atos don’t give a tos: protests against welfare cuts

Sharon Borthwick reports on protests against welfare cuts

Yesterday, 24th January  2011 a second day of Protest was called against punitive benefit cuts. Actions took place all over the country including Scotland, Yorkshire, Tyneside and Birmingham.

In London protesters met at the Archway Examination centre and moved on to the headquarters of Atos in Triton Square, Euston. Groups involved included London Coalition Against Poverty, Kilburn Unemployed Workers Croup, Islington Poverty Action Group, Benefit Claimants Fight Back, Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) and Disabled Peoples Direxct Action Network (DAN). These groups can be found on line and are on facebook.

Moving accounts were given of people denied Disability Living Allowance whilst suffering from terminal cancer who have since died. People living in fear and even being driven to suicide unable to cope with severely reduced circumstances. Atos, the private company in charge of chucking people off benefits are employed by The Department of Works and Pensions and are set to make millions from the misery being inflicted. Their so called medical tests have proved false, the majority of people tested and told they are undeserving winning their cases on appeal. Scandalously they have targets to meet and are being only to gung ho about meeting them, its what their profits are reliant on after all.

There were only about 100 people at the protest in London yesterday, not nearly as many as have turned out in support of students. Of course, many people are too ill to attend such a protest. It is essential that all campaigns against cuts are supported and attended by everyone who can get to them.