Coffee House

Government could face another welfare rebellion in the Lords

27 December 2012

27 December 2012

Remember those rebellions in the Lords on welfare earlier this year? Well, the fight hasn’t disappeared entirely from the Upper Chamber. Secondary legislation filling in the detail of the Welfare Reform Act is the new battleground, and I understand another uprising could be on the cards over regulations affecting disabled people.

Baroness Thomas of Winchester, who regularly cropped up on the Naughty List last year when peers revolted on the welfare reform primary legislation, is calling on the Government to think again about its regulations for the mobility component of the Personal Independence Payment, the benefit replacing the Disability Living Allowance. A last minute change to the regulations means that only those who cannot walk, with the help of aids, more than 20 metres will be entitled to a Motability car. Thomas tells Coffee House that she is annoyed that this change was made without prior consultation:

‘The government have been very good at publishing the PIP criteria in draft and consulting – we saw the first two drafts – but they have changed one key criterion at the last minute. I thought we were going to see the third and final draft before the regulations proper were published, but this didn’t happen, and two weeks ago they published the regulations.’

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She has tabled a motion calling on the government to consult further on the regulations before implementing them. The motion reads:

To move to resolve that this House calls on HMG to consult further before asking Parliament to agree the draft Social Security (Personal Independence Payment ) Regulations 2013, specifically on the number of points allocated to the Moving Around descriptor which will have the effect of denying thousands of disabled people enough points to qualify for a Motability car.

The Lib Dem peer is confident that she could win a vote on this, as she has had indications that Labour could well support her motion. It’s quite a technical issue, but as the government needs to get these regulations laid pretty sharpish, a defeat in the Lords will be inconvenient as well as embarrassing.

P.S. I’m told that Labour also plans to table some of its own motions in the Lords: these will be ‘motions of regret’ which open up the debate in the House.


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Show comments
  • a.m.barrowman

    One thing that is discouraged is that Disabled people can choose to either purchase a car or Contract Hire a car through the Motability scheme. personally I took the option to buy my Motabiolity Car on Motability Finance instead of leasing. When you lease the vehicle the Government gets a massive discount on the cost of the car. usually a Deposit is required to obtain a decent size vehicle to enable ease of access. All of the Mobility Component is taken from the Claimant £54.05 each week for 3 years; thats £8431 over the Contract. Then you take the car back to the garage hand in the keys and take out another contract, the Government then sends the car to auction and on average gets just less than the retail cost so in real terms the government will get a return of £13,000 ish on a £10,000 vehicle which they have probably only paid £8,000 for because of the initial discount. On the other hand if you buy the £10,000 car you pay off £8,431 leaving a balance of £1569, put the car in Part Exchange and claim the equity in the vehicle yourself. Take out another H.P agreement and save money on the next 3 years payments. So you get a car and money in your pocket. The problem is The Disabled are heavily discouraged from taking the option to buy, in my own opinion because the Government loses money.

  • Eeeek

    I am a severely disabled woman with no legs and cerebral palsy but I admit that I can work and I support the government with their campaign against the disabled because I can lift a small empty cardboard box and put a pound coin in to it. I have just got a well paid job doing just that. I think it is bad that so many disabled people object to this test; they must be scroungers. I fully endorse the ATOS trolls as us disabled deserve to be the people who fund big tax breaks for multi-national corporations.

    • Guest

      What, just a down vote? No reply? You do realise that you prove my case! You cannot control the comments section, it is only so big. Easy to scroll down and read. :)

      • Guest

        So I have your attention. Mistake, girly.

        • Eeeek

          :) touched a nerve, what?

          • Eeeek

            She knocks off at ten. ‘makes a note’

        • Eeeek

          “I will follow you, Follow you wherever you may go
          There isn’t an ocean too deep
          A mountain so high it can keep me away
          You are my destiny”

  • Jimbobwalton

    I’ve been severly paralysed for many years and use the motability scheme but i agree it needs to be a lot stricter as it has been abused for years.. also under labour the criteria to get HRM has been watered down.

    • Eeeek

      changed your tack somewhat? It doesn’t work. Paid trolls can be spotted from a mile away.

      • Eeeek

        Well I think that I have proved my point. Only ATOS trolls will go to the bottom of the heap to down-vote a comment!

        • Eeeek

          see?

  • Eeeek

    ToryOAP and Chris M both the same paid troll. Possibly Colonel mustard as well.
    Same writing style.

    • Eeeek

      And a few other aliases also. ATOS perhaps?

  • galeforce81

    I dont have a motability car because i can’t drive although i would be entitled to one if i could. I have a bus pass which allows someone to travel with me which is not ideal but unfortunately i have no other options. I would much rather NOT be in constant pain. Only getting 4 Hours sleep per night if im lucky because my medication doesnt last long enough. I would love it if i didn’t fall over regularly, banging my head and hurting other parts of my body. I would love to be able to bathe without my flatmate (who is the opposite sex) having to help me in and out which is incredibly demeaning, not to mention the fact that he has to help me change myself when i have had an “accident” which is among other things, incredibly embarrassing. I would love it if could make my favourite food, or even make a cup of tea. Plus if i could get out of bed when i want, without any assistance, then that would be magical. I, as you can guess by know would rather not be disabled, but i am. I’m 31, and have many more years of this to put up with, and the money that i currently receive from DLA is one of the only things that makes my life just a little bit more bearable. I think before you critisize these disability benefits you should try and think what it would be like if you had these problems.. i bet most disabled people would swap places with you in an instant, but i bet no-one would swap places with us!!

  • Thomas Paine

    I come from a county in Scotland where the ‘eat enough chips, get a free car’ culture is well embedded and won’t be easily given up. I see their lordships have been well briefed.

    The main thing is to get your claim in well before retirement (ie, retirement through ‘ill health’ as practiced by a ever growing percentage of public servants). If ‘ill health’ arrives **after** retirement (as is the case with my Scottish parents) you get nothing. So best make sure you get your claim in fast enough. You might lose out on a free Citroen or Fiat for life.

    Short of Landlord Benefit (aka free money for BTL Landlords, or Housing Benefit as it’s known in less enlightened circles) this is the biggest racket going, bigger even than the ‘Mansions for feckless immigrants’ beano as popularised by the Daily Mail.

    You read it here first.

    • Eeeek

      I would do your research on the ‘free car’ before you make it apparent to the whole world how ignorant and uninformed you are. The cars are not free.

      • Eeeek

        What? No reply? YET another alias discovered!

  • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

    Someone below asks ‘who funds Atos?’. Surely you know the answer – it’s the Dept for Work and Pensions, the Govt itself, which funds Atos to undertake flawed ‘medical’ assessments, and which is about to fund them much, much more to assess people for the new PIP…

    Or maybe you meant, who funds Atos Victims? Well, as the co-ordinator of a campaign group which pretty much runs on fresh air, I can be fairly confident that the answer is ‘nobody’. WeareSpartacus (wearespartacus.org.uk) is not funded by anyone. Our technical guy, who is currently dying of lung cancer, has just renewed our webhosting subscription for another 5 years as he’s confident he won’t need that money once he’s dead. I work, when I can, on research, bringing reports to publication standard and persuading others to take notice of what’s happening, for no payment, and I pay for the domain name registrations and for the graphics we use on the website myself. There are no other expenses.

    I know this is hard for right-wing people to understand, but many of us work for nothing on campaigning and providing peer support because we know how many people are going to be seriously disadvantaged and even pushed over the edge into crisis as a result of many of the Government’s reforms. There are so many who are, quite rationally, considering suicide as a way out of the desperate life they anticipate when all the reforms have been implemented. For people to be considering this, or to be having to choose between heating and eating, or feeding themselves or their children (the children always get fed in this scenario), in 21st century Britain, is shameful. I, for one, have never been as terrified of the power of Government to ruin people’s lives as I am now. Some may feel able to pass by on the other side, but I cannot. I can’t be aware of the suffering and fear all around and not do anything; I wouldn’t be able to sleep at night.

    • Colonel Mustard

      But coincidentally you are all left wing, eh?

      • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

        I find it hard to see how a disabled person could actually be right wing. Even if we don’t need public services ourselves, we understand that others do. If left wing is about wanting a society in which people don’t have to choose whether to eat or heat their homes, in which disabled people aren’t told to get on with it despite the increased costs that come along with disability, in which sick people aren’t told to work or starve, then yes, I guess I’m left wing. There is plenty of money in this country, it’s just not very well distributed. By the way, I was brought up a Tory – and that mindset is all very well until you find that you need support.

        That anyone can be happy with the situation where taxpayers are funding tax credits because employers won’t pay a living wage and housing benefit because rents are sky high, is beyond me. And that anyone can be happy with a Government which runs 3 consultations on a new benefit and then makes a massive change to it once all consultation stages are past, is also beyond me. What puzzles me is, why consult if you’re just going to ignore what the responses tell you? And why make it dramatically harder for legitimate claimants to claim a benefit which helps them participate in society, look after their families and go to work?

        • Colonel Mustard

          Yes! Thought so. Left wing.

          • http://www.facebook.com/MarkAThompson Mark Andrew Thompson

            Intelligent? Clearly.

            Rational? Inarguably.

            Passionate? Thankfully.

            Ohhh that is what you think Left-wing means!

          • Eeeek

            Brilliant, scathing reply! My, my! That took Ms Young down a peg or two, what! NOT

          • ToryOAP

            Colonel. Glad to see we have attracted the attention of some National Socialist trolls. They don’t like it up ’em do they? I am laughing so much at their rantings I can’t concentrate on the VAT return.

            • Eeeek

              So you reply to your own posts? I didn’t have that option when I worked for the MOD. We didn’t have the internet then. Lazy propaganda.

            • Eeeek

              Be quiet, girly. Go make a cup of tea. You should be used to that sort of order.

        • JP

          At least you’re giving us some facts to work with and not just foaming at the mouth spouting the usual evil baby stealing Tories line – to some degree anyway. There’s a couple of areas of concern, I’m really not happy with this idea that there’s plenty of money in the country and by extension it all belongs to everyone and it’s just a matter of distributing it around. Some (most?) people put in a lot of personal effort to generate that money and expect to be left with at least a proportion of it to spend as they please. Moreover, the government does claim an awful lot of it to spend (approaching 50%?) so, on the face of it, something’s wrong somewhere if your assertion holds. Secondly, are we funding a disability lobby here as everyone you mention seems to be involved in campaigning for better disability rights? Everywhere I’ve worked has had very good disabled access as far as I could tell, so, where possible there should be some expectation that disabled people aren’t just working for campaign groups (I’ve formed this opinion only from skimming over your posts and I’m sure there are tones of examples of disabled people doing all kinds of various activities but that’s the way it reads).

          • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

            I worked for many years as a disabled person (wheelchair user), with various adjustments and equipment including, yes, my Motability car. Towards the end of my time working my employer and I tried all sorts of adaptations to enable me to work, but both my GP and the Occupational Health Manager eventually came to the conclusion we couldn’t make it work. I was devastated – after all, as I said to my GP, work is what people do, isn’t it? However, with increasing respiratory difficulties and the need to use both oxygen and strong painkillers (not morphine then, but that’s what I’m on now) I eventually had to agree that paid work was no longer an option as I simply couldn’t be sufficiently reliable to do a decent job. In fact, if I’d been working in the private sector I’d have lost my job long before.

            Both before and since taking early retirement, the only disability-related benefit I have claimed is Disability Living Allowance, both components at the higher rate. (Following my husband’s untimely death at 42 I claimed Widowed Parents’ Allowance while my children were still in education, and I also claimed Child Benefit as many do). Just because my health means I’m not able to be sufficiently reliable to do paid work, doesn’t mean I wish to sit around all day doing nothing. I do make my symptoms worse when I work too hard but I consider myself extremely fortunate not to have to rely on income-replacement benefits and am all too conscious of what some of the Tory reforms and cuts are doing to people who need far more support from the public purse than I do.

            Obviously losing my wheelchair accessible vehicle would be much more of a problem if I was still working but, as it is, I do still need it, not least so I can properly support my elderly mother, whose memory and cognitive function are failing badly, and her very disabled neighbour. I thought that was what the Big Society was all about? I can also make my contribution, as someone who worked until I had to give up, by using what energy and ability I have in helping other disabled people by campaigning and helping support my mother and her neighbour in more practical ways. In order to make that contribution, I need Disability Living Allowance or, at least, the higher rate mobility component so I can have a vehicle I can both get into and drive.

            I’m actually struggling to see what you find so objectionable about the way I live my life. Is it just because I don’t agree with you, so you feel the need to criticise me for doing what I can for my family and for other disabled people who are less fortunate than I am? You clearly don’t think that volunteering or supporting family and neighbours are very worthy activities.

      • Eeeek

        But coincidentally you are essentially a thinly disguised Nazi, eh?

      • Larry Tangent

        I’m a humanist if the truth be told, you obviously aren’t!!

  • Teach EBD

    Motability criteria are not all that stringent. I teach children with Emotional & Behavioural Difficulties: if these children get banned from public transport, then their parent / carer becomes eligible for a Motability car. A lot of the parents drive less-than-3-year-old cars; none of the teachers do.

    • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

      It’s going to be easier for people who have problems ‘planning and following a journey’ to get the enhanced rate of PIP and therefore get Motability cars under the Government’s proposals. For some reason they’re making it much easier to get the enhanced mobility rate for non-physical (ie cognitive, sensory or mental health) difficulties than for physical difficulties. It’s bizarre.

    • HooksLaw

      You mean criteria for the Higher Rate Mobility Component of the Disability Living Allowance.
      Motability is a charity and does not set the standards against which people qualify for swapping their allowance towards a car.

      I suspect the way this scheme is that the dealers get the cars back after 3 years and sell them on. Probably a good stream of desirable used cars for them which they had offered to motability at a discount for the volume.

    • Eeeek

      and yet another alias discovered. Come on, give it a rest. Know when you are beaten.

  • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

    Baroness Thomas is right to be worried about what’s happening. There are plenty of people with significant mobility impairments who will be caught by this last-minute restricting of the qualifying distance from 50m to 20m. People who abuse the Motability scheme are not the issue; there is always abuse with any scheme and Motability is tightening up their processes to make it harder to abuse the scheme. If anyone is worried that a neighbour is abusing the scheme (ie not using the car for the benefit of the disabled person for whom it is intended), they should contact Motability, which is easy enough to find using a simple internet search. I would recommend doing that rather than ranting in the comments section of an article like this focuses on the disadvantage this sudden change in criteria will cause for disabled people.

    A great many disabled people use their Motability cars to get to work, take their children to school, get to medical appointments, go shopping etc. The more people who lose eligibility for the scheme, the more people are likely to have to give up work (and I thought IDS wanted us all to work?), to use Dial-a-Ride services to get to GP appointments (more demand on local services), hospital transport for hospital appointments (more demand on the NHS) and ask for more help from social services. They will struggle to get their children to school (my son started walking to school on his own once he was 7 because of my disability but that wouldn’t be prudent where there are main roads involved of course) and they and their children are more likely to be isolated. Isolation tends to lead to worse mental health, so there’s another extra demand on the NHS. It’s much better for people with mobility impairments to have the opportunity to be independent, as it’s better for their own quality of life, for the economy and for society, as they can work or volunteer.

    Even the Paralympians, whom the Government described as ‘inspirational’, were supported by Disability Living Allowance and other services. The reality is that disabled people have greater needs and costs due to their impairment, and if these can be compensated for to a certain extent they are much more likely to be able to make their own contribution to society, rather than being dependent on family members and/or public services. Taking away the support they need from one arm of the state will often result in them needing more costly support from other arms of the state. The problem with the Government’s proposals in this area is that the likely costs to the public purse from the withdrawal of benefit and therefore independence from so many are likely to be greater in the longer term, especially when one considers the effect on disability people’s ability to work, volunteer, parent their children and look after themselves.

    In my own case, I stand to lose a heavily adapted wheelchair accessible vehicle which enables me to go out independently. Whilst I have taken early retirement for health reasons (having worked as a disabled person for many years, with certain equipment and adaptations) I am now very busy volunteering. A grant from the Specialised Vehicles Fund covered most of the downpayment to lease the vehicle from Motability, and the conversion was done to meet my specific access needs. I know I’m in danger of losing it because I can walk a few metres, but that would be a waste of the money which went into the grant and would mean I would have to get wheelchair accessible transport for every hospital appointment or other trip out for any reason. I would also become very isolated, which would not be good for my overall well-being. And finally, and by no means least, it would be much harder for me to support my elderly mother and her very disabled next door neighbour, both of whom depend on me to help with various aspects of their lives. They would then cost public services more…. and so on.

    It’s always important to think through the consequences of proposed policies, and this Government continually does a very poor job of this exercise. And I haven’t even mentioned the probably losses to GDP, the car industry, jobs, tax revenues etc as a result of fewer people being able to benefit from the Motability scheme.

  • Justathought

    Dear God we really are scraping the bottom of the barrel if we intend to prevent the disabled using their disability benefit to hire a motability vehicle. And what about the loss of car sales as a result of this reckless proposal?

    • HooksLaw

      The benefit will be what it will be. If it is not allowed to be swapped for a vehicle then the benefit is still there. At some stage there will always be some sort of test for eligibility. The sensible discussion would be about the level of the test.

      • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

        Yes and no. It is only the enhanced mobility component that can be ‘swapped’ for a vehicle; this is about £55 per week and the standard rate is about £21 a week – a big difference. Baroness Thomas is talking about the level of the test for the enhanced mobility component of PIP. After all consultation stages were past, the Government suddenly changed the distance from 50 metres to 20 metres; I understand that it was even possible to get a little blue ‘noddy car’ in the 1970’s if you could walk more than 20 metres, so the Government’s last-minute eligibility criteria are clearly retrogressive.

        It’s not just about the criteria, it’s about the sneakiness of a Government that will change things significantly right at the end of the process and offer no justification for that change. No consultation, no research backing, just the hallmarks of the Treasury deciding how much it can save – without even thinking about how much it will lose by taking this particular level of this particular benefit away from nearly half a million claimants. In another comment I have explained all the reasons why this is likely to end up costing more in the long run, since enabling people with significant mobility impairments to be independent has major benefits for them, their families and the economy.

        And the other thing is, other aspects of the criteria will make it easier for people to get a Motability car if they have learning difficulties, mental health problems or sensory impairments which mean they have a lot of difficulty planning and following a journey. That could mean many more abused Motability cars, which the claimant’s family drives but they never get to see. Just a thought…

  • http://twitter.com/AtosVictims1 Atos Victims

    To get a Motability vehicle a person has to meet certain very stringent criteria, so many people out there who have some hatred for those in society who were dealt a nasty blow by being born disabled or became disabled through no fault of their own should take a hard look at themselves and not be so vindictive & spiteful.
    Those of you who begrudge a disabled person the same rights as able bodied people are disgusting, maybe one day you won’t be so vile when a member of your family suffers a accident, a life threatening medical condition, I doubt you’ll be bemoaning the very wonderful Motability Scheme that is available to some very misfortunate people in our society.
    Happy New Year to all the Scrooges in the UK…

    • Colonel Mustard

      Who funds the ATOS Victims Group which follows an agenda and is therefore hardly impartial or objective?

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=554986702 Dean Wales

        Eh?Atos Victims is an internet group formed from like minded, similarly abused people, i thought, so dont receive or need funding.Of course they, we are not impartial, thats what happens when one sector of society sets out to deprive another sector of its rights to ensure that a third parasitic sector, already bailed out after screwing it up and still wanting more, gets the continued funding on the backs of those in need.Objective they, we certainly are-sadly it seems it is you that cannot see things for what they are and blinkered by the thought that everything requires funds in order to exist;Are you perhaps one of the elitist, untouchable parasitic lot that feeds of UK society to the detriment of its population, already bloated in every area but still demanding more?The only motobility they seem to consider worthy is the transfer of wealth and all its trappings into the hands of the wealthy non needy.Thats the agenda that needs addressing but blinkered you wont even see that.How objective and impartial is that?

        • Colonel Mustard

          I see that you follow the usual tactic of resorting to presumptive abuse rather than answering the question. Another minority agenda pressure group with its own website and campaign yet no funding? What nonsense.

          The comment gives you away too. More left wing agitprop disguised as something else?

          I certainly belonged to an elite. But it is not one you would understand. It was more concerned with duty than rights.

          • ToryOAP

            Don’t bother with the troll Colonel. Check out his facebook page – Left Foot Forward and NHS worker. How do they get here?

            • Colonel Mustard

              Twitter feeds usually and they cluster in mobs like the Borg when any of their sacred cows is threatened with dissent.

            • HooksLaw

              How do ‘they’ get here? How laughable.

              And an NHS worke as well! – Well we all no what a load of shite they are don’t we Mr OAP??

              You will be saying he’s gay next !

              Shocking they let people like that use a computer!

              It would be appalling if UKIP started crowd sourcing round here – oops they already do.

            • Eeeek

              Do you use multiple computers or do they make you switch between running accounts on a single machine?

          • HooksLaw

            There is no one more presumptive in their abuse than you. You were presumptive with me earlier today. A motability allowance is what it says on the tin. If people who are getting the allowance who do not deserve it then tell us who. If because of the economic situation the allowance was changed then I would go along with that in principle. Stop slagging of the infirm.

            • Colonel Mustard

              It’s slagging “off” the infirm and I’m not doing that. I think you are reading the wrong comment. I have made no observations about people getting the allowance who do not deserve it.

          • Eeeek

            Your writing style also gives YOU away. Your organisation must be getting far, far too much public money to be able to afford a mis-information troll. Time to sack the troll and get a more believable one in! Please show this to your supervisor.

          • mikewaller

            Regarding the first paragraph, your having just suggested that a number of individuals pay labinial homage to your posterior does somewhat diminish your plausibility in making such criticism.

        • ToryOAP

          Is there a disability benefit for illiteracy? I only ask because, if there is, you and your mate Robert Mason should apply. Unless you are the same person that is. Disability in this country is a scam and the vast majority receiving benefits for supposedly being disabled are patently quite capable of working.

          • http://twitter.com/AnitaBellows12 Anita Bellows

            A statement the Lords, the labour party, some libdems, the GMC, the BMA, the RCN and many others do not seem to agree with.
            Do you also have, like every tory in this country, a neighbour who “does not look ill or disabled?”

            • ToryOAP

              Listen up love, I worked at the highest levels globally in HR for 30 years and know more about disability, and those who abuse it than most people, left, right, middle or otherwise. I have had to implement more job-destroying legislation and worker-friendly policies than I care to remember. I have also given productive work and careers to thousands of disadvantaged school leavers and graduates and worked with most of the leading Universities in Europe, the USA and Asia. All of this in the private sector and I take no lessons from left-wing do-no-goodrs on equality and dignity, in work or out of it.

              • http://twitter.com/AnitaBellows12 Anita Bellows

                Whatever your experience, it is only your experience and I am afraid it is not enough to base policies on it. I have a different experience, but I am not making sweeping generalisation and do not expect anybody else to take my word for it.
                The first Lords’ rebellion on welfare reform was based on figures, statistics, impact assessments. The next one will be the same.
                Your response shows all what is wrong when you base your arguments on anecdotal evidence

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Laughable. Left-wing agitprop and its many agenda vehicles are usually based on nothing but sweeping generalisations, subjective “experience” (usually the chip-shouldered victimhood kind), anecdotal twaddle and massaged if not fabricated statistics.

                  There is rebellion brewing against forty years of that oppressive left-wing nonsense. As dissent grows it will be good to see the chickens come home to roost and the teflon-coated left get a taste of their own well-deserved medicine.

                • http://twitter.com/AnitaBellows12 Anita Bellows

                  What a long list of clichés… The article deals with the Lords and their rebellion against the welfare reform. They can hardly be called oppressive left-wing agitprop.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  No, but our parliament is coerced by left-wing agitprop which when it doesn’t get its own way scweams and scweams and scweams.

                  And cliché? Funny how any dissent against the agitprop is cliché but the agitprop itself is what? No, don’t tell me – “progressive”.

                  Still the question is not answered. Who funds ATOS?

                • HooksLaw

                  You are so thick you do not even realise the damage you are doing to your cause by the exposure of your thickness.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  I do not have a “cause” I just have an opinion. Your dislike of it does not invalidate that although you labour under the delusion that somehow what you believe in is prescient and always correct.

                • http://www.facebook.com/MarkAThompson Mark Andrew Thompson

                  But the fact you can’t back it up with any reasonable statistics makes your opinion clearly subjective and less rational.

                • Eeeek

                  Yes, you do have a cause. You are paid to be an ‘anti’ by the company who employs you, Ultimately UNUM the big health insurance company who were outlawed for illegal practices in many states of the USA

                • Eeeek

                  ATOS is funded by Joe Public. Our government happily gives them huge wedges of taxpayer’s money to fund their extermination program. To this day ATOS have cost the tax payer much more money than they were hired to save, counting the cost of appeals against their uninformed decisions.

                • http://www.facebook.com/MarkAThompson Mark Andrew Thompson

                  Seems you only see generalisations you don’t generally agree with.

                • Eeeek

                  Yes, workingnurse.

                • Eeeek

                  WHY UNUM (thats the umbrella company) employ such stupid girlies defies all comprehension. Would be better placed knitting jumpers for premature babies.

                • http://twitter.com/rlpkamath Rahul Kamath

                  A v good post. This sort of thinking tends to be ignored around here as it threatens the prejudices of the resident loons.

              • cornwalldisabled

                You worked for 30 years in HR but continue to patronise someone by calling them “love”. I too worked in HR and knew colleagues like yourself, self righteous and stuck up your own arse!

                • Eeeek

                  Its a young (ish) woman. Lies!

              • http://www.facebook.com/MarkAThompson Mark Andrew Thompson

                Oh so you don’t NEED to claim benefits because you have earned enough in those thirty years working (where you were healthy enough to do so). What about the people who did the other essential jobs for some of those thirty years, (maybe not at the highest level globally)? Maybe they need more support than you?

              • Eeeek

                Ahh, this explains the attitude problem. I think that the phrase “I’m all right Jack” fits your bill precisely. No empathy for those who have had a hard time in life and do not have a gold plated pension to retire on.

              • Eeeek

                Oh dear, still banging on? What pay rate are you on? I would bet not much more than minimum wage, if that.

              • Eeeek

                You never worked at any highest levels you liar. The highest levels you worked at was making tea for your superiors! That having been said, put the kettle on darling. Don’t forget the biscuits.

              • Eeeek

                Listen up love! They could have employed somebody with a bit more nouse than you, LOVE!. Stupid girly. Stick to knitting dear.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=515523904 Celia Lawton-Livingstone

            Oh and I suppose the fact that I and many others can’t walk and rely on crutches, wheelchairs and mobility scooters to move around is a scam?

          • HooksLaw

            ‘Like any organisation with close to 600,000 customers, there are a small minority of customers who will try to abuse the Scheme. Motability works with a range of partners, including for example motor dealers, the DVLA and the Police, to ensure that effective procedures are in place to protect the Scheme and to ensure that we respond effectively to all allegations of Scheme misuse.

            During our last financial year, a number of steps were taken to further improve liaison with the Police, including a Memorandum of Understanding signed with the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO).
            Over this period, we dealt with 7,144 allegations relating to fraud or abuse of the Scheme. These included cases of uninsured driving, unauthorised use of Scheme cars, drink-driving and even criminal activity, many of which led to prosecution by the Police.

            Enforcement action was taken by Motability in 2,139 cases, including 829 customers who had their agreements terminated and their cars withdrawn. In addition, 486 applicants were suspended or permanently excluded from the Scheme.
            We will continue to invest in this activity to protect the reputation of the Scheme and of the vast majority of our disabled customers.’

            http://www.motability.co.uk/about-us/news-and-information/lord-sterling/

            Lord Stering who founded the independent charity ‘Mobility’ is of course a businessman and capitalist of renown. He was so poorly thought of by Mrs Thatcher that she ennobled him in her resignation honours list.

            • ToryOAP

              Well done Trevor. You, just like telemucktwat, know how to cut and paste. Lord Sterling (not Stering) is to be admired for what he achieved and his excellent work with Motability. The abuse of his philanthropy by some of the administrators and users of the scheme is unfortunately what he have come to expect in this increasingly socialist state we must continue to pay for with our hard earned taxes.

              • HooksLaw

                Well hello dear typo spotter – According to Lord SterLing there is little abuse. Its sad that the very words of Lord SterLing have to be forced down your throat. I equally note you refuse to acknowledge them.

                I in fact do not have a big problem with the criteria for the HRMC of the DLA being reassessed or any pro and con discussion about it taking place. Thats called democracy. Its also a stick to beat the government with. But with the ignorance on display which talks about ‘free’ cars you can hardly complain if a campaigner, realising that NEXT Christmas has come early, fronts up and gives the correct position.

                Sadly for you and the other hysterics on here you have again demonstrated quite clearly how unqualified you are to comprehend the issues you seek to discuss. One complaint is that many disabled servicemen will not now ‘benefit’ from the scheme. The ‘benefit’ of course is the discount which gives a reasonable lease payment. The recipient never owns the car.

                • http://www.facebook.com/mo.stewart.54 Mo Stewart

                  WELL SAID & thank you to HooksLaw.
                  However, I would advise caution when suggesting that our disabled veterans will be adversely effected by these changes. That may apply to those whose disabilities aren’t too extreme perhaps? However, those of us who were profoundly disabled in the SERVICE (please note ToryOAP) of our country have the funding for the Motability cars attached to our war pensions and they are not, at the moment, under threat by these so called welfare reforms.
                  Mo Stewart – disabled veteran and user of a Motability car

              • http://www.facebook.com/MarkAThompson Mark Andrew Thompson

                Where are your figures? Unsubstantiated again!

              • Eeeek

                Silly little girly. Go change your tampon.

              • Eeeek

                Workingnurse, ToryOAP I feel that your organisation will have to give this crap up. You have been ‘found out’ to put a point. I have spread the news around about you and the organisation you work for. I have also given out a list of all your current aliases to all the people whom I know and spread it around facebook. I have told them your organisation’s modus operandi. Do you really think that this is a worthwhile method of spreading anti-propaganda? :)

          • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

            Under the proposals for PIP, there is one criterion which covers ‘reading and understanding signs, symbols and words’ – so yes, there is a ‘benefit for illiteracy’, it seems. For some reason, this Government appears to think the needs of people with significant mobility impairments aren’t as important as other needs, don’t know why.

            And, anyway, Disability Living Allowance, shortly to be replaced by Personal Independence Payment (PIP), is payable whether you work or don’t work. Many disabled people will be forced to stop working if they don’t get PIP – eg those who use their Motability cars to get to work. So your comment about disabled people getting benefits when they’re quite capable of working is irrelevant, for the benefit we’re supposed to be discussing here. It helps if you know something when you come on these comment sections!

            • ToryOAP

              I see you style yourself as a “disability campaigner”‘ whatever that is. I style myself as a patriotic, right-wing, hard working, taxpayer who believes that the majority of recipients of disability payments are no more disabled than I am. But as I know nothing, according to you, I have no right to comment on the pages of a publication I have been reading for 40 years. Sorry love.

              • http://twitter.com/theyoungjane Jane Young

                I’m sorry. I guess I just get frustrated when people comment on issues they don’t know that much about; even more so when they appear unwilling to learn. I don’t know whether this applies to you or not, but if not, I apologise.

                I don’t really understand what your problem is. I became disabled when I was 32 and my children were aged 4 and 1. My doctor suggested I apply for Disability Living Allowance when my husband and I were in need of a car I could drive. My current wheelchair accessible vehicle helps me to support my elderly mother and her neighbour just as my previous vehicles helped me parent my children and go to work. I carried on working until my doctor advised it was time to give up due to increasing respiratory difficulties, another aspect of my condition which is progressively restricting my chest expansion.

                It is up to you whether you choose to apply for benefits to which you’re entitled if you’re a disabled person, but I did so to ensure I could have a car I could use to transport the children, go to work, attend medical appointments etc, as I couldn’t walk far at all. I see little point in taking away my vehicle, as the Government seems intent on doing, as it won’t make me able to walk without severe pain and significant shortness of breath, it will just mean I won’t be able to support my wider family, neighbours and friends (my children, of course, are now grown up, or nearly). It will mean I become more isolated, though, which wouldn’t be pleasant at all. Even in London, public transport is more difficult for wheelchair users; in most parts of the country, especially in rural areas, there is little wheelchair accessible public transport. And my powered wheelchair is far too heavy to be put into a normal car, so I could never get a lift from anyone else either.

                Anyway, my situation is irrelevant, apart from helping me to explain why the mobility component of Disability Living Allowance is so important. I invite you instead to consider the example set by Baroness Jane Campbell, who can barely move any part of her body and has to be put on a ventilator every night. Her speeches in the Lords have to be finished by an assistant as she doesn’t have enough breath to continue. She is in total agreement with Baroness Thomas as she realises that there are many thousands of people with significant mobility difficulties who will be denied benefit by the 20 metre rule, which was sprung on us on 13 December, after all consultation stages were past. This is not self-interest for Jane, as she cannot walk even one step, but she has been a disability campaigner for years, not for her own sake but to fight for equal rights for all disabled people. The very least I can do for those who are far less well off than me is to follow in Baroness Campbell’s footsteps; there are no human footsteps in which I feel more honoured to follow.

              • http://www.facebook.com/MarkAThompson Mark Andrew Thompson

                If you are entitled claim, don’t sit there moaning!

              • Eeeek

                Sorry, despite what you think of how you style yourself you only come across as an ignorant, gullible Tory tw@t. Gullible, because you would believe the party line that it is the poor that are to blame for this country’s ills while your ‘masters’ chuckle to themselves at your willingness to stick the knife in to the backs of the people who are in the same position or worse than yourself. You keep on doing the work of your ‘Tory idols’ while they stash millions of taxpayers money away in their own offshore accounts, part of which fortune has been paid for by YOU.

              • Eeeek

                I forgot to mention earlier that beside your monitor is a list of aliases with the passwords for each individual troll account so that whoever is working as the paid troll on any given day can log in and continue the job for which you are paid to do. Isn’t that right, ‘workingnurse’? (to name yet another of your ‘set up’ aliases) You use the alias ‘workingnurse’ whenever ATOS is mentioned in this newspaper.Time to put that one to bed and invent a different one.
                :)

                • Eeeek

                  Vote down? I used to get paid out of hours and expenses for the anti propaganda which I did for the MOD. I bet you don’t. Sucker.

              • Eeeek

                Why don’t you just tell your organisation that you have been found out by somebody that used to work for the MOD? ‘LOVE’!

                Never let your age interfere with the job. Basic mistake. *Darling* LoL!

          • atos medicals

            i have been disabled for 25 years and managed to work because i had a mobility vehicle now i am so sick i cannot work and people like you want to call disabled people scroungers,check your silver spoon is not dirty before you put it back in your oversized mouth.

          • http://www.facebook.com/MarkAThompson Mark Andrew Thompson

            Here’s your, presumptive, unsubstantiated guff.

            Although of course motability does actually enable those who are well enough the option to get to work IF they are capable.

            But let’s take it away and see how many can get to work then!

          • Eeeek

            Well said! As you sit in your armchair looking out of your window at the world going past. An old git with a grudge knows about all illnesses and disabilities in the UK despite having no medical training. So how did you attain this great knowledge of the disability benefit scam? Have you had a session in the Joe 90 BIG RAT?

          • Eeeek

            Five aliases and counting….

            • cornwalldisabled

              i guess colonel mustard is one of them

          • http://www.facebook.com/mo.stewart.54 Mo Stewart

            In whose opinion may I ask ToryOAP? The DWP Ministers or the Tory press as, clearly, you are not speaking from any opinion formed by fact.
            Be advised please that I have spent 3 years undertaking RESEARCH, so I don’t need to use the grand misleading sweeping generalisations of the press – be they from the left or the right – and I can confirm that you are totally incorrect with your unqualified statement that “..Disability in this country is a scam….” I suggest you take the time to look at the facts and not the Tory press to aquire detailed info before making such incorrect statements. My research is accepted by 9 Professors in 7 different universities, has been quoted in the House of Lords and in the Westminster Hall debates, plus is well known across the Internet so perhaps you need to be better informed: http://www.whywaitforever.com/dwpatosveterans.html#documents

      • Eeeek

        Shut up girly. Tell your supervisor that thou hast been found out as a paid troll. Its time to end your comfy life behind a screen on minimum wage and get back to office work or cleaning toilets, a job for which you are most suited. You, who are the equal of your people take a job which attempts to denigrate the most worthy of society.

    • Eeeek

      Nobody begrudges a disabled person a vehicle, but on this comments section ATOS pay trolls to make up stories discrediting them. Nasty organisation. Isn’t that true, paid trolls? Don’t reply, just vote me down. You know it’s true.

  • http://www.facebook.com/robert.mason.100 Robert Mason

    its very hard to get a car so unless folk have all the facts they want to stop calling them that have it you never no it might be you that needs the help next ? why blame the poor for the misakes of the bankers and there greed and what about the mp’s who rent now becos of the rules at least half of them are bent

    • ToryOAP

      Any chance of a minimum literacy requirement before allowing the trolls and those of sub-norm IQ to post?

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=515523904 Celia Lawton-Livingstone

        You mean you don’t want to be able to post anymore?

        • HooksLaw

          At least he is not pleading on behalf of the charming chap who runs the EDL.

      • cornwalldisabled

        How do you know if Robert Mason has a mental disability and to be able to post is a feat in itself. No offense Robert, but its assumptions like this that hurt the sick and disabled in many ways.

        • ToryOAP

          What a bunch of loony left-wing whingers this post has attracted. Typical of the Disability Rights Brigade. I, like many right-wingers, have absolutely no problem supporting those who, through no fault of their own, are really disabled, or are injured in the service of our country. What I am not prepared to support are those who are ‘pretend’ disabled: the RSI slackers, the fast-food gorgers too fat to work or walk and too lazy, or thick, to diet, the ‘back ache’ sufferers who can’t work but can play golf and have jobs on the side, those who can’t walk when social services pop around but go skiing on their various benefits. I have seen and dealt with them all and I take no lessons from you bleeding-heart liberals who expect the state (taxpayers) to pick up the tab for everything. You are promoting welfare dependency at the cost of our children’s and grandchildren’s future and the scam must be stopped before it brings us all down. You lot can abuse me all you like and I couldn’t care less, in fact, I quite enjoy your opprobrium. Left-wingers – bah humbug.

          • cornwalldisabled

            But your view is guilty before proven innocent. I agree, there are the scammers out there but you tarnish us all with the brush. Up until 18 months ago i was hard working in full time employment and had been since leaving school when i became ill. i would give anything to work, but my body simply wont allow it. why am i a looney whinger because of that? im just trying to live my life as best i can, with as minimal benefits as possible, but the system is against you from the start. as others have said on here, people rely on motability to actually get to work….in my case, i qualified for motability but as i can no longer drive i have opted to not have a car, and that leaves me to rely on public transport (a joke in Cornwall where you can only get a bus one way a day) or the generosity of others, which is few and far between. the government is extremely short sighted with all of this….while i understand there has to be cuts, why hurt the poorest when corporations are legally avoiding tax, and the rich just get richer.

            • Eeeek

              ToryOAP is a paid troll. You will never get a sensible argument out of it, the person is merely sitting on a few columns in different newspapers appearing to be a ‘shocked member of the public’. They pay it a wage to do the job and spread mis-information! It is now common knowledge that government and lobbyists employ this tactic.

          • Eeeek

            What is the going rate for the job you are doing? I have sussed you. Either being paid to troll directly by some government dept or in the pay of an organisation which lobbies parliament. Possibly paid by a health insurance company? Come on, don’t sit there and tell porkies. Which organisation do you work for? You are too quick to vote down comments against you to be a member of the ordinary public.

            • Eeeek

              told you so. Point proven.

              • Eeeek

                Thanks for proving my point! I love it when I discover a rat in the cupboard! LoL!

                • cornwalldisabled

                  Has he simply decided not to comment, and mark your comments thumbs down…..i cant see anything more from him. I didnt realise this kind of thing went on, and i consider myself quite internet savvy. i guess its the world we live in now….shame!

                • Eeeek

                  His job is also to send to the bottom of the pile all comments against his to bury them. Its a fairly recent discovery for me as well. I have an old friend who works in a ‘department’ in the MOD who told me about these goings on. Watch him vote this comment down also!

                • Eeeek

                  There you go. At least three thumbs down expected from his aliases as well.

                • Eeeek

                  SHE

          • Larry Tangent

            Wow, you’re a real c u next Tuesday aren’t you? I know it’s not an argument or conducive to the debate, merely an observation from someone who has read a significant amount of this thread.

      • Eeeek

        Why don’t you take a pill, you stuck up old git.

      • cornwalldisabled

        what an arsehole…..cant you accept not everyone is of at least average intelligence….your nothing but an internet bully who gets thrills out of beating people down….what if your comments caused such distress that someone kills themselves as a result….i bet you wouldnt feel an ounce of guilt! people like you make me sick…..you talk about the disabled taking the piss when you should be deported for your views!

  • Chris M

    One of our neighbours has one of these free cars. It’s never used by her, she can’t drive, but her nominated driver uses it as her own daily runabout for herself. She gets a new car every three years and a disabled parking space in an overcrowded road. Complete waste of taxpayer’s money. Should be replaced by using local taxi firms which would at least keep some of them in business.

    • Annie Bishop

      Maybe you should complain to motability

      • Chris M

        Several neighbours have complained to the council but to no avail. Maybe Motability might be able to help. Thanks.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=515523904 Celia Lawton-Livingstone

          The nominated driver has the right to use the car without the disabled person if they are running errands for said disabled person… can you guarantee she is not?

        • Eeeek

          No need to lie, I would be ashamed to have to do your job. Still, it puts bread on your table, what? paid troll.

    • http://twitter.com/AtosVictims1 Atos Victims

      As usual peoples ignorance on the issue is overwhelming? The Motability Car is NOT free, people hand over their benefit to recieve the vehicle? Please get your facts right before making insinuations about something you obviously have no knowledge or understanding of?

    • Ross Allan

      What a thoroughly nasty individual you are Chris M.

      I’m sure your mother would be proud of you.

      • Chris M

        Why, because she never uses the car for herself. Her friend uses it for her own benefit. How does that make me nasty? Do you read or just write? My mother, a Christian, is proud of me and is and indignant about the situation as I and all our neighbours are.

        • redmary2

          There is nothing Christian about your attitude, IDS likes to portray
          himself as a Christian, but it takes more then going to church every Sunday, How do you know that her friend uses it for her own benefit,? Or are you one of those curtain twitchers, spying on your neighbour’s

        • Eeeek

          I think I have just discovered another identity to our paid troll.
          right, toryOAP?

          • Eeeek

            Workingnurse? and others

    • HooksLaw

      They are not free are they? if so I will apply for one so i can run my decrepit mother in law around!

      Aren’t people with a mobility allowance allowed to exchange it towards a car?

    • Sliightly cranky old woman

      THEY ARE NOT FREE! My husband has been disabled since birth and he has a Motability car so that we can transport his powerchair around. We had to pay a deposit for our car AND we have to use our DLA Mobility allowance for the term of the lease (i.e. 5 years) to help cover expenses. Get your facts right please before any of you pontificate about what these vehicles cost. They are a lifesaver and help to give my husband and I independence (I too am disabled, and use a scooter);

    • Eeeek

      MPs first. They should lead by example.

  • LB

    More money.
    More debt.
    None of them live in the real world.
    It’s your pensions they are spending.

    What are you going to do when they turn round and say, ah, you can’t have your state pension?

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