Demonstration today

I've heard on the radio that disabled people are demonstrating against proposed cuts to disability benefits at Parliament today.

Does anyone have any detailed info about the demo? I can't find anything online and doubt there will be clear information on the news. I'd like to know who is organising today's demo so that I can be there next time. I have some impairment due to PsA but do not consider myself disabled. However I volunteer for the Citizens Advice Bureau and again & again I see good people living a precarious existence due to disability and poverty.

12 Replies

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  • bbc.co.uk/news/live/uk-poli...

    I found this - they seem to be making quite an impact!

  • Thanks cathie!

  • Both my profoundly deaf sisters and niece, who is a politics student, all went to the Access to Work demo on Saturday and from what I gather the demonstration saved this very important scheme from being the first to bite the dust under the new administration. A good eg of people power although such a shame it has come to this. Best of luck!

  • I've been reading the links in cathie's link & it looks like this demonstration is too late to achieve anything other than a show of strength and determination as it has already been decided to transfer responsibility for independent living costs to local councils.

    Seems like the battle was lost back in 2013 when 5 users of the Independent Living Fund challenged the decision on a technicality and lost. And apparently even the trustees of the (just about) existing fund say that it is likely that some disabled people who now live independently will not be able to continue to do so.

    Is it really less expensive to put people into institutions than to enable them to live independently? Can't see how that works. And how cruel.

    The protest was organised by Disabled People Against Cuts.

  • A friend of mine was involved with this and i saw her on the telly on the bbc news channel,xx

  • Good for her! I was surprised it got as much coverage as it did, that's a result of sorts.

  • Getting attention does help, though it needs to be early on in the process to be most effective. We just have to catch what we can buildiing on the current mood among people.

  • Agree cathie ...... and challenging the current mood among people too!

  • These demos are important for visibility and my heart goes out to the brave souls who go to them. I think the government, media and public rhetoric is as toxic as the cuts. Doesn't it just keep people ill? How are they supposed to get better? It is Dickensian, uncivilised, and targeting easy prey. The disabled are caught in the cross fire between years of reckless spending, the population surge and inefficiency of the public sector. Meanwhile ways of generating income i.e. tackling tax evasion and avoidance is ignored. Regardless of the economic issues though; the past 5 years have shown this country up as ethically and morally bankrupt. Everyone is labelled a scrounger and it has become the collective psyche. So who other than those who are ill or have disabled family/ friends even cares?

  • What is so shocking is that the demo was in defence of the Independent Living Fund which enables very severely disabled people to do just that .... live independent lives. I gather that some who benefitted by it are already having to rely on local councils for their money and are under pressure to accept 'social care' type support instead as a cheaper option. Social care doesn't help severely disabled people to live fulfilling lives.

    I used to know someone who has since died who relied on a different Independent Living scheme, I think it was a charity back then. He had severe brittle bone disease and couldn't do anything for himself other than drive his electric wheelchair. The scheme meant that he could work professionally as well as on a voluntary basis, socialise and go wherever he wanted to, whenever he wanted to. The last time I saw him was at a disco which I realise makes me sound ancient!

    I just agree wholeheartedly with everything you say soteti. Although if I was going to quibble I'd suggest that any population surge is something else the gov can blame - they'll blame anything - whereas it might well help offset the economic issues posed by an ageing population. But that argument probably doesn't belong here, we are so on the same page except you put it better than I could!

  • Thank you postle2, I appreciate the validation. Normally I stay away from such topics to avoid seeming to rant. However, I couldn't help but respond because the whole situation is so emotive. And it pains me that such demos need to happen at all.

    As for the other bit of the economic analysis, I think it best I stay quiet on that one. Else I'll be writing chapter and verse and it won't help my Blood Pressure.

    Disco's - I recall those from when life was simpler and everything wasn't warped, including music.

  • I hesitated before posting about the demo at all, then realised that these things are just as relevant to some of us as discussion of our disease and its treatment etc.

    I thought of applying for PIP but quickly realised that the goalposts have been moved & I didn't have the faintest chance of being successful. DLA was easier to get and I do not begrudge it to anyone who is still receiving it. However it seems obvious to me that, at this rate, if I do badly need any sort of disability benefits down the line the criteria are likely to be even tighter than they are now and I'll be stuffed, basically.

    Ah, those disco days .... thanks to Humira I can now (sort of) strut my funky stuff in the privacy of my own kitchen. Not quite the same, somehow!

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