Friday, 27 May 2011

I'm alright Jack

I'm not an activist I don't go looking for causes . Like most people I suspect unless it was happening to me or one of mine I was completely unaware of what else was going on in the world . I became a psychologist and worked with homeless people, partly I think because my family had been threatened with homelessness , this was a group of people who often had not bought about their own downfall , circumstances had changed, things had happened in their lives that had caused them to end up in the situation that they now found themselves in. Any one of them could have been you or I, all it would have taken was the loss of a job, recession, or a long-term illness . This group of people were looked down on, sneered at and discarded as second-class citizens.
Is this ringing any bells with any of you?
Because to my absolutely dismay I look around me and see it happening all over again. Another group of people, another vulnerable group of people, not homeless this time although some of them may be about to become homeless, again this group of people find themselves in this situation through absolutely no fault of their own.I am of course talking about the sick and disabled, the latest group to be discarded , sneered at and treated as second-class citizens . Again this has come to my notice because I am in that group, would I have known what was happening to these people had I not been disabled myself? I am ashamed to say possibly not! And maybe that is one reason that I'm reaching out to you through this blog today . Open your eyes to what is happening to your fellow man , read about it, try to place yourself in the position of these people who through no fault of their own are now finding themselves under attack , called scroungers,verbally attacked in the streets , and living under the very real threat of having the small allowance that they do get taken away from them. The fear is palpable , you can hear it if you speak to them, you can read it in their writings,It breaks my heart to hear the fear they are feeling at the prospect of a brown envelope dropping through their postbox , can you imagine being so scared of the postman coming each morning in case he delivers that letter . I am getting messages from my friends, full of panic because they've been called to ATOS for an interview to once again prove that they are entitled to the benefits that they are receiving . I read with horror stories of the people that are being thrown off of benefits and told they are fit for work , sick people, disabled people, terminally ill people. I read with real anger the articles that are printed in some newspapers ,falsified figures, attention grabbing headlines and misinformation. Here once again is a section of our community being segregated from the rest of the population . I have seen it before,fought it before, been truly sickened by peoples 'I'm alright jack' attitude. Are you all going to walk away because it isn't happening to you, well are you?

No comments: