Monthly Archives: May 2014

Let’s have a party for #NHS66 – and make it a BIG one

Great ideas. Join the fun and celebrate the NHS to protect it for the future!
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Labour has lost its ideals – now the Party of the People needs to find them again

Just a chance things can change – if the politicians listen!

Vox Political

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Isn’t it desperately disappointing that, after the British people showed Ed Miliband in no uncertain terms that Labour is still going in the wrong direction, his first response was an appeal for us all to rally in support of his values, whatever they are.

No, Ed, no. It’s time the Labour Party gave up trying to force us to accept something we don’t want. It’s time you gave up being Tory Lite. It’s time – for crying out loud, this isn’t rocket science! – it’s time you gave us all a chance to believe you share our values!

Can you do that – you and your pseudo-socialist friends Ed Balls, and Yvette Cooper, and Tristram Hunt (and the rest)? If not, you need to make way for people who can – before it is too late.

The people’s response to Labour’s offer was written very clearly across ballot papers…

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Another wheeze to cut benefits

So what do you live on and pay your bills with for 3 weeks?

Social Policy

The Social Security Advisory Committee is consulting  on the government’s latest wheeze to cut working-age benefits.  This time it’s a proposal to extend the number of waiting days that a benefit is payable, from three days to seven.  This will ‘save’ (that is, cut benefit by)  £40-50 per claim.  Benefits are already paid fortnightly in arrears, so in practice this will mean that people will typically have to wait three weeks for a payment.  (The references to ‘days’ and ‘weeks’ are all anomalous, because the government is supposed to be moving to monthly benefits.)     Those who are desperate will have to apply for a ‘short term benefit advance’.

The policy is due to start in October.  The equalities  assessment notes that 82% of those affected by the change to Employment and Support Allowance have protected status in terms of the Disability Discrimination Act.   Much good may it do them.

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DWP’s decision to abolish the Independent Living Fund overturned thanks to Labour’s Equality Act is ignored.

The budget of the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has being reduced by over 60%, its staffing cut by 72%, and its powers restricted. As from April 2013 claimants in discrimination cases in tribunals will have to pay an issue fee of £250 and a hearing fee of £950
Says it all! Very useful post.

Politics and Insights

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In a very significant decision on 6 November 2013, which highlights the effects of the Equality Act 2010 on public authorities and their decision-making, the Court of Appeal has 
found that the Department of Work and Pensions’ (DWP) decision to close the Independent Living Fund was not lawful, overturning the High Court’s decision of April 2013. The Government had indicated that it would not be appealing this judgement and the Independent Living Fund (ILF) will remain intact for now. 
People with disabilities may receive funding under the IILF: a non-departmental Government body which provides money to help disabled people live independent lives in the community. The ILF operates an independent discretionary trust funded by the DWP and managed by a board of trustees. Its aim is to combat social exclusion on the grounds of disability and the money is generally used to enable disabled people to live in their own homes and to…

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DWP’s decision to abolish the Independent Living Fund overturned

Good news!! Excellent for all those who are affected by this threat to independent living.
Fantastic!!!!
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Benefit tales

The Court of Appeal, in Bracking and others v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions found that the Department of Work and Pensions’ (“DWP”) decision to close the Independent Living Fund was not lawful, overturning the High Court’s decision of April 2013.

This successful judicial review is a useful and interesting demonstration of how strictly the courts will consider whether or not a public body has complied with its Public Sector Equality Duties (“PSED”) imposed by the Equality Act 2010 (“EA 2010”).  There must be hard evidence that the decision maker has fully complied with the requirements contained in the legislation, specifically the duties under Section 149 in relation to advancing equality of opportunity for those who share a relevant protected characteristic.

Read the details of this court decision here:  http://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=fb37d01b-56cf-4a04-8d8c-f9098b2666dd

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An Exercise in Social Control – The REAL Agenda behind Benefit Fraud Campaigns 3 –

Please read and support by signing the petition. Thanks, Jayne.
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jaynelinney

This year to date, I’ve  written two articles questioning the REAL agenda behind the Benefit Fraud Campaigns, the first in January considered how Politicians use psychological coercion to control us, whilst the second in April, introduced the newly formed single fraud investigation service, (SFIS), “a cross Government strategy to reduce fraud and error” apparently costing £140 millionIn April I questioned whether the SFIS would prove to be value for money, particularly as according to DWP figures Fraud and Error has cost the Nation approximately £1 Billion for the past Eight Years?

Well it seems my concerns were justifiable, the latest figures in the DWP official Report shows a significant rise in Fraud, although a minor decrease in Error:

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This situation is despite the DWP already having spent at least  £296,726, just on campaigns to reduce Fraud & Error; when the REAL costs to the DWP, the SFIS, Justice Department & the CPS are…

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JobCentre Staff Say They Are ‘Depressed’ Because Of Sanctioning

Good to hear there is a start on objecting to sanctions!

Same Difference

Labour exchange employees say they are ‘depressed’ by making people destitute on the orders of Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith

FRONTLINE Jobcentre staff renewed their campaign yesterday to scrap Tory benefit sanctions they are forced to hand down to Britain’s worst off.

Civil servants protested at PCS conference about the impact of the government’s welfare policies they witness everyday at work.

Unemployment benefit of just £71 per week can be stopped for two weeks under sanctions introduced by Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith.

Jobcentre worker Martin Humphrey told delegates about the “depressing” task of telling people their benefits have been stopped.

He said: “We have to say to people that they have to live on nothing for two weeks.

“To make people destitute for two weeks is despicable.”

Jobcentre staff exposed once again how they are given sanction targets to hit — a claim Mr Duncan…

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