At the end of last week @hossylass and I were both asked to write a short piece about Atos to go into this satirical paper about the Olympic/Paralympic sponsors. Our submissions were then not included. So I'm posting them on WtB instead. Mine can be found here. Hossy in fact wrote 2 pieces as she was unsure what they wanted, these are them:
You have been carefully selected by your Government database to be one of the first to benefit from our latest opportunity to turn your life around.
Remember how we managed, in one simple assessment, to free you from the burden that is state dependency, and to simultaneously reduce your sickness or disability from “severe” to “marginal” or in some cases cure you altogether?
Well now there is more good news. We have been carefully chosen to take you on a new journey of discovery, to help you to be even less dependent on the state.
This journey will consist of an interview with someone who has an understanding of disability (having completed our extensive 3 hour course), and will be a wonderful opportunity for you to experience different cultural opinions to disability, to learn how to decipher strong accents from many nations, and to allow you to describe your disability in a much reduced manner.
No more shall you be compelled to explain at depth your condition and its affects on your everyday life – we have removed that burden too, and all that will be asked of you is Yes or No answers.
I am confident that you will embrace this opportunity – it will almost certainly be life changing!
Atos sponsors Olympics and Paralympics
Atos are proud to sponsor the 2012 London Olypmic Games, and the UK Government are thrilled that Atos are committing with such generosity.
A spokesperson for the DWP said: “In all our dealings with Atos we have found them very receptive to opportunities, sponsoring the Olympics is another way that the Government can cement our relationship. It is also a clear sign that Atos care about not just healthy people, but also those who need to become healthy. Sport is clearly the way forward to good health, as is work.
It is this commitment to ensuring that people are termed healthy that has convinced us that Atos Healthcare are genuinely the best people not just to sponsor the Olympics and Paralympics, but also to manage assessments that increase the number of people who are fit for work, whilst decreasing their personal costs, something I am sure all sick and disabled people want.”
Meanwhile a spokesperson for Atos said: “We are very much looking forward to watching the Olympians, and are grateful for the opportunity to do so. When the Paralympics start, we will be watching equally as closely, if not more so. It is a marvellous opportunity for us to analyse and assess performance, it should be quite enlightening and educational, and may give us increased opportunity to help people to become less dependent on the state. We may be recording some of the competitors for training and fact verification, in order to reinforce our views.”
When questioned on their knowledge of the Paralympic grading system of disability, and disability in general, Atos admitted to being “not quite up to speed” but are “willing to learn”. This is indeed positive news, given that Atos are currently being accused of not having complete understanding of disability, and the vast amounts of proof available that these accusations are founded in fact.