Sanctioned pregnant lady, disabled man told to travel miles to travel to his ESA assement. Today’s demo. 

I couldn’t believe that Thursday had arrived so quickly. I had spent all week covering the Conservative Party Conference and to say that I was tired is an understatement, but people still need help.
I was met at the cafe by a lady that we had helped a while ago. Her life is back on track now and she is doing well. She likes to come and have a chat with me, and I like it to. I regard her as a friend and we sat and put the world to rights.
I arrived at the Jobcentre and set everything up. Thank goodness I wasn’t on my own this week, last week was awful. People soon arrived, arriving at the Jobcentre for appointments many needing food parcels.

The weather is getting cold now, although it wasn’t raining. My thoughts go out to everyone living on the streets.

We spoke to a young couple who even though they are working they are struggling. Because they don’t work full time they are on Universal credit and they don’t have a penny to spare. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Universal Credit is hell on earth.

We spoke to a lady who was rushing out of the Jobcentre. I asked her what was wrong, was she ok? She told me that she was pregnant and they had sanctioned her. She couldn’t stop though because she was in a rush to collect a bank statement. I gave her a leaflet and told her that we would be here next week if she wanted to talk, and for her to read the advice on the leaflet.

We spoke to a lady who had just been informed that she had been sanctioned for not answering a telephone call from the DWP. She had already told them that her mobile phone was broken, but they ignored this fact and sanctioned her anyway. She will be appealing.

For those thinking that the DWP are lovely, are nice and they have sympathy you are very mistaken. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Apart from the odd nice advisor who never stays employed their long, its generally a soulless, heartless organisation where not a care is given to any claimant.

I spoke to an older, disabled gentleman who has to use a motorised scooter to get around. He had recieved a text to inform him that he had missed his ESA medical assessment in Huddersfield. Huddersfield is miles away, a train ride away and he would have massive problems being able to make this journey. I’m not sure if he had recieved a letter from the assessment centre informing him of this, but I told him that even though it is scary he must open the brown letters that come through his letterboxes. Many people are scared of opening them, the whole system makes you scared because they hold your future in their hands.

We gave him some good advice and helped him.

We spoke to a young couple with a young baby and a toddler. Both the children were ill, and they had a sickness bug. Even so they had to attend their appointment even if that meant that one of them had to keep running out of the building with a child that had been sick. Why can’t they just leave people alone. The mother of the children is also disabled, and in my opinion she shouldn’t have to attend a Jobcentre appointment.

I overheard a young man talking to a colleague saying that it is scary, that they have no power at all and the Jobcentre and a computer controls their life. This is the reality. A person’s life really isn’t their own is it.

I spoke to a homeless man who I like to talk to. He’s a lovely man and is looking much better this week. I really hope that he stays this way.

Thankfully I was joined by my colleagues this week, and some extra colleagues who come along when they are able to. This cheered me up no end. There was a good atmosphere outside the Jobcentre this week which was fantastic.

Remember, the DWP have no sympathy for anyone. A person might find a sympathetic advisor but the next week they can, and often are replaced with an unsympathetic one who will do their best to overturn the good work already done by their colleague.

It’s a system that is controlled by targets and figures, every person entering that Jobcentre has a value to them. If they can’t see a person having a value then they will be tossed to one side. Their life will be made very hard.

I can never, and will never condone the behaviour of the DWP. Nor will I ever sing their praises like its a celebration when they manage to treat one person nicely because this is what they should be doing to everyone all of the time. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect, a person is not responsible for their own poverty. The system is and we need to change it.
A massive thank you to everyone for coming along to support the demo today. You all cheered me up, even though we are all suffering with various aches and pains helping people makes everything worthwhile.

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15 thoughts on “Sanctioned pregnant lady, disabled man told to travel miles to travel to his ESA assement. Today’s demo. ”

  1. I wish people would start asking for proof of receipt and postage. Everyone I have advised and they do the proof of postage and receipt has had their sanction lifted. This is because they don’t get the proofs to say that they posted it or that it was received. Even if you have to describe yourself to the building owners, Telereal Trillium, if they do not supply the evidence they have no proof.

    If they try the “We posted it and you should have received it BS that is not proof, They are relying on the assumption that they will be believed it was posted and thus received. As I say Assumption is the mother of all fuck-ups.” And it appears to be in these cases.

    The DWP are trying to save money not by getting a free proof of postage, but the extra they are charged for signed delivery. In my opinion, any letter they send out about missed appointments or other benefits should be sent signed for. If not they leave themselves wide open for action against themselves.

    There are 3 main times I have come across them using their excuse for a sanction
    1. sending a letter, that you never received, and missing the claimed appointment. Easily countered with the proofs and copy of said letter.
    2. Saying that you were handed a letter at a previous signing on date. Quickly countered with what was the date of my signing on that I was handed said letter?
    3. Not applying for enough jobs! Simply ask them for a full list of all jobs that a person with your qualifications/ medical conditions could apply for, with the contact number email for each job!


  2. I’ve seen a woman have her ESA removed because she goes food shopping with her children she has no choice nobody to do it for her. Another lady had hers removed because she can use a computer – Was forced to fill in forms on her own even though she had support from an agency. A lady sanctioned £2,000 because she missed an appointment she had no knowledge of. Another had a call from DWP to say her benefits were being stopped unable to find out why given 1 weeks notice to quit her flat due to direct payments not showing up. At my tribunal a few years ago DWP told the tribunal I’d not sent in my application or med records I had them with me including proof they’d received them. How do you get to a tribunal if you haven’t applied. There should be redress

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Very wrong for a pregnant woman to be sanctioned. What about the health of the unborn child if she can’t get proper food to eat ? This is punishing an innocent child that isn’t even born yet.
    And I say again, as so many have, where are you Jeremy Corbyn when people like this need you ?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Huddersfield is not only a train ride away, it’s even in a different County to Ashton! The good old West Riding, as was, and you’re in Lancs. /Greater Manchester. It’s ridiculous to send someone so far for assessment. I was just recently sent to Bradford, from Hudds. , to attend a Manual Handling course, but at least that’s in the same County.

    Liked by 1 person

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