Iain Duncan Smith is a mendacious sack of shit – an observation I’ve made, all too often, over the past 2 years. If you want even more evidence that he’s responsible for a lot of the output of his DWP Lie Factory, a propaganda machine that must have the shade of Joseph Goebbels creaming his jackboots with envy, try this sanctimonious bollocks in today’s Express. The subject – mental illness and work.
Among much else to infuriate any normal person, he says this:-
“The Government’s Work Programme is designed to do just that, harnessing the knowledge of the best private and voluntary sector organisations and giving them freedom to tailor the support they offer to individuals’ needs.
We must also see work as a positive step on the journey to recovery, doing all we can to support those who can work into appropriate and productive employment.”
That is about as wrong as it could possibly be. I think the technical term is “pack of lies”. It might also be “bovine ordure”.
Work is NOT a positive step on the way to anything but disaster for many of those who are seriously mentally ill – or physically ill, as I know too well (every job I’ve had I lost through excessive sick leave).
Work, while desirable, is not always an achievable aim for those with mental illness, the stresses involved – often difficult enough for anyone who is mentally sound to deal with – would doubtless tip them into a crisis. Not everybody, you dumb bastard, rises to a challenge by digging deep into their reserves – many mentally ill people simply have no reserves.
Take my ex-wife – and just for the record, I didn’t leave her because of her mental illness, she left me when I became ill – the first thing I had to do, about six weeks after we were married, was take a massive stack of marking back to her school after Christmas – she taught English to A-level** – explain that she wouldn’t be back as the prospect of all that marking, plus all the preparatory work that went with it, had tipped her, not for the first time in her life, into a breakdown.
**Something she was pushed into by her parents, more concerned with status than with her mental health, which had always been fragile.
I spent the next five years, at the behest of her psychiatrist, on suicide watch 24/7 (I quit work to look after her, as she had history – the alternative was a secure psychiatric unit). The stress of that, more times that I care to remember we talked round the clock, me talking her up, or down, whatever was needed, coupled with my own rapidly worsening health, tipped me into a breakdown, at which point she walked away. That didn’t help either.
That’s how well some mentally ill people get on with being forced into work..
It’s also how it can trash the lives of those of us left to pick up the pieces – you might want to consider that too, you dismal apology for a human being, because everything you fuck up, which is pretty much everything you touch – means some poor sod has to deal with the consequences.
You get to walk away.