Parties accused of ‘neglecting’ disabled people after politicians fail to show up for welfare debate : Welfare Weekly

Disability Rights UK: “Such a stance is dangerously neglectful.”

Source: Parties accused of ‘neglecting’ disabled people after politicians fail to show up for welfare debate : Welfare Weekly

Democracy and the ‘Voice of the People’.


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democracy means rule by the people.[1] The name is used for different forms of government, where the people can take part in the decisions that affect the way their community is run. In modern times, there are different ways this can be done:

  1. The people meet to decide about new laws, and changes to existing ones. This is usually called direct democracy.
  2. The people elect their leaders. These leaders take this decision about laws. This is commonly called representative democracy. The process of choosing is called election.[2] Elections are either held periodically, or when an officeholder dies.
  3. Sometimes people can propose new laws or changes to existing laws. Usually, this is done using a referendum, which needs a certain number of supporters.
  4. The people who make the decisions are chosen more or less at random. This is common, for example when choosing a jury for a trial. This method is known as sortition or allotment. In a trial, the jury will have to decide the question whether the person is guilty or not. In Europe, trials with a jury are only used for serious crimes, such as murderhostage taking or arson.

To become a stable democracy, a state usually undergoes a process of democratic consolidation.

The above is a definition of Democracy, but there are many others.

My own view is Democracy is the free voting by the population of a country to elect members to enact the views of the population.

Mainly this is done by a General Election here the population elect members (MPs or Members of Parliament) to represent them in a collective body, in the UK this is in Westminster, the House of Commons. Each candidate in each constituency issue their own Manifesto or is it the manifesto of their party. Ideally the voters in each constituency vote for their representative from the information contained in the such Manifesto. But in reality do they for each household my not receive details of each prospective parliament candidates manifesto and in many instances not even their name. When they vote on Poling Day the voting paper contains the name of each person up for election and also the Party they represent. So are the electorate voting for a named person, a named party, or both. Well who knows for this information is not available.

Then in the Manifesto there are so many areas contain within it. The voter my believe in all of the stated areas, but in reflection do they for who collects this information. However, the winning candidate in each constituency is them the MP for that constituency and when all results or in the Party who has the most elected MPs is requested to form a Government, if they can or a coalition of other parties or party. When this process is concluded are there any rules that the winning party progress through their 5 years on the basis of the manifesto, short answer is no, but it is assumed that they will and if they do not there is an opportunity at the end of 5 years to vote them back in or not.

During the course of the Parliament there my be occasions to call a Referendum on a stated subject with various options available from 2 or more.

One such referendum was the 2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum and this should have been a simple process for there was only 2 options to leave the EU or to remain. Facts were produced by all the various parties on either remaining or leaving, but were the fact mentioned correct. No they were not in many instances from both sides remain or leave.

The result was 52% to 48% to leave the EU, so this should have been cut and dried that all persons involved should have been working together to obtain the best possible result to leave. But remain did not honour that result and started an all out campaign to reverse the result.

The result was, in no question, a result to leave based on the percentage of those that were prepared to vote and the turnout was 72.21%, way above the usual percentage turnout for a General Election being

‘In 2001, turnout fell to 59.4%, its lowest level since 1918 and down 12% points compared with 1997. Although turnout rose again in 2005-2010, it was still below its 1997 level. In 2017 UK turnout was 66.8%, and turnout in each of the countries of the UK was below the 1918-2017 average for the UK, which was 72.9%.’ according to Turnout at electionsContains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.

Based on that information the elected representatives should have supported the leave vote as it was a turnout large than any General Election, certainly since 2001 and the results of General Election are not normally questioned.

This brings into question do elected representatives, MPs have to follow the views of their electorate, or can they do as they please, surely with such a turnout and a result not based on party allegiance, they should have abided by the result.

During our negotiations with the EU there should have been no question to query that the UK was going to leave the EU, but with the strong demand by persons not respecting the result, did they believe such or was there a strong feeling that the remainers would succeed in overturning the 2016 result.

Many points have been raised to invalidate the result, the people did not understand what they were voting for, leave lied during their campaign, the views of the younger generation (those under 18 years of age at the time of the Referendum) were not represented, leave voters had now changed their minds and therefore there should be another’s Peoples Vote. The later, in fact, implying that the 2016 Referendum was not a people’s vote.

All of the above could be said of General Elections, but there is never such a campaign to overthrow General Election results.

However, with the winning margin being so small, although there have been winning margins as small, if not smaller in General Election, it could be said that the winning vote may not have been definitive, as the remainers do claim, but if they are correct then the results of General Elections should also be declared invalid.

Labour are now campaigning as are many remainers for a’People’s Vote. but should they not be saying another ‘People’s Vote’ for are not all votes a ‘People’s Vote’, for if they are not, who then is voting, are they not people?

These are purely ‘sound bites’ to emphasise their cause, for they do not want a people’s vote, but a vote that they agree with, a vote to remain in the EU.

However, as I have already said, the People’s Vote. on this question has already been done, the 2016 Referendum. If it is deemed that another referendum is required, which I do not agree with, then the only questions to vote on should be on how we leave the EU, of which, ‘No Deal has to be one option and in effect the nearest option to the 2016 referendum, which stipulated that a vote to leave would mean ‘No Customs Union’ and ‘No Single Market’.

As the elected representatives, MPs, are to some extent not proceeding on how their constituents voted in 2016, in which case any constituency that voted to leave, then their MPs should be conducting themselves likewise and then the same for MPs of constituencies that voted to remain.

Do we need a revision of the voting system?

Whereby in every aspect the MP of any constituency has to vote in accordance with the majority of all of their constituents, whether they voted for the MP or not, for a MP is the representative for all the constituents, not just those that voted from them.

It also beggars the question, that in General Elections can both the Party and the Candidate be mentioned on the ballot paper. surely it should be only one and then the people would be clear who or what they are voting for, either a Party or a Person, for you can not have both.

Should it be a Party then the MPs always for as the Party wishes irrespective of what their constituents wish, or if a named MP, then the MP should always vote how their constituents wish irrespective of how their Party wishes.

No matter what our current system of voting and the conduct of elected representatives is a shambles and drastic changes are in need of being required.


Vote for a political party or an individual

I have just come across a draft of a blog I was proposing to issue some years ago and this was prompted by the voting for Police Commissioners, but I do feel that the points raised about voting for a Party as opposed to an Individual are still valid, especially in the case of Brexit.

Avon and Somerset Chief Constable resigns

Like it or not we now have elected Police Commissioners, no one should be complaining re the percentage of the vote. All the Commissioners were elected fairly in accordance with the Law of the country. If you did not exercise your right to vote, or spoiled your ballot paper, then that was your choice, if you want a say, use your vote properly.

I agree, Commissioners should be non-political and I did not agree with party details being shown on the ballot paper, as we were supposedly voting for an Individual not a political party.

Voting, who for, a party or an individual

The press article above as prompted me to have thoughts on our voting system.

It is my belief that the political party should not be shown on any ballot paper whether it be for a local or general election. The idea is in all our elections you are voting for a person that is a councillor or MP, that you feel best represents your point of view.

If we are voting for a party then, there is no need for an individuals name to be on the ballot paper.

Currently you are given an impression that you are voting for an individual, who will represent you. In most cases the individual will be sponsored by a political party, but does that mean they should then show allegiance to the party.

As a country we need to decide, are we voting for a party or an individual, you can not have both.

It also is relevant as to whose views the Councillor or MP are there to represent, are they there to represent their own views or the views of their constituents.  For they do say they are there for their constituents, for if they are not would they have been elected.

But then again as we use the first past the post voting system as opposed to Proportional Representation. The former will elect an individual but perhaps could elect a party who would then place their own individual or as we do the winning candidate on the voting paper. Whereas the latter would elect a party, who would place their own individuals according to the split of the vote, assuming there was more than one place being contended.

So in the case of Brexit, should a particular MP vote in accordance with how their constituents voted or their own views?

Scottish campaign could boost political involvement across UK – 16 Aug 2015

Original post from Disabled Go News



A cross-party, user-led campaign aims to boost disabled people’s participation in politics in Scotland, and could soon be doing the same across the UK.

The One in Five campaign was only set up in February by Scottish disabled activist Jamie Szymkowiak, a member of the SNP.

He was soon joined by disabled Labour activist Pam Duncan-Glancy, and within three weeks their new organisation had signed up all six of the political parties represented in the Scottish parliament.

The grassroots campaign’s five-point charter asks political parties, local government and other organisations to make politics more inclusive and accessible to disabled people.

Their aspiration is for the number of disabled people involved in Scottish politics to mirror the one-in-five working-age people in Scotland who self-identify as disabled people.

The Scottish Conservative Party, the Scottish Greens, the Scottish Labour Party, the Scottish Liberal Democrats, the Scottish National Party (SNP) and the Scottish Socialist Party have all signed up to the charter.

Organisers of One in Five say they have yet to find another example of a campaign which has been backed by all of Scotland’s major political parties.

Among other organisations to back the campaign is COSLA, the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities.

The charter wants political parties to ensure that disabled activists can stand for election to posts such as secretary or chair of their local party on a job-share basis, and One in Five hopes this will eventually extend to publicly-elected posts such as councillors and MPs.

Only last week, Disability News Service reported how disabled campaigners have called on Westminster to press for new laws that would allow parliamentary candidates to stand jointly for election as job-share MPs, after a judge threw out a legal case brought by two members of the Green party, one of whom was disabled.

There are now hopes that SNP and Labour MPs will agree to bring the One in Five campaign to the Westminster parliament after the summer recess.

Jamie Szymkowiak, One in Five’s founder, said the campaign had done “amazingly well” in a short period of time.

He said: “We aspire to have political participation and representation that reflects our society.

“I think it has just hit a nerve. A lot of the people I discuss this with do not understand why something like this has not been done before.”

He said the element of the campaign that appeared to be most important to disabled people was the need for meetings to be held in accessible venues, and for information – such as party manifestos – to be made available in accessible formats.

He added: “As a first step, if political parties and organisations ensure meetings and materials are accessible, including at local and national levels, our aspiration is achievable.

“Scotland has witnessed a huge upsurge in political interest in recent years and I want to ensure disabled people are included in all areas of our democracy through a positive campaign, regardless of which political party you support.”

This week, One in Five called on the Scottish government to set up its own version of the Access to Elected Office Fund (AEOF), which from 2012 to March 2015 offered grants to disabled people to pay for the additional impairment-related costs they faced in standing for election as a councillor or MP.

AEOF covered prospective candidates seeking election to the UK parliament, and police and crime commissioner elections in England and Wales, but was otherwise restricted to elections in England. It is now lying dormant after its government funding ran out just before the general election.

One in Five wants a Scottish version of the fund that would help disabled people trying to secure election to the Scottish parliament and Scottish councils.

News provided by John Pring at


Hi I’m Aden, I work at DisabledGo as the Digital Marketing Manager and I manage the blog and all social media channels.

More posts from author  ……………..’

Marking the Political Parties

Original post from Learning Disability Alliance England


LDA England’s Citizen Jury met on 2nd April in London

Find out what happened by lokking at these slides.

<div style=”margin-bottom:5px”> <strong> <a href=”//” title=”Marking the Political Parties – LDA Citizen Jury” target=”_blank”>Marking the Political Parties – LDA Citizen Jury</a> </strong> from <strong><a href=”//” target=”_blank”>Learning Disability Alliance England</a></strong> </div>

On 2nd April LDA England measured how well each political party will stick up for the rights of people with learning disabilities.

We wrote to all 5 main political parties in England and all parties sent along appropriate representatives – all except one, The Conservative Party. The Conservatives ignored both the formal invitation and numerous requests to respond by both phone and email.

Below is the letter we sent to the Prime Minister:

Dear Prime Minister

Re: Citizen Jury 2nd April 2015

Learning Disability Alliance England (LDA) is a membership organisation lobbying all political parties on behalf of the one million people with learning disabilities in England. LDA represents over 500 different charities and organisations directly, or through the two main umbrella groups for people with learning disabilities: the Association for Real Change (ARC) and the Housing & Support Alliance (H&SA).

Before the UK General Election, LDA is raising awareness of the millions of people who can vote - but who often don't: people with learning disabilities, their families, their friends, care workers and other supporters.

At LDA's parliamentary launch on February 24th we announced the results of our 'Quality Checking Government' survey. 2,000 people completed the survey, more than 75% being disabled people or family members. Further details of the survey and the LDA Manifesto can found in the LDA newspaper enclosed.

The LDA don't just want to encourage people to vote, they want people to vote wisely - based on which political parties are most likely to stand up for their rights.

For this reason we are writing to you, as the leader of one of the 5 main political parties in England, to invite you to send a suitable representative to speak at the LDA's Citizen Jury event on the 2nd April 2015, at the Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities (Colechurch House, 1 London Bridge Walk). The Jury will be made up of a panel of 7 people with learning disabilities and 5 family members. Each representative will have 15 minutes to make a presentation to the panel explaining why they should vote for their party and then 15 minutes for questions. At the end of each presentation the panel will vote and the results of the Citizen Jury will be announced at the end of the day, and shared with the LDA membership.

We already have confirmed representation from the Labour and Green parties and very much hope that you will send a representative to join them at this event.

For more information about the event and to confirm your attendance and book your slot, please contact Sarah Maguire or call 020 7261 4103 or 07810 378 346.

Yours sincerely

Professor the Baroness Hollins

Gary Bourlet, People First England

Marking the Parties-01


Politics or Charity

Also charities need donations to exist to help others, while political parties wish donations to help themselves to exist for themselves.


Boiling the kettle for my breakfast cuppa after my shower this morning, I heard the tail end of a radio interview about ‘donations’.
Not knowing the full context or having that much interest really, what caught my ear was the interviewee’s comment:
“If you donate to a charity, you’re considered a good guy. If you donate to a political party, you’re the bad guy. What’s the difference?”

View original post 59 more words

Tories, Labour, Lib Dems and others, which, if any, can be trusted

David Cameron pushing for ethnic votes

From this article and the comments it would appear the Tories are trusted less than Labour and the Lib Dems do not get a mention.

 When will we all view all parties by the same yard stick. All elected representatives are politicians and none can be trusted, How anyone can possibly trust Labour after so many years of rule by President Elect Tony Blair, sorry I was believing his rhetoric, I mean Mr Tony Blair. Can anyone tell me one truth he as uttered?
My party views 
Conservative   I expect nothing from this party and this is what I get, but feel they care for the country, as it is in their and their supporters interests for the UK to be successful.
Labour  I expect this party to look after my interests, due to my Working Class background, but I get nothing from them.  They are too concerned for their own outlook, see Mr TB.
Lib Dems and others  Are any worth any mention?
So, do I support a party I expect to get nothing from and do not or a party I expect to get something from, but do not.
The choice is mine.