Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/760/16489
Con-Dems' latest cruel cut: Disability Living Allowance
Iain Duncan Smith, who claimed he could live on the Jobseeker's Allowance pittance of £53 a week, is the architect of the latest assault on disabled people.
It is called the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) - the Coalition's taste for irony cannot be faulted.
PIP replaces Disability Living Allowance (DLA), and replaces the "lower rate" mobility component with a still-more unattainable "standard rate".
The charity Scope estimates 600,000 people will be worse off under PIP. Those with serious mobility problems - unable to walk more than 50 metres - are first in the crosshairs.
Any person capable of staggering a mere 20 metres (the length of about four parked cars) has their "higher rate" PIP removed. This includes those walking with mobility aids such as canes and those with carers.
Disability Alliance estimates that one in five DLA recipients are employed. They did a survey which found these same workers would be forced into underemployment or joblessness should they lose the means to pay for transport, carers and vital equipment.
While shamelessly propagating myths about 'workshy' benefit claimants, this government has persistently undermined disabled people's employment prospects.
We have seen the Remploy closures. More than heartless, these were counterproductive. Remploy workers made important medical products, sold at a profit.
Remploy factories were set up for veterans of World War Two, enabling these survivors of senseless conflict to contribute to society.
The government's rhetoric, that axing DLA will "simplify" benefits, is true. There is no doubt things will be simpler for government ministers and the fat-cat bosses.
But for those workers with the nerve to be less than fully physically able, the complications are only multiplying.
Socialists call for an end to victimisation of disabled people. We need full public funding of support for disabled people to live independent lives - no to PIP, yes to jobs for all workers of all abilities.
El Morris, DLA claimant, and James Ivens, Lambeth and Southwark Socialist Party
Iain Duncan Smith
I could quite happily live with NO income at all because I get £77 lunch allowance every day, free transport, free accommodation, free mobile phone calls, free stationery, free use of a gym and for every £10 I spend in the House of Commons bar you pay £7 of it my lovely tax paying mugs!! LOL! Yours most gratefully Iain :)
Facebook users made their thoughts on IDS' pledge clear. Nearly half a million people have signed an online petition for Iain Duncan Smith to try living on £53 a week as he said he could.
In The Socialist 10 April 2013:
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
The bedroom tax
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party workplace news
Socialist Party review