Jodie Whiting: Another Victim of the Murderous DWP

Mike yesterday put up a piece about the tragic death of another unemployed person, Jodie Whiting. Whiting, a 42 year old mother of nine, committed suicide after the DWP stopped her benefits, according to the coroner’s inquest. She was sanctioned because she missed an appointment for a ‘health assessment’, though she later said she knew nothing about it, because she was in hospital at the time.

DWP staff have now issued an apology, and the sanction was overturned after she died.

Mike points out that despite his campaign a few years ago to get the DWP to release the figures for the number of people, who have died after having their benefits stopped, the DWP are still sanctioning people. And the results are deaths like these.

Mike also points out that Ms Whiting’s death fits Friedrich Engel’s concept of ‘social murder’, as described in his The Condition of the Working Class in England:

“When society places hundreds of proletarians in such a position that they inevitably meet a too early and an unnatural death, one which is quite as much a death by violence as that by the sword or bullet; when it deprives thousands of the necessaries of life, places them under conditions in which they cannot live – forces them, through the strong arm of the law, to remain in such conditions until that death ensues which is the inevitable consequence – knows that these thousands of victims must perish, and yet permits these conditions to remain, its deed is murder just as surely as the deed of the single individual; disguised, malicious murder, murder against which none can defend himself, which does not seem what it is, because no man sees the murderer, because the death of the victim seems a natural one, since the offence is more one of omission than of commission. But murder it remains.”

Mike in his conclusion makes clear the poor woman’s suicide is exactly what Engels called such deaths – murder it remains.

Ms Whiting’s death is just one of many tens of thousands of people, who have died in misery and poverty due to the Tories’ sanctions regime. Johnny Void, Stilloaks, Mike, DPAC and many, many others have put up posts reporting the deaths, and naming the individuals, who have died and the circumstances of their deaths. The last time I looked, the number of disabled people, who had starved to death or committed suicide after having their benefits taken away was about 500-600 +. And the above blogs and organisations have published lists and short biographies of these tragic victims.

But the actual numbers of people, who have died in total, is much, much larger. From the figures Mike was able to wrestle out of Iain Duncan Smith’s mendacious and obstructive DWP, the figures are in the tens of the thousands. Mike and other bloggers and news organisations, have had to struggle to get these figures. The DWP repeatedly turned down the requests for them under the Freedom of Information Act on the grounds that they were ‘vexatious’. When the Information Commissioner finally forced them to reveal the stats, the DWP did nothing until the very last minute, when it repealed against the decision. When they finally did release the figures, it wasn’t quite those Mike had requested. Even so, these showed that for the period in question, something like 13-14,000 of people had died after the DWP found them ‘fit for work’.

And researchers at Oxford University reported that in 2015 30,000 people were killed by austerity.

An austerity Theresa May is still pursuing, despite her widely reported comment in the papers that it was dead.

This is carnage. This is mass murder. It is what Mike and other bloggers have called it, including Jeffrey Davies, one of the many great bloggers on Mike’s and my websites: the genocide of the disabled.

But the Tories are getting away with it, because those killed are dying in their own homes, by their own hand, or simply through starvation. They have not been herded into death camps, or physically shot or murdered by the DWP. They have simply been allowed to die, in misery and despair.

There are upwards of 100,000 people using food banks, and something like 7 million plus people living in ‘food insecurity’ – that is, they don’t know if their next meal is going to be their last. Or if they will have a next meal. Hard-pressed working mothers, who need benefits to make ends meet thanks to very poor wages, are starving themselves just to feed their children.

This is a national disgrace.
It has to end. Now.
We need another election and a Corbyn victory to end the Tory regime of fear, despair and organised, corporate murder.

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6 Responses to “Jodie Whiting: Another Victim of the Murderous DWP”

  1. Jeffrey Davies Says:

    its called culling the stock has rtu ids stated stock

  2. joanna Says:

    This needs to come to the forefront again! The problem is, the government have really good lawyers on their side, who could think of many excuses. Proof is incredibly hard pinpoint in these cases, especially as suicide is so strongly linked to mental illnesses, starving someone can cause mental illness, but then so could many other things in life. This the very devious way that the DWP will get away with it time and time again.

    Unless lawyers can find any possible causation, that will stand up to scrutiny, then the Government has the best weapon in the world! That is very scary!!! It should scare every human being who has a sense of human justice!

    I think the only thing that can possibly turn the tide, is if everyone of us looks out for everyone else and helps each other out, this government seems to thrive on people’s isolation and distrust for each other, look at their reaction to the thousands of donations that flooded in from the public in reaction to the Grenfell mass murder!!!. Theresa May hated that reaction because it showed the government up, because the public helped each other.

    In time it will have a great effect, the only problem is, we need to identify those who are struggling, The people of this country have proved that they have amazing hearts and generosity!! They are a Reason to be proud to be British!!!

    It is also very hard for those who are very proud and will not ask for help, but at the same time they Will help others! They need to know, they are important to our society!!

    This Government have a society all of their own!!!

    • Beastrabban Says:

      I absolutely agree, Jo! The people of this nation are amazing in their generosity and the way they will come together at times of tragedy. You think of the way the public has come forward to help the victims of the Manchester and London terror attacks as well the Grenfell Tower tragedy. Regarding the terror attacks, people of different creeds and ethnicities have shown their support for others, whether the attacker is an Islamicist or a White supremacist.

      We need to have more solidarity, to show the poor, the disabled, the mentally ill and marginalised that they are still valued and valuable members of society, whatever the Tories do to them, and to fight for their rights to a better life for them and their children.

      • joanna Says:

        Sorry I didn’t include Manchester or The London terror attacks, but the Government had to act differently because it had some American victims, can you imagine what the USA would do if the government treated their citizens as they treat British citizens? It doesn’t bear thinking about!
        It seems like the victims of Glenfell were targeted because they have no wealth therefore no voice, and in this case the government isn’t answerable to anyone! They should be but as they have just won the election they feel safer, I hope that feeling turns out to be an illusion for them!!
        Being distrustful of justice I can’t see any criminal charges occurring! What does it take for this government to be ousted with votes of no confidence? To me it is looking like they can do whatever they want, with no restraint whatsoever!!!

  3. Maria Jacob Says:

    A tory voter questions where we’re Jodey Whitings children they should have helped her.I Love my children who are now grown up but I could not and would not want to worry them about money worries. Especially when they are struggling to make ends meet. There is that programme about been on the sick. It is a mickey take because watching a person’s day to day life especially when sick would be like watching paint dry. The people on the programme are in the main mentally and physically unwell. This will carry on because there are a lot of people who despise the sick and disabled. Yet it could happen to them or their loved ones. Sick and disabled people are people like any other they don’t won’t to disclose how they are really affected. Nobody wants to say I can’t cope I can’t cook and clean or work. Because they know it puts into question what’s the point of being here. Yet people should not be dying. My relative had a brain tumour who went from working and being articulate to a person unable to do anything for themselves. Their husband thought wife would be better off dead and yet she did have happiness and laughter. Society makes us believe we are of no point living if we can’t work etc. This is wrong and people should not have their money taken awaY. People deserve to be treated with compassion and dignity. That is something else and to make sure disabled people are not put out of the way in homes.

  4. Jeffrey Davies Says:

    Aktion t4 rolling along without much of a ado.

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