Can there be any more ringing denunciation of the system for assessing DLA than Sue Marsh’s blog post yesterday?
I have severe crohn’s disease. Probably one of the most severe cases in the country.
I have had 7 major life saving operations to remove over 30 obstructions (blockages) from my bowel.
I take chemo-shots every two weeks that suppress my immune system, ensuring that I regularly have to fight infections. Exhaustion, pain and nausea plague every single day of my life.
I have osteoprosis and malnutrition.
I have had major seizures and a stroke.
Nonetheless, I have just heard from my own Disability Living Allowance application, that it has been rejected. Completely. I will receive no support at all from DLA. Despite claiming successfully in the past, despite only getting weaker and more frail and less able to live independently, my reconsideration was rejected.
Unbelievable. Reading through her list of illnesses and disabilities, my first reaction was, how the HELL can she have been turned down? Even she doesn’t seem to know.
The reasons they gave for the original rejection were nonsensical and didn’t relate to he information I had given on my form. Today, the letter refusing my reconsideration had no details at all.
And remember, this is before the welfare reform bill comes in. That’s the reforms that are already causing disabled people to become suicidal and will condemn cancer patients to poverty for being feckless enough not to get better within a year.
Marsh’s blog post is spreading like wildfire on Twitter and in the Blogosphere. I wonder what the reaction will be from the mainstream media?
My guess is that there’ll be a chin-stroking news report from the Guardian, and a deafening silence from the Daily Mail, the Daily Express, the Times, the Telegraph…Sorry, but to a wide section of the media and the general public, this isn’t the benefits story to get outraged about. The real injustice (apparently) is when somebody manages to scrounge a few quid they’re not entitled to.
I’ve noticed this with various friends when talking about stories similar to Sue Marsh’s – desperately ill and disabled people turned down for DLA on the most spurious of reasons. They’ll listen as briefly as they can to be polite, and then the cognitive dissonance kicks in, and they start changing the subject to talking about “benefit scroungers” who unjustly claim DLA. Because that’s far more worrying than some genuinely disabled person who’s had the ladder kicked from under them.
Maybe these are the Christian values and morals that Mr Cameron seems so keen on recently. Castigate and punish the poor, the weak and the vulnerable. Leave them unable to cope on a bureaucrat’s whim. Who cares, so long as none of the underclass get a penny more than they’re supposed to?
And what does that say about us as a society?