Friday, 27 January 2012

A Premium Life

There's one cut that I've heard almost nothing about. I mean literally only 2 tweets and one blog comment. There's been nothing about it in either the mainstream press or on leftie/disability blogs.

At the moment there's an Income Support top-up called the Severe Disability Premium (SDP). It's often confused with Severe Disablement Allowance because of the similar sounding names despite being very different things.

The amount of money the law says you need to live on each week depends on your circumstances. If you're considered "severely disabled" for the purposes of benefits it's regarded that you need £151.65 a week to live on.

As someone that gets the middle or high rate care component of DLA and as someone who lives alone I'm considered "severely disabled" for such purposes. My Incapacity Benefit, including age-related premiums, is only £108.05 a week. This leaves me with a £43.60 shortfall between the amount of money the law says I need to live on and the amount of money I get. This is where the SDP comes in: I get an Income Support payment of £43.60 to bridge that gap.

The Welfare Reform Bill is scrapping the SDP. Entirely. Not replacing it with something different and stricter like the DLA to PIP changeover: It's just going.

The cost of living is going up, not down. So why do I suddenly need £43 a week less to live on?

I know that to a Tory £43 a week is a drop in the ocean. To a Tory it's maybe the cost of dinner if they eat somewhere cheap. But to me it's almost a third of my week's income. To me it's the difference between being able to visit my father or not. To me it's a grocery shop.

Crossbencher Baroness Meacher put forward amendment 21A on the second day of the report stage in the Lords which would have preserved an SDP-esque payment after the WRB had gone through. It didn't even go to a vote: Freud pointed out to her that letting severely disabled people retain their current income level would cost more than the amount the bill budgets for, so she withdrew it (it's not "cost-neutral").

It's not only people in similar circumstances to my own that will be affected, during the discussion Baroness Grey-Thompson brought up the fact that this will have a huge impact on young carers. People love to don a Red Nose to raise money to send young people assisting a parent 10 Pin Bowling once a fortnight, but where's the outcry over the fact that the government is stripping away financial support from parents which will make the young person's life harder?

All in this together? How about we knock 33% off the MPs' wages instead of severely disabled peoples' incomes. It'd be a much more sizeable saving than the mere £43 a week that makes such a huge difference to someone like me.

Update 15/11/13: DavidG has just pointed me to this article from October last year. It states the number of people that will be affected by the cuts to Disability Premiums: 230,000. I've also become aware today of this 32 page report by the CAB (also from October 2012) into the withdrawl of the Severe Disability Premium.

54 comments:

  1. Was just looking at the breakdown of my ESA award letter and it looks like this:

    Living expenses couple: £105.95
    Disability Income Guarantee: £20.25
    Support Group: £32.25
    Total Income-Related Amount: £158.55
    Earnings: £140.53
    Entitlement:£18.02

    My good friend gets SDP. I wonder if she knows about the changes?

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    1. I am severely disabled, age 53, living alone and have just been awarded ESA but only get £105.05 in weekly benefit. Can someone tell me the correct weekly amount and break it down for me? litigantagent@gmail.com

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  2. I'd also like to know why disabled people themselves have not made more of a fuss over this.

    I tried to raise awareness and get support but was met with a reaction of "how terrible. Now. What about DLA and ESA?".

    SDP only applies to a very small group of people. Many disabled people have been guilty of the very thing they have been complaining about: not being interested in something that doesn't affect them.

    I find it ironic that I have spent all my time and energy campaigning against something that won't actually affect me (I am in support group of ESA and judging the criteria will easily retain HRM and HRC with PIP) but have received no support at all from fellow disabled people over something which will cut my own income by a third.

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    1. I too find what your saying to be true, the amount of time I spend writing letters, sending out mass emails to people to gather their support, half the time people don't bother to get involved, but as you say they will complain and moan about things.

      There is also a lot of infighting amongst some people who run some of these campaigns/groups, I have personally been told that people will not support what I do, fair enough but I always thought all disabled people were fighting for the same thing, how wrong was I?

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    2. I'm a little late to this article, but I wonder if the problem isn't so much that disabled people don't want to campaign on SDA, but rather that disabled people don't understand SDA enough to understand the significance of losing it. Despite what the government claims, most people understand that DLA and ESA are significant, even if some of them are misled by the government disinformation over whether DLA is an out-of-work benefit or not. But SDA isn't quite so obvious, or easily understandable. I'll confess that I didn't have a clear understanding of SDA until I read this, and I've been fairly heavily involved in campaigning for over a year now.

      The problem is a repeat on a smaller scale of the one we all face with the general public - people don't understand disability benefits so don't see the need to campaign to keep them. For SDA even many disabled people don't understand it, so it's a difficult sell to get everyone campaigning on it. Clearly we should be, but people just haven't realised that, and I'm as guilty there as anyone.

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    3. And it seems I don't even understand it well enough to get the acronym right - SDP, not SDA!

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    4. I am in the same position. I have been campaigning continually on behalf of younger people but did not know this "stealth cut" was pending; (although I did realise their plans to award everyone a standard £140 pension might well have the effect of removing this premium.

      After having been a family carer for most of my life I now live completely alone. Social Services continually "lose" the medical confirmations of my severe physical disabilities (although they have managed to retain psychiatric speculations that were added to my records by an abuser who had no medical qualifications, about 30 years ago.)

      Removing SDP will almost certainly make it impossible to live independantly.

      Diabetic (must control diet) severe bone and joint problems (must have heating) wheelchair user. Apparently I will have to apply to Social Services for anything/everything I need - and I have also survived heart attacks and strokes, almost all triggered by verbally violent professionals!

      My religion precludes suicide - but I don't know what on earth I'm going to do instead!

      Mermaid.

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    5. It took a long time to write a comment because this page crashes my browser, and I think I left out the most important thing.

      Please, don't let them get away with "Divide and rule" - we are Spartacus, and we will only be heard if we speak, act (and perhaps vote) together.

      I've been campaigning against cuts that hit the young, as well as the ones that hit me, because I hate to think of more lives being destroyed the way mine was.

      Please - campaign against cuts that hit the disabled old. Disabled welfare means your welfare, and my welfare - and their welfare, the welfare of the ones who are hurt by the cuts that don't affect the campaigner personally - this time.
      Please.

      Mermaid

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    6. I only just found out about this as i just discovered the spartacus website and went to look at the UC bit on CAB web link. I had no idea that i am about to lose more than most. My brother will lose the SDP. this worries me greatly.He lives alone and needs the money to pay for help to get around/do the garden/visit family. Unfortunately there are disabilities in four generations of my family. Some are from trauma, some genetic, some due to defects in development. Either way we cant look to each other for support. I assumed it was just the thing highlighted in the spartacus report, the 26,000 cap for benefit was for famililies on Income support...Find it all very confusing and very scary.

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  3. I am placed to lose all my income this year and share your concern that only the 'popular' cuts are being campaigned against.

    Spoonydoc you have my utmost sympathy and I'm willing to offer what support I can both emotional and practical; get back to me

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  4. its a shame that most people are really only interested in what is going to effect them personally.

    i cant believe this is the first iv heard of this

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  5. I used to get this premium until my son left school and then they took it away as they said an adult lives in the house. My son is not a carer really he cannot do 'those things' but they took it away anyways even though they did not seem to truly understand why themselves. so now I get alot less than I did, prolly going to lose my DLA and then not get ESA and then they will expect me to sign on for JSA and make myself into a liar when I know I cannot hold down a job. So then i will be called a fraudster but they are making me into this, they KNOW I cannot work and yet their stupid rules will leave me penniless or signing on and it's a lose lose situation really!

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  6. I should probably add for those that don't know that I am the co-author of the Spartacus Report with Sue Marsh. Sue was the one who first alerted me to the threat to SDP a while ago now.

    Unfortunately when I was unable to get any help from any of the forums I was a member of, I turned my energy to the DLA fight instead.

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  7. Am completely outraged, I care.

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  8. I think the reason there hasn't been a fuss is that disabled people who currently receive the SDP will be protected by the migration guarantee that means they are supposed to receive the same amount as before until the ESA rates catch up with their benefits. That's why I've not been worrying.

    And yes, the party are currently being d*cks but not all conservative-leaning voters are rich. I'm sure as hell not but the fact that I'm broke doesn't make me automatically left wing either!

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  9. Didn't even bloody occur to me , just expected it to be included somewhere .... doh, ought to have known better really :((

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  10. Haven't the Coalition always stressed that the MOST severely disabled people would always be taken care of? How does removing this benefit accomplish that then?

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  11. I used to have SDP but once someone get Carers Allowance for helping you its lost.

    Also its taken by Independent Living Fund as charges or contribution towards care costs.

    I know it does not help you financially but do you have anyone who helps you that could claim Carers Allowance or someone who would help you if they knew they could get this allowance?

    Not may know about closure of ILF either so I initiated my own letter campaign asked DPAC to help, which they have done.

    So do keep asking for support on this issue its a very important point affecting disabled people living on thier own or with no carers

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  12. I can't believe this hasn't been brought into the light more. I came to the fight quite late on, so I must have missed the earlier discussions about this fact. It doesn't apply to me, but that does not mean I wouldn't have fought for it had I known about it. Every time I hear about another aspect of the WRB my blood pressure raises another notch. I want to scream, cry and beat my fists bloody on the iron skulls of the politicians who just don't understand, or care, what the consequences of their actions will be.

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  13. I stand to lose a lot with the changes as they are, I am not able to fight this, I have neither the physical or mental strength, I have signed petitions & written letters, but each day is a massive struggle, I have a lot of health issues, I am a wheelchair user, I can walk with 2 crutches a little way, like to the bathroom from my bedroom which is next to it. I have limited Mobility, 24-7 excruciating pain all over my body, even my eyes, multiple allergies and a large number of intolerances for which I take antihistamines regularly & carry epipens, I have to take medication 9 times per day, which is anything from 3 - 10 tablets per time, I have to have a special diet & all the additional expenses that come from my health problems & Mobility problems that people who are healthy do not have. I am very worried about the survival rate from all these cuts, including my own chances of survival. Not one person making decisions over our lives understands what it is like to live on benefits, we are not on benefits through choice but because our bodies will break under the physical & mental strain of working, I cannot function very well anymore, I worked as long as I could or rather until my body almost gave up entirely. What is to come of us all!

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  14. As a DLA recipient, I have to say that this is the first I've heard about SDP being cut. Incredible. That must be cut number 8 or 9 for the "hardest hit" list I've been sending to politicians lately.

    I do have a question about the migration guarantee that DeusExMacintosh mentioned earlier, however: does the protected amount of benefit rise with inflation? If not, that would be a yearly cut in real terms until the corresponding ESA amount caught up.

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  15. Im the same I get the top up as I dont have a full time carer, yet because I dont have a full time carer its means a huge chunk of my DLA goes to council for care. So you are doubly dumped on. Ironically if you had someone to care for you 24/7 you get to keep all your DLA. Losing £160 is the difference between managing basics and doing the odd thing nice and having to track every penny for basics.

    I think its Universal Credit means every adult will get the same premium and maybe we woulnt even get an disabled premium and PIP will be for extra? Though with the cap there are no allowences per person if your housing cost are high.

    Arnt they taking away the premium for child to make it the same as adults, so presume when they take ours away they can then do the same to them? Be interested in how we can do something but the public arnt really going to be on our side they.

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  16. I really don't understand why having an adult living in the house means a loss of SDP? Oh silly me, it's an easy way to save money. Someone did once say that it's because the other person can give the disabled person the equivalent of SDP - if an non-disabled person under 25 receives out of work benefits, that's £53.45 per week. There's no way they can give that amount and still have something to live on.

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  17. This F******ing Govt are just beyond belief....I never knew about sdp but its outrageous that these people take the most from the poorest....But its thier policy of divide the people to sneak through thier agenda as we see by this ridiculous 26 thousand pound figure being pushed on the media so now everyone thinks Everyone on a benefit gets this figure.Bloody cameron is a fraud and he is using lord fraud to push through this crap.THEY will learn come election time that we will not forget this and we wont.ALL in this together my arse..

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  18. I have had NO income since 5 Jan, They failed me at the ATOS medical, I got the benefit you are talking about ...income support with the disability premium, I got the result of the ATOS medical just before Xmas, sent in my appeal, and heard nothing, so although they said the benefit would continue during my appeal, it hasnt , when I called they said I should have sent a medical certificate from my doctor, but they at no time had asked for one, Ive sent it now, but I have absolutely no money now, they hve also , due to this, stopped my housing beneft and council tax benefit. i dont know what to do , Welfare rights just confirmed I had to send a certificate after they called them on my behalf, I have no idea what to do .

    This is absolutely appalling, there must be thousands of people in the same situation. How can they leave anypne with no income?

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  19. Since having my DLA cut from middle care to lower care, my income went down by £355 a month. This has left me living in poverty, as I still have the heavy expenses of being disabled but not the income to help me cover it. I am HORRIFIED to see that everyone is getting their SDP cut - its the difference betweent surviving and living. How can there have been so little publicity about this?

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  20. Can I just add, that I think what theyre doing, is hoping that people will get so desperate, having no income, that they'll just forget the appeal, and even though they are unable to work, will register for JSA, just to be able to survive.
    Ive thought about it , I dont see how I can survive with no money . I cant pay my rent .....

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  21. So including your DLA you receive about £1200 pcm in your bank account tax free with most of your living costs paid for? Good work if you can get it.

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    1. Wow, you suck at maths! 4 weeks in a month at £151.65 a week = £606.60.

      What living costs do you think I get paid for? I pay my living costs out of that £606.60! Disabled people don't get things like winter fuel payments to cover the cost of heating, they're for over 60s only.

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    2. DLA care £73.60 a week, DLA mobility £51.40 (assume high rate for both?), £151.65 added up is £276.85. 52 weeks in a year divided by 12 is £1200 a month that actually goes into your bank account.

      Living costs you pay full private rent then from that £1200? No housing benefit at all?

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    3. DLA care £49.30. DLA mobility does not go near my bank account. Neither does my housing benefit: It gets transferred straight from the HB dept at my local council to the rent dept of my local council.

      Total going into my bank account per week? £200.95. Times 4 = £803.8. Out of which I do have to pay some rent (it's not all covered by HB) and all the other "living costs" you seem to think someone is paying for me. AND all the extra costs of being disabled.

      Something you seem a bit too stupid to understand: DLA isn't counted as "income". Go read some rule books. I reiterate: The income going into my bank account is £151.65 pw or £606.60 pm. Half what you allege I'm living on.

      Housing benefit though does count as income (even though it doesn't go anywhere near my bank account), so in total my income is around £210 pw. JRF calculated that for 2010 one needed £277 a week for a minimum standard of living. That's for a non-disabled person, so doesn't include the exorbitant extra costs we face and is two years old and living costs have gone up.

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    4. I think you'll find that the vast majority of people in the country fall below the JRF calculation.

      Ignoring the fact that the DLA mobility 'not going near your bank account' is paying for a new car every 3 years with your insurance and everything else paid for you £803.80 a month is still a nicely comfortable 'wage'. In short, you're financially more secure than most of the country and you are having the majority of your rent paid too, so quit complaining.

      You are 'earning' the same disposable income that most people work full time for and you're still complaining that it isn't enough, something that you seem to be too detatched from reality to understand.

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    5. When I was well enough to work I earned more than that only working part-time! (And since then there's been inflation so the value of what I earned would be greater now.)

      When I checked my income against the average I found that my income is greater than 26% of the population. You should be outraged that 26% of the population live on so little.

      I am not financially more secure than the majority of the population. Newsflash: Welfare Reform Bill condemning me, and hundreds of thousands of other disabled people.

      My disposable income is almost non-existent. As I keep explaining to you: Once living costs and disability related costs are paid, I have almost nothing left. I don't have a social life because I do not have the money to afford one. When I could work I used to go see bands and comedy, I used to go to the cinema, I used to go out to dinner with friends, I used to by DVDs quite often. I can't afford any of that any more.

      Despite having no disposable income I'm not complaining that I don't have enough. I mentioned the JRF research as a frame of reference, not because I'm asking for more. What I'm complaining about is the fact that what little I have is going to be taken from me. And you allege I'm financially secure...

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    6. No less secure than the rest of us. Equality init.

      You do know that under Universal Credit no person/family unit is going to have a lower cash income than prior to UC and that DLA recipients are exempt from the £500 p/w cap? Or have the government been telling little porkies about that too?

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    7. Erm... One in 5 DLA claimants is losing their benefit! They're cutting the bill by 20% even though only 0.5% of claims are fraudulent.

      And even if the government do come good on their promise to not cut the income of existing benefit claimants (with all the lies they tell I wouldn't bank on it), the abolition of the SDP will still affect people becoming unable to work in the future.

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    8. Are you sure 1 in 5 will lose it? Or will that be another government target that lasts as long as it takes for them to cock it up? They're aiming to cut the bill by 20%? I'll bet you a week's SDP now that in 5 years time the DLA bill is higher than it is now.

      Under UC you won't need SDP I'm sure it'll be one amalgamated payment and theoretically it will continue to provide the same level of cash or higher than that under the current system, it'll just be a lot less complicated. Or they could be telling porkies.

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    9. Of course the bill will be higher than it is now: They're planning to introduce regular reassessments for people with incurable conditions. Assessments and appeals cost money.

      Doesn't change the fact that they've rewritten the criteria so that it cuts out 500,000 current claimants.

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    10. What people like you don't know and would never bother finding out is that people in my situation have their benefit removed to pay for their care. It simply makes a pit stop in my bank account before going straight back to social services.

      If this bill goes through two things will happen.

      Some people will no longer be able to pay for their care at all and social services will have to foot the entire bill, putting a system which is already creaking under the strain in a very precarious situation.

      Others like myself who manage on a mixture of social services care and a few extra hours paid for by SDP will no longer be able to afford the extra hours care (yes, that nice money you're so envious of goes on paying carers to help me get washed and dressed rather than fun things I expect you spend your own money on).

      Lack of care will lead to deterioration of hygiene and health. Problems which were previously kept in check will instead reach crisis point.

      It may even be that I can no longer manage to live on my own. If that happens I will have to move into an institution at great cost both personal and financial.

      This is totally short sighted and will end up costing far more than it saves as well as wrecking lives.

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    11. Anonymous please please please try and understand one thing, just one little teeny teeny (but it major major for those with a disability) thing. £800 + per month must sound a very healthy and comfortable income to you but for one aspect and one aspect only, if you're not disabled.

      However, if you are disabled you have to pay your living expenses, just like 'normal people' then on top of that guess what, you have to pay your disabled costs.

      Are you aware that batteries for an electric wheelchair can cost anything from £200-£500 +. Are you aware that an electric wheelchair can cost anything from £2,000-£6,00 plus and these expenses are incurred by many disabled people because they do not fit the criteria for assistance with appliances simply sometimes because they can stand!

      Are you aware that many disabled people have to put down enormous deposits on the cars that you so casually say our DLA are paying for!

      I suggest anonymous you research properly and state all the facts because your posting is half baked!

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    12. Anonymous 6:15am - you can take my benefits and disabilities too. You will then understand why disabled people receive DLA. We're not as well off as you think we are. Many of us have to save up to pay for the expensive items that we need which NHS won't provide.

      As a disabled person, I am actually financially worse off - by the time you count the medication NHS won't supply, (@ £12 a time) needing to constantly replace clothes and shoes that I wear out easy, etc. And then there's the one-off items that cost at least 2 months DLA - that was in a sale too.

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  22. Appeals and assessments also make some people a lot of money, just ask those well known medical pros ATOS and G4S!

    I'm curious what changes are they that cut out the 500,000?

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    1. Mostly by abolishing the low rate care component, though removing references to need for constant supervision will see a lot of people like me on middle rate lose out too.

      Changing the thresholds for the mobility component will see a lot of people lose out too. I can walk a tiny bit, even though I shouldn't (read this for explanation) and am set to be bumped from higher to low rate because of removal of the "virtually unable to walk" criteria.

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    2. Do you have a link to the criteria handy? It might make interesting reading!

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  23. I am shocked. I thought I knew what was going on with Benefit Reforms and have been doing everything I can to campaign and help support others,since the June budget of 2010, even in cases that do not affect me.

    But I did not know that Severe Disability Premium was being abolished. I currently receive it because I live alone and get High rate DLA Care.All my DLA Care goes to the Council for paying a carer which only covers a few hours a week.

    The SDP was meant to make up for the fact that if you had no responsible adult living with you, you could "buy" more care eg My meals on wheels cost £90 per month now. There are many times I am on my own when I really should not be. At least SDP meant I could pay for extra help in emergencies. I beleive it is £55.30 a week and is basically instead of someone else in the house being able to claim Carers Allowance for looking after you. So if you have got a partner who can help look after you, they can get extra help. But if you live alone, now you can suddenly manage with no one? Even a few extra hours here and there? This is truly terrifying.

    People with partners or even older children do not seem to realise how much even the smallest thing can help - like getting a glass of water if ill in bed or taking out the rubbish. Nevermind a meal. It is scary enough to be alone so much when suffering from sever M.E as I do, but not to even be able to get some few hours exta help in a crisis is going to be terrifying. I fear I will end up dead and no one notice or have to go into a home. When I got too ill to cope at all a few years back I had to go into a care home just because I couldn't look after myself even basics anymore and there was no one here to help at all.

    I though my life was already pretty unbearable. I am mostly housebound and my whole day is just trying to do the most basic tasks of living. Or not even that. I can't even bath or wash my hair a lot of the time. I think this lot will finish me off. If I am found fit for work, which I expect to be, because i don't look "obviously" disabled, I will be finished. It only makes me wonder why I tried to survive all this hell for so long, just to come to this. I may as well not have bothered.

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  24. I cannot believe thaat anonymous @ Jan 30 6.15 am is actually JEALOUS of disabled people. This is quite a current phenomenon. People just think it's nice to sit at home all day and have the State pay for you, while they actually have to urgh ..WORK..

    How about taking into account the fact that you can walk wherever you please? That you don't watch the clock to see when you can next take a pain killer that you know won't help much. That you can sleep at night? That you can visit a friend or relative when you want to. That you can get out to make friends? That you don't live in constant terror that one or other of your conditions means you could need an ambulance within 10 minutes any time of day or night? That on a sunny day you are not locked away in a dark room unable to move with pain. What about taking a shower and getting dressed. Is that something that can leave you bed bound for the rest of the day? Did you have to give up your chance to have children because you were too ill?
    Yes, when you are working hard, a day under the duvet sounds lovely. But don't forget, it's not as you feel now. Try it, when you can not get up if you want to, even to go to the toilet? When you cannot watch TV, listen to music or read? When your whole body is just a ball of pain. Still fancy it? For years on end?
    Then again maybe you'll get as lucky as you think the people you are criticisng are. Maybe someone will drive their car into you at high speed and you will be fortunate enough never to have to work again. Maybe you will be lucky enough to NEED someone to do your shopping or you don't eat? How do you fancy being in your house EVERY day and seeing no one? Will your friends still turn up to help?How do you think you would feel if people felt they had the right to ask if you are faking it? Still fancy it? If you have nothing better to do than troll messageboards telling people living in fear of their very lives that they have it easy, I feel sorry for YOU> Do something to make your life count - you never know when the chance will be taken away from you.

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    1. no-one said bein disabled was easy. Im sure its very hard living with the pain and stuff, but that dont mean you deserve everything handed to u on a gold plate.

      ordinary working people pay a lot of tax to make sure the disadvantiged get as much help as they can, but the govt has only got so much money. you cant have everything!

      thank urself lucky u dont live in Afganistan or somewhere like that.

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    2. A question -if you were on your own and found you were suddenly unable to move, what would you do?

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    3. Anonymous seems convinced we shouldn't have things handed to us on a plate, because 'ordinary working people' are so generous as to pay the taxes that fund our benefits. Funny, I thought I was one of those taxpayers, both in the 20-odd years I was one of tge 'ordinary working people' (most of it in more pain than Anonymous has ever imagined), and even now, as someone no longer fit to work, where I pay VAT on almost everything out of the pittance I get on ESA. As for 'handed to us on a plate', my ESA medical has to be one of the most damaging experiences of my life to date.

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    4. Anon.. We dont live in Afghan, thankfully. Some of us very expensive disabled people have served our country and spent time making the lives of all people more secure. Allowing children to eat/drink. Allowing parents to shop and complete daily living in comparative saftey. Many people regardless of religious belief were treated and given a second chance at life, i say this because many of the conflicts that i and many others have been involved in have been complex due to differing religions as well as countries involved in these conflicts. After working and paying into the tax/NI systems, after providing for my family for years, after serving my country and brining up responsible citizens, ie my children, I had the misfortune to need medical care and have to apply for benefits. I jumped through many hoops, filled in reems of paper work, went to medicals, went to tribunals and eventually was awarded benefit. My partner works so no luxury of housing ben or council tax ben. No immediate help with uniforms/meals etc for the youngest children, because i worked. I lost my home, my independance, alomost my family because of an accident. We survive but not live in luxury. I am disabled but i dont get a free car. My mum is disbled she does not get a free car, my brother is disabled guess what? no free car. I would remind you that you could be in my shoes, no one knows what fate holds for us.

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    5. if i was not disabled i would love to snap the legs off anonymous and pull out his eyes and cut off his arms then give the ratbag my 1000 a month that im soon to lose and see how cocky he is then. go dancing fu*ker!
      seriously sdp loss will hit me hard. it took many years before i got it because its such a mystery benefit. at one point i had to live at a friends vacant flat (he worked away) because i was made homeless. the dwp soon sent a letter saying my friend and i must be gay partners and cut sdp and a chunk of other benefits.
      i have served my country, worked hard all my life, then after an accident 10 years ago i am left with just enough to eat. im not even allowed to have savings enough to move into a new home if my current landlord wants me out. we need to scrap these 'reforms' totally and save the money by not paying atos to pipe it to france! atos takes such a huge salary for 'medical professionals' already without letting them start the whole work over again.

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  25. Also anonymous who seems jealous of people who are sick and disabled and people like him don't seem to realise that whilst working their income can go towards paying off a mortgage and into a private pension. If you are too sick to work, by the time you reach pension age, you will have absolutely no private pension on top of the small state pension, no pension lump sum and you will not have the security of owning your own home. And, as so eloquently put, you live with a disabling illness that robs you of so much. I've been housebound for the last two years. No going out, no socialising, no work satisfaction, no dinners out, no nothing...

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  26. Just been reading the postings and I also cannot believe that anonymous said that she is jealous of disabled people. I had to read the sentence right to make sure I had read correctly!

    I wonder if this anonymous person would still feel jealous if she was in pain yet still had to try and get on with her daily ablutions, still having to get up and get something to eat otherwise you don't eat. Feels absolutely shattered because everything you do is so tiring and takes so much energy out of you, you feel as if you can't go on.

    I wonder if anonymous is still nodding and saying yes they are still jealous. Obviously anonymous has no empathy or understanding of our lives.

    Anonymous reminds me of my brother when he was young who never actually said he was jealous but said "I wish I was disabled because they get everything". He was 5 years old and obviously unaware of the situation.

    Anonymous needs to grow up and be a little more mature than saying they are jealous, it's something a 5 year old would say, wouldn't you agree?

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  27. I love the way they assume these idiots that incidentally if they were hit by a car tomoro,would not want to be fixed and mended in case they became a burden(should be cards for this)that NONE of use disabled folk have ever worked or contributed to society,I have run my own business,es over the years and employed many people,plus trained them at my own expense,plus I have started and run a charity,and a community group,all voluntary but taking many hours,and helping those in society from all walks of life...They are incredibly foolish if they think themselves and their families are immune to disease and injury,and heaven help they have a disabled child,we are not uncompassionate robots yet,well some of you are selfish heartless souls,so may as well be a tinman"

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  28. For those who work and pay tax:

    The government do not use all of tax-payers money to keep afloat the benefits system: Gov Budget not available for public to see where their money goes and why it creates debate and misunderstanding in the British population. However, a percentage of tax-payers money does contribute towards benefits, yet only really applies to those on higher-end incomes of £30'000 plus.

    Those on lower incomes of less than £30'000 will pay a very tiny fraction of 5% of their annual income towards the state benefits. Majority of people's taxes are spent by the government on defence, road-maintenance, global charities in a crisis as well as paying politicians their personal budgets.


    Tsunami relief, famine and wars are top priority on the budget list, yet the government will not publish evidence of this.

    It is disgraceful as well as uncivilised for those who work to be so spiteful to those who cannot for various reasons. The ferocious cuts that are happening to everyone is vile enough and workers need to opt for a radical party if they want justice and change in the next election.

    Other useful facts:

    What percentage of disabled people in the UK have worked and contributed before their illness began?

    There is an estimated 45% - all of which have already paid their national insurance contributions before getting ill.

    A good 40% are those who have mental health conditions all throughout their adult lives, yet some of these have worked and made some contributions. However, illuminates the fact that because many employers are biased, those who suffer with a condition are never likely to own a house of their own, can drive a car, have any career prospects alienated from society - their only means of financial support is compulsory benefits.

    A smaller fraction of benefit claimants at 15% are those who are not ill, yet somehow have successfully managed to secure the DLA. I have met hundreds of these that account for this percentage and because they know a lot about how the system works. These are the ones that eventually will lose their benefits because of how (lack) of supporting evidence for their medical and/or mental health cannot fool the system.

    It is the lower percentage that will be answerable as they cannot prove their conditions due to lack of adequate and genuine supporting evidence. Yet, it is the unfair impact it has on the rest of those who are entitled to all that they can and should get.

    Why the DLA premium has been removed is outrageous as well as inexcusable. It only ever adds to the inequality and suffering of a somewhat 'retarded' conservative nation.

    As for the working poor who complain about people who get this essential life-line, they are merely bitter and very frustrated at the poorer quality of their lives by direct comparison to those on the top-end of the enviable richer ladder. The gap between rich and poor in the UK is vast - it is evident in Surrey at least.

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