The Department for Work and Pensions has this week been discovered to be merely making up quotes from a variety of ‘non existent benefit claimants’ in order to try and create some false positive spin that they have been doing the right thing in regards to the use of benefit sanctions in the UK. They have been caught out red handed trying to fabricate lies and deceit from non existent people to give a false illusion that people who have supposedly been affected by the sanctions regime don’t actually mind at all.
It’s almost laughable that this government and the DWP can think they fool the British people when the very real effects of these punitive and unjust welfare reforms are all around for us all to see.
The Leaflets were produced by the DWP and they were distributed in Jobcentres around the UK, these leaflets were produced in order to persuade the public into believing that the impact of benefit sanctions in this country has had a positive impact on the lives of the non-existent claimants that were featured on the leaflets. In actual fact it has turned out that the individuals featured on these leaflets ‘Sarah & Zac’ don’t actually exist.
The DWP has come out in defence stating that these bogus sickness benefit claimants were only used in the leaflets for illustrative purposes only. You may take from that what you will, but personally when the DWP say that these non-existent people were used for ‘illustrative’ purposes only that in itself is very true.
The DWP have sought to illustrate a merely false positive viewpoint and a callous disregard as to how these cruel and brutal welfare sanctions have had such a direct and hard hitting impact on the lives of the thousands of ‘Real’ people who have been so badly affected by them.
A non-existent girl by the false name of Sarah was quoted in the leaflets as saying that her Jobseekers Allowance benefit was sanctioned due to her failing to produce a CV. The fictional statement from Sarah reads “I didn’t think a CV would help me but my work coach told me that all employers need one. I didn’t have a good reason for not doing it and I was told I’d lose some of my payment”. The leaflet then goes on to state that Sarah’s benefits have now been reinstated as she has now completed her CV. She is quoted in the leaflet as saying “My benefit is back to normal now, and I’m really pleased with how my CV looks. It’s going to help me when I’m ready to go back to work”.The DWP leaflets then go on further to include a statement from a lad named ‘Zac’ who is again a non-existent person used for the mere fabrication of nonsense in these leaflets. It has been stated in the leaflet that he escaped a benefit sanction because he had managed to change his appointment with his work coach due to him needing to attend a hospital appointment. He is quoted as saying “I had a good reason for not going to the meeting and proof of the appointment. My benefit payment hasn’t changed and we booked another meeting I could get to”.
The DWP leaflets then go on further to include a statement from a lad named ‘Zac’ who is again a non-existent person used for the mere fabrication of nonsense in these leaflets. It has been stated in the leaflet that he escaped a benefit sanction because he had managed to change his appointment with his work coach due to him needing to attend a hospital appointment. He is quoted as saying “I had a good reason for not going to the meeting and proof of the appointment. My benefit payment hasn’t changed and we booked another meeting I could get to”.
Various Social Media users have also taken this opportunity to poke fun at the Welfare Minister ‘Iain Duncan Smith’ by posting mocked up images of the Tory celebrating in the House of Commons when the news of these fake DWP stories came to light.
The Department for Work and Pensions has since defended their publishings by tweeting to their 33,000 followers on Twitter stating “You may have seen the case study story trending here on Twitter. To let you all know we’ve removed them now- they were illustrative only”
Personally I do feel that is totally wrong and well and truly morally repugnant that the DWP in cahoots with this Tory establishment have resorted to falsely misrepresenting the effects of these cruel and unjust welfare reforms and benefit sanctions. Their actions are representative of the facts that they have now proven that they will lie about statistics to the public to hide the truth, not to mention the legalities behind what they have done. It’s worth remembering that for many people affected by these measures they would never in a million years try to put any positive spin on them I’m sure.
In actual fact there are a growing number of people in this country who have taken to such extreme last resort measures of trying to commit suicide as a direct effect of the benefit sanctions regime imposed under this Tory government. Nowhere in these fictional leaflets are the real stories told from the actual existent people who have been so negatively impacted by these cruel and unjust welfare reforms.
The Real stories of the many people who have been and continue to be affected by the effects of welfare reforms and benefit sanctions are often hidden under the veil of secrecy and the tales of true suffering in our country amongst real people remain to be unheard. However the real effects of these unnecessary measures are all around us for everyone to see in full clarity.
The rising levels of Poverty, Hardship and Financial Inequality are all very real and significant factors in modern British life for many of our people. No matter how this government and the DWP try to paint these reforms and sanctions in a positive light, it simply will not wash with many people because we know the truth. In my own personal situation I have been sanctioned once for around 2 weeks and this was due to me apparently not attending an appointment at the Jobcentre whilst I was claiming Jobseekers Allowance so please believe me when I say that I am talking from experience. During this time that I was sanctioned it was incredibly hard for me to make ends meet and I had to rely on using a food bank in order to put some food on the table in order to stay alive. I had nobody else that I could turn to for the financial help and support I needed and I would say that it was the most difficult 2 weeks of my life. The sanction I felt was unfair and unjust because I wasn’t actually advised of the appointment that was made for me but the DWP always insisted that they had let me know, essentially my word against theirs. In fact if it wasn’t for the help and support of the local food bank for those 2 weeks then I may not have been here today. So I would never sing the government or DWP’s praises about their sanctions regime at all never in a million years.
This government are well and truly going down the wrong path in their attempts to dismantle the welfare state. They cannot feasibly think that they can help and support people back into work by sanctioning their benefits and taking away their only means of survival in the process. For many people in this country their benefits are the only financial support they can receive, many people don’t have the loving support of rich parents who can financially support them. Realistically what we do need to be asking ourselves as Humanity on this Earth is, How can you realistically expect a person to be able to secure employment when you are actually taking away that persons lifeline and only means of people being able to adequately nourish themselves. What company on this earth will grant an employment opportunity to a malnourished skeleton who appears as though they don’t take good care of themselves or their body?
We cannot realistically think that we can help people back into employment by persecuting and sanctioning them and then making these people suffer further in financial hardship and despair. We should be helping people back into work by genuinely helping them and financially supporting them to be able to better themselves and looking after them so that they are able to seek work and be granted the opportunities that they deserve in life.
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Original Article written by Sy Hawkes & published via www.syhawkes.wordpress.com on August 20th 2015