Mind the hypocrisy: challenge DWP-charity collaboration, 31st October

Tom Pollard, the head of policy and campaigns at the mental health charity Mind, is about to spend a year working with the Department for Work and Pensions.

As one report put it,

“Activists point out that Mind made no mention of welfare reform, sanctions, or benefit-related deaths in its latest five-year strategy, and that the government’s Mental Health Taskforce, led by Mind’s chief executive, Paul Farmer, concluded in its report that employment was “vital to health and should be recognised as a health outcome”, when many campaigners – and professionals – warn that this is not the case for all mental health service-users…

There is also continuing anger from the Mental Health Resistance Network (MHRN) at Mind’s decision to pull out of a high-profile and long-running court case that was aimed at forcing ministers to make the WCA safer for people with mental health conditions…

Paula Peters, a member of both MHRN and Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC), said Pollard’s secondment was a “despicable, outrageous move”.

She called for a boycott of Mind shops, events and donations, and for Farmer to resign.

She said: “We are furious at the callous disregard for people in mental distress.

“They have been silent while people in mental distress have taken their own lives over being found fit to work due to the WCA, left destitute after being sanctioned in the work-related activity group of ESA, or sanctioned on jobseeker’s allowance.”

She added: “They are just as guilty as this government by their silence over the tragic human cost of the welfare reforms and colluding with the government, which will cause more distress and harm.

“This is a warning to any charity that colludes with the government: you’re next!””

The Mental Health Resistance Network are calling for people to join them on Monday 31st October from half 3 at 15 Broadway, E15 4, London, for an unwelcoming party to let Pollard know how people feel about his collaboration with the DWP. Facebook event is here.

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About nothingiseverlost

"The impulse to fight against work and management is immediately collective. As we fight against the conditions of our own lives, we see that other people are doing the same. To get anywhere we have to fight side by side. We begin to break down the divisions between us and prejudices, hierarchies, and nationalisms begin to be undermined. As we build trust and solidarity, we grow more daring and combative. More becomes possible. We get more organized, more confident, more disruptive and more powerful."
This entry was posted in Disability, Protests, Unemployment/claimants and welfare and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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