Tuesday, 29 March 2016

The Road to Acceptance

In my early days of campaigning, (before I called it that),I went to 'Gateway Club' on a Thursday night, and met a volunteer named Karen.

One evening we sat on the bench outside the hall, and I told her what I was going to try and do.
She sat in silence,nodding occasionally as little me told her how I wanted to make things better and help people understand disability.

When I'd finished, she gave me a hug and said, 'I hope you can. You'll have your work cut out. You might find it harder to be listened to because you have a lifelong disability.'
I didn't understand what she meant, but I didn't really want to question her further because she seemed sad.
Karen only came for a few more weeks, and then I never saw her again.

Now, nearly twenty seven years later, I know she was right. Nobody listens to 'lifers', because in their eyes we haven't lost anything and we are 'used to' our lives.

People newer to disability or illness feel like they have lost everything, so they shout louder and they often belittle and ignore the experience of lifers because we haven't had it - (strength, health, ability, life),- so what do we know about what it feels like to lose?

That's where they're wrong. We know. We spend a lifetime grieving for what we've never had and never will have. We watch people newer to disability or illness, with their children, or talking about jobs or experiences we can never have. Do you really think that we don't know what it's like to feel the pain of loss? Are our experiences of life and how we're (still) coming to terms with it, any less valid than yours?

We're all on the same road of acceptance! Don't make the mistake of thinking that we're used to it, and therefore we don't hurt. I hurt everyday because I can never have the life I would have wanted.

Cerebral Palsy is lifelong for me. It won't get better. As I age I will deteriorate further, and I constantly (like those new to this), have to find ways to do things, ways to cope and ways to accept my life. You don't just wake up and say 'everything is easy now', 'I'm fine with it'. It doesn't work that way.

Everyone is worth listening to. It doesn't matter if this happened to you last week or at thirty years ago! We've all got to accept something we didn't choose. We should be helping each other


Image: 'Pinterest'


Saturday, 19 March 2016

Iain Duncan Smith Resigns - My Response

I'm actually very angry now - because by resigning, Iain Duncan Smith gets away with EVERYTHING!

The sheer HELL he's put us through, - lies, psychological torture!

By resigning there will be little come-back, short of criminal investigations -(which let's be honest, aren't going to happen).

The minute he resigned I knew he was going to pass the buck and lie through his teeth about his reasons.

Don't for one single second believe that he has a conscience.  

Six years of lies, spin, vilification through 'scrounger rhetoric' and doctored figures. Six years of misery, anxiety, thousands and thousands of deaths, and his blatant disregard for the rule of law, - and he's pretending he cares, now?!

He makes me sick!

I've suffered nightmares due to his policies - (fear of Work Compatibility Assessment). I've been terrified in my own home! I still am, and I will be until these policies which have punished and terrified disabled and ill people for six years are stopped!

I'm luckier than a lot of people, - I have support -but it doesn't stop me being terrified.

Cerebral Palsy doesn't improve. In fact I've deteriorated and will continue to do so, as a result of wear and tear on my body - but I still have to face the Work Compatibility Assessment, and it terrifies me.

Being labelled a 'scrounger' by the government and the complicit mainstream media, has added to my lifelong battle with depression, destroyed what self esteem I had built up, and left me feeling anxious.

He doesn't care about any of that. He doesn't care that he has inflicted six years of cuts. Thousands of disabled and ill people are DEAD as a result. When has he shown compassion about that? When did he put things in place to change the devastating policies that are destroying so many lives?!

He didn't.

Friends say that he cares about 'social justice' and 'protecting the poor' .

I spat out my tea when I heard that this morning!

Is forcing people out of their homes because of Bedroom Tax 'social justice'?!

Is stripping dying people of vital social security, social justice?!

Is the fact that people have been stripped of their only income and have to rely on food banks, social justice?

Is labelling disabled and ill people 'scroungers' and stripping them of vital support, independence and dignity 'social justice'?!

I think not - and it certainly isn't 'protecting the poorest' either is it?!

He hasn't done this because the latest cuts are 'a step too far'! He is done this for himself, and his own agenda.

It's an effective way to destabilise the government prior to the EU referendum, and it's an effective way to stab George Osborne in the back.

He thought up the policies which have destroyed the lives of disabled and ill people. HE did! Blaming the treasury is a way of passing the buck - and with the assistance of much of the mainstream media, he might well get away with it.

As for celebrating the end of his 'reign of terror' - many people are. There is precious little to celebrate for disabled and ill people since 2010, so who would begrudge us this?

As for me, I'll be celebrating when I know I don't have to face the WCA, when the devastating policies are stopped, and when I can feel safe and a wanted part of society again.

I'll be celebrating the day this government goes!

(Image: Google).

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Unemployment Confidence Crisis.

 The government has claimed that UK unemployment has fallen by 28,000, and technically they’re right – but it is important to look deeper before you take these numbers as being completely accurate.
We need to examine how this might have been achieved. It is entirely possible that the figures may be designed to mislead.

There are several ways in which the UK unemployment statistics could be made lower than they actually are.
Firstly, we already know that many thousands of people are being wrongly sanctioned and stripped of vital social security, by the Department for work and Pensions. This includes disabled and ill people who have already suffered enough under this government.
When stripped of vital support, they are often left to fend for themselves, and can also be removed from the Unemployment statistics. Out of sight, out of mind...

To add to this, last week MP’s voted to force through further cuts to Employment Support Allowance, which would strip some of the most ill and disabled people of a further thirty pounds a week, thus increasing the hardship, anxiety and stress we are already under as a result of government Welfare ‘Reform’ policies, - but back to the latest fall in unemployment.

As of this week (via stats released by the Institute of Employment Rights on 9th March, 2016), we know that the number of people working under zero-hours contracts has now risen above 800,000.
People working under this contract have no idea when (or indeed IF) they will get a regular income – but they are counted as employed, and thus can be removed from the unemployment statistics.
Next, ‘Underemployment’: Underemployment is defined as:
an employment situation that is insufficient in some important way for the worker, relative to a standard’.
Whilst it is claimed that the UK has one of the lowest underemployment statistics in Europe, the link below (from the Centre for Policy Studies) states that this is not the case.

Many people are taking multiple low paid or part time jobs (including ones that they are often overqualified for) because it is preferable to unemployment – and actually this might be what government wants people to do. They can keep wages low, while removing ‘underemployed’ people from the Unemployment figures.
It is possible too, that the stigma and divisive (not to mention damaging) ‘scrounger rhetoric’ that exists around those who claim social security makes people feel pressured into taking these jobs. Not to mention the increasing and frightening fear of sanctions –including for those who are ill or disabled, and really not able to work!

Also, we need to consider ‘Workfare’.
The ‘Workfare’ programme is defined as:
Government policies whereby individuals must undertake work in return for their benefit payments or risk losing them’.
‘Workfare’ is mandatory and even though it is stated the a person gets placed on it after six months unemployment, during recent times (under Universal Credit rules) it has been found that people are placed on it after as little as three months. The required hours often leave little time for job searching
Also, we know that disabled and ill people have been put on Workfare, even though they are not fit to do it. Either that or face sanctions. Once a person is on workfare (or similar scheme) they are also removed from Unemployment statistics.
To sum up, the employment, (or rather unemployment) situation in the UK is far more complicated than it appears at face value.
Political spin and various agendas are not always what they seem, and I feel it is important to keep an open mind...     

Link to Equitable Full Employment PDF:

Link to ‘Boycott Workfare’ website (for further information):


Sunday, 13 March 2016

They Cut, We Bleed. (2016 Edit)

Disabled people,
dying and desperate
We are scared,
At government hands!

For our lives, 
We shout, 
Please understand
Why we must get them out! 

Independence taken,
We're shaken,
By an envelope
On the mat

'It's the cost', they say,
Benefits lost,
Because you're just,
Not worth that!

I would give anything
To be free from disability,
'Scrounger rhetoric'
Kills a piece of me.

Confidence gone,
And fear in place
Each one of us, has a name
And a face.

We are begging
And pleading,
Because when they cut,
We are bleeding! 



Image: Pinterest

Monday, 7 March 2016

Britain Today

'Workfare is Slavery'
That's left-wing bleating
Malicious lies
That you WON'T be repeating!

Even though we make work for sh*t,
We'll alter the paperwork 
So you can't prove it!

Disabled people wrongly assessed
We'll slander and bash you
Til you can't take the stress;
If you kill yourselves in desperation,
We'll hide your suicides from the nation!

While you choose between heating and eating
We'll help the bankers dig their heels in.
Sick people sorry, you lose DLA
If you dare leave home for a day.
Papers and TV buy figures fiddled,
They're all scroungers, and you're all being diddled!'
Disability hate crime is on the rise,
We'll look helpful and act surprised.

Look, those ministers say they speak for you,
But don’t turn your back,
They’ll stab you too!
Don't blame us please,
There's no money,
Send millionaire ministers somewhere sunny!

It's not our fault you know
Britain today
We'll just deny everything
It's the only way...

(Image: Google)


Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Hold My Hand

I've already tried walking away,
I'm too tired 
I don't care today.

I've already tried to say no,
Go away,
Just leave me alone.

I've already tried to lose the guilt
Fake a smile
Make up the for the tears spilt.

I've already tried to get some sleep
Curled up in a ball,
Anxieties creep.

I've already tried to forget sorrow
For better days
I'll beg, steal, borrow,

I've already tried being strong
But it's killing me inside
And the days are too long.

I've already tried all that you say
You expect so much
That I've pushed you away.

Why don't you try to understand?
Words aren't needed now
Just hold my hand.

Image: Google