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ESA sanctions ranked by disability: Notice that mental illness attracts by far the largest number of sanctions. Aren’t these the people who are most likely to commit suicide in such circumstances?

There are huge problems with any attempt by Conservatives to tackle the lack of services to help people with mental health issues. Most of those problems are due to funding cuts – by Conservatives.

There are huge objections to Mrs May’s plans. Feel free to mention them in the comment column below, because I want to focus on just one, highlighted in this tweet by David Jones:

“No mention of two big drivers of in our society: and

Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Debbie Abrahams picked up on the comment and responded:

“The point I made in &P PQs this afternoon. Fell on stoney ground I’m afraid.”

One of the pillars of This Site is the effect of the Work Capability Assessment administered by Atos and Capita on the mental health of sickness benefit claimants, possibly leading to their deaths.

So I was interested to see what Ms Abrahams said today, to Penny Mordaunt, who is apparently minister for disabled people, health and work (so does that mean she is there to make disabled people think they are healthy enough to work? Oh dear…). Here‘s what she said:

“People with mental health conditions are more likely to fail the work capability assessment and more likely to be sanctioned.

“At the same time, we know from independent research how damaging work capability assessments and sanctions are for people’s mental health.

“When will the Government take responsibility for the impact of their policies on mental health and ensure that timely, evidence-based support from trained mental health professionals is available for claimants with mental health conditions?

“Will the Secretary of State commit to scrapping the work capability assessment and punitive sanctions, as Labour has?”

Of course she didn’t.

So This Writer can only conclude that the latest announcement on mental health is just another attempt, by the Conservative Government, at ‘gaslighting’.

For those who aren’t in the know, ‘gaslighting’ is a particularly nasty mind game in which a manipulator (the Tory government) convinces a victim (the public) that something is happening, or has happened, when it has not.

Its intent is to sow seeds of doubt in the targets, hoping to make them question their own memory, perception, and sanity.

In other words, I fear the latest policy will make matters worse – not better.

But what do the Tories care?

If another few people with mental health problems die, that means fewer ESA payments every fortnight.

Plans to “transform” attitudes to mental health, with a focus on children and young people, have been announced by Theresa May.

Additional training for teachers, an extra £15m for community care, and improved support in the workplace were among measures announced by the PM.

Mental health experts said more funding was needed to improve services.

Source: Mental health reforms to focus on young people, says PM – BBC News

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