Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/732/15169

From The Socialist newspaper, 5 September 2012

London Paralympics; protests against disability cuts: "Atos kills, kill Atos!"

London

Disabled people, family members and anti-cuts campaigners took a protest to the Atos assessment centre in Swansea, photo Swansea Socialist Party

Disabled people, family members and anti-cuts campaigners took a protest to the Atos assessment centre in Swansea, photo Swansea Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

"Atos kills, kill Atos" could be heard up and down Victoria Street outside the Department for Works and Pensions (DWP) as campaigners occupied the building as part of a week of protest against cuts to disabled people's benefits.

Atos has been in the firing line for its central role in the Con-Dems' brutal treatment of disabled people. Atos, formerly an IT contracting company, won 3 billion of contracts to assess disabled people for receipt of state benefits.

The Tories have vowed to cut 18 billion from the welfare budget and have subcontracted the dirty work of pushing people off vital benefits to Atos at a cost of 100 million a year.

The impact of a negative assessment by Atos is devastating. Aggressive Atos assessments are driving some disabled people to suicide while over 1,000 people have died following the withdrawal of benefits. A final insult to disabled people was Atos' sponsorship of the Paralympic Games.

On Friday 31 August hundreds gathered in protest outside the Atos headquarters in Euston, London. At the same time activists from Disabled People Against the Cuts, supported by the Socialist Party, occupied the DWP head office and called for an end to Atos assessments of disabled people.

The occupation was led by disabled people, many in wheelchairs. These activists showed incredible bravery in the face of a brutal police response. While eight activists occupied the foyer of the DWP head office, roughly 200 people gathered outside. Without warning police from the Territorial Support Group waded into the protesters outside. One disabled person suffered a dislocated shoulder and had to be taken away in an ambulance.

The battle against Atos and disability cuts must be stepped up - especially in light of the latest threat which would mean any disabled person who the DWP decides isn't taking sufficient steps towards getting back to work will lose a devastating 71 a week.

Neil Cafferky

Sheffield

Disabled people in Sheffield put on a united front against the government's chosen Paralympics sponsor. Protesters from the city's branch of UK Uncut, Disabled People Against Cuts and the Mental Health Action Group stormed the steps outside Hartshead Square's Jobcentre Plus, home to Atos healthcare offices, ahead of the start of the Paralympics.

David Kirkham, UK Uncut in Sheffield, delivered an impassioned speech to crowds of disabled people, carers, families and campaigners at the protest dubbed the 'Atos closing ceremony'. He said: "Atos is an unfit-for-work private sector company charged with stopping money and benefits for vulnerable and disabled people in this country.

"The Paralympics is about being the best you can be but the government and Atos are using that to point the finger at disabled people. We have doctors who take a holistic approach to sickness and disability. Instead that is being replaced with a 15-minute box-checking test."

As if to prove the point of the protest, a woman came out of Atos' office and took the mike saying: "I've just walked out of my interview because they don't know what they're doing." Pointing to her files of papers she said: "I've got letters here from my doctor and consultant from the last two years, yet Atos is trying to say I'm fit for work."

Sheffield Socialist Party members

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 5 September 2012:


Fight the cuts

On 20 October... March Together and then we must... Strike Together! to end austerity

Osborne's cuts plans aren't working


Socialist Party news and analysis

Southampton council pay dispute

London Met university crisis

Con-Dems criminalise homeless people

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

South Africa: Marikana massacre ignites a political volcano


Countering the far-right

EDL rally stopped by anti-racists in Walthamstow

Stopping the far-right - The need for democratic debate


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Southampton: Save Oaklands Pool

Building TUSC in Manchester

Fight begins against massive outsourcing by Knowsley's Labour council

Campaign Kazakhstan: Solidarity concert for those facing oppression

London Paralympics; protests against disability cuts: "Atos kills, kill Atos!"

Hospitals lacking services? Save our NHS!

Boris' workfare - no solution

Brighton Pride 2012: anti-cuts group blocked

Socialist Party subs appeal


Socialist Party workplace news

Unison Higher Education Service Group

Workplace news in brief


Readers' comments

From addiction to recovery

Volunteering at the Games


 

Home   |   The Socialist 5 September 2012   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   PDF  




Related links:

Disability:

triangleThe Socialist Inbox

triangleUN slams Tories for disabled rights ruin

triangleWhat we saw

triangleBenefit bullies

Cuts:

triangleNorth London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

triangleNo cuts - hands off King George A&E!

triangleYoung people being strangled by debts

triangleTories scrap the NHS pay cap: now fight for real-terms pay rises!

London:

triangleTower Hamlets Socialist Party: "You can't have capitalism without racism" (Malcolm X)

triangleTower Hamlets Socialist Party: Capitalism in Crisis - is Corbyn the answer?

triangleWest London Socialist Party: Young people need socialism!

Disabled:

triangleChatsworth ward campaign replies to Tory MP's intervention

triangle'Freedom riders' lobby against violent policing

Benefits:

triangleHousing crisis: Corbyn's positive measures blanked by Labour's right

DWP:

triangleFight expansion of disastrous 'Universal Credit' welfare system

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

19/10/17

North West

Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

18/10/17

Democratic rights

Conference on state spies: who's watching who?

18/10/17

Leeds

Striking back against sackers' charter at Leeds Uni

18/10/17

Royal Mail

Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

18/10/17

PCS

Balloting members on the pay cap

18/10/17

Art

'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future

18/10/17

Council

Sheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

18/10/17

South West Wales

Hundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP

18/10/17

NHS

Uprising to save the NHS!

18/10/17

Socialism

Can you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?

18/10/17

East London

No cuts - hands off King George A&E!

18/10/17

North London

North London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

18/10/17

BAE

Nationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

18/10/17

Schools

Schools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

18/10/17

Swansea

Socialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle19 Oct Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

triangle18 Oct Russia, October 1917: When workers took power

triangle18 Oct Tories torn - bin them now

triangle18 Oct Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangle18 Oct Balloting members on the pay cap

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party imploding...drive out the Tories

More ...

triangle21 Oct Birmingham: NSSN Solidarity Forum

triangle23 Oct Chesterfield Socialist Party: The continuing struggle for abortion rights

triangle24 Oct Liverpool Socialist Party: The October Russian Revolution 100 years ago to the day

triangle25 Oct Salford Socialist Party: The October 1917 Russian revolution

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2