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UK - ESA/WCA - BBC World at One - ridiculous interview with minister

Discussion in 'Finances, Work, and Disability' started by Bob, Oct 11, 2012.

  1. Bob

    Bob

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    BBC World at One
    11 Oct 2012

    Item about assessments for ESA.

    The program can be listened to on the BBC website for seven days, here...
    Listen at 25mins:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01n6sjd

    Includes a ridiculous interview with employment minister re ESA, in which he blames patients for wrongly failing the Work Capability Assessment, for not being properly prepared, and not providing all the medical evidence. As if patients are supposed to be legal advocates!

    The minister says patients should include all medical evidence for WCA, but my understanding is that most NHS ME specialist centres don't provide medical evidence for WCA, as they believe such an action would be 'iatrogenic' (i.e. it would reinforce illness beliefs), and it would be a 'conflict of interests', in that patients won't try to get better if on benefits.
  2. SilverbladeTE

    SilverbladeTE Senior Member

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    Somewhere near Glasgow, Scotland
    sooner all those bastards are struck down with poverty, disaster, unemplyment and ill health the better
    what a horrible, ugly, nasty thought, but only way they will ever learn, sigh
    blind, blinkered, uncaring, bloody evil, pernicious ideagogues.

    the recent incident witht he Cabinet minister swearing and berating a policeman, telling them to "Know their f**** place" and calling the officers "Plebs" proves what arrogant scum the TOries in particular but many of the political class, are.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...repares-apologise-police-AGAIN-pleb-gate.html
  3. Bob

    Bob

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    I totally agree, Silverblade, that many of these problems stem from politicians being totally removed, and out of touch, from ordinary people's everyday lives. They don't have a clue what it's like to survive on a low, or very low, income. And they seem to always suggest that surviving on a low income is a crime and an immoral life-style 'choice'. And they accuse patients of being scroungers, despite those patients paying national insurance contributions all their lives, before they got ill. This government seems particularly guilty of these attitudes, probably stemming from the fact that they are nearly all multi-millionaires, all ultra-able, all fit and healthy, and many had ultra-privileged cocooned upbringings. Someone pointed out to me that the weekly ESA allowance is probably what they spend on a good glass of wine for dinner.
    currer and SilverbladeTE like this.
  4. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    As if they're not cutting legal aid for welfare matters!!

    lol @ blaming claimants for not providing sufficient evidence... the whole problem is that there often is no way of gathering clear and objective evidence to prove levels of incapacity. It would be nice if there was, but basing a whole welfare system on wish thinking is not a good idea.
    currer and Bob like this.
  5. SilverbladeTE

    SilverbladeTE Senior Member

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    Somewhere near Glasgow, Scotland
    yes!!
    As I've said before, lot of my family are/were socialists, communists, trade unionists, and fought forsafety, pay etc of ordinary folk.
    they were not well to do, wlel meaning folk of th emiddle classes, but ordinary bods.

    bit of an aside to show the evils we're talking about.
    Today, you keep hearing complaints int he UK about the HEalth & Safety culture, it's BULLSHIT, promoted by greedy bastards in power, who hate the rules/expenses they have to "Put up with" tokeep their workers and customers safe
    ther'es ltos of stupid abuses of such rules by idiot burecrats, sure, but vast majority of such are wonderufl and save lives

    Cousion of mine died before I was born, painting a factory way up high, they didn't have any safety gear back then, they were plebs, their safety didn't matter a damn, he fell and died.
    In the local steelworks there were special furnaces called "soakers", where steel was put into to cool down uniformly
    these were built into the gorund, open to the sky, metal was placed inside them via cranes and big sliding doors would shut over them (sort of like a giant grave)
    Men fell into them and roasted ot death, safety cost money, no one gave a damn at the top.
    Every week or two, a man died in the huge conglomeration of steelworks.
    Grandpa as a young man, had his hip smashed and fried by a 3' square, 1 inch thick steel plate he and some other lads had to catch in tongs, and carry back around into other side of the little roller mill which today no one in their right mind would try and do.
    and lots of other far more horrible stuff.

    that's what they want to go back to, they want ot unravel all the beneficial changes that make it hard for sucm to do what they want.
    currer and Bob like this.
  6. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Senior Member

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    Is a lack of common sense a requirement for many leadership roles in the UK? :p
    Shell, Sean and currer like this.
  7. biophile

    biophile Places I'd rather be.

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    So hospitals should remove TVs from their rooms, as inpatients are too fit for work to watch them? I bet he watches TV when staying home away from work due to illness. Some people with illness can sit and work at a computer screen for limited amounts of time and produce slow or poor quality work which no employer would accept.
    taniaaust1, Valentijn, currer and 2 others like this.
  8. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    My first DLA tribunels decison was "put aside" as they did not examine the evidence I provided to them. This included a respected consultants report that specifically covered the areas of care I needed.

    The second DLA tribunel did exactly the same thing. in their "decision" they did not refer to the evidence and they made claims that directly cotradicted this.

    The idea that patients should be forced to gather evidence and to continue to pay for reports is grossly unfair. The DWP were given as part of my form the names of the medical doctors whose care I was under but they didn't even bother approaching them.

    Leaving it up to the patient means for a PWME either having to pay for a report (and that can be £500 in London) or trying to get a report from a treating doctor. As we only get to see a NHS consultant infrequently and because they consultants can and do, simply refuse to provide reports it puts the ME patient at a huge disadvantage,
    currer and Bob like this.
  9. SilverbladeTE

    SilverbladeTE Senior Member

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    Somewhere near Glasgow, Scotland
    mate, it's what ALWAY Shappens over time when leaders get divorces form the reality on the ground
    was recent item on BBC about famous chinese hsitorian, who eas castrated for his honesty, ouch!
    he cane to the conclusion that many dynasties (governments) are started by honest, worthy, and/or dynamic people, but over time, they become more and more corrupt until it's so bad folk rebel, and the process starts again...
    sadly I think he's right
    democracy is best we've had but nto perfect, as Churchill wisely said "It's just the best of a bad bunch"
    Hence I am totally against inherited wealth as is, as it's accumulation corrupts society and ironically eventually leads ot the destruction of the ruling classes.

    interesting example of this is world war1
    the ruling elite in UK demanded that only those of "breeding and class" could lead, ha!
    so, the officer corp was almost totally of the "well to do"
    but the lunacy of the way the war was fought meant officers lead charges, carried pistols and wore different uniforms ot the men...so they were stood out like sore thumbs, got slaughtered and had casualty ratios FAR higher than even the ordinary soldiers.

    So, entire generation of the well to do, was wiped out
    which is why around my area, there are several parks dedicated to such fallen minor nobility and why some areas came udner local government control because the family line was ended, ick
    and thing is many of them were decent blokes, just caught up in a madness, so we lost God knows how many artists, engineers, scientists etc

    really nasty example of such coudl also be seen in Caligula.
    Absolute power, corrupts absolutely
    I want ORDINARY folk who've lead ordinary, difficult, painful, interestign lives to make decisions, not a bloody "political class" who've never in their life had to fear for their lives or how to make ends meet
    sigh
    beaverfury likes this.
  10. currer

    currer Senior Member

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    Our political leaders are not taking responsibility for guiding society and facing the genuine common environmental problems that exist and can only get worse in future.

    Because they are afraid to think about and open a debate on what the real challenges ahead are, they react in a debased and reactionary way.

    We all need to change our values. Capitalism is destroying this planet. It will destroy us. Instread of blaming the weakest and most disadvantaged, those who benefit most from capitalism have to change. But our political leaders represent that class. They can only try to protect their interests by finding someone else to blame.

    Britain is particularly bad, we seem to have returned to our traditionally heirarchical and contemptuous social attitudes - because our politicians are too frightened to think about the real changes necessary to safeguard our common future they have recourse to outdated and bigoted responses - with the aid of a disgusting system of indoctrination via the press and media.

    This scapegoating of unwanted social groups and the encouragement of hatred, ignorance,and bigotry in the population is a really frightening backward step and will lead to suffering for everybody.

    Other european countries have shown themselves more enlightened.
    SilverbladeTE likes this.
  11. currer

    currer Senior Member

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    I believe that ME has been politically managed to make it as difficult as possible to prove disablitiy.

    To that end the burden of proof is placed on the claimant, but the means to prove sickness, removed.

    So there are no "specialists" other than psychiatric ones, who do not provide medical reports.

    In our area this duty which is normally a part of the consultants contract with the NHS was specifically written out of the "specialist" clinic guidelines. So they have no duty to provide medical letters for benefit purposes.

    Add to this the blocking of biomedical research over a generation and bingo - you can make a disease, and more importantly - its associated costs - disappear!
    justy likes this.
  12. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Senior Member

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    Interesting. The costs disappear to government accountants, but the cost to society still remains. Another win for bureaucracy?
    currer likes this.
  13. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    There was a recent report looking at government data which found that 50% of those found fit for work by the DWP now had no income - they were not in employment or on unemployment benefit (you need to be quite healthy to be able to get on unemployment benefit and attend the regular meetings), but were presumably living off money from friends or family.

    It does all seem very similar to CFS research - patients are 'recovered' if the answers to questionnaires can be manipulated, regardless of whether the amount of activity patient's are able to do increases, or if they are able to return to work. There's little interest in reality, just in constructing narratives beneficial to those with power and money.
    taniaaust1, justy and currer like this.
  14. Firestormm

    Firestormm Senior Member

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    Afternoon,

    You know when I attended my tribunals for ESA and DLA (which I won incidentally) in the last 8 months I suppose; both panels were not interested in 'evidence'. It was about little old me. I was in effect the 'evidence'. That is how these things are structured. How my condition affects what I can and can't do. They were interviews if you like and in fact provided me with an (albeit very awkward and emotional because I felt humiliated by what I had to say - my problem not theirs) opportunity to say my piece.

    One example I recall about my DLA was from the disability specialist who asked about my ability to prepare and cook food. By me being there and trying to speak clearly, by them observing me trying to find the words, getting confused, muddled (not to mention shaking), etc. etc. they gained a better understanding I think.

    I believe the only additional medical evidence I felt able to provide prior to the Tribunal was a very brief update from a doctor at my ME specialist service. This was provided in advance of me attending. Once there it was all about me - as a person. In the flesh.

    Whilst recognising that my experience at both might be considered 'unique' by some, nevertheless they did give me more of an opportunity than the various forms and procedures hitherto adopted. It is bloody hard without representation preparing for these tribunals let alone completed the damn forms. I attended both on my own. CAB don't do representation now. But they did help me prepare and I am fortunate in that my parents also help with the form-filling.

    Question really is whether I can really be arsed to go through it all again if needs be. In terms of ESA I have been in WRAG since my last relapse led to me losing my last (minimum wage) job. But it 'only' pays my NI stamp cause of my income. I wasn't really prepared to fight the claim but then the report from Atos was so appalling and incorrect that I did.

    Last Questionnaire I had, my parents had to complete and that was two months after winning the appeal! Haven't heard a darn thing since - not even to say 'Everything is alright and we'll contact you again in XXX' which would be a nice improvement to the system. Might remove some of the 'stress'. Being in WRAG is a joke too. Three years now and not once has the job centre been in touch. I haven't contacted them for several reasons but the main one being I wouldn't be able to travel to their 'back to work' briefings if God himself lent a hand.

    DLA is different and it took me a long long long time to basically accept that I was disabled and worthy of making the claim. Got a lot of support from friends on another forum to do that for which I am grateful. Of course I didn't expect (who does?) to have to fight even harder (with a tribunal appearance) to 'win'.

    'Win' seems wholly inappropriate even now. Shouldn't be about winning and losing. Bloody system. Anyway, this shirker is off back to bed. Night-all :)
    Valentijn, justy and Bob like this.
  15. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    Sorry to hear about your struggles fire. On the plus side... it's expensive for them to take you to tribunal, so you were an extra burden to them!

    I wonder if they took account of all the work claimants are now expected to do in their cost-benefit analysis? I would expect they valued this burden at £0/hr, and found expecting patients to produce their own evidence and medical research to be highly cost-effective: "Get in the lab people, if you want us to believe you've got health problems and aren't just choosing to live on ESA for fun then you'd better come up with a blood test which holds up under blinded conditions."
  16. Firestormm

    Firestormm Senior Member

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    I tend to hope that after this initial splurge - and let's face it, it was wholly driven by a top-down approach Slashed costs and then applied willy-nilly without much forethought or care for the added societal burden - things will go suspiciously quiet.

    Unfortunately, and aside from Nick's desire to curtail the tory-led purge - we face a further £10bn in cuts. My heart goes out to all Tory supporters - or saps as I like to think of them. All those saps who attended the conference and applauded the ideology, the fog, created by men who live in gilt-clad ivory towers looking down on us poor folk.

    Just remember to ensure that you open your curtains each morning, and don't go on holiday with your benefits! Wouldn't want the neighbours to get the wrong impression. Dirty scroungers.

    Power to the people! :)

    [​IMG]
  17. Bob

    Bob

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    Nick Clegg says he absolutely won't allow the £10bn Tory welfare cuts to go ahead.

    Absolutely not.

    Yet.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-19925687
  18. Snow Leopard

    Snow Leopard Senior Member

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    Where the heck is all that money going to come from anyway? Are they planning on tolerating a massive increase in homelessness and suicide rates?
    Valentijn and Enid like this.
  19. Bob

    Bob

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    Well, it is the Tory party. Every individual should be highly self-sufficient. We should not rely on society to support each other during times of need. Well, we can rely on each other, as long as it doesn't involve using the country's GDP wealth, or lower our productivity. But if we rely on each other, and volunteer our time to look after people, then we won't be earning money, so we'd be useless citizens, scroungers and a leach on society. Not that there is such a thing as society. Unless it's the 'big-society' which is just a Tory synonym for getting rid of the welfare state.

    Sorry, getting a bit political now, so I'll leave it.
  20. Firestormm

    Firestormm Senior Member

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    You know - as a related aside - the only person I know who is actively working with both the DWP and Atos as well as (importantly) other representative organisations of other so-called 'fluctuating conditions', trying to improve the fairness of the system - is Dr Charles Shepherd of the MEA. I don't believe any of the other ME organisations are either involved at all or as heavily committed as he has been and continues to be. Not bad for an organisation that functions as a traditional charity of volunteers and one that doesn't pay hefty (or any) salaries.

    Not that I'd personally be expecting very much (wouldn't want to be disappointed) but at the very least, he is representing me at high level meetings and spreading the word. I think they are now at the point where trials of the recommended changes will be embarked upon - see below. When reading of all that Charles manages to pack into a week, I find it incredible that he doesn't get some payment for his time. I would certainly want something!

    Perhaps some cause for hope :)
    taniaaust1, Bob and currer like this.

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