A Government That Permits The Psychological Torture Of Benefit Claimants Does Not Give A Fuck About Mental Health

Johnny Void in this detailed post demolishes the DWP’s patronising and lukewarm attitude towards protecting the mental health of their claimants. In addition to the complete absence of any serious mental health training of the assessors and decision-makers, the assessment form itself was heavily biased towards physical incapacity. It had very little to say about mental health issues, despite the fact that acute anxiety, depression or other health problems can very profoundly affect one’s life and ability to work. As for work always being good for you, and finding work also being beneficial, this isn’t always the case by any means. Sometime those with acute depression or anxiety simply can’t work because of the nature of their illness, and certain types of job will make it worse. When I worked in the inland revenue, there was a saying that no-one should be left to work doing nothing but filing, because after about three months of doing this the sheer boredom of doing this tedious job would send people crazy. Literally. As for the threadbare guidance offered to assessors dealing with people with suicidal thoughts, it’s clearly not written by anyone with any understanding of mental health problems at all. Depression is not a case of ‘feeling a bit down’. One of the best, short descriptions of it is the title of the book Dr Wolpert wrote about his own struggle with depression after the death of his mother: ‘A Malignant Sadness’. The cretinous advice offered by the DWP clearly doesn’t come from anyone, who knows anything about it, nor have they met anyone who suffered from it. It’s written by someone, who’s obviously been extremely fortunate enough to enjoy good mental health, and thinks that giving someone a brisk talking to and telling them to ‘pull themselves together’ will do the trick. And as for cruddy jobs destroying your health: the civil service knows this. A little while ago Horizon even did a programme on how the employment records kept by the civil service actually show that you will have worse health the further down the chain of command you are. You are far more likely to have a heart attack or some other disease if you are a low-paid grunt humping the files around, than if you are one of the high paid mandarins at Somerset House, whose incredibly inflated opinions of themselves is reflected in the name they gave their ‘staff association’: 1st Division. Really, the DWP’s and government’s attitude to mental health is a disgrace. They should be sacked immediately, and not let anywhere near anyone feeling even the slightest bit emotionally frail.

the void

mental-health-toolkit DWP Denial, An Example Of The Shoddy Mental Health Training Given To Jobcentre Staff

This Government do not give a shit about people with mental health conditions, and neither did the last one.  Whilst politicians of all parties offer soundbites and fake sympathy the treatment of people with a mental health condition by the benefits system now amounts to little more than psychological torture.

This is not hyperbole.  Whilst the medical establishment has stood ildly by, and mental health charities have veered between mild disapproval and outright collaboration, the DWP has lanched an all out war on the most marginalised people in society.

Consider the ‘claimant journey’, to use their language, for someone unable to work due to mental ill health.  The first step is to claim Employment Support Allowance, a process which may take months due to a huge backlog of cases.  During this period the claimant will be…

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3 Responses to “A Government That Permits The Psychological Torture Of Benefit Claimants Does Not Give A Fuck About Mental Health”

  1. jeffrey davies Says:

    its called culling the stock whilst the rest roburstly the rest of the mps talk about rtu ids ways yes its true talk talk talk whilst the benefits claiments die jeff3

  2. prayerwarriorpsychicnot Says:

    I was working for Social Services in the eighties when Thatcher introduced “care in the community” the propaganda front for closing mental care facilities and saving money. The people thus dumped were lucky to have a Social Worker chasing after them once a week to see if they were still in the land of the living. This was followed by changing the cultural norms to the “normalisation” of mental illness. Mentally ill people in the community were just like everyone else, leading to the position they don’t need any special facilities, it’s all “in the mind” – their imagination – they aren’t really mentally ill, just malingering. Everything the govt does, and every new social trend needs to be put under the microscope to see where it leads.

  3. A Government That Permits The Psychological Tor... Says:

    […] beastrabban:Johnny Void in this detailed post demolishes the DWP’s patronising and lukewarm attitude towards protecting the mental health of their claimants.  […]

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