This petition calling for an inquiry into the benefit sanctions which killed David Clapson has hit almost 75,000 signatures in just over a week.
Mr Clapson had his benefits stopped after missing a meeting with the Jobcentre. This left him unable to chill the insulin he needed to manage his diabetes and without any money for food or electricity. Shortly after his benefits were sanctioned he was found dead without any food in his stomach.
His sister launched the petition last week calling an inquiry into benefit sanctions and the terrible damage they inflict. Tens of thousands of people have signed already. The Government will do everything they can to ignore it, but behinds the scenes this will not go unnoticed.
Benefit sanctions are the teeth of welfare reform, and are designed as a form of punishment for being on benefits. If you don’t jump through every hoop set up by the deranged Iain Duncan Smith – in the exact way he has decided you should – then you will have all forms of meeting your basic needs stopped. Depending on your circumstances you might become homeless, ill, or even die. It doesn’t even have to be your fault. The system is as haphazard as it is vicious, and thousands have been wrongly sanctioned for the most trivial and vindictive of reasons.
There are signs that, as the public discover what the DWP are doing to people, the mood is starting to change. A recent poll by Ipsos Mori found that more people are concerned about poverty and inequality in the UK since they began collecting figures in 1998 (h/t @patrickjbutler). If this petition can hit 100,000 signatures then it will be further proof that people are finally saying enough is enough to the war on the poor that has been waged so brutally by both this, and the last government.
One last push can make that happen, so please share, tweet, blog and post the petition everywhere: https://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/david-cameron-hold-an-inquiry-into-benefit-sanctions-that-killed-my-brother
This blog has no sources of funding so here’s a quick reminder that you can help ensure it continues by making a donation.
Follow me on twitter @johnnyvoid