Posted on 19 December 2018 Return



I wonder with the ‘screams ‘of Brexit overpowering our airways, television and senses; if any ‘MPs’ has had the time to look over their shoulders at those who, turned up at the polling stations, hoping to be heard and see a change of a new coat to keep them warm and secure against the cold prospect of the 'Universal Credit'..?


I wonder if the ‘Conservatives’ remember their promise by Ian Duncan-Smith, Work and Pensions Secretary leading up to the general election: when he was quoted as saying “It is our purpose to protect the most vulnerable, it has been from the beginning and will continue to be so”..?


Then there was that speech in their budget about ways to help the ‘generational unemployed’ back into work.


Setting the stage for 2009 when Ian Duncan Smith gathered a team of out of touch thinkers together called the Centre for Social Justice to create a system bringing all benefits together, to help the ‘generational unemployed’ receive their benefits every month similar to a wage and they would have to attend appointments to ‘look for work’, to continue receiving benefits, like a monthly wage and more importantly, this will only affect ‘New Claimants.. Mmmm..!


What a loophole; I’m betting this came as a surprise to the working masses of finger pointers because through changing over to the Universal Credit, the benefit safety net was removed as this change; made everyone a ‘New Claimant’.


The Conservatives launched, the new Universal Credit on the world stage in 2010, rolling it out across the country like Hades hammer to great applause by the affluent members as a success; in getting the lazy few off benefits and into work.


So as we are about to leave 2018, the Rt Hon Ian Duncan Smith has stated many times, that his master piece the Universal Credit was and is a big failer, many attempts to correct its flaws, has only made things worse from waiting 7 weeks for any benefits to be issued, hacking off Landlords to taking about 8 years, just to move up, the clearance time of a claim from 4 to 6 weeks and the Government still cannot agree on that.


These attempts of rectifying the Universal Credit has created an increase in homelessness, starvation in many homes, the appearance of Food Banks/Pantries; which the present Government still does not want to acknowledge, yet visit, to pose for pictures, while the embarrassed vulnerable look on.


"Thatcher’s Ghost" is still swinging that chain around our heads; considering she caused this, when she was first sworn in; no one was prepared for the revenge against the elderly, women and most vulnerable who believed in her. I believe (having lived through it), she wanted to erase any association with living on a Counsel Estate which.


1979, she didn’t stop there as her fever took hold; she introduced: privatisation, greed, Poll Tax, destroyed the Coal Industry for nuclear business rates (clean energy).  Leaving towns/villages jobless and penniless with no solution and no way back, reduced benefits, cancelled free bus passes for the elderly/vulnerable, removed 'winter warmth' monies, ruin the Manufacturing Industry, highest spike in Unemployment, cost of living became the 'haves and have not’s, hated Arthur Scargill so she culled the Unions brutally(some are still recovering but their teeth has been removed), encourage the dismantling and selling off of Council Houses(many sold for 1 pence) for Private construction, etc, etc, etc.


This did not affect the poor and vulnerable that much but I digress; as the memories of the  hidden suffering ensued, like; affordable furniture, white goods in some places were either through debt ridden loans or found on landfills, people would steal bread and milk for dinner, others would try and keep warm in one room and not wake up, buying candles and flash lights was a norm when the ‘Lecky’ ran out, food was an interesting list of whatever was left which included ‘dripping’ sandwiches, some had no heat or light only their pets food to keep them alive; rows of houses turned into red light’ food for sex runs, ‘least we forget’.


The ‘affects’ of  'New Thatcherism' is zero accountability, as a rise; in out dated/vitamin C deficient related diseases amongst children and adults, free Milk and ‘rich’ School Meals being replaced by healthy highlights and ‘mean tested’ attitudes towards parents, Schools turned into launderettes, zero hour job centre assigned work was met by loss of property to sofa surfing to being sanctioned, a homeless man recently died on the steps of Parliament, highlighting the mess the Government was and still in, who knew, this would become our new circle of life.


2018; also found;  paralympians once independent, the chronically ill or those suffering from mental health issues being systematically forced, back into isolation as they’re mobility vehicles and or benefits are taken away.  Further punishment after failing either Government owned or a business run PIP groups and Job Centre appointments; securing ‘ready to work’ Jobseekers quotas, leading some to take their own lives from frustration and ignorance.  


Even single parents on low incomes with under 5s or those with disabled children; found themselves pressured into finding long hours of work and or attending impossible appointments as closed Sure Start Centres meant missing one appointment, would lead to them being sanctioned; none are seen as vulnerable.


This Government has put shade to shame by pretending they care about the less fortunate and the people of the United Kingdom while seeing the ‘V’ for vulnerable as a code to deny money for the poor, in favour of mending pot holes?


The Government made a rod for their own backs, when they gave the austerity poor and vulnerable, vast amount of Universal Credit money per month without teaching many how to budget or keeping safety nets in place.


Let me explain a bit about the latter; I know the Government has been topping up the Job Centres each time, money is available. The Hardship Fund is not free and places you into debt immediately (many people are afraid of being placed in this position), it has to be paid back. 


Unfortunately, it still does not help the vulnerable or mentally impaired to pay their landlords directly to avoid being put out on the streets, this was not a problem before the systems changed, and they were protected. 


It is an argument the Conservatives have, after many year of food feeding the populous about changes, they refuse to continue under a ‘Nanny State’ program by cutting everyone off to fend for themselves; to fail, to fall, to trip, to stall.


Caps and cuts to the benefits system is at present never ending and will continue into 2019 as the Universal Credit receive more patch ups and the new homeless continue swarm onto our streets. While homeless pets are given food, warmth, shelter and a forever homes; no sanctions here, what Bonkers..!!!


We the people’, will still be expected to vote; for someone to take a knee, only for the promise to be broken again with more vigour and conviction. Helped with the distraction of teflon Theresa May with her ‘I’ in Team mentality (stupid woman, she’s feeling it now), Brexit Deals, No Deal Brexit, Hard Brexit, No Confidence etc., topped with the morality of our polite English nature to wait and wait for the voice of reason and actually someone given a damn as the backbone of our society stays broken.  


Especially when under 10s are begging for work or digging through bins to put anything on a plate, you know the bells toll has lost its warning.


So raise a glass, to the end of 2018 because who can clearly say, Universal Credit will ever work without more casualties..???


I believe Universal Credit can be survivable as long as you understand; we are in this Tanker together. ‘Give back’ when you can, volunteer if you have the time, help your neighbour and communities when and where you can, teach your children to be caring where possible, instead of throwing items away for new, pass it on and share the help and support which is out there.



Further information

INFORMATION NOTIFICATION: If you or anyone you know has been sanctioned or in need of additional help; though it is embarrassing, there is help available as long as you reach out and ask for it because not everyone in charge, will readily make this information available, through the lack of resources:



  • You can ask your Housing Association, if they can help you with food, gas and electric; one off or for a short time, through your Housing Support Worker
    Most Associations have their own food banks onsite (not widely known) or they should point you in the right direction

  • Being part of a Union, even when unemployed will have its advantages towards helping you, when in need; their Welfare Teams have been underestimated for the good they have done and still do

  • The Royal College of Nursing (RSN) rsn.org.uk in partnership with the RCN Foundation funding; which also has a ‘Lamplight Support Service’ connected to its website, that helps them support Healthcare Assistants, Nurses and Midwives under the NHS, Independent Sectors, Agency Work, Self Employed or Students; even if you are a RCN member or not advice and support will be given, contact: +44 (0)020 7409 3333

  • If your money has been stopped; you should be able to get help from your Local Council by filling in a ‘Nil Income Form’. This will reinstate your rent, council tax and give access to further help like meter credits, food bank vouchers (free) and emergency cash payments.

  • The Veterans Gateway can help and support all members and their families of the Royal Navy in need of urgent assistance, you can contact them on: +44 (0)0808 802 1212 or visit their website: https://support.veteransgateway.org.uk 

  • The Royal Navy, you can contact them through their helpline: +44 (0)0800 169 2942/020 7580 8343 or visit their website: www.rafbf.org , open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm



NOTE: Christmas Eve and Christmas Day these times may differ?



  • The Royal British Legion; will help, give advice and support to all members of the Armed Forces, their families and ex service individuals finding it hard or homeless on ‘Civvi Street’.

  • You can call the British Legion on their helpline number: +44 (0)808 802 8080, 7 days a week from 8.00am to 8.00pm, all calls are free from UK landlines and main mobile networks

  • ABF The Soldiers’ Charity-The Army’s National Charity, has offices through the UK, just like the ABF Northwest Preston Office, who can be contacted on: +44(0) 17772 260 356, www.soldierscharity.org , Email: northwest@soldierscharity.org 


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