This campaign appears to be a cheap way to provide soft cover for the the vicious cuts to disability and housing benefits currently taking place and features youtube videos of high profile disabled people with good jobs. At a time when many disabled people’s incomes – and even homes – are coming under savage attack, the Government’s inspirational message seems to be that those forced into poverty by the cuts only have themselves to blame for not being Paralympians or entrepreneurs.
Perhaps the most insidious aspect of this campaign however, is that anyone visiting the youtube page – which still exists – would have no idea this was a government run campaign. In fact the page even claims to be “By young disabled people; *for* young disabled people”.
This is a lie. The truth is revealed on the website for the Office For Disability Issues where the announcement for the launch of the campaign says:
“DWP has been working with a group of young disabled people who have provided advice and direction to the campaign. They were nominated by organisations such as National Children’s Bureau, Whizz-Kidz, Apasenth, Essex Unite, Include Me Too and Disability Rights UK.
“With the help of these young people, DWP has produced short, subtitled video clips of a wide range of role models, who talk about their aspirations and achievements, and any barriers they have had to overcome.”
In other words, this campaign is by the DWP themselves and only exists to serve their grubby aims. This is why the youtube channel and facebook page were launched with an accompanying statement from a DWP Minister.
There is no information given at all on the youtube page to suggest that this is a DWP run campaign. The only clue to government involvement comes from scrolling through the youtube feed, where the only other channel the Role Models page has subscribed to is the DWP themselves.
This blatant and bungled dishonesty by the DWP could bring the entire charitable sector into disrepute. The next time you see a campaign which appears to be run by a charity such as Whizz-kidz or Disability Rights UK then look very closely to check that Iain Duncan Smith isn’t lurking somewhere behind the scenes.
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