The campaign of hatred and lies about the sick and disabled started here…

If you wonder who originated the current campaign of lies, disinformation and hatred aimed at the chronically sick and disabled community, look no further than David Freud** (aka Lord Freud now he’s a defected from Labour and become a Tory), an extremely wealthy former City banker (banker – well, that’s almost right…), who claimed in an interview with the Telegraph, in February 2008, that IB medical assessments Continue reading

The Coalition and the tabloids – a fellowship of liars…

We’ve all heard the very public demonisation of the chronically sick and disabled, by this government of liars, and how we are milking the Incapacity Benefit and DLA system through massive fraud. We’ve also read the same lies in the tabloid press.

The current campaign of lies and disinformation can, I believe, be traced back Continue reading

Disability benefits under the Tories…

Given that we may be facing a general election before next summer, with the chance of a Conservative government, I though it might be instructive to compare the policies of both major parties on the subject of the Chronically Sick and Disabled, and the funding thereof. This will, by default, focus on the Tories, as the Labour party website makes no reference to policies relating to benefits for the CS&D.

This, abstracted from the Conservative party website (Note, March 13 2010 – I’ve just discovered that the document has been removed from the website – I wonder why…), isn’t exactly cheering reading, and has the unmistakable stamp of Continue reading

Incapacity Benefit and NI credits…

A question I’ve been asked, and been unable to answer, is which benefit, if any, includes National Insurance credits. Logically, that should be Incapacity Benefit and, by extension, ESA, but no matter hope much I rummaged around on Google, and on the Direct.gov and Pension Service websites, I could find no information at all.

Now Continue reading

Disability Benefits and Human Rights…

I found this in my search-engine heap – “human rights and Incapacity Benefit”.

All I can say is Ha!

Incapacity Benefit – all benefits – are not rights. You can only get them if you qualify (and sometimes, as with DLA, not even then).

You could argue that, as you have a disability, you qualify for disability benefits, but it doesn’t work that way. You have to not only be disabled, you have to be Continue reading

PCA points don’t count for DLA…

Another question from the search-engine list – If you have 30 Personal Capability Assessment (PCA), points do you get DLA?

No, absolutely not. PCA applies to Incapacity Benefit, and assesses your capability to work. It has nothing at all to do with DLA, which, as I’ve said previously, is payable whether you work or not, and has to be applied for separately.

IB is payable because Continue reading

Incapacity Benefit and Pension Credit annual snafu…

Since I reached the qualifying age for Pension Credit, at this time of year it’s a source of aggravation. The purpose of PC, by the way, is to bring my IB up to the national minimum income for people** over 60 (why people under sixty are considered capable of getting by on IB alone, I’ve no idea), but pretty much the only advantage to turning 60 was that people threw money at me.

** Not to be confused with the national minimum wage, of which this is but a fraction.

I was told, earlier in the year, how much PC I’d be paid, then, this week, as the IB annual increase kicked in, it was reduced by a couple of pounds, Not a lot but over the course of the year it mounts up and makes accurate budgeting impossible (and on a limited fixed income that matters).

The thing is that both IB and PC are administered by the Department of Work and Pensions, and the figures for this year’s IB have been available for months, so why is it that the PC people can’t get together with the IB people and get their figures right before notifying claimants?

As it is, the system is massively inefficient (and annoying), and what I want to know is on what do the PC people base the figure in their annual notification to claimants, and why is it always wrong? It must be based on something but whatever it is it’s not my IB.

So why don’t the people who administer PC just access the actual IB figures as soon as they’re notified to the claimants (in my case, the first week in February this year)? Perversely, my PC increase notification for this year is dated February 13, so the correct figure was actually available to them had they bothered to obtain it. But they didn’t. So every year they must send out thousands – millions, for all I know – of PC notices that are wrong, and have to be corrected in April.

That is a colossal waste of resources and simply cannot be justified, not when the solution is as simple as two departments communicating with each other. Mind you, wasting time and money isn’t entirely unknown at the DWP’s PC division. Last year I was reassessed for PC three times. There’s no justification for that either, and I eventually wrote to them saying once is understandable, twice is inefficient, but three times is simply persecution. They didn’t, of course, bother to reply.

Which benefit entitles you to what?

What benefits does DLA entitle you to?

Poor grammar apart (if you’re wondering – To which benefit does DLA entitle you?), this question from my search engine section represents  a typical misunderstanding of the benefits system – in essence, there is no entitlement, per se, to anything.

For example, if you have Continue reading

A message for James Purnell…

The following is the text of a letter to The Guardian:-

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“Lord Lester, a Liberal Democrat and distinguished human rights lawyer, quit as the prime minister’s adviser on constitutional reform a month ago. In a scathing attack yesterday, he revealed for the first time how he felt tethered by the government, describing its record on human rights as “dismal and deeply disappointing”. Guardian, 11/12/2008

Oddly, though, Lord Lester makes no mention of the continued persecution of the chronically sick and disabled by this most despicable Continue reading

The unbelievable stupidity of James Purnell (and that’s being polite)…

I’ve referred to Purnell here, before, as a fuckwit (and had someone complain about it, though not to me), but I make no apology for the word. It’s the worst thing I can say here that won’t have the libel lawyers banging on my door, or getting WordPress to demolish my blog (a process against which there is no appeal, according to their ToS – that’s fundamentally wrong, guys, it really is).

He does not, though, when it comes to the abilities of chronically sick and disabled people, have the slenderest grasp of the realities of the situation, nor Continue reading