Why I Want To Occupy…
…under the proviso of something comfy to sit on and an unending supply of painkillers.
See, I’ve been avidly watching the Occupy movement happening over in the States and I’m crossing my fingers that it will take off here. The government here, much like many others, are only interested in you if you’re a ‘productive’ member of society. According to them, I am not. See, over the last 4 years, I’ve been diagnosed with CFS, anxiety, depression and more recently, Fibromyalgia. All of which are ‘invisible’ illnesses. Meaning the key catchphrase for anyone that meets you is ‘but you don’t look ill’.
People with illnesses like mine are often used as a scapegoat, referred to as ‘scroungers’ and ‘workshy’ by people with little to no knowledge of any of the conditions, just the fact that someone doesn’t ‘look’ ill. Obviously I attempt to make myself appear slightly more human when I leave the house - What they don’t see behind closed doors is the constant pain and discomfort, the panic attacks, the struggle some days to get around the house, let alone anything else. Not even the strongest painkillers (excluding the ones that would put an elephant to sleep) help, most of the time.
As it stands at the minute, I am currently attending college (one and a half days per week) to get a foundation degree in Graphic Design. This is the second time I have attempted the course. The last time I tried it, I got sick in January and ended up barely able to drag myself around the house, never mind the mile to my local college. It was decided by my tutors (with reluctant agreement from myself) that for the sake of my health, I suspend my studies and re-take the following September. Currently, I am managing for now but such is the nature of the illness, I never know when things will flare up again. The pain is constant, but I am forcing myself through it - the ends justify the means.
So there’s the background - but here’s the problem. I am currently in receipt of state benefits for my myriad illnesses but I know, at any time, I may get called in for a medical, run by ATOS origins (look up information on them - fucking frightful organisation). Who are currently under instruction (not explicitly stated, but fucking true) to remove EVERYONE off benefits unless they are literally bed-bound, and in some cases not even then. So thanks to the government, next time I get called to go, I will more than likely get my benefits taken away. Do you know why? Because I am attending college to try and get myself into a position where I CAN work for myself and manage my hours AROUND my conditions - something that a 9-5 job cannot give me. Being able (or at least forcing myself) to attend a 1.5 day-per-week college course, to them translates as me being perfectly healthy and able to work 40 hours a week, which is just ludicrous to anyone sane - but alas perfectly rational to them. Essentially, I will be punished for doing something to remove myself from the welfare system.
The only reason I am even able to go to college is that my tutors are fully aware of the situation and give me maybe a little more leeway than I would be given than if I was a regular student. I get disabled student privileges, which means I can use the lifts, and get a little more time to complete certain things. They’ve been so good to me but the fear is that without my housing/incapacity benefit, there will be nothing keeping us afloat. If that goes tits up, I have nowhere to go, no means to pay for my home/food/utilities and essentially i’ll be up shit creek. I get a loan from Student Finance but that will cover my course fees with little left over - so what’s the point of being able to pay for college if I’m not going to be able to afford to live?
Thankfully, I have family who are helpful and understanding - but what of the people who don’t have that kind of support network? David Cameron, in his big speech to the tory conference yesterday, had the nerve to say that the rich were bearing the brunt of the government cuts. It’s a lie. It’s an outright lie but who will listen when any of us point that out?
The ruling party is in bed with the bankers and won’t dish out the punishment they deserve - so the rest of us have to fucking suffer. I also noticed he went to great pains to point out that people’s ‘hard work’ will be rewarded - which is great, good for them. But what of us who are unable to contribute in such a way? What of us who would very much like to contribute but can’t? Do we not matter?
To them, I don’t think we do. So, on the proviso of a comfy seat and all the painkillers (ALL THE PAINKILLERS) I would very much like to occupy.
It has come to the point where the government are deaf to us - and we must make them start listening, by any means necessary.
- generationterrorist reblogged this from camembertlylegal and added:
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