Harsh Tory Cuts Killed Thousands

After being pressured into releasing the data, the Tories have finally come clean about the social impact of the changes to Employment Support Allowance. The results are more shocking than anyone could have expected, as they show that 90 people per month are dying after being declared fit for work. The changes to the system were implemented in 2011 and in total, 2,380 people have died under this scheme.

The Conservative Party claim that these deaths cannot be totally linked to the cuts but many experts dispute this, as the increase in mortality is directly proportional to people being told they’re fit for work.

Labour Party top candidate Jeremy Corbyn voted against these changes in 2007, claiming that “immense distress and suffering for thousands of disabled claimants,” would be caused.

The Department for Work and Pensions were supposed to have released this data two years ago, but it is obvious why they delayed it for as long as possible… They were eventually forced by the Information Commissioner’s Office after being hounded by ‘freedom of information’ requests.

Of course, realistically, all countries must have a degree of austerity to maintain a healthy economy, but the Conservative Party have been way too harsh on those below the poverty line and those claiming sickness benefit. While it has proved detrimental in the past few decades to have a ‘nanny state’, it is essential in any civilized society to attend to people in a humane way, that understands each case individually. For too long, disabled and unemployed people have been treated as numbers: this is an attitude that has cost 2,380 people their lives.

To prevent this kind of disaster in the future, we need to stop demonising people on benefits and dismiss this ‘survival of the fittest’ attitude.

The UK could do with taking a leaf out of Denmark’s book. Denmark and other Scandinavian countries have programs in place to ease disabled people back to work and give these people heavy support until they have found comfortable employment.

For most healthy people, it can be hard to imagine the struggles that disabled people face on a daily basis. Even getting out of bed can be difficult, so why have some of the most vulnerable people in society been victimized?