A state of mind

Talking with many Labour members, I have learned first hand the impact the Tory government’s lack of compassion is having on the most vulnerable.

I met Clive who suffers from bi-polar disorder. He has been stable for four years and because he is over 65 he will escape the reassessment by ATOS but he felt for those who he knew would not escape.  I also met Hilary who will not escape reassessment and has been unemployed because of her illness.

A recent study for the mental health charity Mind found that three-quarters of people it surveyed said the prospect of a work capability assessment had made their mental health worse and 51% said it had left them with suicidal thoughts.

I have also met people who care for partners with dementia. I cannot imagine how hard it must be to watch someone you love deteriorate and detach day by day. There are 800,000 people in the UK with dementia, and this number is expected to grow to over a million by 2021. There are almost an equal number (650,000) of carers.

Last week was Dementia Awareness Week and the Alzheimers Society set out to get people talking about dementia. I am a great believer in the power of words to break barriers, challenge ideas and lend support. Words can be powerful if turned into actions.

This government is proving itself to be willing to penny pinch from the most vulnerable and those least able to defend themselves. Shameful.



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2 responses to “A state of mind

  1. Nicola J

    Having a sister with learning disabilities means I have seen first hand the significant impact on her and my family since the change of government. When the funding from Remploy was withdrawn many vulnerable people like my sister were made redundant and have very little chance of re-entering the work place unless a support programme is re-established. Any steps which make people more aware of how the most vulnerable are being treated is to be commended.

  2. Jon

    We are not active Party members and as disabled people are somewhat excluded from activism by our impairments.
    Mari has shown an understanding of our ‘problems’ by simply accepting that as a non-disabled person she will never know what it is like to be us and needs to ask. This is a breath of fresh air compared with others who ‘know everything about disability’ as they have worked with ‘other minorities’.
    We (disabled people) will be affected by the actions of this Coalition and by what the next government does to rectify the situation. In the months leading to the next election Labour will need to listen, learn and plan for Government.
    I just hope that senior Party members will follow Mari’s example by listening to Disabled people before acting.

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