Posts Tagged ‘housing’

Stop the Bedroom Tax – Newcastle Rally

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013


The delegation from Scotland consisted of Susan Archibald, Citizen Smart and myself – all travelling down in Susan’s van.  Arriving at Newcastle Civic Centre dead on 1.30pm we were delighted to find such a huge crowd milling , waiting, banners at the ready. Wheelchairs, buggies of all shapes and sizes. White canes, a Guide Dog, police, children and people with all their faculties in tact.

pic courtesy of Gail Ward

pic courtesy of Gail Ward

A buzz of excited anticipation greeted us. It was a little unfortunate that the police directed us along a road which was blocked by a locked electric barrier which was not for moving. Bit of clever limbo manoeuvres got everyone through. Spreading ourselves out along the pavement we made our way chanting towards the pedestrian crossing. Being at the front we had no idea that the back of the march got caught as the lights changed to red. Thinking about it afterwards it would have been in the spirit of the day if the police had just stopped the traffic for a few minutes.

Making our way up through town, weaving around bollards in the precinct, expertly guided by officers in their high vis jackets we arrived at Grays Monument. it was hot. Very hot. Gail Ward, our MC, brought the speakers on. Some disabled, some not, but all had a message to share and they were all passionate in their words. Some only spoke a few words, while others could have gone all day such was their message.

Citizen Smart entertained us with his music especially written for the day. People sang, clapped and stomped their feet where they could. The whole atmosphere was quite amazing. Peaceful yet powerful. Anger, outrage even, with a few tears from a lady standing next to me. People came and listened because they care. They took part because they will be affected and they joined in one voice.

Pat x

Videos’ of the Newcastle event can be found here

Evening chronicle report here  –  ‘Bedroom tax’ demonstrators protest in Newcastle

Many thanks to all those that helped organise this event



Pat’s Debate – your support needed more than ever

Saturday, December 8th, 2012

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  –

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



The Prime Minister understands disability for the rich – but not for the poor

Friday, October 12th, 2012

Mr Cameron in his conference speech claimed to understand disability from his own family experience. He cried at the point in his speech where he mentioned his disabled son Ivan who died. It was very moving. He also made a big point about his disabled father.

So the question is – does David Cameron understand about disability from his own family experience as he claims.?

And the answer is – he has experience of disability in the family as a rich person.

But he understands nothing about disability if you have nothing and are up against the state – as your only source of income.

Absolutely nothing.


Disability References In David Cameron’s #cpc12 Speech

Call Time on This Wretched Government and Its Assault on the Disabled – Andy Worthington

What 26k  Feb 2012

 George Osborne seals deal for £10bn welfare cuts


Please sign the petition here, check for activation email, and then share asking others to do the same.

Disabled people Against the Cuts – week of protests

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Disabled campaigners have planned a week of protests against Atos to coincide with the start of the Paralympic Games

Debbie Jolly in Guardian

Minute Menu of protest Activites


Atos ­sponsoring the Paralympics when its benefit tests are a sick joke is an insult to disabled people

by Kevin Maguire Daily Mirror

Paralympian stripped of gold in protest against sponsors Atos


Owen Jones: David Cameron praises Paralympians, but his policies will crush them



Add your voice to Pat’s Petition here

Share the link 

and ask as many others to do the same


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

Tuesday, June 26th, 2012

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 –


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 children who are supposed to be our future are now expected to live at home with Mummy and Daddy.

Tarquin, you must work hard – save – find and marry a nice girl before moving into your first little house and start a family

Land cloud and cuckoo spring to mind. On one hand they are expected to move around the country to wherever there is work – minimum waged if lucky – and yet now you are saying you won’t support them with housing benefit when they find those elusive jobs. Must try harder.

Work pays. No it doesn’t. Neither does struggling on a collapsing welfare system. Soaring energy prices. Ditto on food. These are no longer essentials – they’ve become luxury items. The amount of money people like Mr PM have as loose change in their pockets, pays their taxi driver’s tip. We live on less than that week in week out.

Who, pray, can afford to live on minimum wages? Who, pray a little harder, can afford to live on benefits? Far too many can’t and don’t.  Now they are expected to clean up parks – litter and rubbish left by those who can afford to enjoy their free time picnicking there. Clean up other people’s mess to get a reward of? A pittance. Must try harder.

Do you know something? As a child I was taught to take my rubbish home with me and put it in the dustbin. I did then and still do now. I was proud of my country. I was, but no more.

You want to pay less in benefits to those areas where the cost of living is less do you? What areas are those? Is the line somewhere South of Watford where the wealthy live? So our electricity suddenly becomes cheap when you cross that imaginary line going north? Back to land, cloud and cuckoo again. Oh sorry. This little gem was dropped from your speech.

Did you know that one very well known high street store charges the same price for its clothes whether you live in London or Livingston? (That’s in Scotland.)

Continue beating us if that’s what makes you tick but don’t expect us to sit still while you do. You may think you have divided ‘your’ country into the haves – those ever so hard working tax payers – and the never will haves – (I can’t even be bothered to write out the words you keep using to describe me.)

Just beware the hand that feeds you


Stop and review the cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families

sign petition here  and share asking others to do the same.


Welfare cuts create ‘grave concern’

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

MSPs have “grave concerns” about the future of the most vulnerable people because of a £2.5 billion cut in benefits.

Hawick News

Benefit reforms paint ‘bleak picture’ for Scotland’s most vulnerable


Proposed new laws to “limit the impact” of UK-wide welfare reforms in Scotland should be passed, MSPs have said.

BBC Scotland

About the Scottish Committee here

1st Report, 2012 (Session 4): Report on the Welfare Reform (Further Provision) (Scotland) Bill at Stage 1

Papers for meeting May 15th – read here


Stop and review the cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families

Sign Pat’s Petition and share the link



David Cameron considers extra £25bn of welfare cuts

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

David Cameron is considering ordering billions of pounds in extra welfare cuts   proposed in a confidential Downing Street policy paper, The Daily Telegraph can disclose.

Read the article in full here

Enough is Enough. Let’s put a stop to this.

Sign Pat’s Petition  which calls on the government to

Stop and review the cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families

Share the link and ask as many others to do the same.


A Disaster waiting to happen – how long before social services sink

Saturday, April 28th, 2012

 False Economy have been updating their list of cuts. You can see them here  and  here

They have also been collecting testimonies from people already affected.

Today the Telegraph tells how “the leaders of   every major council in England and Wales called on the main party leaders to   act now to avoid “dangerous” delays in agreeing reform to elderly services. “

The government must heed this warning. Not to do so will be foolhardy, irresponsible, reckless,

There is a greater danger ahead too. When the proposals in the Welfare Reform Act are put in to place, many people fear their benefits will be cut/withdrawn. The knock on effect to Social Services will be immense, and like a pack of cards the system will collapse.

It is vital that the government “stop and review the cuts to benefits and services which are falling disproportionately on disabled people, their carers and families.”

This is asked for in Pat’s petition . To date almost 36,000 have signed.

The JCHR outlined their concerns in March 2012 – Implementation of the Right of Disabled People to Independent Living

Scottish Campaign tells UN – “UK Welfare Reforms in Breach of Disabled People’s Human Rights”

DPAC protests

Spartacus report

Hardest Hit events

and the list could go on.

This is YOUR opportunity to take action by signing the petition but also to become an organiser. Go out and promote it, gather support where you can. Ask those supporters to do the same.

Any questions or if you require further information please contact –

Pat, Karen or Rosemary



YOUR signature could make a difference

Sunday, April 22nd, 2012

The wait is almost over for the fun runners, amateur athletes, celebrities and elite sportsmen and women taking part in the Virgin London Marathon.
Organisers estimate around 36,500 competitors will take their place on the start line in Greenwich on Sunday morning.  Read in full here 

You may ask yourself why the marathon runners are of interest to Pat’s Petition! The answer is simple.

To date, 35,433 people have signed the petition. There is not much difference between the 2 events.

So, whether you stand on the pavements cheering the runners, or sit at home watching on TV – just imagine that every one of those runners represents a signatory on Pat’s petition. Each one raising their voice against many of this governments proposals.

Those runners participating will make a difference to someone’s life – so can you. By helping Pat reach her finish line of at least 100,000 names.

Please sign Pat’s Petition here but more importantly, Share, Share, Share. Ask friends/family and contacts to sign and ask them to share too.


Shelter add their name to Pats Petition

Monday, November 21st, 2011


Dear Pat,

 I am delighted that your petition   is going so well, with so many charities signing up to back you. We at Shelter  are happy to add our name to this and hope that the hard work pays off and you are successful.

We will be more than happy to pass along and will also be adding it to our Twitter feed this week.

Best of luck with this again.

Kind regards


Campbell Robb Chief Executive – Shelter