What are your thoughts on David Cameron’s welfare speech?

For me to comment on the PM’s speech  yesterday, would be like trying to push an arrogant, self centred jelly uphill – a rather pointless exercise. His government has produced ‘facts and figures’ proving beyond any doubt that we, the disabled people – those with most to lose and least to gain and those who aren’t trying hard enough to find work – are to be punished further. The chattering classes believe him – he believes him. We, the battered and bruised unwashed, bury our heads in our hands saying – ‘NO MORE.  ENOUGH IS ENOUGH . THAT’S IT. WE HAVE NOTHING LEFT TO GIVE’ I am one of those disabled people who had not undertaken a medical for Disability Living Allowance and had ‘languished‘ on it for 17 years. I cringe each time I hear the words spat out. How dare I? Awarded for life? Do they know my condition or me? Of course they don’t. My consultant does and because he has studied for years can make a judgement on me. Does the PM have the same qualifications in medicine? Of course he doesn’t and yet he can make me feel like scum as if somehow it’s my own choosing to be disabled. But of course I’m not trying hard enough. Oh they are going to support me back to work are they? What jobs are those Mr PM? I live out in the sticks with no public transport and unless the law has changed – which it probably has because you change laws like men change their socks – blind people are not allowed to drive. Our...

Opposition Day June 20th – Disability Benefits and Social Care

Last weekend we posted our thoughts on the upcoming Opposition Day debate on Disability benefits and social care. We feel very strongly that the debate needs to go beyond those two simple labels. It must look at the full impact of all changes affecting disabled people and carers. We have repeatedly used ‘Perfect Storm’ to describe how changes, of this magnitude, can NOT be implemented without a Cumulative Impact Assessment. We have now seen the statement on Liam Byrne’s web site  and look what it includes:  ‘calls on the Government to …. conduct a full impact assessment of the combined effect of benefit and social care cuts on disabled people and carers.’ Can the tireless campaign work – readily done by so many individuals and groups – really be starting to show results?  Could Labour actually be listening at last? Over 38,300 people have raised their voice on Pats Petition. Keep signing the Petition – share it and get your friends to sign – let’s make those numbers rise today – let’s show them we are still watching. Please do whatever you can to make sure all politicians hear what we want, what needs to be changed, and that they understand the implications of going ahead with these changes without conducting a full impact assessment. You can watch the debate after Prime Ministers Question Time here Participate in discussions on both Twitter and Facebook. We will be using the hashtag   #OD...

Opposition day June 20th – Disability Benefits and Social Care

On Wednesday – 20th June, following Prime Minister Question Time, there will be an Opposition Day** debate in the House of Commons about ‘disability benefits and social care’. This will be an opportunity to debate some of the issues raised by Pat’s Petition, but we emphasise that it will not cover everything. Pat’s Petition calls on the government to stop and review all the changes affecting disabled people and carers. While disability benefits and social care are two significant parts of the support given to disabled people, there is a bigger picture which must include reform of the NHS in England, the end of legal aid, changes to local authority budgets, housing benefits, Surestart and more. Pat’s Petition is currently using the term ‘Cumulative Impact Assessment’ (CIA) to describe what is needed – an assessment that looks at the impact of all the changes taken together. A CIA has also been recommended by bodies including the Joint Committee of Human Rights and the Equalities and Human Rights Commission. We hope that the government will take heed of all these requests for a CIA and that the debate on Wednesday will reference it. Pat’s Petition now has over 38,000 signatures. Please continue to sign and share the link so that we reach 100,000 signatures to request a full debate on the impact of all the changes, not just disability benefits and social care. We urge you all to take note of the debate, follow it online here, tweet comments adding the hashtag  #CIA, add to Facebook and blogs.  Add comments below. Most importantly urge your MP to attend. Pat x...

Pat to appear live on BBC The Big Questions

Sunday  June 3rd 2012 BBC The Big Questions  ….  comes live from Hutchesons’ Grammar School in Glasgow Pat is to be one of the guests speaking about welfare reform. You too can take part in the debates: via Twitter @bbcbigquestions, please use the hashtag #bbctbq or via Facebook The Big Questions Facebook page Please sign  Pat’s Petition here   and then share as wide as possible asking others to do the same....