Just to recap – I’ve decided to go on hunger strike in protest against the continued roll out of Universal Credit in the UK.
This punitive system has a built in delay of 42 days before people get any money at all.
Imagine, you’ve just lost your job, you may have a physical disability – you may have a mental health problem – if so, you’ll have already encountered the pared back to the bone, lack of services for your condition. So to be smacked between the eyes with the 6 weeks with no money scenario is nothing short of abuse.
Today has been relatively uneventful – I’ve tried my hand at making videos on YouTube, Facebook and Periscope to give folk a different way to follow this particular adventure.
I haven’t felt terribly hungry – but my mouth has felt a tad scuzzy. I’m reliably informed that tomorrow my body will go into ketosis – a system where it realises that there’s no food forthcoming from the usual channels, and will start tucking into my fat stores, of which I have plenty.
My good friend, Derek, suggested that I’ve been building up to this for years. Remind me to smack him in the teeth next time I see him.
Today I was told about the horrific story of a woman with 4 children who’d had her benefits stopped for a gut wrenching 12 weeks! Take some time to digest that…
12 weeks without money with 4 children.
She’d already been hit by the punitive, 2 children only, benefit cap – that was conveniently put in place long after she’d had her children.
She tells me without friends and family, she doesn’t know what she’d have done.
It put me in mind of the family, mentioned in the last Universal Credit debate in the Commons, who’d had their children put into care because they didn’t have any money.
The bizarre thing is that putting their 2 children into care cost the state £900 per week, the cost of their benefits, I’m guessing, would be significantly less.
This system is punitive – nothing more, nothing less.
Universal Credit is wobbling on a precipice – the government have lost 2 recent debates on it’s continued roll out – and yet they’re continuing with it’s implementation.
I don’t want you to sign a petition. I want YOU to do something.
Contact your MP, you can write, email, phone, meet them in their surgery and demand that they halt the roll out of Universal Credit until it is fit for purpose.
Speak to your local councillor – let them know what you think.
I’ve heard rumblings that their looking at reducing the delay to 28 days at the next budget…
Great – 28 days with no money! All my above concerns still apply.
Let’s speak more tomorrow.
Spread the word.
Walk a mile