Some much needed positive news....
As most of you know Sue Marsh has been co-ordinating a report researched, authored and funded by sick and disabled people which is released formally on monday.
As happens with every government welfare report, mysteriously, somehow, details leaked out to the media yesterday and so the coverage has already started. It turns out that Boris Johnson's submission to the DLA reform consultation which closed in February 2011 was the smoking gun we needed and the government hoped no-one would ever find. The Mayor's submission stood out from the other consultation responses, not because it was supportive of our claims (almost all the submissions were) but because it was incredibly thoughtful, well written and researched. Some people are concerned that this may be to do with forthcoming mayoral elections. Whilst we understand the concern, we do not believe that is the case as the Mayor's submission was completed in February 2011 along with all the other submissions. It would be very helpful if we could all let Boris Johnson know how much we appreciate his carefully considered and supportive statement over the weekend.
We desperately need to keep up the momentum over the weekend to ensure this becomes an even bigger story.
We all need to pull together to make this happen. If everyone shares the news on their facebook, twitter, google+, blog, email list, friends, family etc we can keep the focus on the report.
AllBigIdeas is collating a list of the news articles here and so far we've had coverage in;
The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Mirror and The Mail!! Yes, you read that correctly. No you're not dreaming. The Daily Mail have actually covered a welfare story, from a welfare campaigners perspective and had to include the fact that the fraud rate for DLA is only 0.5%. Left Foot Forward have always led the way amongst the political blogs with their support for sick and disabled people's campaign against the Welfare Reform Bill and have gone above and beyond the call of duty to help us. They would never ask us for anything in return, but one way we can all thank them for their support is to ensure their articles are widely publicised.
So please, share these stories everywhere, with everyone you know. Leave your opinion in the comment threads, email the papers, contact your local media, tell everyone and anyone. Keep watch here, on Sue's blog and The Broken of Britain and Where's The Benefit for us letting you know the latest developments and most of all take a moment to step back and think.
Finally we are breaking through. We can be ignored no longer. We have truth and justice on our side. The next few weeks will be the fight of our lives, but no-one is better prepared for that than us. We are people who face and overcome challenges in our everyday lives bigger than many ever have to face in a lifetime. We are used to dealing with confusing bureaucracy, lack of proper support and having to find our own solutions. Above all we know how to endure, that however dark the night, tomorrow will be another day and eventually we find another way.
If you are scared, remember you are not alone. We have come together to show the true power of our community and that we will not be ignored. If you think you won't be affected by these cuts, remember those who will. If you think it'll never happen to you, remember anyone's life can and does change in an instant. We fight this battle not just for ourselves, but for you, your family and loved ones to make sure that in the darkest times of your life the protection you need and have given to us will be there for you.
With love from Kaliya and Sue.
"Alone We Whisper. Together We Shout"