Posted: January 16, 2013 by rainbowwarriorlizzie in Uncategorized

Vox Political

hmv“If you’re a student, and you have to pay a fee to go to university… You end up with a debt of 12,500 quid, you marry another student – £12,500, well, 25,000 quid; you then try to get a house because you want to start a family – that’s 40,000 – you start life with a debt of £60,000! I tell you, it would be great, convenient, to a future employer because someone with a debt of 60,000 quid is not going to cause any trouble; otherwise they might lose their job and so on.” Tony Benn, speaking circa 2002.

One has to admire Tony Benn for his powers of prophecy!

Clearly, he was able to look nearly a decade into the future to foretell the coming of a government for whom the imposition of a £9,000-per-year tax on learning – by universities themselves, not the government itself – was…

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Petition to repeal the Health & Social Care Act (‘NHS Act’)

Petition published by Steve Walker on Jun 10, 2012
595 Signatures 

Target: Department of Health

Petition Background (Preamble):

When the Health and Social Care Act was still a parliamentary bill, Dr Kailash Chand OBE (@kailashchandOBE on Twitter) started an e-petition on the government site demanding that the bill be abandoned.

The epetition.gov.uk site’s rules state that any petition reaching 100,000 signatures or more must be considered for Parliamentary debate. The petition easily exceeded 100,000 signatures, at times averaging 1000 signatures per hour – a clear sign of the wishes of the British people.

The petition was closed, and the discussion never happened. The government – as it is technically entitled to do – let the motion disappear into a parliamentary black hole.

I believe we have to maintain the assault on all possible fronts, so I’ve started another petition.

However, while I’ve submitted the petition to the government site in case people look there, I’m setting up the main petition here on gopetition.com, for the reasons below:

1) The government site is likely to block the petition from even appearing on their site.

2) Even if it goes ahead, once it reaches 100,000 signatures, they close it. I believe that far more than 100k people will sign the petition – potentially in the millions – sending a far clearer and harder-to-ignore message to the government that we will not tolerate the selling-off of our most treasured national possession.

If you agree that the government’s actions and plans are unacceptable, please sign the petition below – and get everyone you know to do the same.

(If you want to send an even bigger message, sign this petition too, for a motion of no-confidence in the coalition government http://www.gopetition.com/petitions/petition-for-a-motion-of-no-confidence-in-the-uk-coalit.html)

Thank you.

Steve Walker
Twitter ID: @skwalker1964

Petition:

Petition wording:

We, the British people, demand the immediate repeal of the Health and Social Care Act, commonly known as the NHS Reform Bill/Act, with all actions, sales and contracts under the Act to be immediately reversed.

There is no place for the profit motive in our Health Service. It is completely unacceptable for the Health Secretary to abdicate responsibility for health provision and to submit the NHS to market forces and private provision that cannot possibly offer the same services at better cost, and which will damage both patient care and NHS pay, conditions & morale, which again will be adverse for patients.

Our NHS is among the most efficient and effective in the world, and it does not require reform.

The Petition to repeal the Health & Social Care Act (‘NHS Act’) petition to Department of Health was written by Steve Walker and is in the category Health at GoPetition. Contact author here. Petition tags: , , , , , , , ,

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Petition for a motion of no-confidence in the UK coalition government

Petition published by Steve Walker on May 17, 2012
3019 Signatures 

Target: UK Parliament

Petition Background (Preamble):

As most of you will know, the UK government operates an e-petition website on the basis that any petition achieving 100,000 signatures or more must be passed forward for parliamentary discussion. The govt has repeatedly rejected an e-petition calling for discussion of a no-confidence motion in the current coalition government.

This government has repeatedly shown itself unfit to govern – sleaze,an all-out attack on the NHS and the public sector generally, inappropriate interactions with powerful media & corporate interests, opposing Freedom of Information requests and not least mismanagement of the UK economy, among many other issues.

If you wish to communicate to the government that it does not have the support or mandate of the UK people for its actions, please sign the petition below – and publicise it to your friends via Twitter, Facebook and any other means. The government may not listen, but the more people sign, the harder it will be for it to ignore!

Petition:

We, the undersigned, state that this government has not acted in the interests of the people of the United Kingdom.

We require there to be a Motion of No Confidence debate in the House of Commons followed by a free vote of MPs in support of the motion.

The Petition for a motion of no-confidence in the UK coalition government petition to UK Parliament was written by Steve Walker and is in the category Politics at GoPetition. Contact author here. Petition tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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Click here to Like this petition or Add/View Comments

Posted: January 16, 2013 by rainbowwarriorlizzie in Uncategorized

The SKWAWKBOX

An article in yesterday’s Guardian by Shiv Malik and James Ball exposes as a fallacy claims by the government, including George Osborne in his autumn statement, to have created half a million new jobs over the past 12 months.

Osborne was referring to figures provided in the September reports on employment from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) which showed that 510,000 new private sector jobs had been created over the past 12 months.

However, the article reveals the fact that a ‘quirk’ meant that the ONS figures included 105,000 people who are in government work schemes rather than in real jobs – and that many of these people were still claiming unemployment benefits. Shadow Employment Minister Stephen Timms MP was quoted as saying:

105,000 of claimed new jobs turn out to be just schemes – this explains why employment seems to have risen.

105,000 jobs out of a claim…

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Posted: January 16, 2013 by rainbowwarriorlizzie in Uncategorized

The SKWAWKBOX

Image

As a report by the excellent campaign group ‘We are Spartacus’ (WaS) disclosed yesterday, the government is going to change the rules around “mobility component” assessments for disabled people when Disability Living Allowance (DLA) benefit is changed to the Personal Independence Payment (PIP) by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP).

As its name suggests, the mobility component of DLA/PIP provides extra funds to disabled people with severe mobility impairment, to fund the additional costs involved for them to get around, for example the cost of assistance or a specially-modified car.

The mobility component of DLA is awarded at two levels. The lower level is currently £20.55 per week and the higher is £54.05. Under the current rules, the higher level is awarded to anyone who is unable to walk 50m (164ft) unaided, and qualifying for this higher rate also entitles disabled people to qualify to access a car…

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Posted: January 16, 2013 by rainbowwarriorlizzie in Uncategorized

the void

atos_logo_killsIn the face of protests both on and offline, The Co-operative Group have ditched poverty pimps Atos as their occupational health provider.

The Co-op posted the following on their facebook page this afternoon:

“Hello everyone, here is an update as promised on our occupational healthcare provider, many thanks for your patience on this matter.

The Co-operative Group can confirm that a robust procurement process considering, amongst other factors, cost, operational efficiency and geographical capability is currently underway for our occupational health services provider. Having been scored against an agreed set of parameters and against other bidders, Atos Healthcare have not progressed to the later rounds of that process and our intention is to have a new provider in place when the current contract terminates.”

Follow me on twitter@johnnyvoid

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Posted: January 14, 2013 by rainbowwarriorlizzie in Uncategorized

the void

atos_kills_bannerA judicial review into the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) begins tomorrows when two members of the Mental Health Resistance Network will argue that the process is discriminatory towards people with mental health conditions.

A protest in support has been called outside the hearing on Wednesday 16th January at noon, head for the Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand, London WC2A 2LL – and spread the word.

Mental Health Resistance Network, who are now on facebook, explain the reasons for the case:

“The reason that the ESA process discriminates against people with mental health disabilities is that the process requires ESA applicants to self-report how their ability to work is affected by their disability. While this is challenging enough for many people with physical disabilities, it can be a distressing, and sometimes an impossible task for many people with mental health disabilities. This is because some people with mental health…

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