Will you support the day of action against Atos?


Ordinary people around the UK will gather outside centres where Atos administers its work capability assessments on benefit claimants next month – to demand an end to the system that is continuing to cause the deaths of thousands of innocent people across the country.

They will gather at 144 of the locations used by Atos to carry out the discredited assessments, under a contract written by the Department for Work and Pensions, on February 19.

It is known that 10,600 ESA/Incapacity Benefit claimants died within six weeks of their claim ending after Atos assessments between January and November 2011, although the DWP seems unwilling to divulge the percentage of those claims that ended because claimants were found fit for work by ATOS. Currently roughly one in four ‘fit for work’ decisions by ATOS is overturned at tribunal.

In July 2013, ATOS whistleblower Greg Wood lifted the lid on the toxic culture that existed within the organisation – carrying out assessments that were not fit for purpose, with huge pressure on assessors to fail ESA claimants. Dr Wood was shocked by the ineffectiveness of the assessment procedure.

A report from the Centre for Welfare Reform showed that informal targets were being set by ATOS which had assessors under pressure to fail around 65 per cent of claimants (Vox Political has estimated 70 per cent in the past).

A petition set up by campaign group WOW (The campaign against the ‘War on Welfare’), calling for an immediate halt to the Work Capability Assessment and an independent, committee-based inquiry into welfare reform – including the ATOS contract, excess claimant deaths and the disregarding of medical evidence in decision-making, gained more than 100,000 signatures. The WOW campaign is currently supported by 57 MPs and there is a commitment to debate the issue in the House of Commons.

Labour MP Hilary Benn said: “As the Labour opposition we have called ATOS a disgrace and said they should be sacked… The system needs to change.”

Labour Councillor Alison Lowe said simply, “I have no problem supporting this. The Government are evil and they don’t care about people who are poor.”

At the demonstrations on February 19, ordinary people will demand an apology from Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith and Thierry Breton, chairman of Atos – not just the disabled, or opposition politicians, but anybody who believes that the Atos-run, DWP-devised assessment system is leading to the deaths of innocent people.

In particular, demonstrators will demand an apology to the families of benefit claimants who took their own lives following decisions made by ATOS, including: Iain Caress, Brian McArdle, David Coupe, Edward Jacques, Tim Salter, Nick Barker, Helen and Mark Mullins, and Paul Wilcoxson.

In Mid Wales, where Vox Political is based, the event will be at the Newtown Assessment Centre, St David’s Business Centre, St David’s House, New Road, Newtown, starting at 11am. Details are on Facebook here.

For readers elsewhere in the UK, details of events closer to you are on the UK Rebellion site and the Atos national demo Facebook page.

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22 thoughts on “Will you support the day of action against Atos?

  1. Joseph Smith

    Yes I’ll support, appologies are just words, largely meaningless without action from the person making the appology. What’s really needed is a writ served on Atos, IDS, and the DWP for manslaughter if that were to be possible it would destroy them. The media would have a field day, Cameron would be changing his nappies hourly. Please God let it happen

    1. W Leon

      Yes, they have to be charged with Corporate Manslaughter at the very least. Ever Welfare Minister, INCLUDING DUNCAN-SMITH, AND THE PRIME MINISTER HIMSELF, along with all those who work for Atos, should be hauled before a court of law to face those charges.

  2. Denise Clendinning

    yes i would support it but what if they start clocking the people and they will be checking face book . This is what this government are doing to us . what a sorry state we have become . Were afraid to move an inch.

    1. Mike Sivier

      It’s true – they came to this blog site after I launched my FoI request about IB/ESA claimant deaths, looking for something they could use against me.

      1. Joseph Smith

        That suprised me Mike. And I think lots of others. A legal request for information has to be innocuous and innocent, wonder what it is they scared of. And why they seem to be so afraid. They must know that sooner or later ( probably sooner) the information will be public, do they imagine we will all be on the streets burning and looting? Silly boys, in the courts yes, personal claims for everything from compensation to manslaughter, yes. The loss of their jobs reputation power possibly property, perhaps, but unlike the ones they’ve killed off they will live hopefully in great discomfort and be given lots of time to ponder the error of their ways, hopefully. Time will tell, time is not on their side.

  3. Joseph Smith

    Odd isn’t it, headlines tonight on The Government channel AKA BBC and ITV lots of time covering the deaths and refugees in Syria, never a word from either channel about the government driven suicides as a result of it’s Fascist policies. Seems media moguls and MPs have much in common………No spines.

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  6. lan

    all these deaths are on camerons hands. He is nothing but a murderer hiding behind his axe of legislation.

  7. wwilmawatts

    Hi there, just found you by way of Facebook. I have already committed myself and a couple of others to the Oban protest. The problem is there is no organizer for the West Highlands of Scotland! So if anyone happens to read this and is living or visiting please get in touch. Also, so angry about the gagging law, signed every petition, even got our MP on side. Changing tack slightly, and I hope I don’t offend anyone here, but all of the above is why we need independence in Scotland. It will be a positive outcome for all of our nations and regions. That is why Westminster is so against it. Vince Cable said recently that London is sucking the lifeblood out of the rest of the United Kingdom. A financier said that London is like a black hole devouring the rest of the country. That is why we need to make this work.

  8. crisismaven

    “assessors under pressure to fail around 65 per cent of claimants” – do I hear no word of criticism against these “assessors” who are obviously bending the truth? How come that all but one (the whistleblower) do as they are told? And why are they not prosecuted for tampering with data and as giving false testimony?

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