Received from Hardest Hit organisers
We did it!
The day of action on 11 May was a great success – we estimate that around 8,000 disabled people, their families and friends took part in the march and 600 disabled people met their MPs to raise the issue of the cuts to DLA and support services.
There was extensive national, regional and local media coverage with at least 500 separate news items related to the event. If you haven’t yet seen our video coverage from the day, you can still watch it.
The rally saw Liam Byrne MP (Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions) powerfully express his support for the Hardest Hit campaign and the day made many MPs and peers aware of the strength of feeling against these cuts.
The Hardest Hit protest has successfully got the issues we care about on their radar. The challenge over the next few months is to capitalise on the pressure we’ve built up and deliver the change we all want to see.
So what happens next
Very soon, Members of the House of Lords will be debating the Welfare Reform Bill, which will contain many of the changes we’ve been challenging. We will continue to work hard behind the scenes to persuade peers to improve the bill and protect the interests of disabled people.
How can you get involved
We need your help to continue to build up a groundswell of support against cuts to services and benefits.
There are a number of ways you can help our push to increase awareness about what the Hardest Hit partners are fighting for:
1. Tell us your story
We need your photos, videos and messages about how cuts would affect you and why you or your family depends on support from benefits like Disability Living Allowance, Carer’s Allowance or Employment and Support Allowance.
Your stories will help us show the government the true impact of planned cuts. Send your links, videos and photos to firstname.lastname@example.org for use on our website, and let us know if you would be willing to speak to the media about your story.
2. Support our Hardest Hit regional days of action
If you were unable to come to the London event, or if you did attend and are keen to keep the momentum going, why not attend one of our regional days of action in October? We will be sending out more information about these soon, so watch out for the next email.
3. Like our Facebook page and Tweet your support
Show your support on Facebook by liking and contributing to our page. Tweet your comments and support by using our dedicated hashtag: #hardesthit
We’re also interested to hear via Facebook and Twitter about any cuts to local disability services taking place in your area. So don’t forget to keep us informed.
Jaspal Dhani, Chief Executive, United Kingdom Disabled People’s Council (UKDPC)
Steve Winyard, Chair, Disability Benefits Consortium (DBC) – Campaigns Group