Letter to Ed Miliband by Sonia Poulton ~ PLEASE ADD YOUR NAMES ON THE LINK PROVIDED

Thank You AGAIN, Sonia Poulton XXX

Update from Sonia 1st August 2012 21.55 hrs

The deadline for Ed Miliband letter has been extended until Friday midday to make up for that nasty business that seems to have taken place!

Sonia Poulton Status Update on Letter to Ed Miliband 1st August 2012 21.00 hrs

Hearing bad things from the techie guy right now about the Google doc…real problems with getting it back…still working on it but it may have been hacked….can anyone who signed the google docs now sign one of the two links doing the rounds so that we can double-check. Am so sorry to all who did but out of my hands at this moment. Here’s a link: http://ramblingsofafibrofoggedmind.wordpress.com/2012/08/01/open-letter-to-ed-miliband-please-add-name-and-postcode-if-you-agree-with-contents/#comment-439


(N.B. Links to related articles provided by Black Triangle for explanatory purposes)

SIGN HERE!https://www.facebook.com/notes/margo-milne/sonia-poultons-letter-to-ed-milliband/10150941223062371 -Scroll down to add your name and postcode on the comment thread on the Facebook Letter!

Dear Mr. Miliband,

I am a UK-based journalist and broadcaster. Here is a link to my website:


On my site you will find all the media outlets that I contribute to across print, TV, radio and internet, nationally and internationally.

I am prompted to write to you having just watched these two programmes on the subject of ‘fit to work’ testing for sick and disabled people: Channel 4’s Dispatches (‘Britain On The Sick’) and BBC2’s Panorama (‘Disabled or Faking it’).

This year, as a writer, I have been made painfully aware of how distressing, unreliable and costly – both physically and emotionally – the Work Capability Assessment is for those undertaking it.

The financial cost to the country is another concern altogether.

I am aware that Employment minister Chris Grayling has made much capital from blaming Labour for the introduction of this system, administered by ATOS. Equally, Mr. Grayling has made it clear that he views the Coalition’s implementation of the process as preferable, and less harsh, than that carried out under the Labour government.

WCA, clearly, is beset with problems. The ATOS assessor, captured undercover in C4’s programme, referred to it as ‘Toxic’. It was made clear that it was designed to reduce benefit recipients. Chris Grayling continues to deny there are targets. I am less inclined to believe him.

The test, at best, is unquestionably inadequate and not fit-for-purpose. Even the Government’s own adviser, before he resigned, described it as ‘patchy’. At worst, it is downright disadvantageous to those who are subject to it.

For many people the horror of the ATOS test has been the worst kept secret for years. Sadly, others have been less fortunate and are no longer here to register their misery. There currently exists a known demographic of people who have died after being found ‘fit to work’. Are you aware of this?

This year doctors at the British Medical Association have opposed WCA. Those who endure it have opposed it. Even the occasional newspaper and TV programme dares to oppose it. As a Social Commentator, I certainly have.

Why, then, has Labour – under your leadership – not opposed it? Should I assume that you support it?

I am disturbed by what I view as a dangerous trend in our country. There is a clear demonisation of sick and disabled people, routinely labelled as ‘scroungers‘ by the media, and driven by frequently skewed statistics issued by the DWP.

Meanwhile, the incidences of attacks on sick and disabled has risen. Disabled people are more in fear for their safety than at any other time in recent history. I believe that there is a direct correlation between the resentment whipped up about ‘spongers’ and the physical assaults taking place.

Surely this is not acceptable to you. It certainly isn’t acceptable to me.

The names listed below this letter are from people who support the core message contained within it. Like me these are concerned citizens. Some are directly affected by issues of sickness and disability, others are not.

For my part, I am healthy, able-bodied and work full-time but I believe it is my duty to support those who need help. I believe that is a duty of us all. Including the Labour party.

Sickness and disability can happen at any time and to any one of us. I would like to think that others would also support me in my hour of need.

I believe what we need in this country is more compassion, not less. The WCA is unacceptable for a progressive country and it is a clear failure. The money spent on the appeals process confirms that, quite aside from the human misery it costs.

I have just heard that Tom Greatrex, MP, has secured a Westminster Hall debate on September 4 with regard ATOS and WCA. I ask you, Mr. Miliband, can we count on you to take a long overdue stance in support of our sick and disabled?

I do hope so. I look forward to your response.

Best wishes,

Sonia Poulton




62 thoughts on “Letter to Ed Miliband by Sonia Poulton ~ PLEASE ADD YOUR NAMES ON THE LINK PROVIDED

  1. christine redmond says:

    to treat people like i watched on both channels should be against there human rights, all gvt and atos should be suid for treating the severely ill and disabled in this manner..

  2. Christine Hathaway-Coley says:

    Sonia Poulton is a real champion for the sick, disabled and most vulnerable in society. A huge thank you to her for having the guts to take on the very people who would conspire to make our lives even more miserable under the guise of welfare reform. Well done Sonia!

  3. Jason Everson says:

    There’s no doubt that this, and the current government Work Programme, is an issue for Human Rights.

  4. Pippa Dannatt says:

    Same too.Tried on diff places on FB and here to add.Cant.So heres mine.

    Pippa Dannatt SP4 7DF

  5. Sam Brackenbury says:

    If David MIlliband really cares about the ethos of The Labour Party he will support this letter and Sonias Concerns…If not I will never vote again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. carole hirst says:

    there is no link to enable me to add my name in support of the letter! has it been blocked?

  7. Cheryl Moncrieffe says:

    Sonia was angry after watching the dispatches panorama stuff and spoke about writing a letter while on FB and a lot of people said they wanted to add their names in support so BT is helping her add names to the letter! I have xx

  8. D Kow says:

    Really hope this draws some attention. The lackluster response given to the disabled, chronically ill or terminally ill has to stop – it could be any one of us and those fortunate enough to enjoy good health shouldn’t simply turn the other way.

  9. tina mcguffie says:

    Sonia needs All our support with this…championing the most vulnerable in society…hope everyone signs and gets behind this very worth cause…..

  10. Murdo Maclean says:

    Saw Both programmes and their about right, been against the ATOS involvement from the beginning and about the stringent assessment of disabled people, it’s a national crime and these people that are responsible should be dragged through the courts for crimes against humanity!

  11. Graham Tiler says:

    Much of what i see happening to sick or disabled people on benefits in this country is morally repugnant. As are many of the cuts in welfare as well as housing benefit. All in the name of cost cutting. Treat people as individuals please not as a one size fits all commodity. No two peoples situation or medical conditions are the same. Some Respect is due please !

  12. Charles S Boyce says:

    I have repeatedly tried the aforementioned link to add my name to the no doubt many by now but to no avail. I just wish to state that I whole heartedly agree and to state that since the advent of this ‘ConDem’ coalition the disabled, of who I am one, are made to feel guilty about existence and taking benefits that should be, no doubt, reserved for poor rich healthy people (ex-bankers no doubt)!

  13. jeffrey says:

    i will support this as i have aspergers and some other health problems
    jeffrey l petch-harrison

    BA4 5LE

  14. Katrina Whittaker says:

    signing again ….CM7 9UF
    I am a carer of a son with Schizophrenia, an activist & member of Rethink Mental Illness

  15. Annette Whyte says:

    Havingfought cancer, and i’s dreaadful aftermaath, I confirm that the WCA was the worst eperience of the whole trauma. Patronising, condescending nonsenisacal questions that everyone not in an iron lung would would have to affirm (can you wash your torso – excluding your back!!!!!!!! and other such piffle) These thugs should be in jail for their actions and the consequences of their actions. Thank God for John O’Donnell and Tom Greatrex for their sterling work in exposing this sad abuse of those least able to defend themselves.

  16. Linda Nightingale says:

    I have an autoimmune disease and am now retired thank goodness. I do worry that people with long term health problems and who are too sick to work, are not getting what they are legally entitled to.

  17. ian turner says:

    labour will do nothing ,they are not the tiny bit interested unless the disabled can use its vote and of course it can not because we do not have P R .as a people we have no c0ntrol at all over what this coalition and any future governments wish to do.the smug middle class and fellow sheep gave all our rights away when they helped maggie ruin the unions .so really its live with it.

  18. Tony Shephard says:

    isn’t there a more secure way of signing that giving our names and postcodes publicly on facebook???????

    1. JJ says:

      Please address the question to the petition organisers on the link provided in the main text of the article. Thanks

  19. Helen Wojciechowski says:

    I signed one yesteday but it seems to have gone so just in case

    Helen Wojciechowski NR16 2PP
    John Wojciechowski NR16 2PP

  20. victim says:

    What we are seeing unfold before our eyes is the financial rape of all working class, sick, disabled and vulnerable people of this country, this government is busted we need to call for an early election.

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