Ah, the poor government. It can be rough when things don’t go your way.
Like this week when they were defeated in the courts over the Bedroom Tax. Or, when the House of Lords voted that they needed to keep income as a measure of child poverty. (Stupid House of Lords *kicks can* thinks income has something to do with to poverty!)
Makes you feel all sad and depressed. Almost as bad as having cancer and then your benefits are cut.
WAIT A MINUTE.
STOP THE PRESSES.
The government’s plan to cut Employment Support Allowance (ESA) by 30% has been defeated!
ESA is the meager benefit people receive from the government if they fall desperately ill like I did not too long ago. People in the work-related activity group – those capable of moving towards employment, but still too ill to work – were meant to lose out on about £30 a week, bringing this benefit more closely in line with jobseeker’s allowance.
I wrote about it in the Guardian and was invited to Parliament to speak to MPs, Lords and Baronesses about it before the vote. Admittedly, my part was very small. But yes, I am feeling a wee bit proud today.
Some insight into how you make things like this happen:
The morning of my visit to Parliament.
Me: I’m going to Parliament today to speak about ESA.
Husband: Awesome. What are you going to do?
Me: I thought I’d start by arm wrestling a few Lords and if that didn’t work, try some harder techniques. Water boarding?
Husband: Yes, I hear that is very effective.
Of course, I thought it wouldn’t make any difference at all because almost everything this government writes passes and ESA received almost no press and, in any case, that’s just how the world works these days, etc., etc.
But, it was defeated and that means that when you, or your dad, or your best friend gets seriously ill in the future, they won’t also have the devastation of also knowing their sickness benefit will be cut.