30_january_2015A letter a day to number 10. No 990

Friday 30 January 2015.

Dear Mr Cameron,

In written evidence submitted by Department for Work and Pensions regarding sanctions some very remarkable things were said, “It is a mistake to see sanctions as a punitive measure.” and later, “it is in the claimant’s gift to end the sanction to emphasise personal responsibility”.

This evidence from the DWP is an astonishing piece of modern doublespeak but at its heart is the malicious and vile practice of victim blaming. The stuff of playground bullies, abusive partners, torturers and, clearly, the DWP.

I have raised this issue many times now, including three times with the Police. Sanctions deprive people of the means of survival and therefore their ‘right to life’, secondly they are used to enforce compliance to a regime of forced labour. These are internationally recognised human rights violations and crimes under UK law.

Depriving people of the right to life is a far more serious crime than say, water boarding’, assuming the victim survives, though torturers use the same rationale, ‘It’s your own fault this is happening, it is in your gift to make it stop, all you have to do is give us what we want. It’s your choice, a gift from you, to you’ (or some such vile nonsense). The DWP must have access to torture manuals to come up with the idea that it’s the victims gift to end torture. Sadly, victims endure with few gifts.

So to add to the DWP crimes we should add psychological torture. HRA – “Treatment will be considered inhuman when it causes intense physical or mental suffering.” That surely must include mental suffering so intense that it leads to suicide.

The clever part is that the DWP torturers never have to get their hands dirty, they can walk in the very highest corridors of power in the Palace of Westminster with clear consciences because it is all the victims fault.

It’s just part of the Tory mindset and the war on the poor, strivers who are struggling aren’t striving hard enough for their poverty and skivers, or shirkers, just means anyone who receives benefits.

You want to scrap the Human Rights Act, why bother? The Police wont act on it and the DWP have clearly diligently worked to find ways to circumvent it. Whether you scrap the HRA or not, it remains that treating people this way is morally bankrupt and evil.

http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/work-and-pensions-committee/benefit-sanctions-policy-beyond-the-oakley-review/written/16558.html

http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jan/03/benefits-sanctions-leading-suicides-dwp-depression

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/oct/01/cameron-pledge-scrap-human-rights-act-civil-rights-groups

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