Tag: Greater Manchester Poverty Action

I’ve had no payments for 13 months. Welcome to universal credit.

Dear readers,

It appears that autumn has now merged into winter, it’s freezing out there horrific for anyone street homeless and anyone that can’t afford to heat their homes.

This cold weather worries me because so many people won’t survive the cold, many will either end up in hospital or become ill as a result.

Before the demo I always have a quick walk around the town centre to check in with people and see if they’re OK. I had some really good conversations, people are far more supportive than they were years ago.

Today was quite a busy demo, I spoke to lots of people with differing problems many of them homeless living in temporary accommodation, others street homeless having to rely on the bed for a night scheme. It helps a lot but it isn’t perfect. In reality no one should be homeless like this at all.

I had a long conversation with a young homeless man, he’s trying so hard to survive out there. He told me that he’s getting pressurised by his Jobcentre advisor to find work, according to them it doesn’t matter if he hasn’t got an address even a temporary one.

He told me that he’s been put on endless useless courses that have only promoted zero hour contract agency work, not really suitable for anyone especially when you’re homeless.

You’d think that he would be getting help with this but nope, work must come first, the DWP must come first and complying with the system must be a priority above everything else.

We as rational thinking people know the work doesn’t miraculously cure a person of all their ills and problems, zero hour contract employment makes these things much worse.

I’m sick to death of hearing the same old statements from the government and suchlike. They don’t care, they don’t have your best interests at heart afterall they have a swinging brick in place of a heart.

We spoke to a woman with four children whos universal credit had been stopped because she apparently hadn’t agreed to the claimant commitment. She hadn’t been asked to review it online and luckily she managed to get this decision overturned and they’ll reinstate her payments straight away.

This however hasn’t helped her with her problems regarding council tax and this matter is ongoing.

I spoke to a man that told me that he hasn’t received any universal credit payments for 13 months. I asked him why and he told me that the DWP insist that he’s working even though he’s provided bank statements etc to prove that he isn’t.

Guilty after being proven innocent because the DWP don’t want to give him his payments. Luckily he is still fighting this and I’m confident that he’ll win.

I had a conversation with a chap who’s in the process of claiming Universal credit. There is a problem though, he doesn’t know how to use a computer.

The system works against anyone like this, anyone with a disability, basically anyone. It’s a cruel, heartless system.

We had a conversation with a man that has recently been made homeless by his private landlord. He now spends his days trying to find somewhere to sleep and stay safe.

What was surprising today was the amount of young people, students at the local college saying that they hated universal credit and that they agreed with everything that we are doing, helping people and providing support.

For those working at Ashton Under Lyne Jobcentre that are telling people that they shouldn’t be listening to us, stop it right now. We help people, we feed them and provide solidarity and advice. These are basic things that you should be doing but aren’t.

Today was cold, but we helped lots of people and we will be returning again next week to do the same.

Please come and join us if you can, if you can’t please read and share my blog this really helps to raise awareness.

A huge thank you to everyone that shares, reads and supports my blog and the campaign.

For anyone wishing to donate there’s a donate button at the top and side of this blog. I don’t know how much longer it will be there though because I have to pay my yearly subscription for this blog and at the moment I can’t afford to do this. I’ll loose the ability to put links like that on my blog but I’ll work something out.

I’ve had no payments for 13 months. Welcome to universal credit.

Dear readers,

It appears that autumn has now merged into winter, it’s freezing out there horrific for anyone street homeless and anyone that can’t afford to heat their homes.

This cold weather worries me because so many people won’t survive the cold, many will either end up in hospital or become ill as a result.

Before the demo I always have a quick walk around the town centre to check in with people and see if they’re OK. I had some really good conversations, people are far more supportive than they were years ago.

Today was quite a busy demo, I spoke to lots of people with differing problems many of them homeless living in temporary accommodation, others street homeless having to rely on the bed for a night scheme. It helps a lot but it isn’t perfect. In reality no one should be homeless like this at all.

I had a long conversation with a young homeless man, he’s trying so hard to survive out there. He told me that he’s getting pressurised by his Jobcentre advisor to find work, according to them it doesn’t matter if he hasn’t got an address even a temporary one.

He told me that he’s been put on endless useless courses that have only promoted zero hour contract agency work, not really suitable for anyone especially when you’re homeless.

You’d think that he would be getting help with this but nope, work must come first, the DWP must come first and complying with the system must be a priority above everything else.

We as rational thinking people know the work doesn’t miraculously cure a person of all their ills and problems, zero hour contract employment makes these things much worse.

I’m sick to death of hearing the same old statements from the government and suchlike. They don’t care, they don’t have your best interests at heart afterall they have a swinging brick in place of a heart.

We spoke to a woman with four children whos universal credit had been stopped because she apparently hadn’t agreed to the claimant commitment. She hadn’t been asked to review it online and luckily she managed to get this decision overturned and they’ll reinstate her payments straight away.

This however hasn’t helped her with her problems regarding council tax and this matter is ongoing.

I spoke to a man that told me that he hasn’t received any universal credit payments for 13 months. I asked him why and he told me that the DWP insist that he’s working even though he’s provided bank statements etc to prove that he isn’t.

Guilty after being proven innocent because the DWP don’t want to give him his payments. Luckily he is still fighting this and I’m confident that he’ll win.

I had a conversation with a chap who’s in the process of claiming Universal credit. There is a problem though, he doesn’t know how to use a computer.

The system works against anyone like this, anyone with a disability, basically anyone. It’s a cruel, heartless system.

We had a conversation with a man that has recently been made homeless by his private landlord. He now spends his days trying to find somewhere to sleep and stay safe.

What was surprising today was the amount of young people, students at the local college saying that they hated universal credit and that they agreed with everything that we are doing, helping people and providing support.

For those working at Ashton Under Lyne Jobcentre that are telling people that they shouldn’t be listening to us, stop it right now. We help people, we feed them and provide solidarity and advice. These are basic things that you should be doing but aren’t.

Today was cold, but we helped lots of people and we will be returning again next week to do the same.

Please come and join us if you can, if you can’t please read and share my blog this really helps to raise awareness.

A huge thank you to everyone that shares, reads and supports my blog and the campaign.

For anyone wishing to donate there’s a donate button at the top and side of this blog. I don’t know how much longer it will be there though because I have to pay my yearly subscription for this blog and at the moment I can’t afford to do this. I’ll loose the ability to put links like that on my blog but I’ll work something out.

I’ve had no payments for 13 months. Welcome to universal credit.

Dear readers,

It appears that autumn has now merged into winter, it’s freezing out there horrific for anyone street homeless and anyone that can’t afford to heat their homes.

This cold weather worries me because so many people won’t survive the cold, many will either end up in hospital or become ill as a result.

Before the demo I always have a quick walk around the town centre to check in with people and see if they’re OK. I had some really good conversations, people are far more supportive than they were years ago.

Today was quite a busy demo, I spoke to lots of people with differing problems many of them homeless living in temporary accommodation, others street homeless having to rely on the bed for a night scheme. It helps a lot but it isn’t perfect. In reality no one should be homeless like this at all.

I had a long conversation with a young homeless man, he’s trying so hard to survive out there. He told me that he’s getting pressurised by his Jobcentre advisor to find work, according to them it doesn’t matter if he hasn’t got an address even a temporary one.

He told me that he’s been put on endless useless courses that have only promoted zero hour contract agency work, not really suitable for anyone especially when you’re homeless.

You’d think that he would be getting help with this but nope, work must come first, the DWP must come first and complying with the system must be a priority above everything else.

We as rational thinking people know the work doesn’t miraculously cure a person of all their ills and problems, zero hour contract employment makes these things much worse.

I’m sick to death of hearing the same old statements from the government and suchlike. They don’t care, they don’t have your best interests at heart afterall they have a swinging brick in place of a heart.

We spoke to a woman with four children whos universal credit had been stopped because she apparently hadn’t agreed to the claimant commitment. She hadn’t been asked to review it online and luckily she managed to get this decision overturned and they’ll reinstate her payments straight away.

This however hasn’t helped her with her problems regarding council tax and this matter is ongoing.

I spoke to a man that told me that he hasn’t received any universal credit payments for 13 months. I asked him why and he told me that the DWP insist that he’s working even though he’s provided bank statements etc to prove that he isn’t.

Guilty after being proven innocent because the DWP don’t want to give him his payments. Luckily he is still fighting this and I’m confident that he’ll win.

I had a conversation with a chap who’s in the process of claiming Universal credit. There is a problem though, he doesn’t know how to use a computer.

The system works against anyone like this, anyone with a disability, basically anyone. It’s a cruel, heartless system.

We had a conversation with a man that has recently been made homeless by his private landlord. He now spends his days trying to find somewhere to sleep and stay safe.

What was surprising today was the amount of young people, students at the local college saying that they hated universal credit and that they agreed with everything that we are doing, helping people and providing support.

For those working at Ashton Under Lyne Jobcentre that are telling people that they shouldn’t be listening to us, stop it right now. We help people, we feed them and provide solidarity and advice. These are basic things that you should be doing but aren’t.

Today was cold, but we helped lots of people and we will be returning again next week to do the same.

Please come and join us if you can, if you can’t please read and share my blog this really helps to raise awareness.

A huge thank you to everyone that shares, reads and supports my blog and the campaign.

For anyone wishing to donate there’s a donate button at the top and side of this blog. I don’t know how much longer it will be there though because I have to pay my yearly subscription for this blog and at the moment I can’t afford to do this. I’ll loose the ability to put links like that on my blog but I’ll work something out.

I’ve had no payments for 13 months. Welcome to universal credit.

Dear readers,

It appears that autumn has now merged into winter, it’s freezing out there horrific for anyone street homeless and anyone that can’t afford to heat their homes.

This cold weather worries me because so many people won’t survive the cold, many will either end up in hospital or become ill as a result.

Before the demo I always have a quick walk around the town centre to check in with people and see if they’re OK. I had some really good conversations, people are far more supportive than they were years ago.

Today was quite a busy demo, I spoke to lots of people with differing problems many of them homeless living in temporary accommodation, others street homeless having to rely on the bed for a night scheme. It helps a lot but it isn’t perfect. In reality no one should be homeless like this at all.

I had a long conversation with a young homeless man, he’s trying so hard to survive out there. He told me that he’s getting pressurised by his Jobcentre advisor to find work, according to them it doesn’t matter if he hasn’t got an address even a temporary one.

He told me that he’s been put on endless useless courses that have only promoted zero hour contract agency work, not really suitable for anyone especially when you’re homeless.

You’d think that he would be getting help with this but nope, work must come first, the DWP must come first and complying with the system must be a priority above everything else.

We as rational thinking people know the work doesn’t miraculously cure a person of all their ills and problems, zero hour contract employment makes these things much worse.

I’m sick to death of hearing the same old statements from the government and suchlike. They don’t care, they don’t have your best interests at heart afterall they have a swinging brick in place of a heart.

We spoke to a woman with four children whos universal credit had been stopped because she apparently hadn’t agreed to the claimant commitment. She hadn’t been asked to review it online and luckily she managed to get this decision overturned and they’ll reinstate her payments straight away.

This however hasn’t helped her with her problems regarding council tax and this matter is ongoing.

I spoke to a man that told me that he hasn’t received any universal credit payments for 13 months. I asked him why and he told me that the DWP insist that he’s working even though he’s provided bank statements etc to prove that he isn’t.

Guilty after being proven innocent because the DWP don’t want to give him his payments. Luckily he is still fighting this and I’m confident that he’ll win.

I had a conversation with a chap who’s in the process of claiming Universal credit. There is a problem though, he doesn’t know how to use a computer.

The system works against anyone like this, anyone with a disability, basically anyone. It’s a cruel, heartless system.

We had a conversation with a man that has recently been made homeless by his private landlord. He now spends his days trying to find somewhere to sleep and stay safe.

What was surprising today was the amount of young people, students at the local college saying that they hated universal credit and that they agreed with everything that we are doing, helping people and providing support.

For those working at Ashton Under Lyne Jobcentre that are telling people that they shouldn’t be listening to us, stop it right now. We help people, we feed them and provide solidarity and advice. These are basic things that you should be doing but aren’t.

Today was cold, but we helped lots of people and we will be returning again next week to do the same.

Please come and join us if you can, if you can’t please read and share my blog this really helps to raise awareness.

A huge thank you to everyone that shares, reads and supports my blog and the campaign.

For anyone wishing to donate there’s a donate button at the top and side of this blog. I don’t know how much longer it will be there though because I have to pay my yearly subscription for this blog and at the moment I can’t afford to do this. I’ll loose the ability to put links like that on my blog but I’ll work something out.

Aged 65 and hounded by the DWP to find work. Universal Credit strikes again.

Dear readers I’m back after last weeks absence. I apologise and I hope that it never happens again.

The weather was cold but sunny definitely hat and winter coat weather. My thoughts always go to those that are homeless or can’t afford to put any heating on.

As usual the food parcels went straight away which is awful in itself. A terrible indictment of how the government regards the working class.

As I was walking towards the lift to the Jobcentre I was greeted by a friend from a local town, he noted that I was walking quite quickly. I told him that I was cold and I was trying to get warm. We both laughed at that.

He then went on to tell me that they’d recently found a rough sleeper sleeping in the lift recently. I replied saying that I was surprised that it hadn’t happened sooner. Whilst I know that there’s organisations that he could go to for the night but some people either aren’t ready for that or they fall between the gaps of society. When that happens it’s not easy to find the help that they need.

The first thing that I noted and I do so every week is the complete lack of signing outside the new council building of which the Jobcentre shares. No one knows where they are going, they only know when they’ve visited once before. Tameside Council please can we have some outdoor signing upstairs on the plaza? Also the steps are very dangerous and even I struggle climbing them.

I know that it sounds petty but for anyone suffering from anxiety related conditions will panic when they can’t see where they’re going. Some won’t want to ask for help and will most likely go home in a state of panic.

We can do better than this can’t we.

I had a brief conversation with a heavily pregnant woman who was going to the Jobcentre. She had just claimed the steps and was exhausted. When I told her that there was a lift that she could use she replied saying that she didn’t know that there was one but she was glad that I told her. It’s things like this that can make a massive difference to someones life.

This week we had extra bread to hand out as well as food parcels, they were taken by anyone that needed one. Can you imagine not being able to afford a loaf of bread?

It was then that I stopped to speak to a chap that I have spoken about before. He had been promised that his first universal credit payment would be made on the last week of September. He’s still waiting for that first payment, it’s the 31st of October.

Understandably he’s furious about this but he is also upset. As I was advising him I could see tears in his eyes. Life is shit for him he said saying that he’s got absolutely nothing to look forward to because ‘That lot’ (The DWP) keep lying to him.

How on earth does the government expect people to survive on a zero income? The honest answer is that they don’t. They don’t want us to survive, they want us to disappear off the system or die.

The government doesn’t give a stuff about us and never forget this. Never forget the cruelty that they’ve inflicted upon the poorest and most vulnerable. We can never ever forget and I’ll certainly never ever forgive them either.

I had a chat with a woman who is constantly being hounded to go on the pointless, basically rubbish DWP courses. She has to sign on every week and they never miss this opportunity to tell her about another course.

Last week she was told that it would ‘be good for her’ to go on the latest course offering. When she told them that it wasn’t mandatory so therefore she wasn’t going to attend they replied saying something along the lines of ‘oh but it would have helped you’ Yep right.

I was then asked to speak to an older chap who is finding it hard to cope with the DWP.

He’s 65 years old and has been told that he has to be online for 35 hours a week looking for work.

We all know that there certainly isn’t enough jobs advertised out there to fulfil their expectations of him. He’s been told that if he doesn’t do this then he will be sanctioned.

I always take issue with this. He’s 65 years of age, who in earth is going to employ him. Its hard enough trying to find work when you’re young. There just isn’t enough jobs to go round.

Of course the DWP know this but they’ll take great pleasure in sanctioning a 65 year old man. Speaks volumes doesn’t it.

I spoke to a chap who had been told that he had been given ‘too many’ food parcels and was refused a foodbank voucher. He’d already had three foodbank vouchers.

Luckily I was there to advise him, to give him food etc.

It angers me so much when I hear of people being turned away from foodbank voucher providers because of this. Do they think that poverty ends after three food parcels?

It’s absolutely ridiculous to think so. Some people have a swinging rock in place of a beating heart.

I had a conversation with a woman who was struggling to contact the DWP via their freephone numbers.

Not all mobile phone providers regard the freephone numbers as free making it impossible to contact them.

This needs to be sorted out now.

We ended todays demo knowing that we had helped lots of people. We had given hope, solidarity, food, and a shoulder to cry on.

It’s not been easy doing a continuous demo for as long as we have but helping people makes it all worthwhile.

You might also be aware that we have a general election coming on the 12tb of December. Please can I urge you to use your vote and vote for Labour?

Labour are committed to stopping universal credit, the constant ESA and PIP examinations, sanctions and much more.

As you might hve already heard the Tory government have also got plans in place to sell the remaining parts of the NHS to firms in America.

This will leave us without an NHS and we will be forced to use an insurance based system.

I know that I certainly won’t be able to get or pay for medical insurance. Many of you won’t be able to either.

This is literally a fight for our life’s and we have to win this fight!

We have also made plans for our Christmas demonstration which will take place on Thursday the 19th of December between 10-12. It will be outside of the Jobcentre and we hope to have some speakers, some festive food on offer and hats, gloves and scarfs to hand out.

Please come and join us we would really like to meet you.

I will be making a Facebook event for it but if you don’t have Facebook then feel free to email me.

We’ll be back next week between 10-12 outside Ashton Under Lyne Jobcentre. Come and say hello!

Please read, share, email, tweet etc my blog. Please subscribe also.

A huge thank you to everyone that supports out demos and who supports my blog.

Without you I couldn’t be able to continue so thank you so much.

For anyone wishing to donate there’s a PayPal button at the top and side of this blog post. For anyone that can’t see this my PayPal address is seercharlotte@gmail.com Thank you so much in advance.

I’ve got £3 to last me for a week. Universal Credit strikes again

Wow I can’t believe that it’s Thursday again. It’s definitely a lot cooler out there so wrap up if your going out.

The cooler weather also highlights the inability for thousands of people to choose between heating and eating. Of course the government don’t want to rectify this, I’m convinced that they’re trying to kill us off.

Today was a mix of differing problems and as usual I will not be naming anyone. I hope that you understand why.

The first thing that I did today was to hand out the food parcels. We had six and within five minutes there was only one left.

The remaining food parcel was taken by a woman struggling to get by. She was claiming Universal Credit and unbeknownst to her the DWP had shut her claim down without telling her.

The DWP claim that she hadn’t signed her claimant commitment but she was adamant that she had done. This resulted in zero consultation with her and now she’s having to appeal this.

The DWP however have told her that she has to make a new claim for universal credit which means that she’s going to have to wait at least five weeks for her first payment.

She also has children and is understandably concerned about how she’s going to feed them.

Don’t expect any sympathy from the DWP though. They’ve got a cast iron weight instead of a heart.

It never get better hearing people’s DWP stories. But thank goodness we were there to help her. She’s going to appeal the DWPs decision.

I then had a conversation with a chap that I usually speak to every week. He told me that he had waited for over a hour for the bus to get to Ashton.

I can confirm that this is the norm in Tameside at the moment. Lots of our bus routes have been taken off and the ones that remain cost a lot more.

I’ve spoken to elderly and disabled people who have been housebound as a result of this. The bus used to stop right outside their houses and they can’t manage the walk to the nearest bus stop. It’s too far for them to walk etc.

If anyone from the Tameside area is reading this please join in with the Better Bus campaign.

I then spotted a woman leaving the Jobcentre. I offered her a leaflet and immediately she told me that she hates universal credit. I asked her why and she went into her pocket and got out some coins amounting to approximately £3. She said “This is all that I have until the end of next week. How on earth am I going to manage on this amount of money. ‘

Of course I advised her and signposted her to local organisations etc where she can get a food parcel from because we had ran out of them.

This is the reality of life whilst claiming Universal credit and its the same for thousands of people.

Far too many people have become accepting of this though. Many are resigned to their fate, they know that they’re going to be hungry and they think that no one cares about them.

Lots of us do care though, this shouldn’t be happening but we all to our best to help people.

We signposted quite a few people to CAB for advice and once again people having trouble with their council tax payments was mentioned. The poorest shouldn’t be made to bear the brunt of this.

We then spoke to a person that had recently been declared fit for work. They’ve got numerous disabilities and illnesses but don’t expect the DWP to care. They’re going to appeal this decision but in the meantime he was told by his DWP advisor that he’s no longer allowed to hand fit notes in.

Apparently the DWP know better than a doctor and a specialist doctor. They want everyone to look for none existent jobs despite the fact that many aren’t able to work.

As regular readers will know this is far from unusual but it never gets easier does it.

I advised a woman who’s son is being moved over from DLA to PIP.

We had a lovely conversation with a man who’s being sent on what feels like constant courses ran by and on behalf of the DWP. The latest course that they’ve been told to attend or be sanctioned is supposed to motivate people.

It’s a bit hard motivating people who are hungry and who’ve got the threat of being sanctioned hanging over their head. But hey every person that attends these courses are worth a fortune to the DWP. Not only does the DWP receive funding for these courses they also pay the providers quite a lot of money per person attending.

Wonderful isn’t it… Not. We can never forget that we’re just a number to them and we can and are exploited by the DWP at their whim.

We then had a conversation with a man that’s been having problems with his employer.

His employer is totally abusing the fact that there’s so many people looking for work. He pays people less than their long term staff. When people complain they tell them that they can walk, it doesn’t matter because they can fill the position straight away.

There’s far too many awful employers like this and it’s about time that something was done about this isn’t it.

Today we helped lots of people, provided support and gave out food parcels. We’ve been doing this for around six years now and it’s getting worse.

Please read and share my blog. Tweet it as well, email it to your local Tory MP.

I’d like to thank Gordon for all of his help today. I’d also like to thank you all for supporting the campaign and my blog.

This has become a full time job and every penny helps me to continue with both the campaign and the blog.

We’ll be returning next week and I’ll be blogging as usual.

Five year aniversary of blogging and the suffering continues.

Dear readers it’s been five years almost to the day since I started writing this blog although I’ve been campaigning for much longer.

A friend encouraged me to write it but I honestly didn’t think that anyone would read it. I was proved wrong though, it took off straight away.

Back then we were chosen to be a trial area for universal credit along with Oldham and Wigan.

Hardly anyone else was documenting the day to day cruelty that universal credit and the benefit reforms.Most likely because it wasn’t happening everywhere and lots of people weren’t aware of this

We were ignored and called liars and suchlike.

Myself and other groups continued to fight against it even though every door was being slammed in our faces. No one wanted to know.

Through perseverance and determination we continued, we weren’t letting this go. People were and are dying as a result and that was and is unacceptable.

DPAC have been consistently supportive and they’re amazing. The work that they have done and are doing is outstanding. I can’t thank them enough.

When I started this blog almost everyone that I spoke to outside Ashton Jobcentre was or had been sanctioned.

Pregnant women were being sanctioned for three years, suicides of people that we had spoken to were a constant worry. I’ve lost count of the people that we have lost.

It breaks my heart and I’ve always got them in my thoughts. Thanks to Black Triangle for their work collecting this info and publishing it.

At the the time the DWP were a law unto themselves, they still are. I’m certain that they were given orders to sanction as many people as possible (remember Sandra’s stars anyone?).

I’m certain that they still have these targets but they’re not so open and brazen at displaying them. People are still being sanctioned and it’s abbhorant that this is continuing to happen. Being sanctioned can and does kill people.

The suffering continues and every week I’m told yet more awful stories from claimants about their experiences whilst on universal credit and other benefits.

Today a man told me that he’d been barred from the Jobcentre for loosing his temper when he was told that he’d been sanctioned.

When he was allowed back into the Jobcentre he had a G4S guard to escort him to his appointment and to take him out again.

The stress of this took its toll on him and he started to pull his hair out. He can’t believe how horrible this system is. Thanks to the DWP he’s mentally scarred for life.

The system hasn’t got better the DWP and government have become more devious, constantly putting unrealistic demands upon people that they know won’t be able to keep up with it.

We’ve handed hundreds of food parcels out because people were and are literally starving. I’ve watched a family open the tins of food and eat it because they were so hungry.

It’s hard to tell you what the worst thing that I’ve seen is. Everything about this system is awful. It persecutes children, women, men, women who should be receiving their pensions but were conned out of them. The DWP won’t leave anyone alone.

The fight continues though. The Labour Party have at last commited to stopping, scrapping universal credit. They’re going to replace it with a caring system and I know that they’re going to do this. The Labour Party have been working very hard on creating the new system for quite a while now.

But the changes won’t happen overnight and until they’ve been elected nothing will change its going to become a whole lot worse.

Every week we speak to disabled people who have been found fit for work. They aren’t fit for work though and we help them to start the appeal process.

We’ve handed out thousands of copies of of our survival guides. They’ve proved to be invaluable and have helped a lot of people. Thanks to Roy for your help with this.

The blog doesn’t end after I’ve published the blog on Thursdays though. It’s become a full time job. Myself or members of the team don’t get paid by anyone either. We do it because we care.

The fight continues week after week. We’ve had abuse from G4S, I’ve been spat on called a scrounger and worse.

The DWP have unsuccessfully tried to move us from outside the Jobcentre. We aren’t going anywhere, we aren’t stopping until the suffering ends.

Whilst the suffering continues we will continue. I made this commitment all those years ago.

I want to thank you all for reading and supporting the blog for these last five years. Its been a massive comfort to know that you all support this blog and the campaign.

I’ll end the blog here this week. I know that it’s a bit different than my usual blog style but I really wanted to thank everyone that’s helped along the way whether it’s on foot at the demos or online. Both are equally as important.

To everyone that does come and help though thank you so, so much. We’ve had a lot of physical support from Stockport Against Austerity and I can’t thank them enough as well as Gordon, Roy, Carol and everyone else who I’ve met along the way.

My local Labour Party and my MP Angela Rayner have also been hugely supportive even though I’ve been a pain sometimes.

Can I ask you to continue to read, share, tweet and email my blog. Thank you to those that already do.

There’s also a donate button at the top and side of this blog. Every penny donated ensures that the campaign and blog can continue. A massive thanks to those that have.

I’ll be back next week with my usual blog. Thank you for the five years of support and thanks to Mike for persuading me to start this blog.

Don’t worry I’ll be writing next weeks blog in my usual style.