Justice For Grenfell

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Over 170 years after Engels, Britain is still a country that murders its poor

The victims of Grenfell Tower didn’t just die. Austerity, outsourcing and deregulation killed them – just as Victorian Manchester killed the poor then.

While in Victorian Manchester, Friedrich Engels struggled to name the crime visited on children whose limbs were mangled by factory machines, or whose parents were killed in unsafe homes. Murder and manslaughter were committed by individuals, but these atrocities were something else: what he called social murder. “When society places hundreds of proletarians in such a position that they inevitably meet a too early and an unnatural death, one which is quite as much a death by violence as that by the sword or bullet; its deed is murder just as surely as the deed of the single individual,” he wrote in 1845, in The Condition of the Working Class in England.

Over 170 years later, Britain remains a country that murders its poor. When four separate government ministers are warned that Grenfell and other high rises are a serious fire risk, then an inferno isn’t unfortunate. It is inevitable. Those dozens of Grenfell residents didn’t die: they were killed. What happened last week wasn’t a “terrible tragedy” or some other studio-sofa platitude: it was social murder.

While in Victorian Manchester, Friedrich Engels struggled to name the crime visited on children whose limbs were mangled by factory machines, or whose parents were killed in unsafe homes. Murder and manslaughter were committed by individuals, but these atrocities were something else: what he called social murder. “When society places hundreds of proletarians in such a position that they inevitably meet a too early and an unnatural death, one which is quite as much a death by violence as that by the sword or bullet; its deed is murder just as surely as the deed of the single individual,” he wrote in 1845, in The Condition of the Working Class in England.Over 170 years later, Britain remains a country that murders its poor. When four separate government ministers are warned that Grenfell and other high rises are a serious fire risk, then an inferno isn’t unfortunate. It is inevitable. Those dozens of Grenfell residents didn’t die: they were killed. What happened last week wasn’t a “terrible tragedy” or some other studio-sofa platitude: it was social murder.

Please continue reading the entire article

Austerity killed the victims of Grenfell –  the deadliest fire in Britain since the country began keeping records at the turn of the 20th century, claiming at least 87 victims  – as it has killed the victims of cruel Tory welfare reforms, and those who have died as a result of cuts to the NHS Austerity will continue to kill the most vulnerable members of our society while the small majority continue to sanction by their vote the gravely unjust treatment of poor people.

Behind austerity is the greed of the rich who get tax cuts at the expense of the poor/working class, greedy exploitative employers who want employees to literally work for nothing   – there are few laws to protect workers. The list of exploitation of the poor is lengthy and by far the worst example is the Grenfell tower. Eighty people died in the fire because of pure unadulterated greed for a grand saving of £2 a square metre for cladding, about £5,000, of an £8 million refurbishing contract, cladding which was banned in the USA. Further tests show that cladding from 190 tower blocks in 51 local authority areas across England is unsafe and there is a 100 percent failure rate in fire safety tests on cladding used in public high rise buildings.  The British government did not ban the cladding used at Grenfell. Thanks to cuts to local councils, and the slashing of red tape, building inspection has been gutted and privatized. The recent refurbishment of Grenfell was sub-contracted, and a fire-resistant cladding alternative was jettisoned in favor of the cheaper option.

Tory economic polices are designed to move money from the poor to the rich and in the process people are dying.

How many more people have to die before those who vote Tory finally decide enough is enough!

Take Action

Don’t let the shock and horror of this atrocity fade into obscurity

Please sign the following petitions:

This government must carry out a FULLY TRANSPARENT INVESTIGATION into the Grenfell tragedy

The investigation into the Grenfell tragedy must be FULLY TRANSPARENT and allow the MEANINGFUL PARTICIPATION of the affected residents, their families, and the surrounding community. The government cannot be allowed to cover up any uncomfortable revelations about negligence and poor planning of the Grenfell estate by the Tory-run Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea.

Please read more and sign the petition:

Grenfell Tower: never again

The government were warned time and time again of the fire risks in blocks of flats like this. But these warnings were ignored. Now, pressure is growing for the government to change the law to make buildings like Grenfell Tower safer when there is a fire.

Please read more and sign the petition:

Please sign to help ensure justice for all victims of Grenfell:

We, the undersigned, call on the Government to announce an immediate amnesty, with permanent residency, for surviving occupants of Grenfell Tower.

Please read more and sign the petition:

You may also want to write to your MP and express you concerns, your anger and outrage. Please be polite.

Contact Your MP:

Related Links

London’s Grenfell Disaster is An Indictment of Austerity

The fire’s victims were caught in the crosshairs of public cuts and a housing crisis.

Examples of Tory welfare reforms kill

BENEFIT TALES -stories from the frontline of benefit changes in the UK.

“The rich have broken Britain and it’s the poorest who are paying

The rise in tax breaks for the ultra-rich and austerity measures for everyone else has left Britain on the brink, says Mail Opinion.

Read More


Tax Credit Cuts: Please Sign Urgent Petition Today.

Please stand up for Britain’s working families by adding your name to the following 38 Degrees petition? Please sign today!

tax credits eat

It is vital that we stop cuts to tax credits. Tomorrow is a decisive day. Unless we stop them, cuts to tax credits will take money away from some of the UK’s poorest children and will plunge 200,000 children into poverty.

On Monday, the House of Lords will vote on the cuts. A growing group of Lords are worried about pushing families into poverty. But the government is pressuring them to vote in favour.

Please sign the following urgent petition which will be carried into parliament on Monday 26th, right before the votes. Please sign now without delay to make sure your signature adds to the pressure. Please share widely

Petition To Members of the House of Lords

House of Lords: Stop the tax credit cuts:

Please help protect families from a bullying government which gives tax concessions to the rich while taking much-needed money from poor families who work hard for low pay.

I am sorry this petition is last minute as I didn’t know about the 38 degrees campaign until this morning. Every signature counts so please sign and share. Three Million Families stand to loose £1,300 each year from April 2016.

This government is vile and self-serving, it supports the interests of the over privileged while taking money by means of this punitive welfare cut away from people who have so little to begin with. Despite a preelection promise not to cut tax credits Cameron has spoken of his “delight” at tax credit cuts while George Osborne has said he is ‘comfortable’ with his decision to take this vital money away from hardworking working families.

More than 3 million families will be hit by tax credit cuts – but George Osborne is ‘comfortable’ with that

“More than 3million families are to lose out from the tax credit cuts. But George Osborne tells MPs he’s ‘comfortable’ with that.
Sneering millionaire George Osborne has boasted he was “comfortable” with slashing tax credits for millions of hard-working families.
The Chancellor also claimed Tories “signalled” during the election campaign that they would attack the vital lifeline for the low-paid.The Conservatives told voters in the run-up to May’s crunch poll that they would cut £12billion of welfare, but repeatedly refuse to outline where the axe would fall.

In fact, David Cameron pledged that tax credits would not be targetted.”

Read More:

Also read how tax cuts for the rich have benefited Osborne’s own father

George Osborne’s dad could be £50,000 better off thanks to his son’s tax cuts

Tax Credits: Government Admits One-In-Five Will Be ‘Worse Off’ As A Result Of Welfare Reform

More information – Source 38 Degrees

The Independent: Tory tax credit cuts will put 200,000 children into poverty in 2016, study finds:

The House of Lords will be voting on a ‘statutory instrument’ to cut tax credits. This is a way for the government to change the law without a whole new law going through Parliament.
Parliamentary business for Monday 26 October 2015:

Earlier this week, some members of the House of Lords spoke out against the cuts. They announced plans to stop the cuts altogether, using a rare process called a ‘fatal motion’. But the government said they’d ‘suspend’ the House of Lords if they dared – forcing them to back down.
The Independent: David Cameron tells peers to back off on opposition to tax credit cuts:

Already, three Baronesses have come back to try and stop the cuts again: Baroness Manzoor, Baroness Meacher and Baroness Hollis. They’ve each tabled amendments which could stop the cuts if voted for:



UN Inquiry into Human Rights Violations Against Disabled People

The moral test of government is how it treats those who are in the dawn of life . . . the children; those who are in the twilight of life . . . the elderly; and those who are in the shadow of life . . . the sick . . . the needy . . . and the disabled.”
Hubert Humphrey

This news has been around for a few days and somehow I missed it. I cannot however let this great news go without mention.

I am pleased to learn that the United Nations is carrying out an  inquiry into “systematic and grave violations” of  the human rights of disabled people by the Tory government here in the UK? Though I knew that the UN were undertaking an inquiry into the UK’s human rights violations in this regard I did not know that it had finally been confirmed.  According to a
spokesperson from Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) the UN inquiry “will examine the vicious and punitive attacks on disabled people’s independent living as well as the cuts which have seen so many placed in inhuman circumstances and has led to unnecessary deaths.”

From Disability news Service

Confirmed! UN is investigating UK’s ‘grave violations’ of disabled people’s rights

“The United Nations is carrying out an unprecedented inquiry into “systematic and grave violations” of disabled people’s human rights by the UK government, Disability News Service (DNS) can finally confirm.

DNS revealed last August that the UK appeared to have become the first country to face a high-level inquiry by the UN’s committee on the rights of persons with disabilities (CRPD).”

Continue Reading:

In the meantime keep campaigning, writing letters and signing petitions such as the one below:

“Leaving people with no means of feeding themselves, keeping warm and keeping essential electrical appliances working is unconscionable and has no place in a civilised and rich society such as Great Britain.”

Too many people have die and suffered. Act now and Implement these Select Committees recommendations.

Please read more and sign the petition:

It is claimed that the government ignores petitions, whether of not this is true it is still a good idea to sign and voice your opinion, it shows the level of public feeling regardless as to whether or not the government decide to ignore petitions or letters or any other form of protest.

The treatment of sick and disabled people, and the unemployed and low paid for that matter, here in the UK during this and the previous Tory government, aided and abetted by the Lib/Dems, is shocking and now that they have the majority is getting ever more abusive and punitive.

“Many disabled people are facing a multitude of attacks on their human rights and living standards. It is rarely just one or two issues per person. This is the crucial point in the current retrogression of the human rights of disabled people – attacks are being carried out in every area of our lives.”

“There has been a massive rise in the numbers of disabled people being sanctioned and left reliant on food banks, and the increasing levels of malnutrition people are suffering due to increased poverty,”
DPAC spokeswoman quoted in Herald Scotland

Along with unfair assessments, cuts and sanctions is the Nazi style campaign to vilify benefit claimants labelling them “scroungers “and “Skivers”. This is outrageous and unethical treatment that has to stop now, such treatment of the most vulnerable in our society has no place in the UK, one of the richest nations in the world. Shame on Cameron and IDS who have violated the human rights of sick and disabled people causing deaths and unimaginable misery. I hope now that finally they will get their comeuppance and that the main instigators Cameron and IDS and all those who enthusiastically supported them will finally be recognised for the evil and vile people that they are and that this grave injustice will end once and for all.

Thanks to the grassroots campaigning organisation DPAC who have tirelessly petitioned the UN to launch an inquiry when charities for the disabled and the Labour party have done so little.

Read more information about the inquiry

So DPAC triggered the UNCRPD inquiry but what does it really mean?http://dpac.uk.net/2015/09/so-dpac-triggered-the-uncrpd-inquiry-but-what-does-it-really-mean/

Maybe just the news alone that the UK government is under investigation by the UN will raise public awareness regarding the violation of human rights concerning people with disabilities.

Other hope comes in the form of Jeremy Corbyn who says Labour would now oppose all the Tories welfare changes, including the benefit cap

Opposition to welfare cuts

“Labour will oppose the Welfare Bill in full. We oppose the benefit cap. We oppose social cleansing,” 

“We will bring the welfare bill down by controlling rents and boosting wages, not by impoverishing families and socially cleansing our communities.”


Below are links to articles and personal accounts of the reality of how Tory benefits cuts have affected the most vulnerable in our society. Ignored for the most part by mainstream media these stories need telling again and again and should not be allowed to fade into obscurity. The fact that 25 percent of people who are entitled to vote voted Tory either means that 25 percent of our fellow citizens don’t give a dam about the shocking treatment of people who are unfortunate to a have to depend on benefits, including disabled and sick people, or they are ignorant of what is happening. A third possibility of course is that those who voted Tory believed all the anti benefit propaganda spewed out by biased right-wing media.

Thousands have died after being found fit for work, DWP figures show

“Nearly 90 people a month are dying after being declared fit for work, according to new data that has prompted campaigners and Labour leadership contenders to call for an overhaul of the government’s welfare regime.”

“…7,200 claimants had died after being awarded ESA and being placed in the separate work-related activity group – a category which identifies claimants who are unfit to work but may be able to return to work in the future.”

Read more:

UK Welfare Reform Deaths ~ Updated List ~ October 21st 2014

Updated tragic list of welfare-related deaths of UK’s sick and/or disabled people. This is the tip on the iceberg:

They shall be remembered forevermore.

Read the entire list, more people have died since the list was last updated and there is no doubt that more people have died who have not been included on the list. This is only the tip of the iceberg!

Personal accounts

Chronically-ill dad kills himself with electric saw after fearing his sickness benefits would be changed again

Glenn Harris, who couldn’t work because of lupus and auto-immune disease, was “profoundly worried” about having to go through the reassessment procedure

“A chronically ill dad of two committed suicide with an electric saw because he was scared his benefits would be changed again, an inquest heard.”

Read More:

Confessions of a Pariah

“My personal story is just one of millions, millions of stories of no real significance to anyone in power but of very real significance and worth in human terms. What the government is doing is not saving the country from austerity but smashing the lives of millions. Disabled, vulnerable and poor people are being portrayed as feckless workshy scroungers, social pariahs who need teaching a lesson. It is an ideological Conservative dismantling of the welfare state, destruction of the health service, marketising social housing and higher education that is hurling this country back into an economically and socially divided nation.”

Read More:

Shocking Benefits Story Exposes Britain’s ‘Barbaric’ Welfare System

“I became badly psychologically ill a few years ago at 17, diagnosed with major depression and general anxiety disorder which developed further into physical conditions and eventually made life impossible to function most days.”

Read More:

People with mental illnesses have seen their already difficult lives deteriorate as a result of welfare reforms.

Sanctioned Jobseekers With Mental Health Problems Are Not ‘Vulnerable’, Says DWP

“Requests for hardship payments may be made by people who say they have a mental condition. A person will only be a member of a vulnerable group if the condition causes limitation in functional capacity because of a physical impairment.”

It continues: “It is extremely rare for a mental condition to produce a physical impairment that limits or restricts functional capacity but it can happen.”

http://www.welfareweekly.com/sanctioned-jobseekers-with-mental-health-problems-are-not-vulnerable-says-dwp/ – please be sure to read the above in full. To comment fully on the outrageous claim that mental illness does not limit functional capacity and vulnerability would need a separate entry. Mental health conditions to name but two of the most obvious and most common, agoraphobia and obsessive compulsive disorder OCD, can incapacitate sufferers in such a way that they can no longer leave their home, sometimes not even one room. Sufferers of conditions such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia can be even more severely affected. Indeed mental illness can be physically incapacitating in the extreme, such as a person with depression may become catatonic. Even if this was the case people still have to feed themselves, keep warm, pay their rent and so on. Mental illness is a profoundly disabling condition which can prevent a person from functioning in any capacity whatsoever. How the hell can you work if you cannot get out of bed incapacitated by depression or you cannot leave your home as a result of agoraphobia?In fact in some way those with a mental health condition may be more vulnerable because it is far less easy to fight for your rights when your mind is in turmoil as a result of delusional thinking and or anxious fearful thoughts, when thought processes are numbed by depression or you are stuck in the turmoil of compulsive behaviours incapacitated by fear and dread.  A sufferer of a mental illness often finds it difficult to communicate either by talking or writing, a phone call can be a monumental ordeal of stress and anxiety. Few understand the effect of mental illness on the entire life of a person who suffers in this way and how added stress can exacerbate symptoms. Publilius Syrus once said that “pain of the mind is worse than pain of the body” and in many ways this may be so, it most certainly can in some cases be just as incapacitating though in a less obvious way than a Physical  disability.

Disabled and sick benefit claimants are not alone in their suffering as low wage earners are now much worse off since Osborne’s Budget.

Minimum-wage families would be £2,038 a year richer if George Osborne’s Budget had never happened


Well I could go on, there are so many sad tragic stories so much suffering and despair. I doubt if anyone has read all the above. There are many stories as their are injustices as the Tory government carry on with their destruction of our welfare state and if no one stands up to them things will continue to get worse and more lives will be ruined and more people will die. This is not the society we want for ourselves, for our children or future generations.

Join a Demonstration at the Tory Party Conference


Graphic: Absolute Austerity by Flickr user Byantine_K

Take Action

Please join a week of protest organised by the Peoples Assembly.

“We’ll be hosting a week of National protests at the Tory party conference. More details will be coming soon, keep an eye on this page.”


Please attend if you can.

Lets make this protest count and make Cameron take notice.

During the recent protest by disabled people against the closure of the Independent living fund (ILF), David Cameron reiterated that he would not bow to pressure from the street and would go ahead with the new wave of social cuts. The reporting of this protest was censored by Commons officials who banned all broadcasters from filming:

This outrage towards seriously disabled people was reported worldwide, for example:

Disabled rage against Cameron in Parliament:
http://www.elmundo.es/internacional/2015/06/24/558aeb36e2704e4e1e8b4583.html  – you will need to use Google translator or similar. Be sure to watch the video which shows the outrageous treatment by the police of disabled people.

The closure of the ILF is but one of the many cuts to benefits and services by the Tory government aimed at sick and disabled people.

There are many many more ongoing and proposed outrages perpetrated against the most vulnerable in our society. If you are in any doubt please read the following which accurately describes the shocking treatment of people who are unfortunate to need to claim benefits as a result of illness, disability, low wages and unemployment:

Check out the unbelievable proposals for the mentally ill:

Of course it is not only people on benefits who have been effected by Tory cuts

The majority of the UK population has suffered from a fall in their living standards during the current government’s term of office concludes an analysis of the latest data of official government data released to the European Statistical office.

Do read carefully the information in the link above, it may shock you to release that almost half of people in the UK cannot afford an unexpected expense and 39 percent cannot afford one weeks holiday from home. This report does not mention the fact that many people in certain jobs cannot afford to take the full allocation of holiday entitlement or as a result of zero hour contracts are not entitled to holidays, this is often the case now for many people in poorly paid jobs who cannot depend on a regular income, a taxi driver for example. Indeed we have all been in it together except the very rich who have found that their income has increased.

There are just so many reasons why this government should not be in power and those of us who are affected – most everyone except the very rich – know only too well exactly what these reasons are. My objection to the Tories in addition to my opposition to right-wing politics in general is their treatment of sick and disabled people and other benefit claimants, low wages, zero hours and the privatisation of the NHS. In fact I am strongly opposed to privatisation in general which is a lot more widespread than people think. Concerning wages: please don’t be duped by the ” living wage” nonsense recently promised in the budget. Besides the fact that £ 7.20 is hardly a living wage – it is lower than the voluntary living wage of £7.50 which already exists – it is cancelled out by benefit cuts  and is in essence a rebrand of the minimum wage which is £6.50. Shadow chancellor, Chris Leslie, has said: “This minimum wage increase is just a rebrand of the minimum wage – trying to call it something different. It doesn’t actually compensate in any way for this massive take away from tax credits. The changes amount to a work penalty that he has introduced into the tax credit system. It hit very, very hard.”

“Charities said that for many families the impact of the national living wage would be swamped by the changes to tax credits and housing benefit, warning that there would be a rise in poverty and inequality over the coming years.”

Also consider:

“Young people will be the hardest hit by the changes as the under-25s will not benefit from the new National Living wage, will lose housing benefits and will see student grants scrapped.”

I have to question why the under twenty-fives do not get the right to a living wage. I know that in the past between the ages of 16 to 18 wages may have been slightly lower but twenty-five is ridiculous as by this age many people have the responsibilities of a family or the need to buy their own home, after eighteen you are an adult and should be paid the wage of an adult. Besides surely regardless of age if you are doing the same work as everyone else you should be paid the same wage, it is as simple as that!

Also it is important to note that by 2020 the £9 eventually promised will be worth one hell of a lot less and most certainly won’t be living wage. I would like to see these greedy MPs living on a wage of £7.20 an hour! Another huge rise of 10 percent is in the pipeline for MPs while for public sector workers wages are frozen at 1 percent for four years!

Note the reality as posted by on-line commentator:

£7.20 per hour in 2016, based on the Government’s 30 hour week example results in £216 per week, or £916 per calendar month, £11,232 per annum; stand up the MP who can live on that considering MPs are in line for a £7,000 pay rise taking their salaries to £74,000 with expenses of Conservative and Labour averaging between £30,000 and £40,000 per annum!

Even calculating the usual 40 hour week £7.20 provides a wage of only £288 per week, not really a living wage is it, not with energy bills of  £1,265 per year, council Tax of around or just over £1.000 per annum at the cheapest – council tax of course depends on where you live and the type of property you live in. Rent is another huge expenditure and again varies according to location. In London the average rent is £1,500 per annum.:

Whatever your grievance against the Tory’s in October there is an excellent opportunity to make your voice heard at this year’s Tory conference in Manchester. If you can attend please do so, the more of us who show our outrage the less Cameron can ignore us.

Keep in mind that only about 25 percent of the voting population voted Tory, they do not have a majority.

I will never understand why even that number of people voted Tory. Was it promises of a better future, did people really believe the economy was improving and that even if it did it would make a difference to their lives for the better. Was it about immigration, the EU vote. Here is why some people voted conservative as reported in the Independent:

According to the above the economy and how good their candidate was with local issues seems to be the main reasons why people voted the way they did. How short-sighted, how selfish, how misguided. What about all the people who desperately need the support of the welfare state, the sick and disabled, unemployed and the low paid who have been driven to poverty by vicious welfare reforms.The 3.5 million children now in poverty not only as a result of benefit reductions including punitive sanctions, but low wages and zero hours.

Here are sixteen reasons why you should not have voted Tory, a pre election article from the Daily Mirror:

Please make your protest by attending the demonstration in October and any other protests before than.

Related Links

Author of the Freedom of Information request into benefit deaths explains the horror of the ‘Work Capability Assessment’

While the video doesn’t really show the extent of the way the protesters were treated the comments show the level of feeling against the Tories treatment of disabled people.

Disability protesters storm into parliament

Tim Farron Slams Tories And Labour Over Welfare Cuts (Video)

“We are very clear: we cannot and will not support the Bill. If it did what it said on the tin, there might be much to commend it, but it does not. The Government pledge a living wage that even they know is not one, they want a welfare state that is anything but good for our country’s welfare, and they use the guise of economic necessity to cover up ideologically driven cuts. Tonight, we will vote against the Bill because we know that the depth and character of the proposals are unfair, unwise and inhuman, and anything but economically necessary.

“The truth is, the Government do not have to take £12 billion from the poorest families in the country, mostly working families. They are choosing to do so.

http://www.welfareweekly.com/tim-farron-slams-tories-and-labour-over-welfare-cuts-video/ – well worth reading though of course it has to be said that had the LibDems defended benefit claiments instead of voting for Tory welfare polices some of the more vicious and damaging reforms could not have been implemented

Join Day of Protest Against Benefit Cuts

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“Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings.”
Nelson Mandela

Please support the following National Day of Protest in Glasgow  – Please consider supporting this protest even if you do not live in Scotland, we need solidarity to end the austerity measures that are having the greatest impact on people who are sick, disabled or unemployed.

ALL SCOTLAND NATIONAL DAY OF PROTEST AGAINST BENEFIT CUTS – please note at the time of publishing, this link did not work. According to this link https://www.facebook.com/blacktriangle11
there have been problems with hacking. The information however appears below and also here:
http://englandevents.co.uk/glasgow-all-scotland-national-day-of-protest-against/280298  Includes a map.

14 June at 12:00 in UTC+01

George Square


If you can possibly do so please attend a protest in Glasgow this coming Sunday. If you can’t or even if you can please share the following:

14th June 2015 George Square Glasgow 12:00









‘If Westminster fails to deliver [HOME RULE AND FULL POWERS OVER SOCIAL SECURITY] there will be an UPRISING in Scotland and we entertain do doubts whatsoever that we will be an independent nation within a very short span of time indeed. If you do not give us these powers the Union is finished. Be in no doubt.’


We reject the UK Government’s unconscionable Welfare Reform Act and policies which are literally killing our people and which are immiserating millions.

As disabled people and citizens of Scotland, we demand nothing less than full autonomy for the Scottish Government over all matters relating to welfare, ownership of our natural resources and national assets, income from taxation and measures to address and eradicate the poverty that blights the lives of nearly one million people in our land.

If Westminster fails to deliver there will be an uprising in Scotland and we entertain do doubts whatsoever that we will be an independent nation within a very short span of time indeed. If you do not give us these powers the Union is finished. Be in no doubt.

We are aware that 10,000 submissions have been made so we will make this brief. These are the reason that we demand full powers over our own affairs. Rocks would melt in the Sun before the catastrophe of UK Welfare ‘Reforms’ would be introduced by Scottish politicians elected by the people of Scotland. This is not the Scottish way. This is the land of Robert Burns.

This is absolutely anathema and barbaric to us.

When Scotland sends 59 Yes party MPs to Westminster in May that will be fighting to repeal the lethal and despicable Welfare Reform Act. It’s now time for all to unite with us and say together: “No More!”

This is an updated tragic list of widely reported welfare-related deaths of the United Kingdom’s sick and/or disabled people. The tip of an iceberg.
We will always fight for freedom from Westminster’s murderous policies and support the struggle of all Britain’s sick and/or disabled people simultaneously, wherever they are from.

Read More:

If you are in any doubt there is worse to come please note the following Facebook comment which I have included here for easy access, and also because I don’t know how to directly link to individual comments in Facebook which soon progress down the page quickly as other comments are added and are often missed. After reading this and viewing the video, people in Scotland and the rest of the UK have good reason to be afraid:

“This is a profoundly shocking scene – I need to draw everybody’s attention to (a very poorly) disabled Baroness Jane Campbell’s question to Welfare Minister Lord Freud in the Lords yesterday asking “will disabled people be protected” from further £12 billion life-destroying cuts to be announced by Osborne in July?

His ice-cold, callous response is truly spine-chilling:

Baroness Campbell of Surbiton (CB): My Lords, during the general election campaign the Prime Minister stated his desire to “enhance” and “safeguard” PIP. Will the Minister say how the Government plan to fulfil that election promise to disabled people and reassure them that their payments will be protected in the Chancellor’s up-and-coming Budget?

Lord Freud: We will continue to support the disabled and the vulnerable in months to come.

Baroness Sherlock (Lab): My Lords, maybe I can follow that up a little more. The noble Baroness, Lady Campbell of Surbiton, specifically asked for an assurance of the Prime Minister’s guarantee that he would continue to support disabled people and that their benefits would be protected. Let me give the Minister the opportunity to give that. The Government want to make £12 billion of welfare cuts. Will he say today that none of those will fall on disabled people?

Lord Freud: I repeat what I said: we will continue to support disabled people and the vulnerable through that process.


Either view the Video on the All Scotland Day of Protest facebook page or click the link below and go to 22 minutes into the programme:
Highlights of Wednesday 10 June in Parliament, presented by Alicia McCarthy.

He didn’t really answer the question did he, indeed very disturbing.

Read About how frightening it really gets for vulnerable benefit claimants

“It gets to the point where you’re frightened of the thud of the postman coming up your path, “You’re fearful of a brown envelope, in case it’s from the DWP [Department for Work and Pensions]. You’re fearful of a white envelope in case it’s from Atos.”

The worry got so much that once she was admitted to the local psychiatric unit, where staff were warned not even to mention benefits in front of her.
Read More:
David Cameron, a champion of disabled people? Try telling Paula Peters
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jun/08/cameron-disabled-champion-paula-peters-cuts-most-vulnerable – this is an excellent article showing the damage both physically and psychologically as a result of welfare cuts to the lives of people already blighted by illness and disability.

Benefits recipients ‘living in fear of cuts’, says report

“Welfare reforms are making people live in “constant fear” of cuts to their benefits, according to a report.

The study by Napier University found those on benefits were anxious that changes to their circumstances would push them into “crisis situations”.”

The following is a detailed rundown of all the benefit cuts this evil government have put in place.Shocking that people voted for more of the same. If you voted Tory you are of course complicit with what amounts to a calculated assault on the most vulnerable in our society. An attack on disabled people much like the beginning of the propaganda that lead to the Nazi’s persecution of the sick and disabled.

‘The Disability Audit: the eight coalition policies that have hit disabled people

“It has made few headlines but two out of five disabled people in this country are now unable to eat, wash, dress or get out of the house due to underfunded services in their area.”

“…a 32 year old who had all his toes amputated after being forced to spend last winter sleeping in a tent. Mitchell Keenan, from Skelmersdale, in West Lancashire, was evicted from his four-bed house because the bedroom tax meant his family could no longer pay the rent. He was diagnosed with frostbite six weeks ago when his family noticed his toes had turned black. His 62-year-old father, Keith, also evicted, has malnourishment, scabies and dementia.”

Read More:
http://blacktrianglecampaign.org/2015/04/30/ge15-the-disability-audit-in-the-name-of-love-put-an-end-to-this-vile-pogrom-on-disabled-people-now/ – You just can’t imagine can you someone getting frost bite, living in a tent in the sixth richest country in the world. One of the problems is that to many people it just doesn’t seem real. With the exception of people begging in the street, for some the reality of what is happening in the UK is often not obvious and many people remain oblivious to the misery, fear and desperation behind their neighbour’s closed doors as sick, disabled and the unemployed struggle with slashes in benefits, no benefits at all, rising prices and the threat of homelessness.

Queen’s Speech: For Our Poorest, Our Sick and Our Disabled The Worst is Yet to Come:

Please attend the protest in Glasgow and spread the word.

For the Sake of Sick and Disabled People Don’t Vote Tory



Keep Calm Conservatives – War on the Poor II

“A parody “Keep Calm and Carry On” themed non-election poster for this parody of a political party and its pathetic and depraved pretense at government.

The country – the sick, the disabled, the unemployed, and for that matter most of the workforce that remains employed (with no thanks to the Tories) have no future if the Conservatives continue in government. Hopefully we will be rid of them by May 2015, but the damage already caused since 2010 is already considerable.”

Read more and download larger sizes
Flickr user Byzantine_K

What will life be like for sick and disabled people if the Tories win the election?

What cuts to benefits do the Tories propose?

The Tories want to cut benefits by 12 billion.

“We are the party of the working people offering you security at every stage of your life,”
David Cameron

“Every stage of your life” that is unless you become sick, disabled or unemployed.

Cameron made this claim in his election manifesto speech in which he proclaims his aim is to guarantee a “good life” for British workers and their families.

The fact that a 12 billion cut in benefits was included in their election manifesto as an intended vote catcher is truly sickening. I hope that those who would vote for the Tories on the basis of this would think the same way if one day they are sick, disabled or unemployed and need support for the basics of life.No one knows if any of these circumstances may befall them, the fact that people are willing to aid and abet the Tories to strip benefits from vulnerable people who depend on them through no fault of their own and to ultimately destroy our welfare system by voting for them on the basis of this vile committment is disturbing indeed.

On this basis

For claimants, especially those who are sick and disabled, the result of the next election could well have a dramatic effect on the quality of their lives for decades to come.
Read More:

Sick and disabled claimants to lose up to £80 per week under leaked Tory plans

“The BBC News investigation uncovered several benefits under consideration for change, including:

  • Carer’s Allowance – this could be restricted to those eligible for Universal Credit. Leaked documents suggest about 40% of claimants would lose out. DWP predicted saving – £1bn
  • The contributory element of Employment and Support Allowance and Job Seekers Allowance – currently claimants who have paid enough National Insurance contributions can get the benefits with little means testing; DWP analysis suggests 30% of claimants, over 300,000 families, would lose about £80 per week. DWP predicted saving – £1.3bn in 2018/19
  • Disability benefits – Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payments and Attendance Allowance (for over 65s who have personal care needs) would no longer be paid tax free. Possible saving – £1.5bn per annum(based on IFS Green Budget calculation )
  • Industrial Injuries Compensation Scheme – could be replaced by companies providing industrial injury insurance policy for employees. Any that did not would become members of a default national industrial injuries scheme, similar to the programme for asbestos sufferers. DWP predicted saving – £1bn
  • Council Tax Support – to be incorporated into Universal Credit. Possible saving – not known
  • Child Benefit – Limiting the benefit to the first two children. Possible saving IFS estimates £1bn saving per annum in the long run but little initially
  • Regional Benefit Caps – The £23,000 limit would vary in different parts of the country, with for instance Londoners receiving the top amount due to the higher cost of living. Possible saving – not known and dependent on where levels were set”

Read More:

Previous benefit cuts and reforms

The following website gives details of the Significant changes that are being made to the benefits and tax credits system over the next few years. It also provides an archive of changes that have already happened:

Here is an example of how welfare reforms have affected people with multiple needs.

This is an extract from the Voices From the Front Line project’s Interim report , highlighting the damage welfare reforms have caused to people with multiple needs and how the introduction of benefit sanctions has been the most negative aspect of welfare reforms for this group.

People with multiple needs experience several problems at the one time which may include the following: mental illnesses, homelessness,  drug and alcohol misuse, offending and family breakdown.

“We found that recent welfare reforms are having an overwhelmingly negative effect on people with multiple needs. They have led to financial and personal strain, and in some cases placed people at risk.There are particular concerns over the use of sanctions, and cuts to legal aid.

“We found that recent welfare reforms are having an overwhelmingly negative effect on people with multiple needs. They have led to financial and personal strain, and in some cases placed people at risk.There are particular concerns over the use of sanctions, and cuts to legal aid.

Welfare changes are having a severe effect on people’s mental health and well-being

  • 88% of services reported welfare changes had a negative effect on their clients’ overall wellbeing,and 86% on their mental health
  • Several services perceived an increased risk of suicide amongst their service users as a result.

Services report that the changes are not helping people with multiple needs to progress toward employment, and are placing them under financial and personal strain

  • Only two percent of services believed that welfare reforms have had a positive impact on people’s ability to engage with the job market, with 55% reporting a negative impact
  • 88% of services reported a negative impact on people’s finances, 82% on access to appropriate housing, and 73% on access to appropriate food and nutrition.

In some cases, welfare reforms are prompting re-offending and placing vulnerable women at risk

  • Many services described a pattern in which people with a history of offending behaviour would reoffend when placed under stress through changes to their benefits
  • Several services described vulnerable women turning to subsistence theft, sex work or being forced to depend on violent partners after losing their benefits

Benefit sanctions are significantly disadvantaging people with multiple needs

  • 79% of services reported that sanctions are affecting over half of their service users, and sanctions were viewed as having the most negative impact of all the welfare changes

Legal aid cuts are affecting a significant number of people with multiple needs

  • 64% of services said that cuts to legal advice are affecting over half their service users

Access the full report:

About Voices from the front line:

Five more years of Tory cuts will turn back the clock to a time many considered long consigned to history, another five years may well see the end to the welfare system.

Say no to the destruction of our welfare system, stem the tide of vicious welfare reforms by not voting Tory.

Related Links

Reports on the impacts of public spending cuts across the whole of the UK:



Reasons Not to Vote Conservative in the General Elections 2015: The Injustice of Benefit Sanctions

“I am not surprised people want to kill themselves. People are now being given sanctions for the most minor things. They make you feel worthless, I felt unworthy being a student and thought I should be working like other non-disabled students can manage.”
Julia a student with autism

If you can’t read the text, click on the image to view the full size


Six of many examples of the ludicrous reasons in which people have had what is often their only source of income taken from them for months – and even longer. Sanctions have led to hunger, homelessness and suicides.

The Jobcentre is sanctioning people to maintain targets set within the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), not in the majority of cases because of any wrongdoing by the claimant. Benefit sanctions were once almost unheard of.

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One of the most inhumane actions taken by the coalition government is the introduction of punitive benefit sanctions.

Unfair Benefit sanctions have driven people into poverty, destitution, despair and suicide. Benefit sanctions are one of the main reasons people have to resort to food banks. Such treatment of vulnerable people – namely the unemployed claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) and sick and disabled people claiming Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) who are consigned to the Work Related Activity Group (WRAG) – is not worthy of any civilised society, it is not worthy of the UK.  The present government has come under the condemnation of the UN for the present vicious welfare reforms which have left sick and disabled people with a lower or no income. The introduction of ever more punitive sanctions adds further to the misery and suffering that has resulted from the coalitions welfare reforms.

Anyone claiming JSA or are assigned to the WRAG can be sanctioned from anything up to one month to three years!

“In the Northeast alone “At any one moment in time, 30,000 people are being sanctioned …”


* A Hartlepool woman who broke an appointment because she was “burying her grandfather and had been at his deathbed for week”.

* A Sunderland man who was told “an asthma attack is not a good reason for missing an appointment”.

* A Middlesbrough woman who forgot an interview because it was “the day her father died”.

* A man in Bishop Auckland constituency who was a collecting a sick daughter from school and was accused of inventing a “fictional child”.

Julie Elliott, the Labour MP for Sunderland, said: “For people to be treated in this inhumane way is wrong.””

Read More:

Read accounts concerning the detrimental effects of benefit sanctions

Where did we go wrong? Why has starvation, suicide and poverty become the norm? More sanctions.. sanctions kill.

As you know every week we hold a demonstration outside Ashton Under Lyne Jobcentre. We believe that the cruel sanctioning and the cruel benefit reforms that are affecting thousands of people up and down the country everyday. Once you start hearing the real stories and the way that they are affecting people in your local community you cant help but feel their pain in some way. Sometimes we cry whilst we are being told of a persons death, sometimes we go home and cry. Today was one of those days. I woke up wanting to change things, but sadly realised that I cant change much apart from peoples minds once they read my blog. I opened my emails and read some stories that have been sent to me, They want their news to be shared but sadly not always their names. You see they feel victimised already and don’t want to be persecuted anymore. Here are a few of their stories. Please read and share.

Continue reading:

As incredible as the following may seem one unfortunate person was sanctioned for three months for making a spelling mistake!!!!!!

Sanctioned for making a spelling mistake.

You couldn’t make it up… Well actually it’s become the norm to be sanctioned for making a spelling mistake. A gentleman who spoke to us on our Thursday demo told us that he was put on a three month sanction at Ashton Under Lyne Jobcentre for making a spelling mistake. He wasn’t given a chance to correct it, or a chance to explain it. He was told very bluntly “we are sanctioning you for spelling this word incorrectly on a form. This will prevent you from getting work so therefore is a sanctionable offence”. This man received a three month sanction for this so called offence. No one bothered to ask him if he was dyslexic or had any other issues which may have prevented him from spelling the word correct. Neither is it a crime to spell a word incorrectly. Indeed we are all human and are prone to making mistakes.


Read the 11 most senseless benefit sanctions:

Worse hit by sanctions and rarely defended are people with mental health conditions many of whom have been unfairly and disproportionately sanctioned.

A Government That Permits The Psychological Torture Of Benefit Claimants Does Not Give A Fuck About Mental Health

This Government do not give a shit about people with mental health conditions, and neither did the last one.  Whilst politicians of all parties offer soundbites and fake sympathy the treatment of people with a mental health condition by the benefits system now amounts to little more than psychological torture.

This is not hyperbole.  Whilst the medical establishment has stood ildly by, and mental health charities have veered between mild disapproval and outright collaboration, the DWP has lanched an all out war on the most marginalised people in society.

Continue reading:

Revealed: Inhumane Treatment Of UK’s Disabled & Poor By Department For Work And Pension

The following blog appears to show that, after blogger Jules Clarke contacted his MP, Iain Duncan Smith admitted in writing to the MP that the DWP sanctions people with “learning difficulties or mental health problems.” Both disabled and non-disabled benefits claimants are most at risk of having their rights eroded if they’re on Jobseeker’s Allowance, and especially if they’re coming off the Work Programme.

Read More:

Benefit sanctions and absurdity: will public attitudes change

It’s always worth reminding ourselves just how draconian and irrational, not to mention pointless, sadistic, and avoidably counterproductive the benefit sanctions regime can be, not least because, as my colleague Patrick Wintour noted this week:

“The issue is one that all political parties are reluctant to take up, partly because public opinion is thought to be hostile to “benefit scroungers”


Is this the kind of Britain in which we want to live where people are hostile towards benefit claimants, the kind of Britain were people are impoverished by unfair benefit reforms including sanctions. Sickening that both of the major political parties consider that the continued persecution of benefit claimants and the imposed drastic decrease in benefit payments as a result of cuts and sanctions are seen as a vote catcher.

Take Action


I would like to say that the best action is not to vote Tory which is indeed a necessary action if we are to ever bring about change concerning benefit sanctions and other unfair reforms.  However it is unclear what Labour intend and with the exception of abolishing the bedroom tax it looks increasingly that nothing much will be done to undo the vicious and unfair welfare reforms of the last five years.

We must demand a more fair system that allows those who through no fault of their own as a result of long term sickness, disability or unemployment to receive benefits which provide a decent standard of living. Bullying people to find work that they are too ill to do or to find jobs that simply don’t exist is unacceptable and it has to stop now, but unless more of us speak out nothing much of anything will ever change. The present government and to a lesser extent the previous one have done a thorough job of turning public opinion against benefit claimants, a tactic used in prewar Germany

Here is the latest outrage

David Cameron To Force NEETs To Carry Out 30 Hours Of Community Work A Week ‘From Day One’


Related Links

Sanctions and the charity shop.

Entre staff under pressure to strip claimants of benefits for no good reason, North East MPs claim

Iain Duncan Smith to accelerate benefit reforms to stop Labour reversing them

Updated list of deaths due to welfare reforms