WinVisible (women with visible & invisible disabilities) which is part of the Support Not Separation Coalition has told us about this survey by the Commission on Social Security (a claimants panel) which they’ve been involved in. It is consulting the public about new proposals for the benefits system.
The deadline for the survey is 31 October.
We hope you will join us in telling the Commission that Carer’s Allowance should be extended to mothers caring for children (see Question 5). Our caring work is raising the next generation, and we need that financial support to stop our children being taken. Poverty is being used to accuse mothers of “neglect” even though we’re doing everything we can to keep a roof over our children’s head, food to eat and a place of safety.
There is now an outcry about child poverty and hunger but many people don’t know that children in poor areas are 10 times more likely to be taken into care. And with Covid19 more lip service is being paid to caring work but nothing is being done to deal with the impoverishment of mothers. As we chant on our regular pickets outside the family court: “Take away our poverty, NOT our children!”
We are also strongly in favour of all the demands WinVisible is making (see below).
Please fill in as much or as little of the questionnaire as you want, but let’s all HAVE OUR SAY on money for carers – as mothers, grannies, aunties, sisters and all those who care for children, who demand Support Not Separation!
From: WinVisible <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Have your say to recognise caring work & everyone’s right to benefits! Help get recognition of caring work, including by disabled women ourselves — and everyone’s right to benefits.
HAVE YOUR SAY!
Your views and support are needed on new proposals for the benefits system from the Commission on Social Security, a claimants’ panel. Please share this with your friends and networks.
Responses to the questionnaire needed by 31 October
Disabled mothers and family carers on the Commission, including us, pressed for proposals to include a living wage for carers of disabled people. And to extend this to mothers. A living wage would recognise the unwaged work which mothers and other carers do, including disabled women ourselves, to ensure the survival and welfare of people of all ages. The COVID-19 crisis has brought this out.
Unwaged caring work for older and disabled people saves the government £132 billion a year. But Carer’s Allowance is a pittance, denying the needs and entitlements of people who do this work for loved ones, and our right as older and younger disabled people to have proper support for the trusted relatives and friends whom we want to care for us. The lack of financial recognition puts a strain on our relationships. Also, unfair rules deny Carer’s Allowance to thousands of people. Widespread discrimination in the benefits system, including racism, denies rightful benefits to many more of us. Those who take on caring responsibilities struggle in financial hardship. That’s why we support a living wage for all who do caring work. Please look at Question 5. Carer’s Allowance where it says:
“Some thought that Carer’s Allowance should be the Living Wage. . .
Some Commissioners say it should be available to people who care for children under 18”.
We urge you to support both these proposals, and also:
· Abolition of “No Recourse to Public Funds”, for benefit rights and the right to work for those of us who are immigrant. (Watch the video to end this discrimination in the Domestic Abuse Bill in Parliament.)
· Abolition of the two-child limit under Universal Credit and tax credits
· Benefit protection for women and children fleeing domestic violence
· No benefit sanctions or work conditions for benefit for anyone
· Ending the hated Work Capability Assessment and PIP test for disability benefits
· Social care to be free instead of charges taken from disability benefit
The Commission on Social Security questionnaire is online now till 31 October, in Easy Read and BSL. Fill it in here. It is anonymous so you do not need to give your name, but if you want to stay in touch with them, you can put your email address.
Please share your replies with us, take a screenshot or email us with the views you gave.
Thank you for taking part. We look forward to getting a copy of your comments.