cannot see the wood between the trees and it
seems that is the case with you also.

You state in your letter that my medical condition is not expected to
change please tell me how you came to that judgment because I never
said that what I did say is it will not get better so putting me in the
WRAG group is not fair.

I had a bursts aneurysm of the middle cerebral artery and the medical
term for this is a subarachnoid haemorrhage commonly known as an SAH
Stroke because the oxegen starvation causes a stroke indeed I have
frontal and temporal lobe damage which has caused clinical mental
health and have problems in many areas like very poor working memory
and short term memory, low motivation and poor executive functioning.

I live in daily pain due to spasticity down my right side and have claw
hand and drop foot, I awake at night due to contractures and spasms of
my right calf muscles. the joints in my right toes and right fingers
are shot due to joint degeneration and is very painful this was
exacerbated by the manual labour I did in the years I did work post SAH
Stroke and the steel toecap boots I had to wear and the heavy lifting
did not help.

As I told you when I was made redundant in 2007 I tried for 6 months to
get my self back in employment because that is were I wanted to be
because I do understand the worth of being in employment but it quickly
dawned on me that it was going to be harder for me that for an able
bodied person due to my disabilities and the lack of full-time
employment, however not to be one that gave up I went back to my GP to
get a physiotherapy referral yes I was kidding myself that they could
heal the damage to my body anyway I had 3 appointments at the QA
Hospital and I was told it was not going to improve so still not
wanting to give up I went on a course with the sector skills centre at
waterlooville to up-skill myself in computing only I hit a barrier
there too due to poor working memory they was teaching me stuff then I
go home and forget it all.

During this time and all the years since my SAH Stroke I never claimed
a single penny in disability benefits or help that was my moral duty
and believed when the time came the Government would look after me what
a stupid thought that was because had a claimed all those years ago I
would not be in the very scary position I find myself in now.

I am now praying that my mortgage does not increase due to George
Osborne’s bad handling of the economy and the reduction in our nations
excellent triple A rating, I have always meet my payments in full every
month even by not claiming mortgage interest help a moral that many
MP’s do not have.

I hope this letter has made it CLEAR that I am not a scrounger but a
constituent in genuine need of help because I am tired of fighting this
con-dem/nation all I want is for medical conditions to be understood by
the government so I can get the support that I need which is well
overdue and live the remaining years of my life in peace with my caring
family and do the hours in voluntary work I can manage with out fear or
retribution from this government because I have done nothing wrong at
all and been a good citizen to the best of my ability.

Yours sincerely,

I await his response before I proceed further.

Letter to Lord Bach

Lord Bach
House of Lords
London
SW1A 0PW

Dear Lord Bach,

I read with interest what you had to say in the Lords and as printed
by:

http://disabilitynewsservice.com/2013/02/benefits-bill-is-miserable-and-mean-spirited-says-disabled-peer/

I had today an appointment with my MP David Willetts at his surgery in
Havant I came out very disheartened even though he said he would write
to the Jobcentre when in fact he should be writing to the DWP as it is
they and ATOS I have issues with.

My MP was more interested in and raised the fact that I had worked
full-time for 17yrs post stroke and could not see why I could not work
again he did not seem interested in the barriers I face or the attitude
of some employers when under interview.

I am 49 years and had an SAH that caused a Stroke I had a deep invasive
craniotomy in April 1990 to clip the massive bleed of my middle
cerebral artery this operation was successful and is a great testament
to our wonderful NHS, however after 2 months of induced coma I faced an
uphill struggle to get my fitness back so I could return to my
full-time work this was all the more harder as it was my strongest
right side that was effected and thus even the simplest tasks like shoe
laces holding a cup was again all new to me and had to relearn, I even
had to learn to write again with my left as computers were not what
they are now.

18 months later I returned to work a proud moment indeed because
throughout this near death illness I never claimed a penny in
government help and that remained the case until September 2007 as I
had morals and felt the need to be self-sufficient what our government
would aspire too yes?

I have never believed in getting money of the government unless their
was a real need and even though I had an entitlement to disability help
I never claimed it until April 2008 after redundancy in September 2007.

Despite this redundancy I was not going to give up and thus search hard
for more employment only it was at a difficult time with the financial
problems this county faced and with my disabilities it was even harder.

After countless interviews and getting nowhere and after one employer
stating to me I had no hope with the many able bodied citizens chasing
the same jobs and that I should be claiming disability benefits I
thought about this because I was originally cross with his comments but
then thought maybe he is right why am I beating myself up with this so
with that I took the decision to move onto option 2 which was claim the
benefits I am entitled too which I never claimed all those years before
which added to the millions that went unclaimed every year and move
into voluntary work working with people who had more of an
understanding of my medical conditions.

Everything was fine with the Incapacity Benefit and little bit of
Disability Living Allowance I was getting not a great sum of money but
enough to survive and meet the mortgage and bills along with my wife’s
earnings.

I was happy doing very worthwhile work with The Stroke Association
raising awareness and fundraising and being a pillar in the community
for other less fortunate citizens then came the ESA and ATOS and I was
on a slippery slope with the worries and fear setting in.

I am sure you are aware of the MHRN Court case that I am eagerly
waiting Judgment on? because it will rule on the fairness of the WCA
for mental health patients and survivors like me.

I was put straight into the WRAG Group without an assessment obviously
they think I will be able to return to work in a year with the wide
ranging health conditions I have which are both mental and physical I
live each day with pain in my hip caused by the gait I have, pain in my
ankle due to drop foot, pain in my shoulder wrist and hand due to
degenerative joints as well as poor working memory and executive
functioning issues please tell me who is going to think I am a good
employment prospect?

These conditions are life long and will not get any better this year,
next year, or any other year I have accepted that and thus work
voluntary because they are mindful and thus can and do make allowances.

So why was I put in WRAG Group as that is for citizens who have a
prospect of returning for work in one year and furthermore what happens
to me when my WRAG entitlement runs out in 8 mths time surely I cannot
sign on for JSA with the health conditions I have? The whole system is
deeply flawed.

I believe that the DWP knew I would appeal if I was sent for ATOS
ASSESSMENT and knew I would struggle to return the appeal forms in the
30 day time limit due to the executive functioning I suffer with after
all that is why the ESA 50 form was sent back late.

I feel stuck between a rock and a hard place through no fault of my own
and can see no way out and a very bleak future when all the other cuts
come in.

I pay my mortgage now in full every month with no help from the
government with the interest that I am proud off and can truly call it
my home as I will have paid for it all however I am very mindful of any
interest rate rises because if they do increase to past levels we as a
family will be homeless as I cannot afford any more and thus will be
evicted which is not a good prospect as my wife also cares for her
elderly mum at this address and again we are proud to do so as it is
our duty not the governments.

I have tried to explain the impact all this is having on our family and
why Mr Cameron’s policy and legislation on the most vulnerable in
society is so wrong and fear all the work the labour Government did in
bringing families out of poverty will be lost as they will be heading
straight back their how can that be right?

I believe in Mr Milibands “ONE NATION” but feel he still has much work
to do before May 2015 to ensure everyone is counted in fairly.

I hope that this email has been informative to you and that you can
help me in seeking rightful justice.

I am still working voluntary with The Stroke Association and looking
forward to Stroke awareness month in May indeed much work to do for
that as many citizens still do not understand the barriers we face
including many MP’s in the commons.

However I hope I will not be forced onto Mandatory Work because I am
happy where I am and that means more to me than anything else.

Yours sincerely,

Leon Carter

 

Nearly Three years under the Tories and so let us have a snap shot of all the great things they have done for the people of this small island.

From Facebook Group: 

The Naked Truth: Cameron:Is he the worst prime minister in British history.

By Dr Eoin Clarke…

WARNING-WARNING-WARNING

If you are a Tory supporter do not read REPEAT do not read….

  • Under the Tories homelessness has shot up 31%.
  • Tory boasts that they would turn Britain into a “tax haven” have come to pass, at least for the rich .
  • Too many of the jobs created under the Tories have been part time Evidence shows that record numbers of those in work want extra hours but cannot get them.
  • There are now 600,000 less public sector workers than there was when the Tories came to power.
  • The Universal Benefit Payment is forcing families to move into squalid housing, typically defined as the lowest 33% of houses by rental value in an area. Given that 46% of private rental homes are deemed sub-standard, this is cruel (ONS).
  • The UK Statistics Authority has rebuked Michael Gove for his consistent misuse of government statistics.
  • The Tory Work Programme has delivered just a 2% success rate , after they ignored NAO warnings it was a waste of money.
  • The Tories will cut Corporation Tax (profit tax) by 25%, from levels of 28% to 21% (here). This is at the same time as scrapping Child Benefit for some earners and cutting Child Tax Credits.
  • The Tories spent a year demonising benefit claimants with their “curtain pulling” stigma, even though £66bn goes unclaimed every Parliament in benefits.
  • The Tories failed to make permanent the Bankers’ Bonus Tax and profiteers in the City of London are still being rewarded, disproportionately, for taking unnecessary risks.
  • The Tories showed no sympathy for the families suffering from Child Benefit Cuts. One Tory MP labelled mothers complaining about losing Child Benefit as engaging in “fiscal nimbyism” and urged them to live within their means .
  • The Tories refused to regulate the Fast Food industry. Instead, they asked their nudge unit to consider “fat taxes” on the poor. They even stopped obsese people having access to some NHS operations. Unashamed of their deeds, one Tory MP said NHS Patients should pay for their medicines if they contract illnesses through “Lifestyle Choice”.
  • The Tories launched a war on women, by cutting Tax Credits and accusing feminism of holding back men.
  • The Tories have wasted more than £90 billion of taxpayers’ cash.
  • The Tories have increasingly refused Freedom of Information Requests, and have changed the rules to make it easier for an FOI request to be refused.
  • The Tories have axed 5,000 Firemen & Firewomen.
  • The Tories have axed 28,000 staff in Police Forces throughout the country.
  • The Tories have accepted £20 million of donations from people who have directly benefitted from their policies. The blame lies not with the donors, but the Tories for creating unnecessary conflicts of interest by accepting the cash.
  • The Tories have abolished Remploy, and sacked 5,000 disabled workers in one day. Oblivious to the sensitivities of what they were doing, the workers were formally sacked on international day for disabled people.
  • The Tories are on course to issue 3 million National Insurance numbers to overseas nationals this parliament, a failing by their own pronouncements, although I welcome our new arrivals.
  • The Tories announced scrapped the 50p Rate of Tax, and in doing so have given a tax cut to millionaires.
  • The Tories admit they will now have to borrow at least £150 billion extra this parliament because of their failed growth. That figure has since grown again.
  • The poor treatment of exceptionally talented foreign students has been one of the saddest features of 2012. The revoking of their visas has meant that some of our brightest students have been, de facto, deported.
  • The plans announced to halt teachers automatic progression through the Main Pay Scale could end up costing teachers up to £10,000. There are real fears among Unions that these plans amount to pay freezes through the back door.
  • The numbers of workers not even being paid the National Minimum Wage has grown under this government, with women being the worst affected.
  • The numbers of homes built under the Tories are at levels lower than any time since the Second World War.
  • The numbers applying to go to university have declined 2 years running, this year by 6% alone. These are dangerous times, where aspiration for educational advancement is becoming unfulfilled.
  • The number of working households now relying on Housing Benefit to make their rent payments has doubled.
  • The number of families on housing waiting lists is now at a record high, after Grant Shapps failed to solve the lack of affordable housing supply.
  • The NHS is wasting more money than ever before. Agency Spend among Foundation Trusts has climbed 50%. We are now paying private consultancies hundreds of millions to assist the new CCGs, to audit accounts, and to report on the future viability of NHS Trusts.
  • The government have failed to tackle payday loan companies, leaving it to crusading backbench MPs to campaign for.
  • The government blamed the poor for being unemployed as unemployment stayed stubbornly above 2.4 million. One Tory MP even accused the unemployed of playing the system and warned of a “rude awakening” as unemployment reached 2.5million.
  • The average NHS worker has had a real terms pay cut of £1,600 due to George Osborne’s pay freeze.
  • Suicide Rates have begun to rise again & the Tories have failed to accurately devise policies to tackle what I call medicine cupboard Britain.
  • Staff Cuts: 85,000 less people are employed by the state in Health & Social Care. 42,000 less are employed in the actual NHS (here).
  • Rail Fares have risen more than 20% since the Tories came to power.
  • Privatisation: £7bn worth of the NHS has been privatised and 90% of it has been handed to a tiny number of companies.
  • Private landlords are recouping a record amount of £42bn a year from tenants, yet the Tories only answer was to cap housing benefit, instead of capping private rents.
  • Personal debt continues to rocket while George Osborne shifts the bankers debt from the state to us.
  • Patient Satisfaction: When Labour left office NHS Patient Satisfaction was the highest it had ever been (73%). It has since taken a record slump to (58%). Just over half of people are now happy with what the NHS has to offer.
  • Parents, pupils and teachers did not want academy status for their schools, but Michael Gove has ignored local democracy and forced academisation upon them.
  • Parents have serious concerns about drafting in 100s of ex-soldiers to teach our children. The army has had a history of bullying, and soldiers have faced severe psychological pressure as a result of a decade of illegal wars. Using these personnel to nurture our children is a step in the wrong direction.
  • Our NHS Foundation Trusts are facing increasing economic instability. In total, 7 NHS Trusts face ‘hit squads’. The NAO concluded that PFI was not the main cause. In fact, rising spend on Agency Staff as a result of Lansley’s recruitment freeze was the main reason.
  • Of the top 10 private health companies in the UK, who have all seen their business blossom under the Tories, there have been 100+ Care Quality Commission Inspections on their premises in 2012 which have reported shortcomings at their sites.
  • No 2 local NHS areas in 2012 offer the same health entitlement. North Yorkshire patients, for example, are losing their right to follow up appointments and health visitors as £10m of cuts are being made to local services . Children’s rights to expensive cancer drugs now vary from trust to trust.
  • NHS Treatments such as cataracts, hip replacements are no longer available free of charge on the NHS in some parts of England for some patients. In total, 22 Treatments are now restricted.
  • Nearly 7,000 Nurses have been axed under the Tories and thousands more have received redundancy notices.
  • More than 400 Sure Start Children Centres have now been shut under the Tories, this from a party who promised not only to protect them but to extend them.
  • £1.3 trillion of damage has been done to economy through lost growth & ballooning debt and misspent money.
  • Michael Gove scrapped EMA that the Institute of Fiscal Studies called Value for Money. His decision was not based upon the deficit since he first sought to scrap it in 2004
  • Michael Gove has left Britain with the most over-crowded classrooms in Europe.
  • Michael Gove has cherry picked the best schools for “converter” academy status, the schools with poorer OFSTED records have been held up in their applications .
  • Michael Gove has actually closed more than 200 schools at a time when class sizes are rising.
  • Michael Gove halved the funding on school meals after which Jamie Oliver attacked him for decreasing the quality & health of children’s nutrition.
  • Michael Gove cut £860m from the Children & Families budget and used it to bribe schools to switch to academy or free school status.
  • Michael Gove cancelled Labour’s plan to roll out free school meals for middle-class families at a time when evidence shows more families are in desperate need of the meals.
  • Just 454 Affordable Homes were built a 6 months spell under Grant Shapps, as reported by the ONS in November 2011. This was a 97% decrease (here).
  • Jeremy Hunt has ordered every Primary Care Trust in England to put 3 further chunks of its NHS out to tender under AQP by September 2013. This follows on from the 456 forced tenders this year. In total, 912 pieces of our primary NHS services are being flogged.
  • Infant mortality rates have started to rise again after a long period of them failing.
  • In Sheffield elderly patients have to pay £5-17 for foot treatment. For a time Sheffield was also charging patients £25 for whiplash tests. In the East of England major health providers are limiting courses of physiotherapy treatment.
  • In each of the 2 years of Tory Rule, private rents have grown by more than 4%.
  • Iain Duncan Smith is forcing public sector workers to accept a 3% tax hike in their pension contributions against their will or any proper consultation.
  • Iain Duncan-Smith penned one of the most heartless letters I have ever read to the family of a suicide victim.
  • The government have been slammed by the leading experts in the Housing Profession who published a Housing Report concluding that the Tories, and in particular Grant Shapps as Housing Minister, were failing tenants.
  • Half of England’s Ambulance Stations are being shut down and sold off. In total, 591 hectares of NHS land is up for sale.
  • Gove now famously refused to discuss Ofqual’s letter of concerns about the E-Bacc in front of the Select Committee. The one-off 3 hour replacement of GCSE English has been labelled dangerous, unequal, unaccountable and unprecedented (evidence).
  • George Osborne signed a record number of PFI deals in his first year in power that will cost the Tax Payer £33bn.
  • George Osborne raised an extra £41bn in taxes in 2011 at a time when the economy was struggling but cut taxes for the rich.
  • Gas Prices are up 31% under the Tories & 40% of families are on the brink of fuel poverty.
  • Food Banks have grown every year of a Tory government as Child poverty has also increased. The Tories have responded in various ways from trying to claim this as a success of the Big Society, to denying poverty even exists in the UK.
  • Female rates of redundancy are climbing at a faster rate than men. More than 80%+ of workers losing their job in the NHS are women. Huge wage differentials still exist between men and women.
  • Despite violence against women climbing, and domestic abuse jumping 20%, one Tory MP drew parallels between the allegations of sex crimes, and smoking a joint.
  • Despite having the consultation period required for redundancy notice halving from 90 to 45 days, the Tories persisted with blaming workers for their declining rights. One Tory MP cruelly judged that British Workers were among the ‘Worst idlers’ in the World (evidence).
  • David Cameron has now abolished Equality Impact Assessments thus guaranteeing less equal services for disabled, elderly, LGBT, and BAME voters.
  • Michael Gove cancelled a plan to rebuild 715 crumbling schools thereby ensuring that all Labour’s great advancements in updating our school infrastructure were put on hold.
  • 10% of A & E Wards are shutting. Dozens of District General Hospitals are facing downgrade or closure.
  • Chris Skidmore co-authored a book that labelled UK workers among the most “idle” in the world. He called for Unemployment payments to be repayable loans , and proposed that benefits such as tax credits and child benefit be capped to just two children.
  • Chris Grayling forced an eventual 350,000 young person’s (50,000 of who are disabled)to work unpaid for multi-national firms.
  • Cameron has spent 2 years bullying, mocking & insulting women, disabled & the elderly.
  • At least 570,000 more households (1.2 million people) were forced into fuel poverty in a single day.
  • As a portion of GDP UK state spending in Education is set to fall far behind the USA making us more neo-liberal than the state we love to mock for its laissez-faire approach.
  • Andrew Lansley & David Cameron ignored a Tribunal Ruling to publish Risk Register.This Risk Register if published could have saved lives as it would have led to an improved mitigation response to the Tories new NHS impositions.
  • After mucking up the security arrangements for the Olympics, and wasting taxpayers’ money in still paying a company £80 million+ for failure, a Tory MP had the audacity to mock the Olympic Ceremony as Leftie Multi-Cultural Crap.
  • According to the UK Statistics Authority, the Tory Manifesto Commitment on page 45 has been broken. There has not been a year on year increase in NHS spending (real terms).
  • According to the National Audit Office, Gove has overspent by £1 billion on his Free School & mass academisation experiment. Gove is making up the shortfall by taking £1bn cash from state school children.
  • A&E Waiting Times at 8 year high. Things have not been this bad since 2004.
  • A proliferation of the same fast food premises in and around schools mark this a sorry year for those trying to improve school food standards.
  • A Bedroom Tax on families with wounded soldiers, disabled or elderly who require extra space for their treatment is callous.
  • A 20% VAT rate has added 0.7% to inflation that reached 5% in 2011 while wages grew at less than half rate. This had a dramatic effect on the misery index.
    95 Academy & Free School bosses now earn more than MPs & up to £300,000 a year.
  • 74% of GPs say that there has been a reduced entitlement on the NHS this year.
  • 600,000 people will go bankrupt under this government.
  • 250,000 Disabled People have been forced onto Unpaid Workfare with a 2% job success rate.
  • 2012 will forever be remembered as the year where Academy Bosses salaries accelerated to more than double the pay of the Prime Minister. There are now hundreds of Academy bosses raking in more than Government Ministers earn (evidence).
  • 2012 saw record high Clinical Negligence payouts totalling more than £1.2 billion. This is a £500 million increase than payouts under Labour. Each claim takes on average 1.3 years, so the 2012 payouts were for errors in 2010-11.
  • 25,000 businesses have already gone bust under this government .
  • 2 Trusts have been placed in administration with one judged ‘bankrupt’. A Further Trust was told it was facing bankruptcy.
  • 2 NHS Acute Secondary Hospitals are either a) privatised or b) the formal process of franchising has begun.
  • 11,000 Hospital Beds have been axed in 2 years. We now have the lowest number of hospital beds in our NHS in living memory.
  • 10,000 students GCSE English Results were debated in a High Court as Michael Gove oversaw a belated altering of the grade boundaries that unduly punished some students by as much as 2 grades.

By Dr Eoin Clarke…

 

McVey set to face legal challenge over PIP changes that came ‘out of nowhere’

Disabled activists are planning legal action over the government’s decision to tighten eligibility for support for people with the highest mobility needs.

Many disabled activists were shocked and angry when Esther McVey, the Conservative minister for disabled people, announced the unexpected changes in December.

The alterations to the regulations that will decide who is eligible for the new personal independence payment (PIP) – which will gradually replace working-age disability living allowance from this April – saw the key walking distance criteria reduced from 50 to 20 metres.

Lawyers advising the WeAreSpartacus online network of disabled campaigners have now suggested that this lowering of the distance criteria could be unlawful.

Jane Young, coordinator of WeAreSpartacus, said: “The reason for a legal challenge and a great part of its basis in law is that there was absolutely no consultation on 20 metres at all.

“One of the reasons people are particularly angry about this is that the 20 metres has literally come out of nowhere.

“We realised PIP would not be great, but it wasn’t until the regulations were published that we realised how bad it would be from the mobility perspective.”

She is now appealing on her blog for disabled people – although only those in certain categories – to come forward to take a case against the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

Earlier this week, McVey insisted again that the “moving around” part of the PIP assessment – which includes the 50 to 20 metres change – had not been tightened in December.

She told a committee of MPs debating the PIP regulations: “I know that there have been concerns that we have tightened up rules regarding the physical mobility activity ‘moving around’. I take this opportunity to reassure honourable members that that is not the case.”

This “reassurance” came despite the government’s own figures making it clear that the overall package of changes announced in December would see – by 2015 – 20,000 fewer people eligible for the enhanced mobility rate than under the previous draft version of the PIP regulations, with this gap rising to 51,000 by 2018.

McVey claimed that, under previous drafts, the government had “differentiated by the type of aid and appliance that an individual used”, and “used terms such as ‘up to’ certain distances, which meant it was not clear which descriptor applied to people”.

She said: “In the final version of the criteria, we differentiate by distance, which we feel is much clearer.

“In the final draft, individuals who cannot walk 20 metres can be certain they will receive the enhanced rate, regardless of whether they need an aid or appliance.”

And she insisted that last month’s decision to ensure that the need for activities to be carried out “safely, reliably, repeatedly and in a timely manner” was included in the regulations would make “the protection in our policy stronger”.

But Anne McGuire, Labour’s shadow minister for disabled people, said disabled people had “been alarmed at the hurdle they will now face before being awarded the enhanced mobility rate”.

She said: “Most of those who have looked at these descriptors would say that a 20-metre qualifying distance simply does not provide a practical level of mobility.”

She said about 200 disabled people in every parliamentary constituency were likely to lose their Motability vehicle with a 20-metre qualifying distance.

And she pointed out that one of the Department for Transport’s own publications, Inclusive Mobility, recommends that “seating should be provided on pedestrian routes at intervals of no more than 50 metres, and that parking spaces for blue badge holders should preferably be provided within 50 metres of the facilities they serve”.

7 February 2013

News provided by John Pring at www.disabilitynewsservice.com