Monday, 8 December 2014

How Do We Fight?

I feel so angry and hurt, that I've been crying, again.

I hope that one day, disabled and ill will get justice, for everything we have been put through, and for all the people that have died, at as a result of what this government have done to us.

Today is not a good day, for disabled and ill people, (with the 'Independent Living Fund' closure being ruled lawful, and the ruling about priority access to buses, going against us),  but neither is any other day, under this government. It just feels like a couple more kicks, while we're down.

Even the law doesn't protect us, because when the government doesn't like any victory we get, they change the law retroactively, (which means everything that went before, no longer stands).

It's one thing after another, after another, and then alongside that, the media, does the government's work for them, and tells us that we are any variant of 'scrounging scum', relentlessly!

It's only a matter of time, before it all starts to rip apart your self esteem. In my case, I've spent my life trying to build it up, because I don't have much. What I do have, is fragile.

It's not just the impact of what's happening to us now, that hurts and frightens me. It's the thought, that when this government is gone, (which it will be, one day), it's the long term campaigners, that will be left to pick up the pieces.

We'll have to work even harder, to bring back the cause, even to where it was, before the damage was done, - in more ways than one.

How do you do that? Where do you start?

This government has told the public that we're all 'fakers' and 'scroungers.' They have vilified us, and made us second class citizens, if that! They have made people view us, with doubt and suspicion, rather than understanding, and compassion.

Everything I, (and so many others) have done, over the years, to help people understand disability, and view disabled people positively (and as equally as we had been), is being eradicated,by a government with malicious, cruel, twisted, and heartless ideology.

They've taken the cause back thirty years - if not more, and if they win again next year, they will keep doing it!
People like me will keep feeling unwanted, keep feeling that they are a burden, and they will keep being victims of disability hate crime. I dread to think how many more of us will die, or commit suicide, if this is allowed to carry on.

Sometimes, I feel so hurt, and angry, that I can barely breathe! It's all I can do, not to sit and scream my head off!

One of the hardest things, is getting people to listen to what the truth, actually is. This government has been so effective in turning people against us, with a drip, drip, drip, of lies, and (ahem), 'massaged' fraud figures!

They don't want people to know the full extent of what welfare reform has done. and they've stopped counting our deaths! What does that tell you?!

I miss the days, when disability rights campaigning was about fighting access issues, changing attitudes,and being positive. I didn't know when I was well off! None of us did.

If you had told the little eight year old girl, I was when I started campaigning, that twenty five years later, things would be worse, rather than better, she wouldn't have believed you, and I wish it wasn't true now, but it is!
Now, disability rights campaigning is about saving lives! It's about playing 'cat and mouse',with politicians that, (largely), don't care, (because we don't fit the twisted ideal). It's about reading policy, and thinking constantly about the best way, to solve the next problem.

It causes tension with your family, and rifts with your friends, because they just don't understand that this is something that IS happening, and that I, (we), have no choice, but to fight! If we don't, no one else will.
The anxiety and fear, (caused by the Work Compatibility Assessment, and benefit sanctions), that disabled and ill people feel, now, is so great, that you think about it,and you feel it, even when you try, with every fibre of your being, not to!
I want this to stop. I would give up, almost everything in the world, for this to stop!

Disabled, ill, and poor people, didn't ask for our lives. None of this is a choice, and yet, we are being punished for it, and being made to feel bad about ourselves, every day single day.
We can't take another five years of this government - at least, I know I can't.


  1. Excellent blog piece. It's tragic that the majority of court rulings in Britain have favored the state rather than the rights of the disabled.

  2. I don't know what the answer is. I do know how difficult it is to get people to understand about conditions, though. Most people don't understand that hearing loss is not about just turning up the volume. It is about hearing different frequencies at different decibel levels - or not at all. Some letters and sounds are unheard or heard very faintly; some may be heard at normal level. Result is that speech often sounds like a jumble of sounds. The brain has to work overtime to try and fill in the gaps. Sadly it often doesn't do a very good job, leading to misunderstanding.

  3. We are lucky, though, that digital hearing aids often help enormously. Mine have transformed my life. However, these wonderful devices are now under threat of being denied to us on NHS. Many people will be unable to afford them privately so will be vulnerable to isolation, depression and accelerated development of dementia. We have a very cruel government.

  4. Helen, Keep fighting the good fight - you are not alone. I have no disability, have a job and I can't take any more of this govt. either. The lack of ethics and compassion distresses and angers me. There is a welling tide against the austerity and its everyone's responsibility to stand up to it. The TUSC, Socialist parties,most trade unions, community groups and Russel Brand! are active in creating an alternative, the capitalist controlled media are ignoring or demonising organisations such as these. A union of disabled would be a very powerful organisation (maybe one exists, I don't know) it could certainly rely on the support of anti-austerity groups. I am optimistic that Solidarity will grow between all walks of oppressed society (the majority) and will demand change. We can't rely on Labour getting into power as they will keep the cuts agenda. Keep campaigning and don't be afraid to ask for support from the afore mentioned kind of organisations. Together we can not only make a difference but real change.