Last week I wrote 'Psychological effects of being branded a scrounger', as always I wrote this because it was how I was feeling, I thought maybe some others out there may be feeling the same. Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the response this blog attracted, over 1,500 people read the blog and it was passed far and wide.
You may think this would please me, after all isn't that what we write for? We obviously want readers or we wouldn't bother, that is true but generally I write my blogs about my own situation, they are my own thoughts on what is going on in my life at any given time. I am always pleased when people choose to read them but don't expect to appeal to a very wide audience, after all why would people be interested in a middle aged (I'm sticking to that) woman whose life revolves around her family, cat, puppy and her degenerative disease?
So you may think I am slightly deranged when I say I am incredibly saddened by the amount of people who have related to the blog. What a sad indictment on this Government that so many of us have such deep concerns over what is happening to us and such fear over our futures.
What has happened to this country? What has happened to humanity?
I can just hear some of you saying 'oh here we go, another disabled person over reacting because her benefits may be at risk'
or more cruelly perhaps 'another scrounger scared for her easy lifestyle on benefits' after all that was suggested by an MP last week that we 'choose' a lifestyle on benefits therefore we 'choose' to be sick/disabled.
How very strange some of the wording has become with regard to this issue, i hear and read on a regular basis now the words 'scroungers, layabouts, scum, feckless and workshy' but I still can not relate them to myself or any of the other sick/disabled I know or have come to know.
So who are these people?
The government would have you believe they are in the majority, the media certainly seems to be able to find them with alarming regularity.
They would have you believe they are driving around in large expensive cars or holidaying abroad and living the life of Riley ( who is Riley?)
They live next door to practically every one of you, how often have you heard recently 'oh yes, him 2 doors down has had a 'bad back' for years, never done a days work but he has a flat screen television, his children are always dressed in the latest fashions'?
Reality check here and now......the fraud rate is 0.5% in DLA, the DLA forms are a horrific 30+ pages long of very intimate details. Checks are made with your health professionals, you are made to reapply at intervals unless they are certain you have a condition that has no hope of ever improving.
ESA is incredibly difficult to get, you have to go through a very unfair computer generated assessment again and again and again.
As it now stands since the Governments dirty dealings with regard to this benefit regardless of how long you may have worked previously and paid in your contributions if you are placed in the WRAG group (and many are wrongly placed here) you can only have ESA for one year, then apparently you are miraculously cured and ready to return to work!
I am one of those fortunate people who has been cured, oh yes my degenerative auto immune disease is going to disappear from April, I am so pleased because my GP and my consultants have all said it will get worse and worse as time goes on, I have got so much worse over the last 2 years that I can now hardly walk and my hands are swollen and sore and don't work at all well so you can imagine how very very indebted to this Government I am that in approx two months I will again be able to work and earn money and pay into the contribution system!
And if that's not what happens? If that's actually a big fat lie and I wake up that morning and am still the same as I am now?
Well there is no plan B, no plan B because this Government is NOT ever wrong is it?
They and the media have convinced the public that we are all pretending to be sick/disabled and that after a year of help we WILL be able to rejoin the employment market.
Ok, in all seriousness I am scared, more scared than I have ever been since being diagnosed with this condition and wondering what my future held.
Is it the fear of financial difficulties? Partly, obviously that is a concern but I know we will get through no matter what so although that worries me that is not my main fear.
My fear is that I am being pushed into a mould that doesn't fit me, I am being made to feel, consider, behave? Like someone I am not.
And all the time there is this furious little voice screaming at me 'what about my rights? My right to be treated as a human being, my right to be heard, my right to live my life as I choose, my right not to be questioned or labelled, my right to good service from the departments I have to deal with and yes even my right to be sick/disabled...........sod it what about MY RIGHTS?
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