Employment Support Allowance cuts

In light of the Government attaching a financial privilege and forcing through the cuts to Employment Support Allowance (ESA). I would like to tell it as it is by my experience as a disabled person trying to get work. I am in the Support Related Group but I am able to work if Society enables me.

Currently I’m living with my Disabled brother we share a Carer so we are receiving insufficient care to even be part of the Community, we have to do everything together or not at all, we are two separate people with different interests and commitments. I have been told by the Social Worker that I should be asking for 12 hours a week independent hours anything more isn’t achievable that means even though I want to work I would have to use my 12 hours a week to work part time so can only be part time.

But also will have no time left for Social activities this is disgusting, and they institutionalise people like myself. ESA will be cut by £120 a month in 2017, a survey of 500 people in the affected group found that 28 per cent of people had been unable to afford to eat while in receipt of the benefit. Around 38 per cent of respondents said they had been unable to heat their homes and 52 per cent struggled to stay healthy.

This is what Grey-Thompson an ex Paralympian said in the House of Lords. ESA benefit cuts forced through by Tories on ‘black day for disabled people’

It always feels like we’re putting the blame on the disabled person trying to fix them and not understand the barriers we face getting to work, reducing the gap between those economically inactive through sickness and those who are unemployed. This throws away all recognition of those who are facing hardship through sickness of no fault of their own.
I was told by a Career advisor the best job I could ever get would be to answer telephones and I should not aim too high. Right now disabled people are being told similar things.

Reformers also say there’s a financial advantage to being on ESA that suggests to me they have no experience of living on that amount of money if you’re sick/disabled is really like.’

This highlights the fact that most of us want to work, we require support to work the local councils argue as long as we are safe at home that’s all they are willing to pay. This means we don’t have a community identity under the Care Act we are allowed to have extra hours, the issue is the amount of hours we get and that will always be minimal so we can’t work full time. The government don’t understand that we actually want to work. With some people literally being unable to work because they are too ill or disabled and taking £120 a month off them is massively damaging, not only to their physical health but mental health which the Conservatives don’t seem to recognise.

Labour have asked for an impact assessment which has been ignored with MP’s pushing through the cuts in total, MPs voted 309-274 to send the cut back to the Lords for a third time where the Lords have backed down and cuts will go ahead.
And disability rights campaigners Scope said the changes would have a “harmful impact” on half a million people.
How we have to stand for this is utterly shameful in our ‘civilised country’. We have to unite stand up and fight back against these disgusting Policies.

Disabled people can work for example if a new building is built without wheelchair access then Society has disabled us not the disability itself. I’m a real believer in the Social model of disability. The social model of disability says that disability is caused by the way society is organised, rather than by a person’s impairment or difference. It looks at ways of removing barriers that restrict life choices for disabled people. When barriers are removed, disabled people can be independent and equal in society, with choice and control over their own lives.Disabled people developed the social model of disability because the traditional medical model did not explain their personal experience of disability or help to develop more inclusive ways of living.

An impairment is defined as long-term limitation of a person’s physical, mental or sensory function.

Ryan Worth – Crewe and Nantwich Disability Campaigns Officer

North West Youth Labour Officer
Mobile number – 07926104027