Archive for November, 2012

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My husband and I were watching BBC Parliament when they were discussing people with learning disabilities that live in care homes and the abuse that they were receiving at the hands of the ‘carers’ but that the care homes were monitored, obviously not closely enough (or they knew and turned a blind eye, because people with learning disabilities are unable to make a complaint themselves and even if they do they are not listened to.) Or BBC’s Panorama wouldn’t have had to go undercover at Winterbourne House to reveal the truth.

Then in the next sentence the MP’s said that they wanted these people to go out and work.

These people are obviously not able to live fully independently, then how could they possibly work, and when they are being abused in the ‘care’ homes, what is there to stop them from being abused at work, disabled people are scared…

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Not surprisingly the UK press haven’t made as big a deal of this fire as they did over the factory fire in Pakistan this week.

I’ve seen no TV coverage on this most tragic of accidents that killed many disabled people.

Just as our government are forcing many disabled people into work!

26 November 2012 Last updated at 20:37
Play
Firefighters wore breathing apparatus as they tried to rescue people

Fourteen people have been killed and eight injured in a major fire at a workshop for disabled people in south-western Germany. The blaze occurred at the centre run by the Caritas charity in the Black Forest town of Titisee-Neustadt, some 40km (25 miles) east of Freiburg. About 50 people were believed to be in the building when the fire started. The cause is unclear, but local media reports that there may have been an explosion in a store room. The centre is reportedly used for woodwork and metalwork, but it is not known whether there were any flammable materials on site. ‘Devastating’

The blaze occurred at about 14:00 local time (13:00 GMT), and flames were first spotted on the roof of the modern three-storey building. Alexander Widmaier, of the local fire department, said his firefighters were on the scene within six minutes but a “massive” amount of smoke had filled the building “extremely quickly”. More than 100 firefighters backed by helicopters tackled the blaze – some, wearing breathing apparatus, braved the thick smoke to rescue a number of people trapped inside. But police confirmed that not every one made it out. “We can tell you that we have 14 dead. The process of identification is ongoing,” local police spokesman Karl-Heinz Schmid told N24 television. He said it would “take days” for the investigation to get to the cause of the fire. The number of wounded has risen from seven to eight, but none are thought to be suffering from life-threatening injuries.

Map

The centre is run by Caritas, a relief organisation affiliated with the Catholic Church, and offers a range of workshops to people with both mental and physical disabilities. “We know the colleagues at the scene will do everything to find out the cause for this terrible event,” Caritas president Peter Neher was quoted by AFP news agency as saying. Police have spoken of the bewilderment of many of the survivors by what had happened. The town’s mayor Armin Hinterseh said the buildings were quite new. “It is devastating. We now have to find out how it happened,” he told the local daily Badische Zeitung. German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman said on Twitter that she was “shocked” by the loss of so many lives.

Please help DPAC and Mr Samuel Miller, fight for our justice, by reading and replying to his plea on the following link;http://www.dpac.uk.net/2012/11/death…d-for-justice/

“I want to appeal for anyone who has lost a loved one because of the DWP/Atos work capability assessment system to get in touch with Mr Miller. He needs to know the verdict that was reached at the inquests into their deaths.
His email address is disabilityinliterature@gmail.com

Many Thanx
FM

More than a thousand sickness benefit claimants died last year after being told to get a job, we can reveal. We’ve highlighted worries about the controversial medical tests for people claiming Employment Support Allowance which are being used to slash the country’s welfare bill. The Government has boasted that more than half of new claimants are found “fit to work” – failing to mention that over 300,000 have appealed the decision and almost 40% have won.
We’ve used the Freedom of Information Act to discover that, between January and August last year, 1,100 claimants died after they were put in the “work-related activity group”. This group – which accounted for 21% of all claimants at the last count – get a lower rate of benefit for one year and are expected to go out and find work.
This compares to 5,300 deaths of people who were put in the “support group” -which accounts for 22% of claimants – for the most unwell, who get the full, no-strings benefit of up to £99.85 a week. We don’t know how many people died after being found “fit to work”, the third group, as that information was “not available”.
We have also found that 1,600 people died before their assessment had been completed.
But there are plenty of tragic cases – such as that of David Groves who died from a heart attack the night before taking his work capability assessment. The 56year-old from Staveley, Derbyshire, worked for 40 years as a miner and telecoms engineer but stopped on doctors’ orders after an earlier heart attack and a string of strokes. His widow Sandra said: “When Dave was called in for a medical, he felt like he was back to square one. “He wasin a terrible state by the day he died. It was the stress that killed him, I’m sure.” Stephen Hill, 53, of Duckmanton, Derbyshire, died of a heart attack in December, one month being told he was “fit to work”, even though he was waiting for major heart surgery.
Citizens Advice told us it has found “a number of cases” of people dying soon after being found fit for work. “There seems to be a clear link between the cause of death and the condition they were suffering from that led to the claim,” said Katie Lane, head of welfare policy.
WCA Outcome at most recent assessment and number of claimants with a recorded date of death
Assessment not complete 1,600
Work Related Activity Group 1,100
Support Group 5,300 Total 8,000
All figures have been rounded to the nearest 100. Data on the number of ESA claimants that have died following a fit for work decision is not available, as the Department does not hold information on a death if the person has already left benefit. The Department does not hold information on the number of claimants who died whilst an appeal was in progress.
We then asked for:
Clarification on whether these figures are only new ESA claims or whether they include the transfer from Incapacity Benefit?
We were told: These figures only cover new ESA claims – claims from IB recipients are not included.However, there are more figures on the outcome of Work Capability Assessments on the DWP website.

My opinion is:….Therefore, the work capability test is akin to a ‘cull”, of the weak and the most vulnerable members of our society. If there are many more deaths in the years to come it will be more like genocide of disabled and unhealthy people. Isn’t that what Hitler did to the Jews?

You can read the full article here at http://blogs.mirror.co.uk/investigat…ailing-in.html

The WCA is psychological abuse designed to break down the already vulnerable disabled and unwell people of the UK.

Aren’t ATOS the governments mercenaries of psychological warfare?

It might be old news, but this holocaust is still happening !!! But the government are doing it legally…apparently!

If we disabled people have to keep on proving that we are still worthy of support from the government, then shouldn’t MP’s have to retake their exams to prove that they are also still worthy of our support!!!If they fail then they should be sanctioned and/or kicked out of government.

Maybe we should start an e-petition to put this idea through parliament???

Maybe if ATOS had to assess their capability to run the country?

I have come across the following debate ( Public Accounts Committee taking evidence on ATOS Medical Services) which was held on Monday 19/11/12 . Please see the following links:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/democracylive/…00/9770606.stm

Or for a transcript; here:

http://www.publications.parliament.u…-i/uc74401.htm

Very interesting viewing/reading!

P.S. Who the heck does Robert Devereaux think he is??? The way that he speaks to Margaret Hodge ‘chair’ is astonishing, I think he has a narcissistic God complex!!!

After having just finished watching the Public Accounts Committee, if the MP’s couldn’t get a straight and honest answer out of Mr Devereux what chance has any disabled person got of taking on this system and their Doctor Bill Gunnyeon.

The government are at fault in the first place by giving the contract to ATOS, aren’t they?

The chair was saying that the appeals were overturned using the same medical facts, as had been used when they were refused benefits regarding their disability.

Robert Devereux ” In about a third of all cases, the judges are saying, from their drop-down menu, that they reached a different conclusion on substantially the same facts. So in one third of all the appeals on which they are reaching a different view, they are saying, “We have reached a different view on the same facts.”

In around 60% of the cases, they are saying that they reached a different view based on oral evidence presented at the hearing. You will recall that these hearings are, regrettably at the moment, a long time after the event, and whether the condition of the person at the appeal is the same as it was at the test is something we do not know. But then, last of all-this comes back to the question you asked me-when the medical assessment relied on by the decision maker from Atos contained a significant error-

Q74 Chair: And that was in what proportion?

Robert Devereux: Less than 1%. I am thinking: here is a piece of evidence-all right, it is only one piece of evidence-and, as I said, this is the primary reason they are adducing-

Q75 Fiona Mactaggart: But you said that 30% came to a different conclusion on the same evidence, which means not necessarily that the evidence they have received is wrong, but that the judgment of the Atos assessor has been wrong.

Robert Devereux: Except that the judgments are made by my staff, on the basis of the Atos assessment. Decisions in this Department are made by decision makers.

Q76 Chair: So your staff are incompetent, are they, in a third of cases? You are taking the blame rather than Atos. Is that it?

Robert Devereux: I am not saying that, but we have to be really clear about this, because this was precisely the reason I asked about who was going to appear. The thing that we are looking at is a process based on law and decision makers in my Department, with the contracted-out tests designed by my doctor. I am really keen to be very precise about what evidence there is about what Atos is doing, what the Department is doing, and what the failings in the process are.”

There is so much more that was discussed at the above posted meeting, you really need to see for yourself!

Our opinion:

That 30% should never have lost their benefits in the first place, and some don’t even fight decisions due to their cognitive impairments and other disabilities or learning difficulties.

All of those who created the WCA should take the blame for the lives that they have wrecked.

It is also mentioned that medical evidence should be handed over at the very start of the process, but I have heard many, many accounts of people taking their medical evidence to their ATOS assessment, and the health care professional (as they call them) put the medical evidence to one side and do not even look at it. These ‘health care professionals’ are undermining and overruling the medical opinions of all of our Consultants, Oncologists, Specialists, Neuro-psychiatrists, G.P.’s and psychiatrists.

Please feel free to copy and paste this or any of my posts to spread the word to other support sites.. 

The ConDem‘s have attacked just about everyone since the banks screwed everyone, and everyone is so busy fighting their own corners that no-one is sticking together and people are becoming more & more divided. This is exactly what the government want as it makes it so easy for them to control the populace. This country is becoming more & more of a dictatorship than has ever been known in British history. Is this what the government have really learnt from going into Iraq and Afghanistan? And we went in dictating to them that they were wrong?

I see other countries sticking together, like Greece, Spain and Portugal. Even having a strike and a protest march on the same day.

What is the point in unions if no-one goes on strike anymore, if striking is or becomes illegal and then job losses are imminent due to strike action then that’s another dictatorship control of the masses.

What happened to the Labour party, aren’t they paid for at least partly if not fully by the Unions. Where’s their support for people’s rights?

By keeping inflation high and pay rises low there are many thousands more just like you that also cannot afford to strike, we are all just accepting the austerity measures and will continue to do so until it all collapses in on itself. (Stiff upper lip, and all that!) The English are far too tolerant….

I have ‘hopefully’ attached a map that I got from  BBC news website, which shows the EU trade union membership (% of working population).
Image

It looks to me, that those countries, (Belgium, Norway, Sweden and Finland) that have a higher % of union members don’t have the problems that the rest of the EU are going through…..Just an observation….leading to an idea……get the union to recruit more members and use the austerity measures to bring in the young who don’t know what union membership is!

Our grandparents fought tooth and nail to give their future generations a decent life, and now all their hard work is being undermined every single day in parliament.

My husband and I were watching BBC Parliament when they were discussing people with learning disabilities that live in care homes and the abuse that they were receiving at the hands of the ‘carers’ but that the care homes were monitored, obviously not closely enough (or they knew and turned a blind eye, because people with learning disabilities are unable to make a complaint themselves and even if they do they are not listened to.) Or BBC’s Panorama wouldn’t have had to go undercover at Winterbourne House to reveal the truth.

Then in the next sentence the MP’s said that they wanted these people to go out and work.

These people are obviously not able to live fully independently, then how could they possibly work, and when they are being abused in the ‘care’ homes, what is there to stop them from being abused at work, disabled people are scared to try to make a complaint because of the backlash of consequences afterwards.

Our government are not concerned with people’s health problems, vulnerabilities and disabilities all they are interested in is getting them out to work.

I thought that the reason to work isn’t only to contribute to society through taxation and National Insurance contributions, but to improve one’s standard of living as one gets older, by working your way up the company’s ladder.

So they’re saying that it is perfectly okay for a disabled vulnerable person to get a minimum paid job, which is all someone with a learning disability could expect (lets be realistic here), and at the same time someone with a physical disability could also get a job doing the same thing for the same wage at the same company. Yet the physically disabled person with a normal IQ could and probably would eventually work their way up to say ‘supervisor or something’ and get a higher wage but the person with a learning disability can only look on, feeling useless and worthless while their colleagues all work their way up leaving the learning disabled person stuck in the exact same job for life.

My vulnerable husband and others with learning disabilities were forced to endure things like government schemes that put people with learning disabilities on a factory production line doing repetitive work when he was younger for very little money, it was basically slave labour and he had no choice but to do it, he felt raped of his dignity. He attended a school for disabled children but was unable to access the curriculum due to his cognitive impairments, he is not able to read at all and is colour blind and cannot remember names, phone numbers or addresses, is unable to use a phone, washing machine, DVD recorder, Sky TV menus or a microwave. He needs help constantly and cannot remember a list of commands of what is required of him in a work situation.

People like myself who have a physical disability and a normal IQ want society to treat us no differently to able bodied people, however, people with learning disabilities ‘problems’ can’t deal with normal social situations ie; the work place.

Therefore, people with learning disabilities should not be tarred with the same brush as people with a physical disability and a normal IQ.

There is, rather unfortunately, a trait within people with learning disabilities, in that they are what you might call ‘pleasers’. They like to please others, and say yes to all sorts of things and some social workers and care/support workers take advantage of them. If a learning disabled person does try to stick up for themselves and gets frustrated by the lack of empathy from social workers etc and then bang a table or raise their voice just to try to be heard because they know that no-ones really listening to them and taking their complaint seriously, then social services just say calm down and ask if they want to see a psychiatrist and class them as mentally ill, when they are mentally disabled and vulnerable. They are blackmailed to calm down because they are scared of the consequences. Learning disabled people’s voices are very rarely heard and these vulnerable people get shunted from pillar to post like sheep, often with very little say in anything about their life.

Someone who ‘flips burgers’ who got no exam results can still go to night school or college to get exams, they can still work their way up or leave and get a better job, they can still better themselves.

My husband can’t read the computer screens that tell the cooks how many burgers to ‘flip’ and can’t remember a list of commands ie; an order of food.

When there are no more disability benefits which are supposed to give a disabled person a better standard of life to that which they could achieve for themselves then don’t bother going on protests to keep your motability car because you are normal and don’t need to be propped up by this wonderful charity. People fought for many years to get support and now no one cares about it.

People don’t understand learning disabilities, if your brain don’t work properly then it doesn’t work…end of!!! You can’t push yourself to do better, you try, but end up feeling very frustrated and useless because your brain can’t do it….you end up feeling abused by people trying to push you to do better, but if this is the new model of society then there is a very bleak future in store for those with a learning disability ‘PROBLEMS’, my husband is a very loving, caring man and I wouldn’t be without him.

My husband is unable to read or write at all and could not put his views across on here without me to write it for him!

With regards to whether or not we have a choice to work, when already faced with adversity due to impairments, mostly we do currently have that choice, to a point. Yet if the government get their own way with all the new proposed changes to disability benefits and work ethics then we will not have any chance of having a choice. All disabled people will have to work.

On a Sky News report Friday 31 August 2012:
{{{“Disabled and anti-cuts campaigners have been rallying all over the country for the last week because they claim the tests for people on disability benefit by the IT firm and Paralympics sponsor Atos are “damaging and distressing”.”

Molly Solomons, a spokeswoman for UK Uncut, said around 150 people had taken part in the protest at Atos’s headquarters, with a further 30 moving on to the DWP building.

She said: “We are doing this to highlight that Atos, a sponsor for the Paralympic Games, is receiving £100m from the Government in the hope they will assess people with disabilities and get them off benefits.

“This is due to a political and ideological choice which harms disabled and sick people, not an economic necessity.”

On Tuesday activists cut off traffic with a road blockade in Cardiff and on Wednesday they delivered coffins to Atos.”}}}

These coffins were to represent the people who had either committed suicide or had died from heart attack or other stress related deaths which have been directly attributed to the new work capability tests being a contributing factor.

My husband just said after I read him the above news report “What are they going to say next?; ‘lessons have been learnt.’ But at what cost, how many more disabled people will die? and all they will say is ‘lessons have been learnt!’ or will they let it continue? They will get away with it because they are the government, once they make something into legislation then it is law and we are screwed”

We look forward to hearing your views on this topic…