Friday, January 13, 2012

Day 5 #spartacusreport

What an amazing week for sick and disabled campaigners! Sue and I are so incredibly proud of everyone. We've lobbied, researched, tweeted, blogged and campaigned despite how very poorly many of us are.  Through provocation and disappointment about media coverage people have remained calm, considered, rational and constructive, which is so important as we are finally breaking through to the mainstream media and that is because we have facts, reason and morality on our side. When the best justification the government can dredge up to cut benefit eligibility to the most vulnerable, those disabled during childhood, is that some of them might at some point inherit some money it is clear how dubious these 'reforms' are both morally and politically. We are British, our sense of fair play is hardwired into our national identity; the justifiable outrage people feel about benefit fraud will pale in comparison with the outrage ordinary, decent people will feel about the most vulnerable in society being targeted and bullied by a government who have already committed to overturn the considered judgement of the Lords by using antiquated laws.

This week we have been able to demonstrate to the wider public something we all knew. That we are not ranting for the sake of it, but that we have detailed evidence and clear alternatives to the government's proposals. Sue's appearance on Newsnight last night shows that the media are finally starting to understand that, and see us as a credible, powerful community.

We know how exhausted you all are, we are too. We know how much pain you are all in as we share that pain. We share your frustration and your fears. Just yesterday our community had to support someone through the terror of receiving their Work Capability Assesment notice, to comfort, to console them and desperately try and persuade them not to end their life. We take all such pleas very seriously as there have already been multiple suicides associated with benefit loss.

As long as we remember we are a community we can all get through this. We must support each other, agree to disagree where necessary and never forget we are fighting for a shared aim. We owe this debt to those disabled people who lived and died in institutions, abused, hidden and ignored. We owe it to those disabled people who found the courage to rise up, to protest against the conditions they were forced into, many of whom never saw freedom but fought to protect those younger than themselves from imprisonment. We owe it to those who's mantra was "Nothing About Us Without Us". We owe this debt to all of our community who are still institutionalised, still in 2012 being horrifically abused by those supposed to 'care' for them and to the public who's taxes foot the bill for that abuse. We owe this debt to ourselves, to ensure we do not have to return to institutional living, to being condemned, hidden away and ignored because we are 'stock' 'too expensive to sustain'.

We must continue to keep up the pressure lobbying the Lords for next week's DLA votes, contacting MP's in preparation for when the Welfare Reform Bill returns to the Commons, and sharing our stories with the public so they understand that we are them. We are their daughters and sons, sisters, brothers, husbands and wives. We are all Spartacus. Together we have taken on the leader of the Labour party and last night Sue was fantastic debating with Chris Grayling on Newsnight. As Spartacus we can continue our fight.

So long as we remember "Alone we whisper. Together we shout" then we can and will win.


With love to you all, from Kaliya and Sue

12 comments:

chocolatewig said...

Yay I'm right behind you.. Bring up the rear. Everyday I get more incredulous at the reasoning behind this welfare reform.. Taking from the poor and needy in order to reduce a large deficit created by the greedy..

Bottom line .. It is morally wrong.

misspiggy said...

Thanks for being so inspiring, we really need it.

Achelois said...

Thank you

Anonymous said...

How articulate you are - perhaps an office job beckons, or maybe working from home on some Internet related employment - rather leeching of the rest of us? Genuine disabled who are not able to physically/mentally work should and will be looked after - the 'shameless' lead swingers should not be.

Saranga said...

Anonymous: get knotted.
Sue was on newsnight?. Fantastic! I'm gonna go watch it on the I-player now.

Anonymous said...

Articulate for short periods doesn't = non-disabled.
People r making themselves ill, keeping this level of activity up for a couple of weeks + will hav2 do nothing 4 many weeks 2recover - not really what any employer wants.
We are many, but special thanks 2 all involved in reading the responses + writing the report.

misspiggy said...

I know I shouldn't feed the trolls, but Anonymous, if you had actually read the rest of Bendygirls's blog, you would know why she is unable to take paid employment, and all the horrendously difficult attempts she has made to stay in work. Why you feel the need to cause pain to someone who has done nothing but help others, I don't know.

L Disney said...

Anonymous @4.51am

The point of the campaign is that genuinely disabled people are under threat of NOT being 'looked after' by society. Attacking one of the people who has devoted considerable time and effort to raising this issue, at a cost to her own health, just demonstrates your lack of understanding of it. Who are you to judge the author's capacity for work?! Being articulate does not equate to being a 'scrounger' for receiving support!!

Have a read of this http://diaryofabenefitscrounger.blogspot.com/2012/01/spartacusreport-inspires-sermon.html?spref=tw

Falling into the 'scrounger' mob mentality shames us all.

Anonymous said...

I'm not a troll and I wouldn't want offend anyone who was genuinely ill or incapable - but we all know that a lot of people on sickness benefit are capable of working but choose not to and go 'on the sick' to get more money - and want to spend the rest of their lives that way - whilst I go to work when I don't necessarily want to to keep them through my taxes.
Paid employment doesn't have to be physical work - it can be working in all kinds of jobs like telephone based or desk based or even home Internet based.
Why is it that groups like yours always oppose every measure to get the non genuine claimants back to work? It makes you look like you protect the non deserving scroungers because you think you could probably do 'some' work if you had to so seek to protect all benefit claimants.
You'd get a lot more support if you said you agreed with getting the 'shameless' crew back to work and didn't mind the introduction of programs and tests which did weed out the wheat (you) from the chaff (them).
Opposing such tests make you look like you've something to hide.

chocolatewig said...

Anon 8.15pm
I can kind of understand your post. And Im not very articulate so all I give you is an analogy.
You I presume are a shopper? so for instance when you are shopping in Sainsbury's how many in that shop with you do you presume are shoplifters? Do you judge everyone to be? how would you feel if you were treated like a shoplifter just by shopping? if it was the 'norm' to assume by all staff and other customers that you were a criminal until proven otherwise?
And yet (Although shoplifting costs the retail industry millions every year) there is probably just one in the shop at any given time?

The reality is fraud rate for DLA is 0.5% rate Incapacity even lower.
so we as the disabled 'massive' think it is unfair to have to repeatedly have to prove (by assessment) we are telling the truth even thought most of us are diagnosed with incurable, degenerative conditions.

If you suspect someone is frauding please please report them. for our sakes because we are the first to report anyone we think might be using the system, but we are also much more open minded than people who have never been ill to invisible disability like cancer etc

I hope this helps

Steve said...

I am unemployed. I was laid off 4 days before xmas. I have been applying for at least 3 jobs a day, with no luck. Am I scum? I can't afford groceries this week because I spent my giro on bills, petrol to attend interviews, and phone calls to try to secure interviews. My efforts to better myself are thrawted at every turn. Then I pick up a news paper and I read about how people in parliament, banking and local councils and big business are angry at scroungers. Expect social unrest to the point of civil war this summer. The people of Britain are getting a bit fed up with being told they have to tighten there belts because rich people and there rich mates have stolen all the money.

Anonymous said...

8 out of ten sickness claimants could work says new survey - tell us something we don't know.
Those of us toiling away at the work face are the angry ones matey.
And anyone in work should be putting money to one side so that they can tide themselves over until they're back in work - rather than asking me to support them.

Looking forwards to the day you.re all back in work - as I'm sure you are!