U.K. government reveals thousands died after their welfare payments were stopped
The Department of Work and Pensions emphasized that there is no proof of a causal link.

U.K. government statistics reveal that thousands of people died within weeks of being found “fit to work” and having their welfare benefits cancelled.

The release of the statistics follows a protracted campaign from journalists and activists, including a Change.org petition that garnered almost 250,000 signatures. Many have already accused the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) of stalling its response until after this year’s election in May.

The most shocking mortality data comes from a document about disability-related benefits. Between December 2011 and February 2014, 81,140 people died within six weeks of “flowing off” benefits such as ESA (Employment and Support Allowance), which the government pays to people who cannot work due to illness or disability.

Over the past five years, the DWP has made a public effort to reduce the number of people claiming government benefits. This included the introduction of “fit to work” assessments, which are used to determine whether people are qualified to receive disability benefits.

The newly published documents show that 2,380 former ESA claimants died within two weeks of being declared “fit to work.” 


UK petition: Provide an online instant-messaging alternative to phone and post with the DWP.

You know how when you have a problem with Netflix (and various other websites), and you can open an IM chat with them to report problems and ask for help? Wouldn’t it be great if you could do that with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)?


If you can’t use the phone due to hearing issues, anxiety, or processing speed, your only alternative with the DWP is postal communication. Most of us who need to do that have had their paperwork get lost.

Give us a way to communicate with the DWP in real time and save our conversation easily.


The current system is discriminatory, making extra expense and effort for people with a disability that prevents the use of telephones, and it’s meant to be used by disabled people. It’s a system designed for abled people, keeping us disabled.

Setting up a text-based real-time communication solution for people who can’t use the phone would allow so many people to maintain independence and save so much anxiety.


If you are in the UK or have followers who are, please consider sharing this petition link on Tumblr and elsewhere. It would make a huge difference to people with anxiety disorders, hearing problems, voice dysphoria, people who struggle to process quickly during conversations, etc etc. And if you’re resident in the UK, please sign!

I’m currently going through the very stressful process of having my disability benefit switched over from DLA (disability living allowance) to PIP (personal independence payments). The DWP have required this for all DLA claimants. Here’s how it goes:

Keep reading

In 2007, the Department of Water Protection in Los Angeles detected high levels of bromate in the Ivanhoe reservoir. Bromate forms when sunlight causes chlorine to oxidise bromide. Bromide is a natural constituent in water, particularly groundwater, while chlorine is generally added to water supplies to kill any bacteria, viruses and protozoa. 

The reservoir facility, which is 102 years old, supplies more than 600,000 people with potable water in downtown and South LA. When the Department of Water Protection realised the problem with bromate, they began construction of a new underground reservoir, but while the new facility was being built they had to determine a way to keep the sunlight out of the water. 

The method had to be quick and cost effective. The solution was “bird balls” which are made of polyethylene and cost only 40 cents each. 400,000 balls were dropped into the reservoir on June 2008, where they were to remain for the next four to five years until the new underground reservoir is completed.


Photograph by Gerd Ludwig

For more info see: http://pubs.acs.org/cen/news/85/i52/8552notw4.html