Protect the Independent Living Fund

Scan000162cEd Miliband MP
House of Commons

06 February 2014

Dear Mr Miliband,

I cannot imagine what you must be thinking, planning to close the Independent Living Fund if you win the general election.

At an average cost of £345 a week that’s £6,210,000 for 18,000 recipients, or roughly half what it will cost to provide residential care which will be the only other option, this is sheer madness. It is impossible to imagine a more vulnerable group of people for whom the cost of support in terms of the national economy is less than the price of a tin of Spam.

Throwing these people at the mercy of local authorities, which are already cut to the bone, is, in real terms, to simply abandon them. I don’t have to ask, is this really Labour policy? Clearly it is and the smallest group of the most vulnerable will be cut off to hit the cold hard ground.

The Labour movement has secured all the protections and workers rights that we’ve ever gained. These weren’t given to us by grateful elites, they were bitterly fought for and won at great cost. Many have died in the fight for social justice. You are a young man and much can be forgiven the naivete of youth, but not the leader of the Labour party. You are without excuse.

Do you know how many have already died to austerity? I do not, the DWP has refused to update the figures, but it is in the tens of thousands already.

Press TV reported two days ago that the number of people dying from cold in Britain is up 30% on last year, 28,800 people died in the fortnight ending January 23. Are you really prepared to commit to many thousands more deaths to save peanuts for the national pot? Are you really ready to throw the most disabled people into terror and despair?

Oh how I wish I could say this is unthinkable in a modern western advanced society and the 6th richest nation on Earth, but it isn’t, it’s policy

Mahatma Gandhi, on being asked what he thought of Western civilisation, replied, “I think it would be a very good idea.” Your call, Mr Miliband.

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