The latest government changes equate illness with a lack of motivation, as welfare becomes a tool to modify behaviour.
What’s worse: kicking someone because you’ve convinced yourself it will help them, or knowing it won’t and doing it anyway? This isn’t some abstract moral dilemma: with a new wave of “welfare” cuts set to come into force next week, a perverse ideology seems to be driving government policy.
Take the grim cut to Employment and Support Allowance, the out-of-work sickness benefit relied on by hundreds of thousands of people with disabilities, mental health problems and chronic illnesses. From April, anyone newly classed by the Department for Work and Pensions as “Wrag”, or Work-Related Activity Group – people judged as so ill they can only take steps to prepare for future work rather than actually apply for jobs – will see their benefit shrink by £30 a week. That translates…
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