Posts Tagged ‘Convalescent Charge’

Vox Political on aIDS’ Introduction of the Convalescent Charge: Bastard Brother of the Bedroom Tax for the Disabled

February 25, 2016

Really, Ian Duncan Smith doesn’t miss a chance to take food, clothing and dignity away from the poor, the sick and the disabled. And he’ll do it using any old excuse. Mike over at Vox Political has this story from the Mirror about MPs voting to cut benefits to people on the ESA Work Related Activity Group by £30. The deduction is made if they’re expected to get better within a year. This has been called a ‘convalescence charge’, and naturally compared to the Bedroom Tax. Mike in his comments about this odious new assault on the sick writes

MPs have voted to reinstate a plan to cut Employment and Support Allowance by £30 per week for no good reason.

The similarities between this plan – the Convalescent Charge – and the Bedroom Tax are shocking.

Like the Bedroom Tax, the Convalescent Charge affects only a certain number of people. In the former case, it’s people in social housing who the Conservative Government says have a ‘spare’ bedroom. In the latter case, it is those claiming ESA in the Work-Related Activity Group. People in the Support Group of ESA will retain the full amount.

Therefore we can say that members of the WRAG are being charged £30 a week because they have been told – by assessors employed by the Conservative Government – that they will get well within a calendar year of their claim becoming active. In any case, they will lose the benefit when that year is over.

He also points out that the mortality rate in the WRAG as it is, is three times higher than the national average. And this is amongst people, who are supposed to be well enough eventually to find work. He therefore wonders how many more will be killed by this new charge.

The Convalescent Charge – bastard brother of the Bedroom Tax – is here

I dare say the excuse here is that people expected to get better within a year don’t need quite so much care as those, who are permanently disabled. Or some other such mealy-mouthed mumbo-jumbo. Really, it’s just another excuse by the government to cut welfare spending and punish the sick for being sick, because Unum and Neo-Liberal social theory says they’re malingering.

I was reading one of the William Blum’s Anti-Empire Report columns last night, in which the great critic of the American empire stated that watching Bush or Obama defend yet another assault in Iraq, he wanted to shout out to him, ‘That’s enough, sir! You’ve done enough. Have you no decency, Sir?’ like the attorney who finally tore down Senator McCarthy and his wretched House Committee on Un-American Activities. I feel the same way about aIDS. He’s killed 590 people with his benefit cuts, and 290,000 more have suffered mental illness as a result. But still this squalid little man wants to go on bullying and killing. It’s about time somebody pulled him up short, somebody with the same sense of decency and justice, which this crawling, grovelling slug doesn’t.