Pat’s Debate – your support needed more than ever

After a year of very hard work and wonderful encouragement from all of our friends and supporters Pat’s Petition  closed with over 62,600 signatures. We then sent an open letter to Liam Byrne.

We are delighted to announce that all the effort succeeded

and we have a result.

Liam Byrne has been in touch and the Labour Party are giving us an Opposition Day Debate in the Commons based around Pat’s Petition. This means the debate will take place in the Chamber at the House of Commons with Ministers and front benchers as well as back benchers.

So fantastic news – Pat’s Petition is moving to Pat’s Debate. Tell everyone – shout, sing, tweet using hashtag #PatsDebate. Let’s shake this government into listening to us at last.

The debate will probably take place some time in January and we will only have a weeks notice so the important thing now is to get ready for the debate and make sure all the issues we have been campaigning on get attention.


The theme of the motion for the debate will be the Pat’s Petition demand that the government – Stop and review the cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families and a demand for a Cumulative Impact Assessment. It’s a very wide brief so if you want to focus on a particular issue that’s fine.

We will need lots of help from you all to make sure that after all your effort this debate gets real results.

We are hoping that many of you will put up blog posts in support of Pat’s Debate and that we can collect the links together here.

We will also need your help to ask MPs from all Parties to speak in this debate and if we can direct them to your blog posts it will show them the kind of messages we want to put across.

Contact your MP details via this link

Watch this space to see how the plans for the debate are progressing.

Time is running out.

Please get behind this debate and make it a game changer.

Pat x

for further details contact  -  patspetition@gmail.com

If you have any suggestions/comments, please add them below.

 

 

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48 Responses to “Pat’s Debate – your support needed more than ever”

  1. [...] #PatsDebate Pat’s Petition Progresses And Succeeds! Posted on December 8, 2012 by samedifference1 Disability Voices offered full support to Pat’s Petition from the very beginning. So we are very pleased to be cross posting this from CarerWatch. [...]

  2. Glenn Mrosek says:

    Fantastic news!

    I’m sure a lot of us wouldn’t mind a reduction in benefits over this difficult period. But to suddenly withdraw huge chunks of income completely as well as community support, social services, transport etc. Is killing people.

    The repeated treatment by Atos and the DWP one-size-fits-all approach is tipping people over the edge.

    • Steve Southwick says:

      I am sorry Glenn I have to disagree why should we have to have to
      take a cut in our benefits after all we didnt cause these difficult times
      why not cut camerons and other tory M.PS wages make them struggle.

      • Garreth Rogers says:

        The OP raises an important point which I feel illustrates a continued need to educate society at large – including those negatively affected – re. recent cuts. To help spread awareness, please allow me state the following points (which will have been made by many others elsewhere):

        1. Those dependent on welfare benefits were, are and are likely to continue to be generally the poorest in society.

        2. The original point of welfare payments was – I believe – a socialist model to help those most in need meet the most basic living expenses for their circumstances, and where possible allow them to improve their situation (NB not necessarily to the end of furthering purely fiscal concerns). The levels have been set and developed based on these costs (of course they don’t actually meet a decent living standard, but that’s another matter which also concerns minimum wage etc. etc.)

        3. To the best of my knowledge and perception, cuts to welfare (NB which includes below-inflation rises) have not arisen from any preceding decrease in living costs.

        For these reasons I believe it is clear that the cuts are certainly unjustified, *IF* we can assume that we are claiming to hold to the original ideaology (i.e. considering the point of view of their intended social outcome).

        I think we would all agree that the cuts have been explained as an allegedly effective and morally righteous method to reduce the national debt. So far, so uncontroversial.

        Now, if – at the risk of being accused of extremist views – I can also add my personal stance: I feel that incumbent political forces have co-opted and manipulated a growing social phenomenon to scapegoat those on welfare (partly but not entirely media-led, chicken/egg and all that) for society’s ills. Through propaganda, the electorate has been softened to the point where it is acceptable or encouraged to view those receiving sickness benefits as a cause of society’s ills. To my mind, whether by applying their ideology without care, or if it be a fantastic degree of denial and blindness to the obvious, this is an abuse of power which has caused the current crisis.

        I only wish I also had the answer…

    • My husband worked for our local council for 33yrs even though he suffered from epilepsy and was in pain a lot due to arthritis in his hips, Three years ago he had an added illness which left him with balance problems, the council medical board had him in for an assessment and decided he was no longer fit for work and sent him home, then they decided to retire him, kenny didnt want that but had no choice but to agree, 6mths later ATOS asked him in for a medical through him claiming benefits and after a 10min Interview…NO MEDICAL check up they decided he was now FIT for work even though by this time he was worse than what he was before council retired him, youve no idea the strain that brought to us being told his benefit was getting stopped and he was to sign on job seekers, The worry caused him to have epileptic fits and put a strain on both of us, My husband has since had to have a replacement hip and is awaiting another replacement to his other hip, he cant walk without a zimmer his fits have started happening during the night and his specialist has more than doubled his medication his arthritis has worsened and affecting his knees and back, We are DREADING his next call for another medical as I believe they will still say hes FIT FOR WORK…maybe the goverment should just make it legal to take our own lives because thats the only way we are going to find any peace these days. I think the goverment is trying to get rid of the sick, elderly and frail and by attacking them make them lose all hope and desire to carry on living..SHAME ON THEM!!

      • zhiv says:

        You need to put in an appeal as soon as possible. Everyone is found ‘fit’ after assessment, as it’s assumed that people will appeal. However they will never tell anyone this! so go to the CAB for advice. Your husband will be put on £71/wk appeal rate while waiting for tribunal. The Spartacus Report group on Facebook is also very helpful so have a look at them.

  3. Any publicity is good everyone has worked so hard for this you have my support 100% one of my questions is how can they overule a General Practioners conclusions (had mine for 7 years) for a intimidating assessment?

    Good luck Mrs Alison Chesterton

    • Georgina Fox says:

      I think they do that because that is the agreement between ATOS and the DWP. The truth is that ATOS’s action in over-ruling medical records is “arguably unlawful” according to a High Court judge who called for a judicial review of this about 6 months ago. I know of someone who challenged ATOS at their assessment who was trold the GP records were “irrelevant.” Did this happen to you? In which case you can appeal an ATOS/DWP decision to set aside the medical records. The DWP may try to say you must prove you have got worse since the assessment to allow an appeal. You need your doctor’s support with this. You may have to attend an appeal tribunal. Expect DWP/ATOS to lie to you and try to stop an appeal. They have no legal right to stop an appeal, though they can try to say you didn’t appeal within 30 days. However, if you can justify why you could not be expected to appeal within 30 days then there is provision for an appeal within one year. If you can get legal advice I think you should, but go armed with data and to a Benefits Expert or you’ll just be throwing money away. You will be very lucky to get any worthwhile advice from the CAB, or indeed the telephone-based Community Legal Service.

  4. Mel Isherwood says:

    I work in health and social care provision. I have witnessed a number of our customers supported by Mental Health Services and Adult Social care traumatised by having to go through to ATOS assessment they then advised they fit for work, I’m all for supporting anyone back to work but when the process damages the emotional well being it is horrific. As a result my colleagues and I provide additional social care support (and the government think they saving money). Good luck at parliament.

    • Georgina Fox says:

      I wish someone could define what support you refer to here, Mel. If someone is placed in the ESA WRAG when really ill, the DWP does not bother with any Work Related Activity because there is no point. Nobody is interested in employing a sick person. Once in WRAG the government piles the pressure on in every way they can think of in a bid just to stop benefits. If someone is in the ESA Support Group, there is no support other than a payment of £34 a week on top of £71 ESA. That’s it, it is all actually about cash. Just because the DWP uses terms like “Work-Related Activity” and “Support Group” does not mean that there is any work-related activity or support involved. Those terms are just a government smokescreen to hide the facts from the general public. All they are interested in doing is cutting the Welfare costs. As we’ve found recently the massive investments in so called “Work Programme” has resulted in actually less people finding work than would have happened if the government hadn’t a Work Programme at all. The Government are just lying.

      • Loan Ranger says:

        @ Georgina, was that a slip when you wrote that,
        ” If someone is placed in the ESA WRAG when really ill, the DWP does not bother with any Work Related Activity because there is no point. ”

        Sorry to be the bearer of bad news to you but since 3 December,

        c/o Benefits and Work December newsletter:
        MANDATORY WORK FOR ESA WRAG CLAIMANTS
        Private sector work programme providers can now order claimants in the ESA work-related activity group to carry out work experience for the benefit of the community– although this may include working for commercial companies. There is no time limit on how long claimants can be forced to work for, although the DWP claim that it will generally only be for two weeks.

        Providers will have to take into account a claimant’s health problems and disabilities when deciding on a placement, but if this is based on an Atos assessment of their abilities this may be of little reassurance to many claimants.

        The combination of potential mandatory work placements and the savage new sanction of £71 a week for ESA claimants who refuse, without good cause to do as they are ordered, gives private sector companies enormous power to threaten and bully claimants.

        See also this memo from the DWP:
        http://www.dwp.gov.uk/docs/work-programme-memo-082.pdf

  5. Johnnie says:

    Hi Pat. I Had An ATOS Assesment This Year. It Was’nt An Experience I Want To Go Through Again. Yhe So Called Dr Just Sat There On Her Computer. I Have Spinal Damage Which A Lot Of The Time Makes Walking & Standing Up A Living Nightmare. I Also Have Sleep Aponea as well Type 2 Diabetes and Also Mental Health Problems. The Doctor Was Not Interested. Not Long After I Had A Leter Telling Me I Was Being Placed In The Work Activity Group In This New Employment Support Allowance. I Was Sent To The Job Centre For A Meeting. He Was Not Interested In My Health He Was Just Showing How Much Better Off I’d Be In Work. I Am On The Verge Of Ending My Life. I Know & Understand Why People Who Have Been Unfairly Assed By ATOS Feel So Hurt. Good Luck. My Love & Support Are With You.

    • Gary Gans says:

      Johnnie,

      We are all enduring extraordinary pressures, courtesy of Atos, the DWP, and their infamous WCA. The Government and media are keeping the focus on the single-mothers and under 25s while racing full speed on 11,000 flawed Assessments. I have nightmares every day for the brown envelope asking for further testing. Even with PIP and ESA Support Group a 1% annual increase is in fact 3% decrease from the Government statistics. My utilities and let are all rising far higher than 1%.

      It’s placing me on the edge, Johnnie, and I’ve been going through my own Hell, but keep in touch when support is needed. These have even more impact during the Festive Season, and you are worth something far more than the House of Commons. You are reaching out. Please continue, because we will work together to make these changes with us, and not in some pine box. You are far more than you give yourself credit.

      This has been an attack years in the making. We are lifting the hypocrisy of their war on the vulnerable. My life is trying to do what I can. I’m very limited, but I am dedicated to protecting we disabled Brits from slipping back to Bleak House. Stay strong and we will see the Tipping Point.

    • Esther Thomas says:

      Johhnie Please don’t end your life – know that you’re not the only one who feels that way. I have severe bipolar disorder, osteoarthritis spreading through my body, borderline rheumatoid, and have suffered ME too (brought on if I do too much) -all thanks to a hit and run driver when I was 18 – the fact that I strove to stay in work till a particularly bad breakdown nearly meant the death of me counts for nothing it seems.
      Yesterday I was just a gnat’s whisker from ending it, but today feels a bit better. If we did end it, we would just be playing into their hands – ie deaths create a reduction in welfare payments, which appears to be the overall aim, they do not care a hoot about our welfare, we must try and look after ourselves and each other…we mustn’t let the b’s grind us down

    • russ says:

      The Coservative party’s policy is to solve the cost of benefits by killing off the people who cost most – the disabled and elderly. please do not let them do this to you.

    • david says:

      hi pat. atos assesment is a joke i was there a month ago and in 20mins
      my assesment was over in that time the nurse if thats what you could call her had spent 15minutes on the computer. 3weeks later i was told i was fit for work yet i cant bend and cant walk far as the discs in my back are braking down and i have severe sciatica in my left hip so to me atos is just a farce. you have my full support.

  6. FionaP says:

    Shared and sent MP request. I really hope every one who sees this will too.

  7. [...] Find out more about Pat’s Debate on the Carerwatch blog Share this:FacebookTwitterEmailLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. This entry was posted in Home by The Hardest Hit. Bookmark the permalink. [...]

  8. mary says:

    I have cancer and genital lymphodema, and radiation damage to my bowel. I will require medication for the forseeable future. I was working, and worked happily until my daignosis, even at the age of 61. Now I can’t, I loved my job as a support worker for people with dementia in their own homes. I have no other income apart from dla and pension credits. I feel desparately let down by this government, who are determined to continue targeting the most vulnerable members of our society.

  9. martin phillips says:

    i am unemployed struggling to live whilst the prime minister is getting away from squandering money left right and centre.

    I am currently getting after stoppages which isnt my fauly £114.00 for 2 weeks out of that i have to pay for the electric food and clothes and shoes. Also i have to go to job interviews out of this it cannot be done and all the government do about it is laugh at the poor and give to the rich.

    Please fight for the jobseekers too i wish you the best of luck and i look forward to hearing how you got on.

  10. Hazel Roy says:

    I get really upset when some of the most vulnerable people say they understand if their benefits have to be cut at this difficult time. This so called difficult time is largely a construct of the coalition government. Our debt actually fell during the previous govt. If we stopped wasting money on weapons of mass destruction – 3 BILLION a year allocated to TRIDENT (the equivalent of 7,200 Hiroshimas) If we brought troops back from fighting a war in Afghanistan 60% of the population dont want, and changed the law to stop corporations like Apple Amazon Starbucks IKEA Vodophone etc etc evading their tax and pursued the 126BILLION evaded in tax by the most wealthy individuals in our society we wouldnt have an ‘economic crisis’ and society could address the needs of the most vulnerable

    • Phil says:

      The government will NOT cut their wages, but yet, everyone has to suffer. As always one rule for them……..

    • russ says:

      The British government are doing what the people who elected them want – they were elected by the banks acting on behalf of their big company clients and very wealthy individuals. Their absolute policy is to keep tax income from workers high enough and spends on the elderly and disabled population low enough to maintain the fat cat lifestyle of bankers and company directors. If you want a honest government then do not vote for this mob of crooks, anyone else would be better.

      • noushy says:

        you have a very valuable point this is exactlly the problem role on the next election so maybe we might just have a chance of stopping this insanity go any further and doing any more damage to vunerable peoples lives than it already has.

  11. Robert says:

    Well if Byrne is saying this then Labour are up to something, sadly I trust Miliband and his bunch as much as I trust a snake.

    I have signed all the petitions and I have been on both radio and TV over the cuts and the closure of the Remploy factories something I feel greatly about.

    Sadly to me Miliband is out to try and get people to vote for him, I cannot forget what this chap said at conference, he’s two faced and I do not trust him

  12. Amanda Glen says:

    I’am a carer for my partner whos right side of heart has stopped working and also his kindeys are failing. So i support ur petition all the way.I WOULD LOVE TO SUPPORT YOU PAT ALL THE WAY

  13. Steve Southwick says:

    To reply to Hazel Roy the previous goverment did not cause the
    debt crisis they were still clearing up the mess the John major goverment
    left us in.

  14. Michelle East says:

    My adult son receives DLA because he is Autistic and has a learning disability.
    He functions as an 11 year old and has an IQ of62. He lives independently in his own flat and his DLA allows him to pay for his support. He needs help to cook and support with his personal hygiene. He also needs support to acess and understand the outside world. He could not do this without DLA and would possibly end up in some kind of institution, costing a great deal more!

  15. Martyn Field says:

    My MP is also the Speaker so he doesn’t vote – isn’t democracy wonderful?

  16. I have MS, CFS, fibromyalgia, costochondritis and type 2 diabetes which is insulin dependent non of my illnesses show very much on the outside and people will often comment that I look well, but I am always in pain it’s just a case of how much, whether it’s a good day or a bad day and I wake up more tired than when I went to bed even if I have slept for 12 hours. My DLA is the full mobility part, nothing for personal care, all of this goes on my motability car which is vital for me, I cannot use public transport, because of my pain and right sided weakness and taxi’s are too expensive, so to have a reliable car is essential, for medical appointments and visiting for Age UK which I volunteer for to give me a sense of purpose. Now while I consider myself to be more fortunate than a lot of disable people in that I am not in a wheel chair yet nor bed ridden, I do not believe I can cope with life without the independence my car gives me and I will become more of a drain on the NHS than I already am. How can the government throw money at the immigrants and terrorists that have come to this country and decide to take away from genuinely disabled people of Great Britain, people who have paid their income tax and National insurance for 30 years or more, it’s political correctness gone mad

  17. Neil Caven says:

    Hopefully something can be done to stop this idea of “level of disabillit”. I am Terminally ill and use a wheelchair. If i can push myself more than 50 metres in a self peopelled wheelchair i am not entitled to a car on motability!!! Whats that all about? It seems they want you to stay indoors untill you die or you can only get a low level of benefit??

  18. John says:

    I fully agree with the comments made I have suffered bowel cancer I also have D.V.T. For which I have to take warfarin (rat poison) daily but I had to fight for ten years to get the higher rate of DLA,yet I noticed that alcoholics & addicts received a daily payment for their habits.

  19. Rob says:

    My son was put onto the support group without an assessment, effectively denying him the right to access work-related activities. He is 18 years old, has a learning disability, is very willing to work, and needs some support, but he is desperate to get help to get a job and he has lots of skills. The two-tier ESA is unfair and divisive: lets scrap it and give everyone who wants a job the right to get employment support and vocational training without financial penalties.

    • Georgina Fox says:

      Whatever you do, please do not try to get your son re-assessed and placed into the WRAG. Let me explain why. First, your son can stay in the Support Group and “volunteer” for work related activity. He has a right to do that. Second, if he is placed in the WRAG there is a chance that his benefit payments could be affected in the future. For instance ESA Contributory WRAG payments are often time-limited to 365 days, whilst ESA Contributory SG is not time-limited. Whilst this may not affect your son right now there could come a time when you wish he had stayed in SG. Even if he doesn’t qualify for ESA Contributory or even Income -based ESA, be aware there is nothing to stop the government changing the rules and removing other benefits from people in the WRAG. Please also be aware that “Work Related Activity” is not necessarily a programme delivering any work-related activity. Often it just means that in certain circumstances the person gets less or no benefits. Likewise, Support Group, as you no doubt know, does not include any actual support, just potentially an extra few quid and extra protection against getting benefits stopped. However, as I said earlier, your son can keep his Support Group status and insist on the DWP helping him to prepare a CV, start applying for jobs etc — without any threat to his benefits. If you can, I think you should get some legal advice from a benefits expert. I would also urge you to ask your MP to intercede with the DWP and insist your son has the right to help to prepare for future work without any threat to his level of benefits in the short or long term, and without being placed in the WRAG.

  20. Colin Anderson says:

    What about the bedroom tax that this government is going to bring in starting April of next year , another attack on the disabiled and vunrable of this country it is ok for a lord to say just downsize he has no worries leaving his home in my case a home of 30 years and a wife that has disibilitys we would have to pay 25 percent of our housing benifits also our son who lives in his own home and also has a disibility comes home three days a week for support if we downsize what will the future hold for him as we will have to downsize to a one apartment , residential care no doubt this government has no understanding of there damage to the welfare state , but what do you expect from a bunch of millionaires

  21. Julia Smith says:

    With you all the way Pat…keep up the good work…I am a former teacher…now Atos victim…I am confined to a wheelchair and have multiple conditions but scored ZERO POINTS twice via Atos and was assessed ‘fit for work’ My benefit was taken away and my husband had to fight for 8 months for me….I was a whisker away from joining the Atos suicide statistics. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR HELPING US….AND PLEASE MAKE SURE LIAM BYRNE KNOWS HOW APPRECIATIVE WE ARE….but we need to know that LABOUR would do things differently if back in power. Questions I need addressed… How can this coalition government DELIBERATELY break Disability Discrimination law ? Equality Act 2010..loads of it is relevant… we are being harassed, humiliated, abused, and our means of retaining a little dignity and equality of access to transport and public services is removed from us when our benefits are removed. Disabled people are being killed as a result of this government’s policies re Atos WCA’s with the excuse that heaps of ‘scroungers’ are being weeded out. The media have made sure that the general public believe that lie and Leveson has done nothing to allow our voices to be heard. ESA WCA’s are appalling, inhmane and discriminatory…also breaking European Human Rights law…(a right for disabled people to have a home & family life FREE of fear….and I have noticed that Cameron is trying to opt out of those ECHR laws too so that we as disabled people have even less of a ‘voice’ . Why is he removing Impact assessments ? Why is he trying to remove legal aid? Why is he trying to remove the right to appeal via Tribunals ? It is the only way the disabled can fight for their rights because the judges are independent from the DWP…. sorry for rambling on…….Love, hugs and genuine respect for all you have done/are still doing Pat XXX

  22. Tim says:

    In addition to the action that is already being taken, I would suggest that a written letter outlining the issues and problems (I’d suggest no more than two A4 pages), backed up by a dossier of evidence, is sent to the Chair of the House of Commons Work and Pensions Select Committee, Dame Anne Begg, and that it is copied and posted to all the other members of that committee for their information.

    This committee has the power to investigate, call witnesses, produce recommendations and criticise the government department itself on matters relating to work and welfare. The committee details are given below:
    http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/work-and-pensions-committee/membership/

    Good luck!

  23. chris says:

    well,sent an e mail to our mp asking him if he will say something about the reforms and how it will affect disabled and carers.to be honest ,i have a son who was unemployed up until recently,he was a cats whisker away from been sanctioned,for what I dont know. another young man had his jsa taken off him but still had to do full time workfare for 2 or 3 months full time good job he has a mum and dad. my relative who isnt well has been placed on the wrag group,she is on so much medication,needs a lot of support from services,she had a letter saying if she doesnt take part in wok related activity and attend things she will get sanctioned,she doesnt realise the implications,thinking shes better off,because they are paying her more,just waiting for the fallout. oh i am not expecting anything from our mp,he is conservative.

  24. A says:

    received via email

    Hello as a person with 4 hidden disabilities with a partner with Learning disability we live in fear of the benefit changes, our DLA means we can rent the lovely house we live in now, without it we would end up ina council flat in a poor area and with my Aspergers I would be terrified there as I did it before, I have to have peace and quite and a gentle pace of live with my condition, as it is there are weeks when we choose food or heating and sometimes we just go without heating as its a struggle. i am unemployable although i do volunteer work as I don’t like to something for nothing, i used to work but got ill with my nerves and things have been bad for me, my partner has IQ of 65 and sturglles to read and write so he is on disability money, its hard as we are not in wheel chairs and people think we don’t have problems but we do. if theres anything i can do like petitions and things ( I have bad social skills and am cripplingly shy in person) i want to help as lots of disabled people will suffer and it makes me cross as people with mild to moderate LD will suffer alot and yet the governement wants us out in the community, i am scared institutions will re oepn and we’ll all end up back inside them

    best wishes

  25. A says:

    received via email

    Hi pat have signed your petition regarding the debate , and regarding this all I can say is great work , we need people like yourself to stand up for the disabiled and vunrable of this once proud and fair country ,, as these cuts are starting to have affect ,, and more so next year when the bedroom tax , starts and retesting for the new personal income payment comes in that will cause more suffering , my point for the debate would be as I am a carer for my wife and we have a son with disibilitys who stays in his own home as he wants his own independence but comes home to stay three nights every week , and as we have three bedrooms we would have to downsize or pay the housing benifits , if we downsize that would leave our son with no support to live independently and would be possible in the future he would have to go into residential care so what then for his future also this was the family home for my son and two daughters , I have lived here 30 years and made this a home , it would be devastating to my wife and myself to move this is a point I think should be made at the debate , no doubt there will be a lot in the same position up and down the country ,,,
    Again thank you pat and all the best for the future debate hope our voices are heard

  26. P Clark says:

    Hi
    I have just been told by my lung specialist that my emphysema and Pleurisy, Pneumonia/Scars along with constant pain from a badly reformed broken rib which caused a massive pneumo-thorax (They wont go near that lung now for fear of totally ending its service)etc has progressed too far fro Lung reduction or valve treatments, and I am nowhere near fit enough to join the queue for a lung transplant. Ive been told that all I have left is the ability to do some very very light exercise , and take 2 different anti depressants, along with a LOT of Morphine, to make my life more bearable. He advised that I probably have , at best 3-4 years left to live.
    Now, I get all benefits, thankfully, I rely on them all, especially my motability car, its the ony way I can leave my house.
    I am dreading an immature youth with a deadline and a quota to fill stopping my benefits. Im losing sleep through this Atos/Pip thing, its simply not fair.
    Anything I can do I will do, suffice to say I have writen to my MP, my Op Mp, Prime minister, Clegg et all.
    Good louck and please keep up the fight for the thousands like me.

  27. Kate Brown says:

    Hi Pat, you have my vote all the way we the disabled need to challenge strongly the proposed cuts, the indignities we suffer simply because our illnesses make us reliant on benefits and other state help if we can get it.It has taken me 22 years to become accepted as disabled by the state,fortunately I am retired now so no longer have to endure work capability tests or struggle to keep employment, but still appear to have to quantify my right to my well earned pension and the DLA I have been in receipt of since being sacked on medical grounds prior to retirement. I beleive I was entitled to DLA when working but was refused on numerous occassions by medical boards like ATOS based on short interviews.The system must change in that respect.Medical assessors need to be more disability aware ,especially in respect of fluctuating illness and the government needs to take a fairer approach to health benefits.

  28. [...] Pat’s Petition has secured a debate to take place in parliament in January. [...]

  29. Adrian Miller says:

    Plenty of experiences that will help here

    http://www.meassociation.org.uk/?p=14001

  30. Peter Cox says:

    The Government needs to concentrate much less on legalizing homosexual marriage in churches which is not an important issue as homosexual people can always marry in registry offices and concentrate on making large organizations pay more taxes ( Vodaphone- why were they let off? why don’t Google, Facebook and Starbucks pay enough tax? ), means-testing the £200 winter fuel payments to those over 60 so that you won’t get £200 if you have more than say £50,000 in the bank, relieving anxiety of poorer sickness benefit claimants by assurances that they are not unfairly going to lose money by changes in the benefit system and explain just why the benefit system at present needs changing, and sack ATOS not appointing any organization in its place but relying on reports from GPs and psychiatrists whom the claimants have already seen.

  31. G says:

    I support Pats Petition all the way!
    Good Luck and any help I can give please email me.

    My family member who has been unwell since birth, was diagnosed with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, Insomnia and Depression as a child, after a catalogue of illnesses including double pneumonia.
    Last year she was found ‘Fit for Work’ albeit she struggles to do the simplest things in life such as get to the toilet. Her £56.25 was stopped immediately and she has been left penniless since the 9th November, No money for food, heating or electric, even though she immediate appealled the decision in writing.
    Her Mother was told that the Assessment level of ESA was not payable during the ‘Revision’ stage! I rang this week for confirmation on this and suprise suprise, she will be paid on the 4th January. Her Housing Benefit/Council Tax Benefit has also been cancelled, putting her into rent arrears.
    This stress has caused her condition to deteriorate and for her to feel worthless and depressed.

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