Posted Sunday 22nd May 2016 12.48pm
For the Attention of The Crown Prosecution Service and Northumbria Police
I would like to make a formal complaint regarding the growing body of evidence that together and separately, the DWP, Atos, Maximus, Capita et alia have by their wilful neglect been responsible for the deaths of hundreds of benefit claimants – systematically ignoring professionally diagnosed and well documented evidence of severe disabilities, chronic illnesses, and desperate mental health problems, declaring claimants ‘fit for work’ when doctors and hospitals clearly stated they were not, and cutting, withdrawing, sanctioning crucial benefits, adding despair, poverty and stress to extreme medical conditions, such that claimants died whether by illness or suicide shortly afterwards – the conduct amounting to gross negligent manslaughter, with more than a suspicion of conspiracy.
You may be aware that a similar complaint has been registered by
disabled activist John McArdle, co-founder of the user-led campaign network Black Triangle, and as reported in Disability News Network of 5th May is currently being assessed by Scottish Police – but you may agree that awaiting their decision, and in the meantime more people dying in England and Wales, might itself constitute negligence.
You may also be aware that, as reported by Disability News Service:
In response to a story in The Guardian about the publication of the peer reviews – co-authored by DNS editor John Pring – a DWP spokesperson said: “Any suicide is a tragedy and the reasons for them are complex, however it would be inaccurate and misleading to link it solely to a person’s benefit claim.” (The use of the word “solely” means that ministers have now accepted that the actions of their department can be partly responsible for benefit claimants taking their own lives, and for other benefit-related deaths).
You may also be aware that the Shadow Minister for Disabled People Debbie Abrahams, and the Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell, have expressed considerable interest in this topic, and that a current, on-line Government petition (but by no means the first related petition) has passed 10,000 signatures, and was recently amongst the 3 most popular Government petitions being signed, reflecting the grave public concern.
Might I suggest that as a first step, you may be advised to contact the following organisations via their Facebook pages for lists of the deceased, and either direct evidence or where it might be found:
Black Triangle Anti-Defamation Campaign in Defence of Disability Rights
DPAC (Disabled People Against Cuts)
Disability News Service
Respect For the Unemployed & Benefit Claimants
ATOS National DEMO
The People Vs The Government, DWP and Atos
Friends & Families of Atos/DWP Victims & Casualties
Atos whistle blower
In memory of those killed by the government
Benefit claimants are not scroungers
Smash Benefit Sanctions
Put Iain Duncan Smith on JSA
And posted on the above Facebook sites.