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As Theresa May announces her intention to hold a general election on 8 June, we ask: is there anyone for claimants to vote for?

Assuming, as seems likely, that May gets her way and parliament votes in favour of an election, who will you vote for?

In some parts of the UK, such as Scotland, many claimants may consider that there is one party that is clearly more claimant friendly than the rest.

But, if you live in England in particular, you may feel that it is struggle to find a party with a realistic chance of winning a significant number of seats but which is also willing to stick up for the rights of people on benefits.

The Conservatives are clearly out to take as much cash as they can from sick and disabled claimants, the Lib Dems supported repeated attacks on claimants' income when they were in coalition with the Tories whilst Labour have been utterly ineffective and largely uninterested in fighting for claimants whilst in opposition.

Benefits and Work will not be supporting any party in the forthcoming elections, but we’d be very interested in hearing your opinions in the comments section below.

Comments  

+1 #129 tintack 2017-06-21 01:54
Quoting Asbo:
I also think you misunderstand reducing inequality for meaning 'everyone being equal'. If you read the very thorough research in the book 'The Spirit Level' you will understand that more equal societies eg Japan and the Scandinavian countries do far better in terms of reduced crime, happier workforce, lower mental illness and many other indicators than in societies with the greatest inequalities. Not surprisingly, Britain and the US came up as two of the most unequal countries. Greater equality in terms of redistribution of wealth is better for ALL in society as proved by the authors, that including the wealthiest. It's just not necessary to have such a huge gap between rich and poor but it has soared since monetarism became the god and now that economics is unravelling


We've heard a lot from the right about the UK being turned into another Venezuela if Labour's manifesto were enacted. And yet, the Scandinavian countries have had much higher levels of taxation and public spending than us for decades - which, if the right were correct, should have led to those countries being in a perpetual state of economic ruin. Instead, they've done pretty well economically, have better funded and higher quality public services than us, and they're far less unequal. I wish those on the right could explain how this has happened, because if their own economic doctrines are correct none of this should have been possible.
+1 #128 tintack 2017-06-21 00:46
Quoting caiti:
I said I wouldn't vote for Labour, I didn't say who I would vote for.


Well, you did say you were "glad the Conservatives managed to win the election". I'd say that's a pretty big clue.

Quote:
I feel tremendously sorry for people, who, through no fault of their own are facing major issues obtaining the benefits they are entitled to
But it's Tory policies which are responsible for that. It's Labour who produced a manifesto for disabled people which tackled those problems head on, for example by scrapping the WCA and PIP tests and getting rid of the corporate vultures who profit from them.

Quote:
However, I believe everyone would feel more in control of their lives if they had opportunities & ambition to improve their circumstances
You don't help people by cutting away their safety net and then forcing them to apply for jobs which (a) they have no chance of getting, and (b) couldn't do even if they did.

Thousands have already died within weeks of having their benefit stopped because they were supposedly "fit for work", and they weren't in such desperate situations because of a lack of ambition to improve their circumstances.
+1 #127 Asbo 2017-06-20 22:40
Quoting caiti:
I feel tremendously sorry for people, who, through no fault of their own are facing major issues obtaining the benefits they are entitled to.


Feeling tremendously sorry for people isn't good enough and isn't going to restore their safety net. People are facing major difficulties with their benefits precisely because of the Tory cuts (and before that because of the Coalition), so a vote for any other major party other than Labour is a vote for those cuts and the continued misery for people in benefits. Or to put it another way, a vote for Tory is condoning those cuts and ego that very misery which 'we feel tremendously sorry for'. r
-1 #126 caiti 2017-06-20 15:25
Re Nikkini, I , too, have brought up 3 children on benefits. Returned to college, obtained qualifications in business studies, then altered career to train and qualify as a midwife. Whilst working under a Labour govt. I well remember searching the wards for equipment,plus filling in safety logs, whereby , due to lack of staff, women had to be transferred to other hospitals as not enough midwives were available to safely care for them. No govt. is ideal and as long as we can have discussions about any govt.'s downfall then that is a good thing. I said I wouldn't vote for Labour, I didn't say who I would vote for. I feel tremendously sorry for people, who, through no fault of their own are facing major issues obtaining the benefits they are entitled to & I wish them the very best in their endeavours. However, I believe everyone would feel more in control of their lives if they had opportunities & ambition to improve their circumstances, so every good wish & good luck to you.
+1 #125 Mutley 2017-06-19 18:59
Quoting caiti:
The Conservatives can't be blamed for the current acts of terrorism in the UK. Terrorists care not a jot about who is in power.

Actually we don't know what has triggered this recent spate of terrorism, as IS will claim its them just for publicity. The authorities will blame the latest news headliner and the Conservative party will say not our fault. How do we know these attacks are not because of Tory Policies ?

Quoting caiti:

but the high end workforce & big business would leave the UK in droves at the prospect of being the ones facing a huge tax burden. As for everyone being equal, that's impossible. A consultant surgeon wouldn't be expected to earn the same as a domestic cleaner. Just being realistic.

Actually Brexit is to blame for them leaving. Everyone was warned by the banks that they would leave this country, as trading within Europe is paramount to their business. Even the Swiss trades through London, because they cannot trade with Europe without the UK's help.
So regardless of all else we loose Billions in revenue through those businesses setting up shop in Europe, and your worried about people earning over a million a year being taxed more.
+1 #124 nikkini 2017-06-19 18:11
Quoting caiti:
Quoting caiti:
the high end workforce & big business would leave the UK in droves at the prospect of being the ones facing a huge tax burden. As for everyone being equal, that's impossible. A consultant surgeon wouldn't be expected to earn the same as a domestic cleaner. Just being realistic.

d social care. These are simply my views, sorry if you think they are "skewed". I just think the Conservatives will be better for the economy, security, defence and better for the Brexit negotiations overall.


Where exactly would the business's go if they left? We have the lowest rates and labours increase would still make ours the lowest. And for many businesses it's not at all viable to shift everything to another country.
The tories have ruined this country, they have ruined the lives of many people, I know because I am one of them. You should try being poor and disabled under a tory government and then see how long you're a fan for, I can guarantee it won't be long. Or maybe have a bash at a job with a zero hour contract with a mortgage and 3 kids. Better still try being a nurse, after a week of any of those things you will hate the tories as much as everyone else with more than half a brain.
#123 nikkini 2017-06-19 18:09
Quoting caiti:
The Conservatives can't be blamed for the current acts of terrorism in the UK. Terrorists care not a jot about who is in power. When May reduced police numbers crime levels were at their lowest than they had been in previous years.



Who is selling arms to Saudi if it isn't the tories? You do know those arms are used to kill people? Are you also aware that many of those weapons end up in the hands of isis and in turn used against us? I assume you are ignorant to these facts but it's the tories refusing to stop the trade. When crime rates were low she cut the police guess what happened??? Crime went up, it doesn't take a genius to work out the police were keeping the crime rates down. Where I live seeing a police officer or even a special is as rare as rocking horse shit. My nearest police station is 10 miles away because the 5 others within easy distance have all been closed. The same for fire stations, if my house caught fire there wouldnt be much left by the time they got here cos they closed the nearest one then a year later another one 5 minutes away. then yet another last year. The nearest to me is a 14 minute drive with no traffic, it would have to drive down and across some jam packed roads during rush hour. If my house does burn down I can thank the tory cuts for that.
+1 #122 nikkini 2017-06-19 17:35
Quoting caiti:
Hi all...just back from my annual holidays so not been on here for a while. Glad the Conservatives managed to win the Election , enough to form a minority Government if things don't go to plan with the DUP. Labour were very keen to form a coalition with the DUP in 2010, if I remember correctly. Now hopefully progress will begin with the Brexit process. The Labour gains have made the Government acknowledge where they went wrong with their manifesto and put in place more of what the majority of people want.Well, fingers crossed anyway.

The tories didn't win the election.
+1 #121 tintack 2017-06-19 17:15
Quoting caiti:
The Conservatives can't be blamed for the current acts of terrorism in the UK. Terrorists care not a jot about who is in power.


And yet you "feel safer" with the Tories in power.....

Quote:
When May reduced police numbers crime levels were at their lowest than they had been in previous years. Now, those numbers will be increased to meet the demand.
Has it not occurred to you that perhaps the thousands of officers she then cut were helping to keep those crime levels low in the first place? She was warned of the impact of those cuts on the police's capacity to keep the public safe, warnings she dismissed as crying wolf.

Quote:
Whereas Corbyn would like to have "meaningful discussion" with those involved in terrorism.
Well for all the "terrorist sympathiser" smears he was proved right about Northern Ireland wasn't he? The British government began secret talks with Adams and McGuinness long before the peace process got going.

Quote:
He may have increased his majority on the back of promises to students of free university tuition and promises to tax only the highest 5% of the workforce, but the high end workforce & big business would leave the UK in droves at the prospect of being the ones facing a huge tax burden.
We've heard this for years every time any increase in taxation is proposed or enacted. They haven't left in droves. Ironically, the one thing that may well cause that to happen is not taxation levels, but Brexit.

Quote:
As for everyone being equal, that's impossible. A consultant surgeon wouldn't be expected to earn the same as a domestic cleaner. Just being realistic.
Come on, no-one is proposing that. That's a straw-man caricature.
#120 Asbo 2017-06-19 17:14
Quoting caiti:
...but the high end workforce & big business would leave the UK in droves at the prospect of being the ones facing a huge tax burden. As for everyone being equal, that's impossible. A consultant surgeon wouldn't be expected to earn the same as a domestic cleaner. Just being realistic.


It;'s a complete fallacy to say those being taxed at the highest rate would leave in their droves. Corporation tax under Corbyn would be raised to 26% less than it was in 2010. That is lower than anywhere else in the EU. The reason why some businesses are upping sticks is because of the uncertainty of Brexit.

I also think you misunderstand reducing inequality for meaning 'everyone being equal'. If you read the very thorough research in the book 'The Spirit Level' you will understand that more equal societies eg Japan and the Scandinavian countries do far better in terms of reduced crime, happier workforce, lower mental illness and many other indicators than in societies with the greatest inequalities. Not surprisingly, Britain and the US came up as two of the most unequal countries. Greater equality in terms of redistribution of wealth is better for ALL in society as proved by the authors, that including the wealthiest. It's just not necessary to have such a huge gap between rich and poor but it has soared since monetarism became the god and now that economics is unravelling
+1 #119 tintack 2017-06-19 17:02
Quoting caiti:
It is not a hung Parliament


Yes it is. A hung parliament is one in which no single party has an overall majority. That's literally what hung parliament means.

Quote:
which is trying to be agreed to the benefit of both parties and ultimately to the benefit of the whole of the UK.
It's aimed at enabling May to cling to power, regardless of the consequences (see Major's intervention).

Quote:
As for the NHS, well the Labour party run the NHS in Wales, which has a horrendous track record
The English NHS is run by the Tories. It's on its knees.

Quote:
I hope the Conservatives will take on board the depth of feeling regarding the NHS, austerity, the whole benefits system and social care.
Social care maybe, as it hits their own voters, but forget the rest of it. For example: look at Labour's manifesto for disabled people (link on the news page) and ask yourself how many of those things you honestly think the Tories will do.

Quote:
I just think the Conservatives will be better for the economy, security, defence and better for the Brexit negotiations overall.
I've dealt with the economy and security in previous posts. As for Brexit: remember that in Europe Brexit is largely viewed as the result of a Tory civil war that got out of control. They also believe (rightly IMO) that years of relentlessly poisonous anti-EU propaganda in the Tory press was one of the biggest drivers of the Leave vote, and it just so happens that a certain Boris Johnson used to get paid a handsome salary at the Telegraph for literally making up crap about the EU. They haven't forgotten that in Europe, however much his antics may be indulged here. May thought it was a good idea to make him foreign secretary. Let's not forget the Tories' generally antagonistic attitude to the EU either. The best people for the Brexit negotiations? God help us.
#118 Asbo 2017-06-19 16:49
And how anybody can possibly think that "the Conservatives will take on board the depth of feeling regarding the NHS, austerity, the whole benefits system and social care" when it was they that created the savage cuts and creeping privatisation in the first place must be living in cloud cuckooland. I can only think that the slow drip drip of the propaganda served up to the gullible on a daily basis by the RW press is responsible, not to mention the poverty on Channel 5. But those of us who've been on the frontline for the last 7 years know the truth of what's been happening and exactly who is responsible.
-1 #117 caiti 2017-06-19 15:18
The Conservatives can't be blamed for the current acts of terrorism in the UK. Terrorists care not a jot about who is in power. When May reduced police numbers crime levels were at their lowest than they had been in previous years. Now, those numbers will be increased to meet the demand. It's simple economics, supply and demand. Whereas Corbyn would like to have "meaningful discussion" with those involved in terrorism. He may have increased his majority on the back of promises to students of free university tuition and promises to tax only the highest 5% of the workforce, but the high end workforce & big business would leave the UK in droves at the prospect of being the ones facing a huge tax burden. As for everyone being equal, that's impossible. A consultant surgeon wouldn't be expected to earn the same as a domestic cleaner. Just being realistic.
#116 Drizzle 2017-06-19 14:23
Quoting tintack:

The myth of Tory economic competence really does need to be nailed. Since the current shower got in they've borrowed more than every Labour government in history combined. Outside London and the South East there has been little to no recovery, and even in the south the benefits of what recovery there has been have mostly gone to those at the top. We have an economy increasingly based on low wage, dead end jobs, which is being propped up by vast amounts of quantitative easing and completely unsustainable levels of house prices and household debt. In work poverty has soared, so has the number of people relying on food banks, and we have a housing crisis exacerbated by sky high rents. And this is before the reality of Brexit kicks in.

Even those arguing that the Tories will keep us safer than Labour don't have a leg to stand on - not when we've had three major terrorist attacks in three months on the Tories' watch (to say nothing of May's record of cutting thousands of police officers). Oh yes, and let's take a moment to savour the irony of Mrs. Strong and Stable clinging on to power with the help of a party endorsed by paramilitary groups.

And yet still they claim to offer a "more secure future" than anyone else. Jesus wept.


And what's even worse, so many turkeys still believe them and vote for Christmas! Hopefully this weak and wobbly Tory/DUP coalition of chaos won't last very long.
+1 #115 tintack 2017-06-17 14:24
Quoting Asbo:
The Tories didn't win - we have a fragile hung parliament. People are sick to death of the unnecessary austerity ideology and people voted for public services and the NHS in huge numbers ie for Labour. Now we have a national scandal with hundreds of poor people dead in a catastrophe that was completely avoidable. Huge inequality is society in even this wealthy area of London has got to stop - that is your Tory ideology. Labour believe in equality and redistribution of wealth.


The myth of Tory economic competence really does need to be nailed. Since the current shower got in they've borrowed more than every Labour government in history combined. Outside London and the South East there has been little to no recovery, and even in the south the benefits of what recovery there has been have mostly gone to those at the top. We have an economy increasingly based on low wage, dead end jobs, which is being propped up by vast amounts of quantitative easing and completely unsustainable levels of house prices and household debt. In work poverty has soared, so has the number of people relying on food banks, and we have a housing crisis exacerbated by sky high rents. And this is before the reality of Brexit kicks in.

Even those arguing that the Tories will keep us safer than Labour don't have a leg to stand on - not when we've had three major terrorist attacks in three months on the Tories' watch (to say nothing of May's record of cutting thousands of police officers). Oh yes, and let's take a moment to savour the irony of Mrs. Strong and Stable clinging on to power with the help of a party endorsed by paramilitary groups.

And yet still they claim to offer a "more secure future" than anyone else. Jesus wept.
-3 #114 caiti 2017-06-17 11:37
Actually the Conservatives did win, 318 seats. It is not a hung Parliament, rather a "supply & confidence" agreement with the DUP which is trying to be agreed to the benefit of both parties and ultimately to the benefit of the whole of the UK. As for the NHS, well the Labour party run the NHS in Wales, which has a horrendous track record of long waiting lists, use of private health facilities in lieu of NHS and cancelled operations , so what does that say for Labour? As I mentioned previously, I hope the Conservatives will take on board the depth of feeling regarding the NHS, austerity, the whole benefits system and social care. These are simply my views, sorry if you think they are "skewed". I just think the Conservatives will be better for the economy, security, defence and better for the Brexit negotiations overall.
+1 #113 Mutley 2017-06-17 11:23
I would have to agree with the last comment. But besides the fire, people should really research what rights have been taken away from them, because of the Conservative Government. These people are elected to office, not power, but for some reason individual rights and freedoms have been restricted to such an extent now, that government departments can stick 2 fingers up to the law courts and tell them they cannot be penalised in any way for breaking the law and yet you as an individual can be prosecuted by acts that are unlawful. Now these cretins want to change the legislation to for human rights, so they can limit your freedom, even more.
No wonder we have more terrorism in this country, with such a government. Now these planks want to break peace accords by including the DUP. Wow
+1 #112 Asbo 2017-06-16 17:29
Quoting caiti:
Hi all...just back from my annual holidays so not been on here for a while. Glad the Conservatives managed to win the Election , enough to form a minority Government if things don't go to plan with the DUP. Labour were very keen to form a coalition with the DUP in 2010, if I remember correctly. Now hopefully progress will begin with the Brexit process. The Labour gains have made the Government acknowledge where they went wrong with their manifesto and put in place more of what the majority of people want.Well, fingers crossed anyway.


You seem to have a very skewed view to most people I speak to. The Tories are a disaster. Labour weren't keen to go into Coalition with the DUP, that myth was debunked last night by Emily Thornberry. The Tories didn't win - we have a fragile hung parliament. People are sick to death of the unnecessary austerity ideology and people voted for public services and the NHS in huge numbers ie for Labour. Now we have a national scandal with hundreds of poor people dead in a catastrophe that was completely avoidable. Huge inequality is society in even this wealthy area of London has got to stop - that is your Tory ideology. Labour believe in equality and redistribution of wealth.
-2 #111 caiti 2017-06-16 15:21
Hi all...just back from my annual holidays so not been on here for a while. Glad the Conservatives managed to win the Election , enough to form a minority Government if things don't go to plan with the DUP. Labour were very keen to form a coalition with the DUP in 2010, if I remember correctly. Now hopefully progress will begin with the Brexit process. The Labour gains have made the Government acknowledge where they went wrong with their manifesto and put in place more of what the majority of people want.Well, fingers crossed anyway.
+1 #110 Asbo 2017-06-12 00:16
Quote:
Quoting Asbo:
With links to past terrorists too - er - and wasn't that the reason Corbyn was decimated by the RW press for his alleged connections with the IRA? What hypocrites....and also our government is supposed to be neutral in Irish affairs to keep the peace process alive, Things are balanced on a knife- edge at Stormont at the present time and this will not help one jot


I'm sure the Tory press will soon be expressing fury and outrage at the Tories getting into bed with a paramilitary-endorsed party, given their relentless smearing of Corbyn as a terrorist sympathiser. Or possibly not.

In fairness to May, she did warn that this election could lead to a coalition of chaos with dodgy links to terrorists. She just forgot to mention that she'd be the one leading it.
Yes, some good memes going round Facebook and social media with exactly that!

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