Letters

Letters: DWP wants to make it as hard as possible to look after my disabled relatives

A reader explains how caring for family members has left her exhausted and broke because of DWP rules around carers allowance

Image: Sabine van Erp from Pixabay

Big Issue readers react to articles on the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), Yungblud, homelessness and why Rishi Sunak would be better off moving to the US.

DWP makes it hard to care

The DWP system in place for carers is discriminatory. My own circumstances show how terrible it is. My carer’s allowance (CA) is deducted in full from my universal credit (UC). So I basically don’t receive one. I work 10 hours per week in the evening cleaning on minimum wage. It kills me and I’m exhausted, but I do it to stay in the workforce, as I won’t always be a carer for my parents. 

UC deducts 55p from every pound I earn from my job. I also received a small amount of inheritance and the DWP deducted £80 per month of my UC because the inheritance was over £6,000 and I’m legally only allowed this amount in the bank. So I work at least 60 hours plus per week with my caring and part-time job, yet I’m not allowed to have savings and I’m continuously penalised financially. 

Why would any government penalise the people who need the help most? I can’t wait to be working full-time so I don’t have to deal with CA and UC. It appears the DWP wants to make it as hard as possible for people looking after disabled elderly relatives. I suffer from pure exhaustion. Recently my sister took a week off work to look after my parents and I took a week off my cleaning job. I spent the whole week in bed. 

Jacqui Davey, Hornchurch 

Get gone, Sunak

If Sunak loves the worst of US politics so much: gerrymandering, vote rigging, no NHS, rampant capitalism at the expense of the majority, unworkable border controls, criminalising homelessness (which his own policies have caused in the first place) pharma totalitarians etc… Why doesn’t he do us all a favour and get gone over there asap? Yesterday or last year would not be soon enough. 

@Joozyboozy

Rough justice

Looking back at the homelessness article and BBC footage of treatment of rough sleepers, it seems to me that if any person, rough sleeper or not, were to behave in this way to the police they would be arrested and most likely end up in the (in)justice system awaiting an unfair trial. 

I often do collage from found pictures/words in magazines and do simple and sometimes complex pictures. Reading this and thinking about the disparity of the share of the world’s resources I thought I would do a simple collage with this page to process these thoughts and pass it along to you.

Having MS-related pain issues I find art/collage helps me to be in the moment and take my mind away from what my body is physically feeling. Best thing is it is practically free as I always have old magazines lying around and an active imagination;  you can even pick up old magazines cheap in the charity shops. So, even if I’m feeling too low to leave the house, my mind is free to travel.

Also, big hello to my lovely Big Issue seller, Serena, who sells outside my local Sainsburys in Lampeter. No matter what the weather in this rainy corner of Wales, she has a welcoming smile for everyone.

Andi

Simon is a star

I started buying The Big Issue from one of your vendors, Simon, last June and have been stopping for a chat every week since. Simon’s kindness to every person that walks by stopped me in a moment in life when I felt awful. I always say you need to find a moment of brightness in life. And for me, one day in June when I was at the lowest point I’ve ever been, there was Simon saying, “Would anyone like a Big Issue, cash or card?” 

Now it’s become a weekly pleasure to stop, have a chat, and buy a copy. I wish him nothing but happiness in his life and hope he knows how much of an impact his positive attitude has on people. 

Thank you to all at Big Issue. 

Leanne, Norwich 

Mind your language

Looking at your item regarding Yungblud – Dominic to his mum – he seems to address various personal issues. Why then, does he use the word ‘mental’ in such a pejorative fashion? Given that mental illness is a concern for many people, the use of this word is insulting. He himself has claimed ADHD. It really should not be encouraged among youth like this. 

Thomas Collins

Do you have a story to tell or opinions to share about the DWP, Sunak or any of the topics raised? We want to hear from you. Get in touch and tell us more.

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