(not satire – it’s the sad state of the UK today)
I never usually reveal my personal situation in blog posts. I prefer to stay anonymous – not for legal reasons but I find it prevents criticisms becoming too personal. However, I’m going to make an exception in this case because I know this blog post is going to attract some criticism from people I usually like to regard as allies.
There’s probably only one thing worse than being disabled or sick. And that’s having a child who is disabled or sick.
And I have two.
That’s why it really bothers me to see the appalling way the sick and the disabled are being treated in this country today.
Of course we all know that politicians and tabloid journalists and even comedians like to scapegoat people – and it seems to be the turn of the sick and the disabled at the moment to bear the brunt of their prejudice.
But the worst thing for me is how so many sick and disabled people are being sold out by the very people we should normally expect to be on their side – the public figures, the charities, the spokespeople – the so-called ‘leaders’.
I see leaders of charities like Scope, Mind and The Papworth Trust – along with countless others – actually justifying using disabled and sick people on mandatory workfare placements while at the same time paying themselves huge 6-figure salaries and telling us how the privatisation of the NHS will create fantastic business opportunities for the ‘charitable sector’.
I see disabled MPs – the very people who should be speaking out in support of the disabled and the sick – standing up in parliament labelling disability campaigners as ‘extremists’.
I see well-liked disability bloggers telling their followers not to share damaging information about how this same MP had claimed over 10 grand in expenses for things like soap, coasters and biscuits.
This was because it turned out there was a meeting with the MP arranged by disability ‘leaders’ in the House of Commons designed to ‘bring him onside’ as a future ally (an attempt which by the way failed – he’s a Tory FFS)
I see barely any mainstream journalist willing to tell the truth about the government’s attacks on the disabled and the sick apart from one extremely dodgy one who occasionally works as the token lefty for the Express (FFS) and the Mail (FFS) and David Icke (FFS).
Because I can tell you now, of all the many, many problems facing the sick and the disabled in this country at the moment, 6-foot lizards isn’t one of them.
Where are all the real journalists, charities, spokespeople, leaders prepared to speak up for the disabled and the sick?
The bitter truth is, I see very few so-called leaders who are really interested in the true welfare of the disabled and the sick. Most have their own agendas – usually furthering their own careers in politics, charities or journalism.
But then I look around and I see there is real help for sick and disabled people. I see local groups, self-help groups on social media like Facebook, a whole network of mostly small self-run groups offering real practical advice and help and support for disabled and sick people who are desperate to survive a worsening onslaught of attacks against them.
I’m talking about groups on Facebook like ESA/DLA, AFTER ATOS, ATOS MIRACLES, DISABILITY DEFENCE, FIGHTBACK, BENEFITS & WORK etc and all the countless local groups that share practical advice for people who need help.
It’s truly a case of lions led by donkeys.
In a future post I would like to compile a list of self-help groups which are valuable sources of help for the disabled and the sick – so if you have any suggestions, please leave them in the comment section below. Thanks.