Bernadette Meaden's blog

No money left, or is it just in the wrong places?

All three main UK political parties now base their economic arguments on a premise which has come to be accepted as truth, but which may be false. The premise is that ‘there is no money left’ and this is used to justify austerity. We don’t want to cut, the argument goes, but there is no money left, so we have to make difficult decisions.

Food banks: A national scandal

‘When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a Communist.’

This was said in the 20th century by Helder Camara, a Catholic Archbishop in Brazil living under a brutal right-wing dictatorship.

Work Capability Assessments have failed the test

Last year I wrote about my friend Yvonne, who had undergone an Atos Work Capability Assessment (WCA) and been placed in the Work Related Activity Group, meaning she was expected to attend the Jobcentre and prepare for work.

We need to recognise our common humanity as the welfare changes hit

On the miserable journey that is welfare reform, we have reached a very sad milestone: the first suicide to be attributed to the bedroom tax.

The BBC: Promoting UKIP and ignoring NHS privatisation

When the House of Lords recently passed Section 75 of the Health and Social Care Bill, there was no coverage on BBC News. The significance and contentiousness of this legislation, which opens the NHS up to a free market in healthcare, was explained here by Savi Hensman.

Pankhurst v Thatcher: A tale of two legacies

With the backing of Conservative Way Forward, and the Cherish Freedom Trust (CFT) fundraising has begun for a proposed Thatcher Library. With supporters like Rupert Murdoch on board it will no doubt be quite easy to raise £15 million and acquire a prestigious Central London property.

Amnesty condemns erosion of human rights of disabled in UK

In the last few days, the economic case for austerity has been dealt more than one significant blow. The IMF has warned George Osborne that he is ‘playing with fire’ and an academic paper which had ostensibly given the policy great legitimacy has been shown to be fatally undermined by mathematical and statistical errors.

Let's not spend too much time debating the Thatcher legacy

What is there to say about Margaret Thatcher’s legacy? So much has already been said. It’s not just tasteless to celebrate a person’s death: it also seems terribly futile and diminishes our own humanity.

When National Insurance becomes a 'Jobs Tax'

Today I got an email from George Osborne. It wasn’t personal. I signed up for them on the basis that I like to keep my eye on what he’s doing; or more accurately, what he claims he’s doing.

Our welfare works

For all who care about social justice, the last few years have been dreadful. To see the incomes of the poorest people cut, and to see those cuts justified by inaccurate and divisive ‘scroungers’ rhetoric has been depressing. For those at the receiving end it has been very painful.