Monday, August 01, 2011

Let's Do The TimeWarp Again...

"Coercion, tears, government rhetoric, employment gap and welfare reform" from Disability Now.

It sounds like a contemporary article doesn't it? All the ingredients are there, a desire to reduce the number of those claiming IB, disability groups outraged and a complicit media readily producing articles on benefit scroungers.

Except this was 2007* not 2011. Not of course that you'd know that unless you were well informed enough to know who Peter Hain is** and that his tenure of the DWP was in 2007 under New Labour.



*estimated
**Winner of the "I've been Tango'd political award"

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

What confuses me is that they seem to want to reduce the number of disabled people - well sorry guys but you can't - there isn't a way to undisable someone (well, not without radical changes to society and massive improvements in healthcare that are unlikely to ever happen!).

It's like they think that they can just 'declare' people non-disabled!

The same was suggested by their proposals on children with Special Educational Needs. The Government said it wanted to reduce the numbers of children in this category from 1.5million to 1 million - well you CAN'T! People can't stop being disabled just because it doesn't suit the government.

It is frightening and utterly bizarre.

And it's amazing how, despite all this nonsense about wanting to help disabled people into work, there is NO help available and nothing significant has been done to stop the discrimination against disabled job applicants that most certainly does exist.

cogidubnus said...

I'm not wishing to belittle or minimise disability of any kind, but you do need to be a little careful about the statistics you quote vis a vis Special Educational Needs...

I'm not trying deliberately to be provocative, but if it stirs up intelligent discussion then so much the better.

Pre-retirement my wife worked as an LSA, specifically with "children with special educational needs", and says it was very noticeable how the number of "diagnoses" and "labels" suddenly boomed when schools budgets began being adjusted for taking on such children...

Yes, diagnosing these conditions has improved no end (which is great) but be aware that labelling certain children as having special educational needs does sometimes have benefits in common for parents, headteachers and the more idle of our social workers/medicos alike...

Again I'm not saying that the conditions involved don't exist...far from it, I'm sure a lot of kids are still missing out on the help they really need because they're not attention-seekers and try too hard to help themselves...

But I fear that a lot of children who lag in perhaps just one subject, or who through upbringing are of a disruptive nature, for example, are being rather facilely labelled in this fashion (a) for budgetary reasons,(b) to get round awkward Ofsted statistics, and (c) because on certain sink-estates it's almost a matter of pride to be able to claim your child has SENs (which is something I wouldn't have really believed until I came across it personally a few years back) ... and sometimes it's simply anything to avoid having junior labelled as the bullying little b****r he really is.

It's difficult...but I sincerely believe the wrong people may in a lot of cases, be getting the benefits, whilst other suffer in silence...who knows what the correct figures really are?