The British Government refuses to conduct a cumulative impact assessment of its welfare reforms on the grounds that it is too difficult to do – that the changes are too complicated.Yet the DWP has the unmitigated gall to demand “actual hard research and data” from Ms. Raquel Rolnik, UN Special Rapporteur for adequate housing, who is calling for the bedroom tax to be abolished.They have missed a fundamental point: it’s truly remarkable that Tories loudly attribute the capacity for moral agency to other people – everyone else in fact – people claiming benefits, for example, formulating sanctions and “assessments” to both shape and question the morality of the poor constantly, or demanding more and more “evidence” from anyone that challenges, yet the Tories think they stand outside of any obligation to morality themselves.
It’s always someone else’s responsibility, never theirs. Any claim to value-freedom in decision-making, in any case, does not and cannot exempt the Government from their obligation to International Human Rights Law, moral responsibility, or justify their utter moral indifference to the plight of the vulnerable.
The purpose of Government in any democracy is to reflect the needs of a population. This Government seems to believe that the population are here to fulfil their own needs, and they are exploiting the vulnerable, stealing lifeline benefits from them – which we have all paid for via taxes – to profit the very wealthy. This is authoritarianism, and not democracy.
This morning I heard Grant Shapps attempt to trivialise the issue of the Government’s breach of our Human Rights by pointing out that other countries are breaching Human Rights. The Government here have breached International Human Rights standards and law, regardless of whether or not other Governments in the world have done so.
People are dying here, made homeless, we are seeing a massive increase in food poverty, and people are committing suicide because they are so desperate. Human suffering, loss of dignity and death may have many facets, but all of them are equally unforgiving, and when imposed by humans on fellow humans, all are equally unforgivable.
This Government have consistently breached the Human Rights of the sick and disabled. It’s about time something was done about it.
Kitty S Jones.