Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Shame on you Prime Minister. I know you know better.

One of the quietest announcements in today's Comprehensive Spending review was that the High Rate Mobility component of Disability Living Allowance will be removed from those resident in care homes. On the face of it that might seem a sensible place to save money, after all if someone lives in a care home surely they don't need to worry about transport, but this is certainly the nastiest, pettiest cut of all. Petty because the numbers of people resident in care homes is a very small proportion of the overall awards for high rate mobility meaning the sums of money to be saved are minimal. But downright nasty, disdainful and cruel because people resident in care homes are far more likely to use the mobility component of their disability living allowance to pay towards the phenomenally expensive specialist wheelchairs they need rather than a vehicle.

I believe that matters relating to health and disability should never be party political, they are too important for that. That David Cameron, himself the father of a profoundly disabled child, should preside over this kind of cut is wicked. Shame on you Prime Minister. I know you know better. I know you know how difficult the lives of disabled people and their families can be. I know you could afford to pay for the additional costs of disability and I know you know how high those costs are, far in excess of the actual levels of Disability Living Allowance. That you would allow this to happen is such callous disregard for those with severe disabilities that it makes me weep.

12 comments:

Blood In The Sand said...

I'm writing to iDave about this Bendy.. I'm all for cuts and sorting out the mess... But they have this wrong.

Anonymous said...

The problem is, he can afford to pay for the additional costs of disability and so believes everyone else can, too.

We're somewhat comfortable but still face choices such as "new coat for the oldest as his old one is three years old and leaks" or "new work boots for me as they're cracked, leak and are lined with bin bags". We decided on number one and I'll go through another winter with leaking boots.

And before the usual suspects jump in about cutting back on luxuries: no holidays since 2001, no wine, spirits or beer, no cigarettes, one 10-year-old car (and we use bikes a lot), one 10-year-old CRT TV (third-hand), a PS 1 (third-hand gift), no mobile phone, etc etc.

But we have a decent enough house for us (some would consider it rundown), are warmish most of the time (thermostats to 12C), and eat healthily and well (thanks to growing our own fruit and veg).

We're a fair way behind our parents at an equivalent point in their lives, but far, far, far ahead of our grandparents and great grand-parents. They were crofters, jute spinners, coal miners, sailors, maids, WW1 munitions workes, steel workers, farm hands, navvies and the like, living in damp, wretched hovels with poor or no food and minimal clothing.

We'll stay above that level but I suspect vulnerable friends, with conditions that already leave them as perilously close to the edge as you, may get pushed down to that level of abject, grinding poverty. And I worry for the future our children, particularly our oldest with his own set of disabilities that are likely to leave him unemployable.

It's taken four generations to claw our way up out of the shit and it could take just one generation to be dumped back in it again.

And people wonder why I loathe and detest the people who run this country, regardless of which cloak they use to mask their sins.

Devonshire Dumpling said...

May I please quote this post on my blog?

BenefitScroungingScum said...

DD: Yes of course! I've now got a transcript of the video just working out how to put that on youtube/blog

Anonymous said...

Hi
Saw your blog highlighted on the Guardian. I totally agree with you. It's sick and disgusting that the disabled are being picked out like this. If they want to use the word 'vulnerable' for this section of society well it's measures like these that make people with disabilities vulnerable and even more disabled. Shame on them!

Anonymous said...

I was going to say much the same as anonymous, so I'll just agree with them. I wish you luck, and a change in government.

Seaneen said...

It's revolting, the whole thing. Thanks for speaking out about it.

Anonymous said...

So camsham has cut benefits in an area which saves little money.

Does this mean there is an underlying anti-benefits agenda? Waging an ideological war on "scroungers"?

Life for the not-so-well off improved under labour.

They sent the bill to the better off, who can afford to pay a bit more tax.

I think we call this "society".

It's something which the Tories don't believe in.

CHatter said...

Great work Bendy. Came to this via Patrick Butler's blog in the Guardian. I had spent the morning framing letters to MPs about the outtage of the DLA cut but your blog and video encapsulated it so much better.
I hope it gets a wide viewing and that the Coalition thinks a bit harder about the consequences.

Anonymous said...

(1)
Hi there. Thank you for your post, also saw it in The Guardian. Wishing you love and strength.

They also said people younger than 35 years old living alone will only be able to claim housing benefit for a single room in a shared house...

I'm 29, became ill with mental health issues, and live in a very small studio flat (where i lived before when I was working). I live almost in poverty, I don't even have a tv because I had to sell mine long ago because the money I receive from benefits hardly keeps me alive. Not only I desperately want to be fit again to work, to have my independence as before, and be an active member of society I also don't understand how can people say that the ones on benefits have a great life; I certainly don't, it's horrible because the money is not enough, i struggle to pay the bills each month and one has constantly to hear/read others saying that benefit claimers are scroungers, the system owes me, and it's horrible because if I could I wouldn't be going through this illness.

Due to my condition I need stability and I haven't had any because the way the system is organised, in fact I got worse and worse. It's like big brother controlling you, all the time papers to fill, medical assessments, doctors, psychiatrists changing every time I have an appointment having to tell the same thing every time, bureaucracy, rude unhelpful people at jobcentres, at phone centres, with no sympathy for the fact that others are suffering and it's difficult for them to deal with things at that moment. I read somewhere that actually benefit fraud comes only to 1% and that 7 million from the money awarded for benefits isn't used every year. They try to find escape goats it seems and manipulate public opinion.

It's incredible the amount of bureaucracy they make ill people go through, and actually had a horrible, surreal time this year, i've been in a nightmare, when talking to someone on the phone in the offices in Glasgow, who shouting at me and being rude decides to close my claim out of pure evil. It was like I was in a nightmare, a film I don't know...surreal... I had a severe panic attack and had to be taken to hospital. For the following 8 months I've been suffering like hell, without money while waiting to hear from the tribunal decision for my appeal against the action that man took, which obviously was in my favour in the end and disciplinary action was taken against him. But I only survived on the generosity of a couple of friends and family member who provided me with food and lent me money as I'm not able to provide for myself at the moment. I was suicidal and in extreme distress. My housing benefit was still being paid, fortunately, as long with my dla, and i had some feeling of safety in my home; it's actually the only place i feel safe. One man on the phone, that I have never seen and talked only once, in a bad day for him? took an action he shouldn't have taken that led to months of suffering and almost made me to take my life away.... Whenever I need to phone to any of the departments or even at the jobscentres I receive a lot of contradictory information about the same subject... the stories are endless....

I am withdrawn most of the time, I rarely go out as I don't feel comfortable and safe in public places and around strangers ( and when I do it's mostly with my carer), I have many panic attacks when outside, and I need a space for myself. In fact after medical assessment I was given medical priority and was put in the housing list to move to a bigger flat to have a bit more space as basically my world is my studio flat.

Anonymous said...

(2)


Now another man, which has no mandate by the people to pass the laws he wants to pass, says I must go and live in a room in a shared flat?! I've been having suicidal thoughts again since this has came out.... Due to my condition I hide from everyone, i sometimes are days withdrawn, without eating, showering, only the very close are around me... I shouldn't be, but I do feel embarrassed and suffer a lot with it, and I don't like people seeing me that way, neither I want anyone to know about it or presence it... And now I must go a live with strangers? How?

The system, society should help the ones in need gladly cause they cannot provide for themselves, instead of making their lives more and more unstable, painful, controlling and treating them as scroungers. Tomorrow it can be their sons, daughters, brothers or parents in that situation. People totally detach themselves and treat others as objects, forgetting they are human beings, with feelings... You are talking about people, not numbers! If there's no respect from society towards the ones in need, if society wants them to disappear, then better kill them no? No, of course not; the prime minister can't take that awful responsibility, even though he might just want that... he just takes all means of trying to provide a minimal quality of live, treating them as "things", inflicting pain and distress so the weaker member ends up dying or killing himself in despair.

Hypocrites, who never suffered pain and always had a great life, never struggled for money. At least, even though totally in the wrong, hitler wasn't embarrassed to kill straight away the ones he didn't want...wasn't trying to portray to be good, friendly and handsome to keep things open to win elections in 4 years time, wasn't hypocrite.

It's amazing how politicians forget straight after being elected that they were elected by the people and the people is their employer, and act like they own the people instead, are arrogant towards them and expect vassalage. They should be humble and with a huge sense of responsibility for leading the lives of thousands, instead of being driven by personal ambition and pride.

We as a society, will only evolve and become better when we understand that is through love and respect and fairness that higher grounds will be achieved.

Love to all, and myself included, and be strong in these difficult times ahead...

KOR said...

Hey Bendy! [RoR from ouch here].
am a residential care centre resident,and also recieve HRM and have a motability car,technically we do have house transport- a minibus and a fiesta,but they are both reserved exclusively for the childrens side,outreach services and one adult who lives long distance,and am not able to travel with others.
Am left housebound without the motability car,as cannot use public transport,and getting out in the community is a no go,the car is a lifeline.

am hoping this isnt a definite goahead from captain prejudice- david as it will be yet one more reason to hate life right now.
he really is going to far with his
attacks on benefit cutting, who is the best person to complain to about this?