Saturday 1 September 2012

UK Uncut Video and DPAC press Release on yesterday's Atos Protests

Yesterday, I had the live stream of the DPAC protests (supported also by @UKUncut) against Atos and the DWP running on my laptop.

I popped into the kitchen to make a cup of tea and in the few minutes I was out of the room, police had attempted to separate protesters inside the building from the larger crowd of protesters beyond. It seemed to me that the police, walking two abreast, forced their way through the crowds.

When I came back into the room, people were screaming, scuffles were taking place, a woman in a wheelchair was protecting her child from harm by holding her close, putting her own body between the child and police. Another man in a wheelchair had his shoulder broken.

Were the police too violent? Were they provoked by protesters? Does it matter?

What on earth have things come to if sick and disabled people cannot protest peacefully and know they will be safe and free from injury? 

Here is the DPAC press release on the issue :

Also, please take a few minutes to watch this wonderful video by UK Uncut and DPAC all about Atos, "fit for work" tests, the DWP, and just how unfair cuts to sickness and disability benefits REALLY affect sick and disabled people :


  1. Well the protest was carried as far away as on the "Russia Today" news channel this morning..yet coverage by the BBC was abysmal by comparison to Channel 4 and others..(Gov't mouthpiece worried about their licence funding no doubt!) maybe even the protestors, though happy with what they DID achieve themselves..may not even be aware how this issue is reverberating further than even their OWN wildest expectations...WELL DONE to each and every one of those brave protestors

  2. Dunno about anyone else..but in pretty much all of the news media, the stock reply from the Games organisers (in summary) is : "Without our Sponsors, there would be NO games" But no-one yet seems to have challenged them (The paralympic committee)with the reverse argument, "If you have athletes that are unable to support them selves financially with adequate support, to train, get around and eat, your so called Games (..and its a Games playing with peoples lives) would have NO friggin Team GB there!)..Think about it and share at every opportunity if you agree..! :-))

    (And of ocurse..I believe I read somewhere that Thierry Breton, CEO of ATOS,also happens to be on the board of that same self smug committee)

  3. Oh and while i'm here..I could do with a few more signatures on my petition also..

    So if you haven't already done so..your signature would be MUCH appreciated..and please..SHARE! SHARE! SHAR! and aks your friends to continue sharing with their friends and so on..Many Thanks

    P.S. To Sue..glad you were feeeling well enough to make that cuppa Sue..your own single-handed achievements against this EVIL REGIME..(yes its as evil as Hussein, Mubarak, Gaddafi, Asad in the context of people being killed by the State)..and therefore qualifes for the title of EVIL and a REGIME...qualifies you for AT LEAST a PLATINUM Medal in HONEST POLITICS..:-)

  4. The protest yesterday was very significant:, not least the numbers but the fact there were lots of young 'abled bodied' people there.I can remember a few years back hearing derogatory remarks from students, even progressive professionals like junior doctors, about scrounger, 'swinging the lead' etc. As i posted earlier, its a lot different from five years ago, when NCAWRB held their anti-welfare reform bill protest at the LP conf, same weekend 60'000 marched 'against the war' and we had 80 to try and challenge the initial NL welfare reforms.

    I agree with you about 'letting a thousand flowers bloom', and that all avenues must be explored(though increasingly the LP seems to be endorsing WCA/PIP, etc) but there is something uniquely empowering about peaceful direct action, (and not just for its participants)There is a buzz now amongst many opponents of the reforms including many members of the public who have seen all the social media reports,the BBC was as usual a disgrace, why are we paying for our licence fee, when we are not fairly represented.

    1. Hi Sue
      Where can people get stickers to put in the back of their cars stating ATOS Kills or something to that effect. I am sure with something like this in the back of the thousands of cars that disabled people drive people behind them in the queue or in the carpark will ask what it means. This may be another way of getting things across to the general public about what is going on

  5. I suggested on facebook that the atos lanyard be reshaped into a noose.
    And yes, after watching police brutality yesterday, mainstream media is having a fun time blaming the protesters and will continue to do so until someone wakes the f*** up and realises "what if the protesters have a really valid point?"

  6. Cameron, Grayling, Duncan Smith and Miller are still unaware of any deaths that THEY feel are to do with the ATOS testing system

    They say the people choose to end their own lives because of other issues ?

    It would be a good idea for a journalist reading this blog to spend some time with some of bereaved families to find out who was to blame for the death of their loved ones so that those in the government and ATOS can get the message into their brains crystal clear

    only then we can make some headway on getting some sort of redress preferably in a court so that those that have come up with a policy and those that have implemented a policy that kills can be bought to justice

    as it stands at the present time their is a potential death sentence hanging over the heads of every sick and disabled person in the uk as anyone of us at any time could have our benefits cut and our entitlement to a life finished at any time and i think we all need to pay heed to this and for a newspaper to focus on it to protect the lives of the sick and disabled

  7. Government's first responsibility to its people is to look after them. Where did it go wrong?

  8. The protest yesterday was very impressive. Thank you everyone who took part or helped organise it. This Guardian report includes a good interview with Jeremy Hardy, who is clearly very clued-in to the situation, and Adam Lotun who is standing as a Parliamentary candidate in Corby.:

  9. This governments first 'responsibility' is to get nice £££ directorships lined up for when they are out of power, they don't give a shit about Uk citizens. Unless we really make PR headway and capitalise on the Games and on welfare deaths /??reform/ATOS/DWP that is where Grayling, Miller, IDS are heading, lots of dosh and no responsibility, rather like claiming Mps expenses for their lunch and 2nd homes??? lets create so much negative PR for them that no company with shareholders will touch them with a barge pole for a non exec position. Every 'irregular' expense, every sandwich, every loophole lets make up their Cv for them.......

  10. Well Sue, I watched it live on bambuser too and didn't pop out for a cup of tea.

    "Were the police too violent? Were they provoked by protesters? Does it matter?"

    Yes they were too violent. No, they were not provoked by protestors. And yes, it does matter.

    There were 3 citizen journalists there broadcasting at different times and different angles. It was clear from one that the TSG lined up on the street, a litle distance from the entrance to the DWP. Riot vans down both sides of the stree and a police helicopter overhead.
    They then suddenly rushed forward to appear from the side of the building from behind a pillar and charged straight into the crowd.
    The protestors were doing nothing more than they had already been doing for some time, with only a handful of police at the entrance, while some protestors in wheelchairs had been let inside.
    That it was a charge straight into the crowd can easily be seen and heard with the broadcaster shouting an urgent warning to the crowd that the police were coming in.

    It matters because if the demonstration was peaceful, then it is still legal in this country (supposedly)It matters because the attack was unprovoked and had to have been ordered by somebody. The police were warned there were disabled people in the crowd but charged ahead anyway.

    It matters because no one knew the demonstrators were even going to the DWP until it happened. So it means the TSG had been put on standby for a peaceful protest by disabled people. Obviously they were not afraid of anything serious happening, since they were not protecting themselves with riot gear but in normal uniform. If there had been even a hint of serious trouble from the protestors, the riot gear would have definitely been ordered on.
    Why did they wait till the scuffles were hapening to tweet for the leaders to make themselves known to "facilitate the protest and care for any needs" They could have just asked a long time before. If they wanted the entrance cleared, they could have just tried asking first?

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  11. FFS, I didn't mean it like that, I was trying to pre-empt the inevitable criticisms that would come from those who have never protested, but hey, join in!! Have a pop! Come on, use me as the human kickbag I so obviously am.

    I have lost count how many people have had a pop today - entirely without cause may I add, just a part of their fevered hating brains, so that's it, come on join in!!! Easy isn't it!

    I post something about a DPAC protest, I do it in good faith, but that's not good enough. It never is.

  12. Tanni Grey-Thompson was given a remarkable privilege when she was appointed to the house of lords
    for those that dont know is that to be a cross bencher in the lords you must have been seen to be an expert in your field in the understanding and for improving the lives like yourself in tannis case that meant the disabled

    My own views on this appointment is that she did not merit a Lordship as she has not been effective and far to many sick and disabled people have struggled and continue to struggle with getting their benefit entitlement

    for her and for her wonderful achievement's as a disabled athlete she should have been made a Dame the female equivalent of the honour of knighthood as that is befitting ones great personal achievements over a lifetime

    A Lordship is a much higher award and should only be given to a cross bencher who understands and will fight the corner of those they are supposed to be representing as i say tanni a lovely woman has failed to get her message across and her fellow peers in the lords take what she says with a pinch of salt and dismiss it and she is unable to make any headway hence the position with regards the sick and disabled remaining very black and bleak with another ATOS death just being on the news

    sue marsh however has continually fought very hard for the well being of the sick and disabled and in reality she should be in the lords as baroness marsh a cross bencher speaking on behalf of those like herself in that the sick and disabled do have rights in international law and that they be given the full support that they deserve in leading the fullest life as is possible and not the lives that they lead at this time as one of fear and death

    i recommend that all readers to this blog put forward sues name here
    so that the lords select committee can get a chance to see the vital contribution that sue has made to the sick and disabled on line communities in where she will have saved many lives by the wonderful support that she offers along with many of her followers

    sadly many have died despite this blog best efforts in offing words of comfort to those at the end of their mental tether

  13. Well well anonymous let us all hope you do not become ill !!!!

  14. Thank you for posting such a great article. Keep it up mate.

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