OH STOP IT

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Richard Leonard said that the Scottish government should mitigate the 2 child policy in its next budget.

Nicola Sturgeon asked him to co-sign a letter with her to the Brits asking for ‘Welfare’ powers to be devolved to Scotland.

He refused to do that.

Jeremy Corbyn has now tweeted:

. is calling on the Scottish Government to use its powers in the interests of the many, not the few. needs to listen and scrap the two-child cap in the upcoming Scottish budget.

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I saw an excellent comment from Cameron Archibald.

Labour: The SNP should mitigate the two-child cap policy!

SNP: Sure, join us on calling Westminster to devolve welfare powers to Holyrood.

Labour: …

SNP: …

Labour: …

SNP: Well?

Labour: …

SNP: Hello?

Labour: …

SNP: Are you ok-?

Labour: The SNP should mitigate…

Come on Labour. What’s the problem? It’s not like some welfare powers are going to make us totally sovereign. It would, though, mean that we would be able to run out own social security system, hopefully, a good way from the despicable English Tory welfare misery which, only last week, prompted damning criticism from the UN Rapporteur.

GOOD NEWS FOR DUNDEE: AND ANOTHER TRAVESTY FROM THE DWP

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Nicola Sturgeon was in Dundee today to announce the siting of the headquarters of the new Scottish Social Security Offices in the city.

At least half the 1,500 jobs expected to be created in these offices will be based here in the City of Discovery (and Munguin). The rest will go to Glasgow.

It has been estimated the new agency will be worth £125m to the local economy and will support another 800 jobs.

So, a good day for Dundee. After the Bank of Scotland news from earlier this year, this is exactly what we needed.

I sincerely hope our new department can avoid failures like this:

atory

Why would someone who is tetraplegic be on a benefit that was reviewable? , s Does the DWP expect that she might be getting better? Could they not have checked this with her consultant?

Does the DWP expect that she might be getting better? Could they not have checked this with her consultant (or indeed anyone with a first aid certificate)?

Given that you seem to have to prove that you still suffer from things that are incurable, if an error was made and she didn’t attend for an interview (something for which she can hardly be held responsible herself), and she was taken off her benefits and told to report to the jobcentre, why, when the situation was explained, wasn’t her benefit immediately reinstated?

I mean, seriously, whoever you are in the UK government that organises these things, have you got jobs up your sleeves for people who, as her husband says, can do nothing for themselves?

This is almost literally diabolical: the work of the devil. It is no wonder that the UK government was denounced by the United Nations for failing to respect the rights of disabled people.

The management of the DWP makes me ashamed to live on the same island as they do.

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SCOTLAND’S NEW SOCIAL SECURITY POWERS

For your information, through the Scotland Act 2016, the following benefits will be devolved to Scotland:

Group Benefit Main Purpose
For carers, disabled people and those who are ill.   Attendance Allowance To help with personal care for individuals aged 65 or over with a physical or mental disability.
Carer’s Allowance To help an individual look after someone with substantial caring needs. To be eligible the individual must be 16 or over and spend at least 35 hours a week caring for someone.
Personal Independence Payment (PIP) Helps with some of the extra costs caused by long-term ill-health or disability for individuals aged 16 to 64.  This is a replacement for DLA for working age individuals.
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) Help if your disability or health condition means either:

  • You need help looking after yourself
  • You have walking difficulties

DLA is closed to new working age claimants and being replaced by PIP.

Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit For individuals who are ill or disabled as a direct result of an accident or disease caused by work or while attending an approved employment training scheme or course.
Severe Disablement Allowance Was for working-age individuals who are unable to work due to illness or disability. SDA is closed to new entrants.
Currently part of the Regulated Social Fund Cold Weather Payment A payment for individuals on certain benefits when the temperature is either recorded as, or forecasted to be, an average of zero degrees Celsius or below over seven consecutive days.
Funeral Expenses For individuals on low income and needing help to pay for a funeral they are arranging.
Sure Start Maternity Grant Introducing a new Best Start Grant which will see support for qualifying families increase from the £500 payable only for the first child under the existing UK Government Sure Start Maternity Grant to £1,100 for the first child and £800 for second and subsequent children over  three payments during a child’s early years.
Winter Fuel Payment A tax-free payment to help pay for heating bills if you were born on or before July, 5 1952 (Current State Pension Age for women).
Other Discretionary Housing Payments Additional help for those in receipt of Housing Benefit and having difficulty meeting their rent payments. Paid at the discretion of the Local Authority.
Job Grant A new Job Grant which will be a payment of £100 or £250 for people with children plus a three months bus pass for  16-24 year olds who have been claiming benefit for six months or more and are starting work.

The following benefits will remain reserved to UK Government:

  • Universal Credit
  • Contributory Job Seekers Allowance
  • Contributory Employment Support Allowance
  • Child Benefit
  • Maternity Allowance
  • State Pension
  • Pension Credit

JUST WHEN YOU THOUGHT YOU’D HEARD IT ALL… ALONG COMES RUTH WITH THIS BEEZER!

amay

The Tories have overseen a large number of fairly odious policies designed, so they say, to encourage the workshy back into work. (Some of us might say that when you are lying dying in intensive care, possibly “workshy” is a tad on the harsh side, even coming from a Tory. Indeed, some of us might be tempted to believe that what the Tories were REALLY trying to do was to dismantle the Welfare State that they never much cared for.)

A new rash of cuts in benefits was introduced at the start of the new financial year 2017, among which was a particularly controversial policy which means that to benefit from child tax credits for a third or subsequent child, women must prove that the child was conceived as a result of rape. Not so easy to do if like many cases, for obvious reasons, the violation was not reported to the police. In any case utterly humiliating to have to relive such a vile experience.

Politicians, campaigners and people in the street have condemned the measure as, at best, heartless, at worst downright inhuman.

As Nicola Sturgeon said when talking about it on her recent visit to the USA, the policy is bad and bad enough, but for it to have been introduced by a government led by a woman is nothing short of astounding.

I’m not going to even try to get into what a rape victim must feel like. Relatively few men are raped, and it’s impossible for me, as a guy,  to imagine the horrors and the humiliation.  Suffice to say, for what must be a very small amount of saving when compared with, say, the refurbishments to the Palace of Westminster, it would have been a good idea just not to go there.

akezlat

OK, so in Scotland, the leaders of the main parties across the board, have condemned out of hand the Westminster policy. All except Ruth Davidson.

Uncharacteristically quiet this week, when normally she would be taking every opportunity to get her face on tv and in the papers in the run-up to the council elections, Ruth eventually issued a statement, via a spokesperson, saying that she supported the UK government’s policy, and that she would write directly  to constituents who had contacted her on the subject.

Cop out, we thought. You’re a party leader, we thought. You need to tell us ALL what your take on this policy is, we thought.

So, today, a new line has been taken both by Ruth and by her deputy, Jackson Carlaw. Obviously, they have had one of these “how the hell do we get out of this mess?” meetings and this was the answer they came up with.

Wait for it…

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Yep, it seems that in time-honoured SNP BAAAAAAD fashion, it is all the SNP’s fault. Nicola, they both think, is a hypocrite to blame the Tories for a Tory policy that the Tories introduced (what with the Tories being in Government in London).

anicola1

Yes, you read that right.

Ruth and Jackson point out that the Scottish government now has the power to mitigate some of the social security policies of the Tory government without permission (and indeed they have done so). If the SNP feel so strongly about not humiliating women who have been raped, they should use these powers.

So, there you are. Problem solved, thanks to the super brains that are Davidson and Carlaw.

I wonder what Ruth thinks the government should cut in order to fund this… or perhaps it would be better if we put the tax up on high earners. There are few funding options open to Scotland. Any Tories reading, how do you feel about this policy? Should Scotland mitigate it and if so, with what?

Pathetic. spends millions mitigating welfare cuts & will continue to do so. We wouldn’t have to if Tories didn’t make callous cuts.