Tory ministers have lost a landmark Court of Appeal battle over Universal Credit rules that discriminated against seriously disabled people.
Campaigners celebrated as the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) lost a bid to overturn two High Court rulings against the six in one benefit.
This means that ministers must now either give up their fight, which has spanned two years and cost the taxpayers more than £130,000 in legal fees, or take it to the Supreme Court.
The two men who brought the case, TP and AR, and who were among 13,000 who lost out on disability premiums when they moved over to Universal Credit.
TP, a 54-year-old man with terminal non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and AR, a 38-year-old man who suffers from severe mental health issues, got around £170 a month less when they moved over to Universal Credit.
However, in June 2018, the High Court decided the DWP acted unlawfully by refusing them top-up payments and after the DWP helped them, judges supported a second claim stating their repayments were too small.
But despite halting new severely disabled claimants moving to Universal Credit, and giving back payments to those who’d lost out, the government continued appealing the matter.
But it’s hoped that the Court of Appeal ruling will ultimately bring an end to the fight for seriously disabled people not to be disadvantaged by Universal Credit, and it’s shocking, that severely disabled people have had to fight so long and so hard just to get the government to see that their system is illegal.
And the government should spend no more time or resources challenging this legal matter and get on with what it should have been doing in the first place, instead of victimising seriously disabled people and this should be a wake-up call for our government.
The Government asserts that Universal Credit is protecting the most vulnerable, but that’s not been the experience from claimants who have suffered a climactic reduction in their monthly income when they moved on to the new benefits system, and this discrimination was unjustified and unlawful.
And it wasn’t only the severe disability payments that they got wrong, thousands of people on incapacity benefit were underpaid when they were moved onto ESA and 180,000 people have been receiving back payments to fix their blunders.
But you can wager that the DWP will challenge this ruling to the Supreme Court, after all, they’re using our money to do it, rather than admit their mistake, and instead, treating vulnerable people with some decency, paying them what they’re entitled to.
And all this time, the Government has been promoting Austerity, wasting £130,000 fighting a case they had no possibility of winning and still they want to appeal to the Supreme Court.
Boris Johnson needs to admit that Universal Credit isn’t fit for purpose and he should make it a proper welfare benefit, that’s a benefit that supports those in need, not kill them because all we hear about are people with severe infirmities scoring zero points and this government is leaving the severely ill impoverished and sometimes destitute, and assessors are killing defenceless people, and not giving them the proper help they need and they send them to these cruel assessments to be patronised, where they’re made to feel like frauds and it needs to end now!
And these assessments have been masterminded to fail the claimant, and yet these multi-millionaire MP’s determine how much money people can live on when these MP’s are getting £74,000 plus expenses and are claiming that it’s not enough to live on and let’s not forget Iain Duncan Smith stating that he could manage to live on £53 per week, and then the next morning spent £59 on his breakfast in the subsidised parliament canteen/restaurant.
But the default position of all these assessors is that the people they assess are lying about their health. I think their doctor or consultant is more equipped to determine that rather than some assessor that has no qualifications to determine whether that person should live or die.
This government is despicable and whoever voted for them believe that the sick and disabled are the problem, well the Tories have managed to turn the preponderance of the public against the minority and we should look back in history and see where that got us.
And hopefully, they will scrap it, because they were told it wouldn’t work from day one, so we shouldn’t be shocked that it’s failing, and how incredibly sad it is that these two courageous people had to go through this enormous stress to accomplish this and we should take our hats off to them, and our government has blood on their filthy lying hands.
The Tory voters only voted for one topic and that was Brexit and to hell with the suffering that’s gone on for ten years, and this is the hatred that’s taken hold in our country.
And it’s all weaved together with the ‘let’s build walls’, that’s Brexit. Prejudice and racism and to hell with the disabled, sick, elderly, that’s the attitude from the Tory voters, and it’s wrong.