Over Half A Million Trapped In ESA Assessment Stage

Same Difference

With many thanks to Benefits And Work.

Over half a million people are trapped in the assessment phase of employment and support allowance (ESA) whilst waiting for a work capability assessment (WCA) and hundreds of thousands more are dealing with the uncertainty of not knowing when their next assessment will be, a government minister has confirmed.

In answer to a written question, Mark Harper, minister for disabled people, stated that:

“As at 30 September 2014 there were around 580,000 cases awaiting Work Capability Assessments at Atos Healthcare (down by 25% since February). These figures do not include cases where the claimant has yet to return the claimant questionnaire.

“From 1 March, MAXIMUS Health and Human Services Ltd. will take over delivery, initially using elements of the Atos infrastructure in order to ensure a smooth and gradual transition between providers. The priority for MAXIMUS will be to deliver the best service…

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Young & Homeless 2014 – what young people told us

Social Action 2014


We’ve published our annual Young & Homeless research, looking at the changing state of issues facing and provision offered to young people who become homeless in England.

This short film combines the words of the young people we interviewed with some of the facts and statistics uncovered in our report.

http://www.homeless.org.uk/young-homeless

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Student Movement Sparks Back To Life In Fight For #FreeEducation

the void

copper-paint A copper gets a paint job in response to the violent police attack

In a further sign that resistance to austerity is sparking back to life, students from across the UK marched in central London yesterday demanding the right to free education.  This was the biggest student protest since the spiky demonstrations in 2010 when students smashed their way into the Tory Party headquarters.

As on previous protests, many students were not content to obediently march from A to B and then listen to politicians making boring and insincere speeches.  Instead, when the march arrived at Parliament Square many protesters tore down the fences surrounding the square.  These were erected after the recent Occupy protests and are intended to prevent any unofficial dissent against government policies outside the Houses of Parliament.  So far they havent worked very well.

As hundreds of people occupied the Square, a large group broke away…

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New Research Debunks Social Housing Benefits Dependency Myth

UNEMPLOYED IN TYNE & WEAR

New research published today debunks the myth that social housing residents are characterised by high levels of benefits dependency.

The latest Real London Lives research report, commissioned by the University of York, reveals that rather than being blighted by long-term unemployment and low aspiration, there is a strong commitment to work among social housing tenants, despite difficult circumstances and personal vulnerability.

Two-thirds of residents in social housing who can reasonably be expected to work do, however three-quarters were only ‘holding steady’ financially, due to low wages and a shortage of working hours.

Much like the experiences of other workers, jobs taken by social housing residents do not necessarily guarantee financial security and don’t always offer a steady wage.

Social housing tenancy is supporting people through many of the challenges they face in life, protecting and strengthening the family unit and insulating vulnerable people who may otherwise become…

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Iain Duncan Smith Greeted with Shouts of ‘Murderer’ as he visits Ipswich.

Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Earlier in the day.

We had a long wait for Iain Duncan Smith (IDS) yesterday (we began at 9 o’clock)  but he finally arrived at “MyGo” Ipswich at 5.00 pm, accompanied by Ben Gummer, before heading off to a £45 a head Tory fund raising dinner in Melton.

This Tory Party stunt received a hostile welcome from many people.

Members of DPAC (Disabled People Against Cuts)  from Suffolk and Norfolk, and Suffolk Peoples Assembly made sure the message that his term of office as Work & Pensions Minister has been a disaster for people with disabilities and should be terminated immediately came over loud and clear.

As we stood many Ipswich people came up and told us their own stories of how IDS has made their lives worse.

Cries of ‘murderer’ greeted the Tory Toff as he was spotted in the building.

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Political Fury and Personal Responsibility

jaynelinney

Once again I’m finding it difficult to sit down and write, I’m finding myself inundated with the appalling tales of life in the UK today; this week I’ve internally wept (there is a reason why only internally, but that is a tale for another day) as I read of IDS laughing  as a rape victim was forced to defend her right to feel safe in her own home as it was debated a PMQ. I Squealed when the DWP refuted hard evidence of people using foodbanks due to Benefit issues and this fury continued as the blogs I follow come in to my inbox daily with stories of people suffering or even dying.

Today we all got up to, unless of you stayed up to watch,  the news the UKIP have their second MP. I freely admit  I have a problem with this; I really do not understand why anyone would want…

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Three Children Who Were Bullied Because They Are Disabled

Same Difference

Research shows disabled children are much more likely to be bullied. Three young people who were once victimised tell their stories and share tips on tackling the problem.

This year’s Anti Bullying Week has been asking schools to give particular attention to children with disabilities or special educational needs. The organisation behind the campaign, the Anti-Bullying Alliance (ABA), has published new research on attitudes to disablist language this week and cites other recent research which shows eight out of 10 children with learning disabilities have been bullied, and that disabled children at primary school are 50% more likely to be victimised.

Rebecca, Maxine and Ammaar were at the receiving end of bullying. They explain how they got through it in the hope that their stories will help those having trouble now.

‘Speak up’

More than 90% of parents of children with Asperger Syndrome told the ABA that their child had…

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