Work Capability Assessment faces replacement if Labour wins election

'To see ourselves as others see us': It is hard to stand on a platform when you can't even stand - but the social media are giving disabled people a stronger voice and a chance to take the spotlight, rather than the sidelines.

‘To see ourselves as others see us’: It is hard to stand on a platform when you can’t even stand – but the social media are giving disabled people a stronger voice and a chance to take the spotlight, rather than the sidelines.

The Labour Party is likely to scrap the hated Work Capability Assessment for people claiming sickness and disability benefits, replacing it with “something that looks very different” – but you haven’t heard anything about it on the news, have you?

Labour’s shadow minister for disabled people, Kate Green, said she would be treating with “great seriousness” the Beyond the Barriers report by the Spartacus online campaigning network, which concluded that the WCA is “inaccurate, unreliable and invalid” – but you won’t have heard anything about that on the TV or radio, or read it in the papers either.

Vox Political found it on the Centre for Independent Living’s website, The Fed Online, after being pointed to it by a link on social media. The article – from Friday (April 11) – said Beyond the Barriers was “backed by evidence from more than 1,200 sick and disabled people”, and drew on the best of the systems used by seven other countries.

It said the report “demands a new system that is ‘radical and ambitious’ and ‘inspires, enables and encourages’ disabled people, rather than the current ‘punishing, penalty-based system'”.

Kate Green said she would not want to scrap the assessment immediately, but would want to replace it as soon as possible.

She criticised the points-based format of the current, computer-based test, and its focus on a one-off “snapshot” of each claimant’s condition – which takes no account of fluctuating ailments.

But she also warned that the Department for Work and Pensions has been pushed into a “very fragile” state by its Conservative Secretary of State, Iain Duncan Smith, with his hopeless Universal Credit project and problems with the new Personal Independence Payment and ESA – both of which were related to the work capability assessment.

She said a Labour government would have to be careful not to “knock the whole department over completely” with any changes.

This blog would rather have the whole DWP dismantled, with its work turned over to a new organisation – or several. It seems clear that the attitudes of the department’s heads, along with the damaging work ethic they have propogated, make the DWP unsustainable in its current form.

For the rest of the article, visit this site.

LabourList, the UK’s top political blog, added its support to Beyond the Barriers, with columnist Luke Akehurst stating: “It cogently promotes a viable policy alternative which protects the interests of disabled people without being profligate with public money.”

He continues: “The report calls for: ‘Work for those who can. Security for those who can’t. Support for all.’

“This is the language of Labour’s values. We could do a lot worse than implementing this report’s proposals if we get into government.

“Read the report. Get angry about what the Government has done to disabled people. And get organised to ensure our Party takes these excellent ideas, from disabled people themselves, seriously.”

The rest of that article is here.

How sad that Beyond the Barriers – and Labour’s reaction to it – has been ignored en masse by the news media. It seems a sensible response to this issue is unwanted in those areas.

And a senior member of the Labour Party supporting this sensible attitude would be a long way off-script for the right-wing press, whose mogul bosses need to depict Labour as even more crazed than the loonies in blue ties that their papers and TV stations support.

Still, there it is.

This blog now awaits the fevered response from commenters who have remained determined to trash Labour’s policies.

Let’s see you get your ignorance out, in the face of all the evidence.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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80 thoughts on “Work Capability Assessment faces replacement if Labour wins election

  1. Pingback: Work Capability Assessment faces replacement if Labour wins election | kittysjones

  2. JK

    If WCA is so bad why not scrap it immediately and leave people as is until such time as the improved scheme of assessment has been piloted and is ready to roll out nationwide? Why carry on making sick and disabled people jump through hoops of fire?

    1. Mike Sivier

      The Conservative Party is currently in charge of disability benefit assessment. They absolutely love the Work Capability Assessment because it gives them an excuse to starve people of the benefits they need to survive. This has led to the deaths of thousands upon thousands of sick and disabled people – all at arm’s-length from the Conservative Party. The Tories think this is brilliant as it means fewer people are claiming the benefit and they can say they are “helping” people into work when in fact they are sending them to their graves.
      This article is about the Labour Party’s response to the subject. Labour is not currently in office and has opposed every draconian change made by the Conservatives and Tory Democrats to the laws on state benefits. However, because the Coalition has a Parliamentary majority, it has won all the important votes.
      Nothing will be done to scrap this genocidal system until Labour win a general election.

      1. JK

        But shouldn’t Labour scrap the Bedroom Tax and WCA immediately if the party wins the next general election? Why continue to make people suffer if you have the power to do something about it?

      2. Mike Sivier

        I think the plan is to repeal the Bedroom Tax straight away. As for the WCA, I think they’re saying something has to remain in place in order for claims to be processed.
        To be honest, it seems likely they’ll have to do some more thinking about this as the assessment system is currently in chaos and keeping it would be unhealthy all around.

      3. slap7

        The reduction in housing benefit should not be scrapped – it is a good policy. Ditto the WCA – yes, it needs reform, but not scrapping.

      4. Joanna

        I have thought for a couple of years, the condems have began and are eager to continue an organised culling of human beings, in the most legal way they can. It makes sense, because the less lower class people, the more services, they don’t have to pay for.
        It is also interesting the fact that nick clegg, is a self-proclaimed atheist. That says to me that he can do anything he likes to hurt others, without worrying about personal morals.

      5. Mike Sivier

        I think most atheists would say they have very high moral standards that are not foisted on them by someone else and their interpretation of what a higher power would want.
        However, in discussing the individual beliefs of Nick Clegg, I fear you may be correct.

      6. Joanna

        Wasn’t the PCA fairer, if so, why not use the original PCA and rework it a little to make it fresh and a lot fairer.
        What about a Universal income guarantee, which isn’t means tested, and also means people can top it up with wages if they please, or live on it whilst figuring out what they want to do with their lives. It could be paid for by taking back the billions that have been given to the banks. It’s just a thought, I know it’s probably wishful thinking!

      7. Florence

        I think the opinions of slap7 are misplaced, at best, because they can only be held by someone who has not been directly affected by them, or has not bothered to take the time, or have sufficient compassion, to understand what is currently happening.

        On the wider issue of why does Labour not promise to scrap WCA immediately upon election, I think the DWP is in a very parlous state, with new job reductions due to take it below operational capability. Let us remember that this is the department responsible for paying pensions and benefits, AS WELL AS being turned in to a benefit & disability denying department too. I am more inclined to trust a politician who is capable of recognising the danger of pushing the DWP over the edge. Too many millions of people depend on it to risk a complete meltdown, and I prefer to have pragmatists in place of the nutty ideologues of the right running the country.

        It is entirely possible that by 2015 the ESA and PIP processes will have ground completely to a halt anyway, seeing the crisis upon crisis that is now affecting the WCA. The tory-run press has not been able to negate the ever growing ground swell against the DWP changes. I hope that Labour do keep on developing the policies that will attract people in 2015 to return a Labour government. Yes, I would love to hear a thundering, spirit-raising proper opposition, really speaking out, but it would still remain un-reported by the mainstream. It is a trickle for now, but I hope it carries on and does grow in volume. There are many out there for whom political change in 2015 is an absolute life-saving necessity. Unfortunately, there is still another year to go, and as we all know, many thousands could die, and many more lives wrecked by poverty, hunger, sanctions, WCA disability denial, and workfare.

  3. Big Bill

    We should remember it was Labour’s Yvette Cooper behind the infamous ‘imaginary wheelchair’ testing where disableds could be regarded as mobile if they could arguably use a wheelchair whether they had one or didn’t or indeed were unlikely ever to have one. For some of us, distrusting Labour doesn’t come about as a result of ignorance, it comes about as a result of direct experience.

    1. Mike Sivier

      Yvette Cooper, like Ed Balls, is a graduate of Oxford’s Politics, Philosophy and Economics course. As such I don’t personally consider her to have Labour Party ideals at heart.
      She won’t stop this happening if Labour wins an election.

      1. JK

        Oh! And I believe Yvette Cooper is pencilled in to be the next Labour leader if Ed Miliband falls at the final hurdle. All one can do is hope that Labour wins the next election even though Cooper will probably end up running the Home Office.

    2. Irene Glover

      This is why DLA (and other disability benefits) were brought in in the first place, so that the disabled were able to be a part of a society that was mainly tailored to the able bodied. Will be so glad to see these benefits going back to benefiting those it was brought out for. Hate how the Tories act like that if you can work you aren’t disabled, very insulting to everyone who is disabled but capable. Got to wonder where on earth they get these stupid ideas from, or do they just not care and want the disabled to live in poverty? Sickening whatever their reasons.

      1. anon

        Sadly what people considering disability insurance will not be told, is that should they become ill or disabled, the insurance industry will use the exact same criterea as the WCA to deny them the support they paid in for.

        As was found by UNUM’s customers in the US, disability insurance is no safety net, and anyone failing the WCA faces being summarily failed by their insurer.

      2. Mike Sivier

        Correct. I’ve blogged about it before.
        That’s why the WCA must be replaced by a state-run benefit system. Personally, I’d prefer not to have any private company contracted in to run any part of it.

  4. HomerJS

    I think you are absolutely right about the DWP Mike. They should dismantle it and create a new department that actually works.

    1. vomsters

      The problem is, the new department would consist of identical staff to the old. Same Management, same frontline, same ethos throughout. That’s how the Civil Service works.

  5. Mike Sivier

    Valerie Evans on Facebook makes a very important point: “We have all been brainwashed to accept that there should even be a ‘test’. Helping disabled into work is totally different subject. It’s all got muddled together. I am sick and although the illness makes me ‘disabled’ it’s not the same thing. Disabled people who want to work and are otherwise fit and healthy enough to work should be helped – but please leave the sick who are too ill to even contemplate work alone!!!”

    1. Big Bill

      Absolutely – it’s not as if there’s work for everyone who wants it anyway, is it? I hope this will all shake out into a universal basic income in the end, that seems to be the only workable solution.

      1. jaypot2012

        I agree with you BB – in 2014 everyone should be able to have enough to pay rent/mortgage, utilities, food, clothing etc.
        We are quickly going back to 1914.

    2. Moggy

      Exactly. I support the guaranteed income scheme – universal benefits for all – instead of all this work nonsense. We are more than work and most ‘work’ or ‘using one’s time constructively for the benefit of others and the community’ as I prefer to think of it, goes unpaid. If people haven’t already got involved they should hop over to the Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/basicincomeeurope/

  6. jaypot2012

    Labour should commit to ending the WCA as soon as they are elected into office. They should stop it immediately if they care anything about what the disabled and long-term sick are going through!
    No excuses…

  7. joe mcghee

    The hated wca should be scrapped right away,I spoke to kate green,and she agreed that it needed to be replaced with a fairer method.just keep posting complaints about how unfair this hated wca is,and labour will replace it, when elected.

      1. Mo Stewart

        Counting the days till you get that info Mike. It is sinister that Freud stopped these stats being routinely published & now the DWP want to stop Coroners from listing the WCA and removal of benefits as responsible for deaths – it’s time to get rid of this dangerous government.

      2. Big Bill

        Worth noting perhaps that if, when caught with their hands apparently up to their necks and beyond in the public till, MPs were judged by a proper court instead of an essentially informal and egregious court of their peers, at least one prominent member of the current government would in my view have left office, public life and been deprived of liberty a long time ago #betsygate

  8. Jan

    Labour are going to throw the election away if they are not careful

    They need to stop being scared of Daily Mail headlines and readers – they’re not going to vote for them anyway.

    What they are doing is alienating their own voter base and people who want something very different than the Tories but don’t see Labour offering it.

    Time for Labour to stop pussyfooting around difficult issues and come out on the attack. An awful lot of people want a decent alternative and will vote for it if they think it is heartfelt and sincere.

    A pledge to scrap the WCA is the minimum required. How can they possibly delay on something that is driving people to destitution and death. And an end to ridiculous sanctions.

    Ed is being far too timid and leaving it too late. From my reading of comments in newspapers, people are desperate to be rid of the Tories but don’t see Labour as offering any real alternative. They are far too weak at challenging Tory lies and have allowed the narrative to take hold that Gordon Brown single handedly caused the economic crisis. People don’t remember what happened in 2008, only what the Tories tell them.

    Tell Ed, if he wanted the leadership so bad, it’s time he said something to show us why. It is time he stopped being afraid to mention what is happening to the sick and disabled. The public is getting a rough idea about it and mostly, they care and want it stopped.

    1. Joanna

      From an increasing amount negative comments aimed at the daily mail on that very same website, says that people are already very disillusioned by their right-wing reporting. The only half-decent reporter there is Sonia Poulton, she seems to have sympathy with those who are being damaged by what is happening

    2. Mo Stewart

      Well said Jan. Even the unions are threatening to withdraw funding for Labour as they are very weak in opposition and working people no longer feel represented – look at the pitiful turn out for national elections… Apathy rules. Sonia Poulton does support us and I’m in touch with her. With very few exceptions Labour are not presenting a strong opposition and it’s time they started.

      1. Moggy

        Sonia Poulton did a great piece on the privatisation of the NHS recently – very frightening stuff

    1. PeeJay

      If I hadn’t felt too sick to look in on this site yesterday evening I’d have written that as well. There’s a tiny handful of Labour MPs who make clear their disgust at WCA, atos, ESA and so on; for the rest it’s simply not a vote-winner. While large sections of the public do nothing against or actively support the bullying of the weak, sick, disabled and old it’s not in Labour’s interests to push this one with vigour in case it turns round and bites it in the bum,

  9. Dave

    Great isn’t it… after many years of ESA and the WCA, Labour finally start to make small hints that they’ll overhaul or scrap it. Why? Not because they’re moral people with integrity, but because the WCA debacle has now slowly seeped into the general public’s consciousness… and so now Labour can take advantage of this for electoral purposes. They didn’t give a damn a few years ago and were happy to feed on the demonization of ill and disabled people – and of course Labour also set up the WCA in the first place and hired Atos.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather have a Labour government in relation to welfare, but still, the whole thing stinks. from all main parties. It’s just a case of the voting for the best of a bad bunch.

    Don’t you just love ‘democracy’?

    1. Mike Sivier

      That’s a pretty little narrative you’ve made for yourself but it doesn’t take into account a vitally important piece of information.
      It has been necessary for Labour to keep its plans away from public view, in order to ensure that (1) the Tories don’t steal policies and (2) the Tories can’t rubbish Labour policies in the mass media, which they control.
      You cannot claim that Labour is taking advantage of current interest for electoral purposes because that is not true; Labour has constantly opposed every Tory measure to worsen the assessment system for ESA (and now PIP). I have covered several such Parliamentary debates on this blog. And don’t start on about Labour’s opposition being half-hearted or non-existent because that denies the facts as well. Just go back and read the articles, and no – I’m not going to go looking for the links. Do your own legwork.
      Yes, Labour hired Atos. But Atos only did what they were told. Labour would have scrapped the WCA in its then-current form after the 2010 election as the information that was coming back from the first couple of years of ESA showed it was harming and not helping; it is the Tories who have perpetuated the process and turned it into the genocide machine that it is today.
      In short, all your points, other than that Labour would be a better government in relation to social security, are mistaken.

      1. Dave

        I’m sorry? Did you have a bad weekend or something? Why such a vicious reply, and actually quite insulting? Your whole reply appears quite personally bitter and personally quite defensive. People post on your blog in good faith and honestly – perhaps expecting some respect even if you don’t agree with their view. Take a look at the language you employ, if you want to see what I mean. The point was made not against you personally you know.

        I think you have an idealised impression of Labour – you seem very trusting of a party which over the years has shown, through its actions and policies, that it is largely no different to the Tories – privatisation, foreign intervention, and happy to go along with draining public funds through, for example, cutting tax bills for the ultra-rich.

        Yes, thirteen years of it. And then we are supposed to be satisfied with such crumbs as the minimum wage.

        By the way, it is one thing for Labour to have to keep their welfare policies under wraps due to a right-wing mass media – but does that also entail Rachel Reeves having to make a speech saying a Labour government will be tougher than the Tories when it comes to welfare? There is much more to this than just the media.

        And wow, you honestly think Labour in 2010 would have ditched ESA and the WCA. I think that is wishful thinking.

        By the way, yes, the ESA has killed people. Many people. It is unjust and frankly evil.
        But it is not genocide.

      2. Mike Sivier

        I do not agree with you.
        My response was not vicious – it was based on established fact. If anything, there may have been a weary quality about it, from having to say the same thing so many times to so many people who have got the wrong end of the stick.
        For example, yesterday, responding to another commenter, I made reference to my article in which I pointed out that Rachel Reeves very quickly disowned her comment about being “tougher than the Tories” on social security. She backtracked on it almost immediately yet here you are today, trying to use it against that Party.
        New Labour was a wrong turn for the party but it has woken up to that fact and has been changing to fit the times.
        As for ESA – I am taking the government to a tribunal in order to get more up-to-date death figures. We already know it has caused thousands of deaths and fear it has caused tens of thousands. Considering the context – the size of the sick and disabled population – that could rightly be considered genocide.

  10. tommaz jay

    Just remember where we all should coming from as regards the non-elected assembly that presides as our overlords in the palace of falsehoods, injustices, perjury and utter abject misery for anyone who will not fit into their twisted mentally of hard working economically viable zombies, bled dry on the altar of dogmatic ideology’s that belong in an era that drilled holes in sculls to let out demons. They attack the feckless unemployed. The sick, lame and lazy.Don’t forget the Mentalists, the Nutter’s and the Freaks, Feeble Minded and the Morally Deviant Single Mother. And very, very soon the Old Age Pensioners.
    You can imagine how much they would enjoy cracking the whip with the cry of“Look Out He’s In A Wheelchair, He Has A Vacant Look He Must Be Mad, On Drugs Or Drunk. Next He Will Be Inside Our Pockets Looking for “Our Hard Earned Worked For Money”. Let’s Put Him In A Place Where We Will Be Safe From Him. He May Even Die If We Treat Him badly enough, That Will Teach Him a Lesson He Won’t Ever Forget”

    They attack anyone but the people who got us into this mess in the first place, (and we all know who that was) If by any divine intervention they gain power again they will resume the demonization of the weakest in their wonderland of political utopia and make one figure higher and cost effective by making suicide a viable alternative. Now that will make a difference and cost us “nothing governor”. Now that’s a real return to true core conservative corrupt values.

    We have squeezed them until the pips squeak, what next ?, “oh yes we have a solution it’s tried tested and really works, been around for as long as anyone can remember and will be all that is required and be true to our true blue political ideology”,
    “Now we need a name, what about the DWP solutions. No sound too much like a government department”.What about “mortem sibi conscivit solution” a nice Latin word that the sniveling upper class will understand, maybe, well maybe not. What about words that the ones who were being “Jolly well rogered by the prefects” and missed Latin classes. Well ok I’ve got it, silly me it has had a name all along, great let’s go with this.
    FINAL AND UNIVERSALLY ACCESSIBLE SOLUTION.
    It will be jolly well acceptable the shorten it to
    “THE FINAL SOLUTION”
    To save ink and for the snivelers in the self-proclaimed Born to rule class to remember.

    Now that sounds like a spiffing idea, don’t ya’r know!

    I like many others because of mental and physical illnesses and the constant bullying from the “snouts in the trough inbred ruling political classes” have nothing more to give and we are at the end of our metaphorical ropes.

    Many like myself despite overwhelming evidence from doctor’s reports and other medical professional opinions are routinely dismissed as if they were liars, cheats, scroungers, work shy, criminals, malingers, need I go on any further, you get the picture painted by the tw** at the Department of Benefit Denial. (DBD)
    It is the not being believed that is the worst pain imaginable to anyone who has the misfortune to be dragged through “the system”. As we try as best we can to explain our illness, it soon becomes apparent that whatever evidence is produced the final outcome has already been decided by monetary policy, Denial is now the norm alongside a total lack of compassion.
    At every turn of a news page we are pilloried by a press and government who are in terminal moral panic and decline. We are now, as one of the many groups suffering from the backlash of hate stirred up by the tory protagonists are becoming very afraid and see death ether by lack of care or by our own hand as our only viable alternatives.

    It only takes one letter or phone call from the DWP or comment from press or government indoctrinated individuals to push us over the ultimate cliff. Believe me I have been there myself on many occasions and only by my own ineptitude am able to write this now.
    I was one told by a professional that to commit suicide was my choice if I thought it was the right thing to do and no one could stop me. Is doing the right thing what this eugenics led government want us to do for the good of the “Hard working tax paying families who get up early and trudge through the snow to get to work on a minimum wage zero hours contract, while struggling with several payday loans”?

    If we don’t or can’t do the right thing will the government ultimately assist us? If we won’t do the right thing what then, will we see the UK’s own final solution implemented?
    We now have forced labour for the sick and disable via the insidious workfare by any other name. Denial of benefit using sanctions and Civil Penalty Notices without the right of hearing and applied by a decision maker on the flimsiest and pettiest of transgressions.
    We had until the late seventy’s Government Training & Rehabilitation Centers that by compulsory attendance under threat of denial of benefit, housing and removal of children into care forced the indoctrination of the unemployed into the so called ethics of work and hard labour.
    So as we now have the right mood in our country for the have and have not’s, the Skivers against the Strives, the ill versus able-bodied and the idle rich against the plebs. If we have the forced labour and the training camps is the ultimate and final solution not that far away?

    NOW THAT SOUND LIKE A MASTER PLAN
    Tommaz Jay
    Ashamed and frightened to be a member of the society that once cared and now wallows in its own putrid s***.

  11. Pingback: Work Capability Assessment faces replacement if...

  12. thoughtfullyprepping

    A politician promises to do away with something and replace it with what exactly?
    Coming into the election year all the slime will be promising great things and as per usual, the words will mean nothing.

    Only one thing will work, a completely new system of government.
    Just changing the color of a tie will do NOTHING.

    Orwell summed it up fabulously:-
    “If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever.” Who’s wearing the boot? Cue the politicians!

    1. Mike Sivier

      If you read the report, Beyond the Barriers, you’ll see there are some very good ideas there for politicians to use. The Tories are hopeless but Labour’s shadow minister has at least indicated a willingness to consider these changes.
      I know it’s easy to be pessimistic after the neoliberal nightmare of the past three or four decades but there are positive moves to be made and people of good character willing to take them.

      1. thoughtfullyprepping

        I live in a world of hurt caused by suits wearing different colored ties. Much like everyone else.

        Red, blue, yellow, it don’t matter.

        Our system of government is basically a temp job. You get 5 years to bitch about what the other guy did then you get 5 years to cock it up some more.

        Nothing changes and for the most part the UK sheeple believe in the lie that things are going to get better if you vote for XYZ. One huge sick joke.

      2. Mike Sivier

        What’s your answer?
        (Please note that others have already suggested not voting and that is not welcome here. These people have complained that they don’t have any ability to change the status quo, then thrown away the only tool they have that can be used to do so. Ridiculous.)

      1. john daly

        These murderous bastards should be flogged then delivered to the nearest tree or airport wheres the difference between duncan smith and hussein you can murder just as effectively by the use of pen and policy when are the decent people in the uk going to get off their arses and banish these morons

  13. thoughtfullyprepping

    You ask yet I have no clear answer and I suspect you haven’t either.

    You have to vote, that is a given. To not do so is just plain stupid.
    Yet what do you do when no one listens?
    I always vote for the least evil (usually an independent) yet in vain as it’s always one of the three colors of ties that wins.

    I always thought that one of the key things about government was to look after those who can’t look after themselves. The sick, disabled, elderly, and the poor.
    No more is that true.Today it’s all about the money and political correctness..

    Political parties are all about rhetoric with the ignorant sheeple voting for those who promise the most.

    Perhaps it is because no one in UK government is held accountable for their actions.
    In some civilized countries you fk.up, you get removed, overthrown, escaping with whatever you have squirreled away in a foreign land.
    Here, they just wait until the next election and cross over to the opposition.

    There is no honesty, no integrity, in politics.
    Those who want to do good are pushed to one side, muzzled like dogs.

    It needs to be torn down. Perhaps our “democratic” form of government needs to be replaced by a military junta or even a dictatorship. Perhaps even taken over by another country (note I say country NOT THE EU.)

    One thing is certain, Great Britain isn’t, and the United Kingdom is getting “untied”.

    To resolve it now by peaceful means and the ballot box alone is impossible.
    Those who think it can be by voting alone are naive and probably delusional.

      1. Big Bill

        I refer you to the poll tax, the magna carta and the origin of the eight-hour day, just off the top of my head…

      2. Mike Sivier

        It won’t come to that. As I mentioned, I would seek a peaceful solution. If others bring violence to me, I would have to react appropriately.

  14. Sam

    Sorry Mike, but you’re sounding like a party political broadcast for the Labour party.
    It is also full of toffs who live in cloud cuckoo and who lie and chat with the best of them.
    You can’t force people to forget or think how you want them to no matter how much we all hate the b*stards in Gov now.

    1. Mike Sivier

      Nor do I need to. All I need to do is remind them they don’t need to think how other people want them to, either. There’s an awful lot of disinformation around and it’s very easy to be drawn in by a claim that appeals to you, even if it isn’t supported by facts. I try to supply facts. thoughtfullyprepping, above, was discussing opinions so I gave mine.
      As it happens, time has moved on and Labour has put out an announcement that it would keep the work capability assessment, but adapt it in order to improve it. I don’t think that will work, and intend to write an article about it soon.
      You see, I don’t agree with the Labour leadership all the time. Many others take a similar view. It is by informed dialogue that we encourage – and deliver – changes in party policy.
      (That’s INFORMED dialogue, by the way – saying they’re “full of toffs who live in cloud cuckoo” land would just insult everybody.)

  15. Mike T

    People are forgetting, it WAS LABOUR who introduced the whole WCA, and ATOS scandal.

    Labour are just as guilty as every other government party. I certainly do not trust Labour to do s*** apart from make people worse off again.

    1. Mike Sivier

      The Atos scandal happened under the current government – Atos only did what they were told by the government of the day.

      And weren’t Labour ready to admit that the assessment system wasn’t working, when the general election of 2010 happened? They were keen to change the system because they could see that it was harmful to legitimate claimants (if I recall correctly). It was the current Conservative-led government that decided the system was not punitive enough and intensified the agony.

      I’d welcome a bit of clarity on what Labour wanted to do, from someone who can quote sources, as this is something I remember reading a couple of months ago but can’t put my finger on the source material at the moment.

      Other than that, I’m glad to have helped clarify matters for you, Mike.

      1. Mike T

        The ATOS Scandal only happened under this government, because LABOUR came up with the idea. END OF STORY.

      2. Mike Sivier

        Don’t be silly. Anyone can see that someone coming up with an idea is the beginning of a story! The Tories taking an idea that its originators were about to terminate as a failure, and perverting it into something much worse – that’s the middle of a story. The end… has yet to be decided.

      3. Big Bill

        Labour didn’t. It was Peter Lillee who got the ball rolling when he invited Unum in as advisors on welfare reform, despite the obvious conflict of interest. That was back in 94 and the WCA as we all know is based around the same principles of disability denial which have made Unum notorious.

    2. Mo Stewart

      Correction: Labour did bring in the WCA BUT it was the Tories who brought in UNUM Insurance as ‘government advisers’ from 1992 and from 1994 they began debating the WCA as we now have it. Labour introducing the WCA was a done deal, the Tories would have introduced it if they had won the election, and both did it as so much Government cash had already been invested in planning the assessment.

  16. john daly

    its time Miliband used the ***** his father gave him or disappeared you have a hated bunch of morons ripping the **** out of people £60 billion foreign aid and foodbanks here years on the pension you can have one year’s sick money get these ****s to **** before the streets are bloodied. If Miliband won’t stand up and tell the people exactly what he will do with sanctions, wca etc he doesn’t deserve my or your vote. How many out there think Coulson took the hit for Brooks – a couple of Cameron’s chums!!! Cameron a prime minister; I would not trust him to go to the shops for milk and bread. Any bankers who ****ed our country been gaoled yet? No, thought not.

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