Bernadette Meaden's blog

Liam Fox: Voice of the 1%

Quite stealthily, and without an electoral mandate, since 2010 the government has proceeded to dismantle the welfare state, and privatise the NHS, the state education system, even the fire service. But for some, it has not been radical enough, or fast enough. Hence the reappearance of Liam Fox, who left the Cabinet in disgrace in 2011.

Bedroom tax: Is the Government genuinely ignorant?

This is not the first government to be accused of being out of touch, and no doubt it won’t be the last. When the government is comprised largely of millionaires who have led unusually privileged lives, perhaps it is almost too easy an accusation to make. But when a government seems disconnected from the lived reality of its people to an extent that is quite evidently damaging, then the disconnect must be taken seriously.

Eastleigh, UKIP and the immigration blame-game

On the day of the Eastleigh by-election, figures were released which showed a marked recent decline in net migration, which obviously delighted the Government. Home Secretary Theresa May boasted about how much she had toughened up the rules, but perhaps in an attempt to forestall one potential criticism, stressed the fact that visas for university students had increased by three percent overall.

Mocking sick and disabled people

When did sick and disabled people become 'fair game' for mockery in the UK?

Over the last few years the way certain elements of the media have portrayed these sections of the population as ‘scroungers’ and ‘benefit cheats’ has been depressing, but today the Daily Mail reached a new low. In this article dramatic claims were made about the numbers of new claimants for Disability Living Allowance, describing a rush to claim the benefit before new more stringent rules are introduced.

Ian Duncan Smith: smoke and mirrors over welfare reform

As elements of the government’s Welfare Reform programme meet growing opposition, the Secretary of State comes under increasing pressure. Defeat in the Court of Appeal over Workfare and increasingly vocal opposition to the bedroom tax has seen Iain Duncan Smith stridently defending his policies.

Women rising in the Catholic Church

During discussions surrounding One Billion Rising, it was pointed out that, when it comes to creating a culture in which women may be viewed as inferior in some way, religion has a lot to answer for.

Serious questions about the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)

Over the past few years the DWP has developed something of a reputation for having scant regard for facts or statistics. It has been accused by the UK Statistics Authority of twisting or misrepresenting figures in order to justify its own policies.

Foodbanks: charity, justice and Cameron's avoidance

For several weeks at Prime Minister’s Questions, David Cameron has been asked about foodbanks. Each week he has had a request by an MP to visit a foodbank in their constituency, to speak to the people who run them, and to the people who rely on them to feed themselves and their families.

Welfare: Archbishop should seek justice, not charity

The day before he became Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby spoke at an evangelical church in Nottingham. His comments were summarised by the Daily Telegraph thus; ‘The welfare state cannot go on doing the job it has for the past 70 years and the Church should step in to fill the void, according to the incoming Archbishop of Canterbury’.

Panorama exposes the great (war on) disability scam

Last night’s Panorama programme (BBC1, 28 January 2013) was sickening, but for those interested in disability or welfare issues, sadly not so shocking.