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You do not pay anything towards me. I am happy with that, why on earth should you?
Agreed on that?
Contrawise, why should I pay anything to you?
So when I need a doctor I pay. Not you, not anyone else.
What one person receives, it is taken from someone else. Taken.
I do not like taking what is not mine or freely offered.
It seems most of you are happy with taking, ok its up to you but it cannot last.
Although at the moment from what I've read I'm treating this with a little bit of caution, especially with regards to the caveats in this document:
Think it needs to be run through a few more layers of data analysis before we can reach a firm conclusion as to the correlation between the 2 things (benefit withdrawal and death caused by benefit withdrawal).
Looks troubling at first glance though. Although it's a murky area. I've said before that I believe the stress caused by the implementation of `the bedroom tax` was a contributory factor in my fiancée's Mum's death, so I'll be watching this closely.
The papers are reporting a query that's been raised with very inflammatory headlines, I think. It seems like this is the point where someone's said we need to make sure the cuts in benefits aren't responsible.
And I think the ACTUAL extent to which benefit withdrawal has correlated with a rise in deaths (esp. by suicide) is relevant. If there's been a slight increase, then that was perhaps inevitable and can be seen as such. If there's been a large increase then, quite frankly, it's hammertime. One can always comment on the perceived cruelty of a government's policies subjectively; but if something this severe can be legitimately backed up by robust data then... there's hell to pay.
Not buying this conspiracy theory re: withholding of FOI requests for this data either. Perfectly reasonably for this to have happened.
There has been enough publicly-available reporting of how bad this has been over the past five years, and next to no public reaction. Nobody gives a shit.
I have heard first-hand about high-ranking DWP staff laughing in meetings about ESA suicides meaning less cases for them to deal with.
As you can see now by how much media coverage this is getting. `Government policy has resulted in the deaths of a disproportionately large group of vulnerable people`. Yeah I think people will give a fuck about that. And also opposition parties can use it to campaign effectively against the Tories and remove them in 2020. This sort of stuff can change public mood y'know. We're not talking about the stereotypical knobhead at the end of the road in a nice big council house, claiming `loads of benefits` whilst creaming a load of cash in hand on the side... We're talking about the vulnerable/needy who most people accept the welfare state is there to help.
Maybe I'm disproportionately passionate about all this owing to personal experience, but I genuinely feel this could be a gamechanger.
I just really think if 'disabled and mentally ill people having their lives systematically destroyed' was a game-changer, it would have changed the game some time ago. I am very pessimistic about public opinion catching up with the reality. The majority of people still want benefits to be further cut. Maybe at best this story might finally stop the public's blood lust for the vulnerable, but I don't think it'll go much further. It will be one of the defining policies of this government. But we probably won't get perspective on it for a long time, as a society.
As far as I can tell, only The Guardian is running with this. And The Mail is running an anti-Government front page about the immigration stats today, so it's not like they're hiding from criticising the government. Just don't think the majority of the public care about it.
Your fella works in this doesn't he so deferring to your pessimism is probably wise.
Maybe it's naivety but... my general thoughts on `you the public's` opinion on welfare/benefits is that they are fully backing of a welfare state that helps those who actually need it. i.e. the elderly, the ill, the vulnerable... From my experience most peoples' rancour towards benefits is that too much welfare goes to a) people who they perceive don't need it and b) immigrants who they perceive haven't sufficiently paid enough into the system. I have faith that enough people, given enough evidence, would be appalled that welfare cuts have been so mismanaged that they've actually been responsible for the deaths of thousands of people who they perceive are fair recipients.
Whether or not that message would ever get through to them is, of course, another matter.
The further up the chain he gets, the grimmer the picture. It's brutal. He's doing some amazing work and it is making a big impact, but he's got to fight so hard every day against some of the worst people you could imagine.
I just don't think the public have really caught up with the changes in welfare, because they've been so badly reported (largely because the victims have little to no voice). The public perception is still of the welfare state being a soft touch for everyone, which is farcical when you look at the reality.
I think if you sat every member of the public down and explained to them what's happening, public perception would shift massively.
Maybe that will change with Corbyn as leader of the opposition? I can see him pushing it pretty hard. I'm not a fan of his, by any means, but could save a lot of lives if he can make this a big enough issue that people clock on to what's happening, instead of getting furious about the fantasies in their heads.
because he'll frame the argument in a way (i.e. wanting to spend even more on welfare) that will doubtlessly make people even less inclined to trust him on it.
Not saying he'd be incorrect to do so by my own values - just that his general vibe on welfare I would expect to be so far removed from the majority of the electorate that they'd disregard whatever he says.
Just mean he will challenge them and actually talk about what they're doing. Whereas Miliband and Balls were scared of being painted as the 'welfare party' if they spoke up about anything the coalition government did.
Corbyn will just straight up challenge them on it at PMQs, and not really care about the repercussions. That won't win Corbyn an election, but it may well fundamentally shift the public debate on welfare.
Just say there's no real evidence, investigations ongoing, and everyone will forget about it. Brief flash of optimism extinguished.
but there seems to be an inability/unwillingness to ask why it's happening, or at least to try and set in in context of government policy and the climate of suspicion and lack of empathy that is encroaching on Britain.
people will look for any excuse to doubt people's honesty re: claiming any kind of handout (except pensions, obviously!!!).
I don't think (enough) people care, and those that do will be dismissed as scroungers and the usual wet lefty types.
I don't think these figures are enough to demonstrate the cruelty of the measures though yet - the DWP were very careful to issue figures that made any kind of judgement all but impossible.
not enough data actually exists to make a firm conclusion on the causation of the 2 events in question.
enough for the bare minimum to be released.
data via various agencies and at various stages that would allow a meaningful conclusion to be drawn, were it all to be released. There have been a number of pieces from various social policy/stats people today and yesterday highlighting the limitations of the data that's been released, the inadequacy of the IC's instructions, and what data, that is already collected, would be needed.
in my first post on the matter.
You got the links?
Think they definitely published in the most unhelpful way possible. Think the denominator is out there though, ESA outcome is an official statistic regularly published, might try and do some analysis when I get home
I have probably done something wrong but I make the death rate 4%.
Adding up tables 2a and 2b and subtracting table 3 for the time period (knocking off a third of the first and last quarter to approximate the same time scale as months are awkward). Adding in table 10 (using the average month figure for pre April 11 as data not there) gets to about one million (seems about right as they say 2 million got a decision and looking at the appeals it seems like around half get upheld). 40680 deaths so that is 4%. Even if I got the wrong end of the stick and the 2 million is the denominator then that is 2% which is still really high. Don't know about age but will see if that is out there
The average death rate for those on benefits for that period is 0.6% and for the general working age population 0.2%
How come the papers all say 2500 people died when this says 40,000? https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/456359/mortality-statistics-esa-ib-sda.pdf
Ok so that is all deaths of those that had a decision, not just those deemed fit for work. Still think it can be worked out, going to try again tomorrow
I've been very frustrated that no one in the media has calculated the death rate for those who have been declared fit for work, as that is the only way to tell if the 2,500 number is significant or not.
Just read the storify / Ben Goldacre link and it seems like the relevant number is not in the stats they released, so it can't be calculated.
I came up with a figure but I don't think it can be right so don't want to post it.
the relevant numbers weren't published as part of the response to the FOI request, but the outcomes of the fit for work assessments are published routinely which I thought could be used to approximate it.
that link includes a time series, the time period in which 2,380 people died is December 11 to February 2014, where as the routine publication for those found fit to work is by quarters so Jan 2012 to March 2014 could be used to make a good estimate (my first attempt was looking at the wrong number with a different time period, this one is more straight forward).
Frustratingly it doesn't just have a total those found fit for work figure but various breakdowns. I thought adding 'fit for work' number from tables 2a (outcome of initial assessment), 2b (out come of repeat assessment) and 10 (out come for incapacity benefit assessment), subtract table 3 (appeals to initial assessment) for those whose appeals were upheld *might* be the figure (but there seems to be nothing on appeals that apply to table 2b, table 10 is already adjusted).
but I am not confident in what I came up with, may be double counting between tables, the time periods may not match (tables 2a and 2b are month of assessment, don't know if there is a lag for coming off, the appeals would be based on month of claim start, and table 10 based on month of referral).
All that would be needed is a clearly written FOI request asking for the numbers that came off ESA between December 2011 to February 2014, I guess many people will have put in this request now and so when its released it comes back as a bigger story for them having tried to hold it back
Seems to me that based on your analysis and even at a conservative estimate, based on the available (and incomplete) information, that there has been a significant/large spike in the death rate among those declared fit for work. Which is alarming in and of itself.
Although I’m guessing that these figures will only make real sense when compared to death rates in those whose claims were reassessed/stopped in the period, say, 2000 – 2010. What we’re trying to work out here is the impact of the specific actions of this government re: reassessment of eligibility for benefits. Just thinking cautiously here. For instance there was a lot of headlines a few years back concerning the suicide rates/mental health complaints of soldiers who served in Iraq. They looked high at first glance vis-à-vis suicide rates among the general population, but when layered over with data from previous conflicts the numbers didn’t look all that significant for Iraq in particular iirc.
That said even with my repeated pedanticisms it’s difficult to see any other conclusion than government policy actually being responsible for killing people.
has a sign that says 'Benefit cuts = racist attack of the financial kind'.
some of the comments here are around whether being denied benefits contributed to these people's deaths, but even if it didn't contribute isn't it also crazy that we have a system where we say to people "hey you seem fit for work, better start looking for a job" and then it turns out they were on the brink of death
I agree, these decisions will have undoubtably contributed to some deaths but likely to be rare, what the deaths may show is how invalid those assessments are (which is already obvious from the appeal success rate). Regardless of deaths this policy is so damaging, my brother has schizophrenia and the past few years he has been obsessed with losing his benefits, it has genuinely contributed to his illness and I an sure this must be common