Middle Class Solutions To Working Class Problems Is Why Charities Like MIND Keep Getting It So Wrong

In this impassioned post, Johnny Void takes Paul Farmer, the head of the mental health charity, Mind, to task for buying into the false medical consensus that any kind of work is good for you. Mr Void is careful to point out that MIND as an organisation does some great work, with very caring and genuinely helpful, hard-working frontline workers. But they’re led by managers on salaries of hundreds of thousands of pounds, are insulated from the realities of mental illness, and only know what they hear from other, upper middle class people, who share their prejudices about malingerers. He is particularly critical of MIND’s suggestion that sensitive information about a claimant’s mental health should be passed on to the workfare providers, like A4E and G4S. They also want the Fit to Work service now run by Maximus, to involve claimants’ employers. At the heart of this new scheme is a suggestion that the government should set up a specialist service for people with mental health problems. Mr Void suggests that this is, basically, a job advert aimed at getting a future Labour government to employ them in a specialist capacity.
Put simply, Farmer’s trying to get more work for his organisation, while totally misrepresenting the realities of mental illness. The mentally ill people I know stopped working because they simply couldn’t face it, not because they didn’t feel like it. And it certainly wasn’t a case of ‘I don’t think I’ll go in tomorrow’. And they genuinely felt guilty and humiliated because they couldn’t work. Furthermore, as Mr Void has repeatedly pointed out, there are jobs out there that will drive people nuts, especially those at the bottom of the ladder. That’s been shown by stats from the Civil Service, for heaven’s sake. How ignorant can Farmer be? Obviously, about as ignorant as the rest of his class, who stopped listening to evidence and logic long ago, and only now pay attention to anything that confirms their own prejudices about the proles.

the void

didnt-go-to-work-todayIain Duncan Smith must be pissing himself.  A report released at the end of last year by mental health charity MIND could not have gone further in endorsing the core ideas that lie behind his bungled and brutal welfare reforms.

The report is titled “We’ve Got Work To Do” and claims to demand ‘fundamental reform’ of the workplace and social security system to better support people with a mental health condition.  Sadly it is calling for nothing of the sort and is underpinned by the exact same lies and toxic assumptions that have driven both Tory and Labour welfare reforms.

Just like the DWP, MIND have adopted the flawed medical consensus that work is good for your health. The charity does acknowledge that this isn’t actually always true, but falls short of saying that work can be bad for your health, instead arguing that “inappropriate or poor quality work…

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2 Responses to “Middle Class Solutions To Working Class Problems Is Why Charities Like MIND Keep Getting It So Wrong”

  1. Florence Says:

    There is a sizable contingent of those who have been bullied out of work, and suffer PTSD as a result, where a return to the workplace may cause a total relapse. This used to be covered in the IB/DLA forms (but is not explicit in the new ESA / PIP forms, and not addressed at all in the WCA), as it was recognised that there could be serious problems such as psychosis and breakdown. In fact the ex-military suffering from PTSD are already finding major problems with and benefits the DWP.

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