What they don’t tell you about council tax

Applying for council tax support is nearly as much hassle as Universal Credit. They too want my most recent bank statements, and they want proof that my lodger is a student. They too would quite like to see all of this in person. The problem arises when they ask for evidence of my Universal Credit … Continue reading What they don’t tell you about council tax

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What they don’t tell you about the JobCentre

Yesterday I had three (!) JobCentre meetings. • One to show my housing details – the one that in my last blog I’d had to ask my housing association to specifically write and post to me a letter for; • One because I’d entered into the system that I do some self-employed work, and they … Continue reading What they don’t tell you about the JobCentre

Work is not a health outcome

A couple of days ago I saw this tweet on Twitter: "Work as a health outcome is a fundamental principle for us. There must be a shared approach within the health and social care system" Jenny Osbourne from @GM_HSC #ERSAMBW #disabilityconfident #nooneleftbehind pic.twitter.com/13KRhqnyEf — Pluss (@PlussInspires) May 23, 2018 This phrase creates a visceral reaction … Continue reading Work is not a health outcome

Back in the benefits cycle

I got a brown envelope today, except it was white. The 'Personal Independence Payment' just showing in the address window gave the game away. I've been expecting a brown envelope since 24th October, when I was told my PIP was being reassessed (51 weeks after being given a two year award). I got two brown … Continue reading Back in the benefits cycle

Chronically sick people don’t matter to the Conservative party

I'm exhausted. I'm exhausted by six years of chronic illness and seven years of Tory rule. It seems like every time I go on Twitter - and most days I don't go on at all - there are multiple new items of the harm this political party is causing to my friends. I don't feel … Continue reading Chronically sick people don’t matter to the Conservative party

Governments have no right to be ignorant

The government still doesn’t know what its talking about. But this time it’s almost seven years on from when it gained power, and its politicians no longer have the right to plead ignorance. They do not have the right to remain ignorant on matters of great importance over which they hold the power. A spokesperson … Continue reading Governments have no right to be ignorant

Conflicting Policies

Just as nature takes millions of years to regain diversity after a mass extinction, so neighbourhoods take years, even decades, to build up informal support networks broken by forced removal. Just as DLA is the means that allows people to work, so informal support is what allows people to work. The government isn’t even identifying … Continue reading Conflicting Policies

Conservatives have ignored their history on disability benefit reform

A new disability benefit should reflect the policy intent that the important factor is not the medical condition but the effect that it has on people's care and mobility needs. The best that an examining medical practitioner can do is to take a snapshot of the person's condition on the day on which he sees … Continue reading Conservatives have ignored their history on disability benefit reform

Benefits and the Budget

George Osborne has decided that benefits will be up-rated at 1% for the next three years.  Previously, they would have been uprated in line with the CPI.  This is itself a Coalition-introduced decrease from uprating in line with the RPI. Uprating in line with the CPI has no merit or justification, other than that it … Continue reading Benefits and the Budget