28_august_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,536

Sunday 28 August 2016.

Dear Mrs May,

Salford’s Unemployed & Community Resource Centre reports that David (no surname given) was repeatedly sanctioned, “This resulted in him being unable to control his diabetes because he had no money for food. This caused diabetic ulcers which became infected and he had to have a leg amputated. All his sanctions were eventually overturned, but it was too late.”

Depriving people of the means of survival has serious and deadly consequences. I and others have repeatedly warned that people’s lives are being put at risk, many are already dead, through a draconian punitive policy that no court in the land would consider for a moment. The DWP’s secret penal system is a travesty.

The Guardian reported that the DWP has had to issue a ‘new policy for all DWP businesses to help them manage suicide and self-harm declarations from customers’.

This descent into barbarism has no place in a supposedly civilised nation.

Although we were given no choice in the matter, we, the people, bailed out the banks and since then we’ve been told again and again that we are also responsible for paying down the debt left by the bank bail out. That’s a nice double whammy for the vast majority of people who had no part in the failure and greed of the banks which led to the banking crisis.

When George Osborne proposed cuts to working Tax Credits he said in his Summer Budget 2015 speech, “So those who oppose any savings to Tax Credits will have to explain how on earth they propose to eliminate the deficit, let alone run a surplus and pay down debt.” Attacking low paid workers to pay down the debt is the most obscene travesty of justice, as are the tens of £billions in cuts imposed on the poorest and most vulnerable people in Britain.

David has lost his leg as the price for a tissue of lies that we were in any way responsible for the criminal activities of the banks. What part did ordinary people play in the fall of Lehman Brothers which triggered the banking crisis? The clue is in the description and the answer is – None! The banks aggressively sold junk mortgage securities which were given AAA ratings and which, unsurprisingly, blew up in their faces. Yet the banks have been allowed to carry on with business as usual. Osborne even tried, post crash, to protect bankers bonuses in Europe using public money. You couldn’t make it up!

https://welfaretales.wordpress.com/2016/05/06/benefit-sanctions-are-britains-secret-penal-system/

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/aug/27/death-britains-benefits-system-fit-for-work-safety-net

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2011/may/08/jobcentre-staff-guidelines-suicide-threats

https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/chancellor-george-osbornes-summer-budget-2015-speech

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2016-06-22/lending-to-poor-people-didn-t-cause-the-financial-crisis

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2014/02/06/osborne-20k-banker-bonuscap_n_4735825.html

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