Posts Tagged ‘green party’

MEPs back Green call for EU-wide Carers’ Leave law

9 July 2013


EURO-MPs have voted for a raft of measures proposed by London’s Green MEP Jean Lambert to  prevent care for vulnerable groups falling victim to government cuts – including a proposal for a new EU law granting ‘informal carers’ time off

The European Parliament voted by a clear majority today to adopt Ms Lambert’s report – ‘Impact of the Crisis on Access to Care for  Vulnerable Groups’, originally drafted for the Employment and Social  Affairs Committee, of which Ms Lambert is a member.

The  report, which will now be considered by the European Commission as ‘official’
European Parliament policy, sending a clear message to all EU governments that austerity measures and cuts should be evaluated to ensure they do not prevent the most vulnerable from being able to access healthcare, care services, and basic living support.

It calls for (more…)

Alan Wheatley – Green Party spokesperson on social security and care services

17 January 2011

I find it quite frankly laughable that Labour’s Disability Spokesperson should say that ConDem policy on disability benefits “is driven entirely by economic factors”  unless she means neo-liberal economics ideology.

Compare and contrast the wisdom of her judgement with the fact that the current Welfare Reform Minister Lord Freud was originally headhunted by Tony Blair as a welfare reform guru, despite the fact that the then Mr David Freud knew absolutely nothing about the benefits system.

Green Party policy toward disability benefits is incorporated into Citizens Income policy.

Alan Wheatley
Green Party Spokesperson on:
Social Security  – Care Services

One Month Before Heartbreak – 1st day round up

15 January 2011

What a day to remember………

…… witness so many individuals/groups/bloggers all working together to support One Month Before Heartbreak . The internet was used to its full advantage as a campaigning tool, which enabled many groups to create a network, all working towards the same goal.

Many links were added to Facebook pages, and Twitter was full of #ombh and #TBoB hash tags.

When posting this article –  462 names had been added to the petition today re DLA

Carer Watch  would like to congratulate the Broken of Britain for their iniatitive with this event , and we will continue to support it fully for the rest of the weekend.

We must do more to help carers out of poverty

29 September 2010

Jean Lambert, the Green MEP for London, has called on the UK Government to do more to help the thousands of carers living in poverty and the many more who are at risk at sliding into financial hardship and social exclusion

Jean, who opened a meeting of the European Parliament Interest Group on Carers today [2], heard how despite more and more being expected of carers due to demographic changes and challenges to formal health and social care services throughout Europe support is fundamentally lacking.

Read article in full

Alan Wheatley Green Party Disability Spokesperson

15 October 2009


It is all very disturbing news. One point I notice in reading the adult care green paper for England is that the options have implications for England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland via the tax and benefits systems, and yet it seems that the people in those other territories – that have higher rates of unemployment — are not being consulted.

And it all makes a mockery of ‘personalisation of social services’.

I would also argue that any soothing words such as Care Services Minister Phil Hope’s, “DLA is not under threat and people can be very happy”[1] have virtually no validity when said at Labour Party Autumn Conference or in Labour Party conference season. A similar thing happened at the Labour Party conference in 2007 regarding plans to close Remploy factories.[2] The Remploy mantra over Remploy-factory closures was, “Supported employment, not sheltered employment.” Remploy management kept their top-end luxury car fleet.[3]

In the market economy, the lives of the economically most vulnerable are colonised and commoditised as fossil fuel supplies dwindle. ‘Government consultations’ are too frequently ill-informed and laden with misconceptions about minorities such as people with severe mental illness and people with autism. “Those who give the order seldom see the mess it makes.”[4] Both groups are traditionally over-represented on the poverty line, and disability benefits have been designed to compensate for that poverty.

Yet the Adult Care Green Paper has been marketed more in the context of making adult social care funding and services fit the needs of an ageing population, at a time when Labour and Tory ‘welfare reform’ agendas seek to reduce the out-of-paid-work benefits bill.

In the Welfare Reform Green Paper of 2008, “No-one written off:
Reforming welfare to reward responsibility” all of the questions about ‘rewards’ were to do with rewarding prospective scheme providers, and the carefully edited published research skewed toward scapegoating claimants. By contrast, for the Adult Care Green Paper, more elderly home owners are targeted as respondents. Adults with learning difficulties who cannot read are already suffering from savagely axed ESA payments and will not be supported to respond adequately to this consultation, despite the existence of ‘easy read’ editions.

Not enough is invested in lifelong education, etc; and also home-based family carers are neglected, too. As Rosemary has commented elsewhere, family-based carers are motivated by LOVE, not money. They also require more resources and respite support.[5] Increasing Carers Allowance would
be a great start there, I believe.

Supplying the London 2012 workforce has priority over supporting basic level independence, Learning & Skills Council London Central reported in late 2004.

Meanwhile, most newly qualified Speech & Language Therapists cannot get paid work as SLTs and too many social care service users are denied a voice in day-to-day transactions, let alone government consultations. In the case of adults with severe speech impairment on account of a lifelong condition, it should be noted that family-based carers are more likely to have learned to ‘interpret the language’ as the speech-impaired service user grew up than an army of ‘bank’ social care workers would while on cover duty.

To sum it all up, in such a diverse and inequitable society as ours, perhaps ‘fair’ is just a four-letter word?

Warmest regards

Alan Wheatley
Green Party Disability Spokesperson

PS: Mental health orders is an interesting contrast with Atos Healthcase assessments and Government targets.




[4] Euripides, translated by Jean Paul Sartre ‘The Trojan Women’ [play] The Trojan women by Euripides

[5] Peter Beresford:  The prime minister’s party conference commitment to introduce free home care for people with the highest needs has made a further mockery of the government’s green paper consultation.

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