Ministers have been branded hypocrites for rejec

first_imgMinisters have been branded “hypocrites” for rejecting the idea that the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) should be held responsible for benefit-related deaths, despite their government calling for social media managers to be held criminally responsible for safeguarding failures. Home secretary Sajid Javid (pictured) said this week that the government was acting to hold the social media industry accountable for its failures because “we know, in our hearts, we know that protecting the vulnerable is our shared responsibility”.But evidencehas also mounted over recent years of links between the failings of DWP ministersand senior civil servants and the deaths of disabled people, particularly inrelation to the flawed work capability assessment (WCA) process.The deathsof disabled people such as Paul Donnachie, Mark Wood, David Barr, Stephen Carré, Lawrence Bond, David Clapson, Susan Roberts, Alan McArdle and JodeyWhiting – and many others – have all been linked to DWP safeguarding failings.This has led to the launch of the Justice forJodey Whiting petition, which says DWP ministers and civil servantsshould be held to account through a police investigation for their failure toensure the safety of these and other benefit claimants.In a speech to launch the new whitepaper on online harms,Javid said this week that some tech companies had “long got away with the claimthat they cannot possibly be expected to take any more responsibility for thesafety of their customers”.He added: “Ifwe saw a child being abused or threatened, I’m sure all of us in this room wouldstep in and do something.“And we’d dosomething because we know, in our hearts, we know that protecting thevulnerable is our shared responsibility. “It’s notcontroversial, it’s not authoritarian. It’s just what you do in a civilizedsociety… So if companies fail to fulfil their safeguarding obligations theywill face serious consequences.”This week’s white paper on online social harms – which is now out for athree-month public consultation – shows the government wants tohold social media companies to account for their safeguarding failings.One of thekey elements of the white paper is that the government is exploring new lawsthat would hold individual senior managers “personally accountable” in theevent of a major breach of a new statutory duty of care, which could extend to “criminalliability”.EllenClifford, a  member of the nationalsteering group of Disabled People Against Cuts, said: “Social media companies mustact against online disablist abuse but in pushing responsibility onto thosecompanies, the government is conveniently avoiding its own role in deliberatelyenflaming hostile attitudes towards disabled people in order to justify welfare‘reform’. “The UnitedNations recommended in 2016 that the government undertake awidespread publicity programme to improve attitudes towards benefit claimantsbut this recommendation was rejected. “If thegovernment really cared about stopping disablism the first place to start wouldbe the DWP.“It is alsoentirely hypocritical to introduce new criminal laws holding companies toaccount for safeguarding breaches when government ministers and civil servantsare still able to evade justice for the deaths of benefit claimants and ignorethe blood on their own hands.”DeniseMcKenna, co-founder of the Mental Health Resistance Network, welcomed the white paper’ssafeguarding proposal but said the refusal to introduce similar measures tocover DWP was “hypocrisy”.She said:“Certainly we feel that safeguarding for people with mental health problems isextremely important, and for people who have disabilities too, and we fail tosee why the government would consider safeguarding for one group of peopleimportant but not for another. “It’s notgood enough just to safeguard a person up to a certain age and then throw themto the wolves.“MHRN feelsvery, very strongly that those government ministers and senior civil servantswho have engineered a hostile environment for people with mental healthproblems, some of whom have taken their own lives, should face some kind ofjustice.”She saidthat the outsourcing companies who carry out disability benefit assessments onbehalf of DWP – Maximus, Atos and Capita – should also be held to account.She said: “Wewill see all of them held to account, even if it takes the next 10 or 20 years.We will not walk away and forget this has happened.”McKennapointed out that many people with mental health problems have experienced abuseas children and are now being “subjected to the cruelty of the benefit systemand sanctions”.She added:“It seems to be that we are protecting children until they reach a certain age,at which point we change from seeking to protect them to almost despising them.”Ian Jones,from the WOWcampaign, said: “It is now up to JustinTomlinson and Amber Rudd to explain to disabled people how they are going tointroduce a requirement for the DWP to demonstrate a duty of care to disabledpeople and all claimants of universal credit and other benefits. “DWP staffand ministers whose conduct may have caused harm to claimants of universalcredit and other benefits should be held to the same standards as social mediabosses when ignorance and failure to follow procedure leads to harm.”JohnMcArdle, co-founder of Black Triangle, welcomed the white paperannouncement but said it would be “rank hypocrisy” if the government was notgoing to hold DWP to the same standards.He said:“Ministers and civil servants should face the same exacting standards as SajidJavid proposes.”DWP hascontinually insisted that it is already“committed to safeguarding vulnerable claimants”, has “robust safeguarding inplace to protect and support vulnerable people” and that “where any failings onspecific cases have been identified, we have addressed these to ensure they arenot repeated”.Asked this week if similar laws to those proposed for social mediacompanies should be introduced to cover the actions of civil servants andministers running DWP, a DWP spokesperson refused to comment.And asked if there should be a criminal investigation into thesafeguarding failings of DWP ministers and civil servants, she again refused tocomment.To sign the Justice for Jodey Whiting petition, click on this link. If you sign the petition, please note that you will need to confirm your signature by clicking on an email you will be sent automatically by the House of Commons petitions committeeA note from the editor:Please consider making a voluntary financial contribution to support the work of DNS and allow it to continue producing independent, carefully-researched news stories that focus on the lives and rights of disabled people and their user-led organisations. Please do not contribute if you cannot afford to do so, and please note that DNS is not a charity. It is run and owned by disabled journalist John Pring and has been from its launch in April 2009. Thank you for anything you can do to support the work of DNS…last_img read more

Sign up to LabourLists morning email for everythi

first_imgSign up to LabourList’s morning email for everything Labour, every weekday morning.The biggest news of the weekend: LabourList has a fresh look. Yes, we’ve redesigned the site, which should now work smoothly on mobile and be much easier on the eye. I know some readers will be disappointed by the decision to remove comments – I’ve already received emails to that effect – but we think it is best to move the conversations on to social media and other forums. Informative contributions on the details of local meetings and parliamentary selections were very helpful, and my inbox is still open to those messages, but too often the exchanges below-the-line became unpleasant and unconstructive. We don’t have the resources to moderate them.Instead, LabourList will engage with readers via means such as surveys. Our latest has offered interesting results. Readers chose Jeremy Corbyn, followed by Yvette Cooper and Keir Starmer as their top Labour MPs, which would suggest high-profile backbenchers can compete with shadow cabinet members in popularity, and that Brexit played a big role in determining answers. As expected, it indicates our readership is largely pro-Corbyn, pro-EU. The majority of readers also said Labour’s Cooper amendment rebels should resign or be disciplined in some way, although no shadow ministers have been, and that Labour should launch a fresh consultation of members on Brexit. Click here for the results in full.It’s been a bumper weekend of political rumours we’ve heard before: apparently Theresa May is going to call a snap election (in June) and anti-Brexit MPs are splitting off to form a new centrist party. But in the immediate term, Westminster is still talking about the latest news affecting May’s chances of getting a deal through parliament. Labour Party chair Ian Lavery used an exclusive LabourList piece on Friday to tell MPs that taking the Prime Minister’s “bribe” – cash for their constituency – in exchange for a Brexit deal vote “would be fool’s gold”. John Mann aside, it’s certainly provoked a backlash from Labour MPs who say they “cannot be bought”. A serious misstep from the Prime Minister, who will have to do better than that to get rebels on board.Sienna @siennamarlaSign up to LabourList’s morning email for everything Labour, every weekday morning.Tags:LabourList /Theresa May /Labour /Ian Lavery /Jeremy Corbyn /Brexit /daily email /Redesign /last_img read more

SAINTS produced a tenacious and committed performa

first_imgSAINTS produced a tenacious and committed performance as they beat Wigan 28-12 in a pre-season friendly that at times was anything but.Joe Greenwood bagged a brace whilst Travis Burns and Atelea Vea demonstrated why they were brought to the club with excellent contributions.But it would be wrong to single them out as this was a real squad effort.Keiron Cunningham drilled his team down to 21 players – Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook and Luke Walsh the duo to miss out through injury – whilst Shaun Wane opted for just 19.And if there was to be any doubt as to the intensity level that was eradicated in the first hit up as Saints were awarded a penalty for a late shot from Dom Crosby.Moments later, Mark Percival was held up as he went for the corner and at the other end of the field Burns and Joel Tomkins had a niggle during a large amount of Wigan pressure.Alex Walmsley’s thunderous hit forced the ball loose in the 7th minute and then Wilkin’s clearing kick hit the post causing Gelling to knock on.Saints then twisted the screw, Amor offloading to Roby who put Greenwood over just to the left of the sticks.Makinson with the extras.Saints’ forward line were beginning to dominate causing Wigan to give away penalties in key positions. Mose Masoe was held up over the line on one foray in the 17th minute and then Tommy Makinson just couldn’t find enough space to catch a chip through.In fairness Saints should have been further ahead – and they were given a warning when Josh Charnley knocked on over the line.But it was one they heeded as they stretched the lead in the 29th minute.Ryan Hampshire knocked on; Turner snaffled up the ball and fed Swift who showed all his pace.Tony Clubb let Burns know he was in a game on 27 minutes, hitting him late as he passed the ball.The half back didn’t seem rattled though getting stuck in on Saints next defensive set and then being involved as Makinson had one chalked off in the corner for a knock on.Saints weren’t going to let their visitors get off scot free once again and Vea scored after Swift’s break on their next attack before  Makinson finally got over in the corner thanks to superb work from Burns – who kicked a forty-twenty in the build-up – and Lomax.Cunningham’s side began the second half on the front foot pinning Wigan in their own 20.But a mistake on an innocuous high ball found John Bateman in acres of space.The game was scrappy and punctuated by knock ons until Connor Farrell made it game on with a burrow over.That left Saints with 20 minutes to stem the flow or face undoing their fantastic opening forty.More penalties for the visitors followed, Connor Farrell was held up over the line and Wigan won repeat sets.But Lance Hohaia forced the ball loose with a crushing tackle.Into the final 13 minutes, Saints grabbed a repeat set to turn the tide and Greenwood caught Masoe’s offload for his second – and ultimately the game winner.Hohaia almost put Swift in for the icing on the cake in the final three minutes but his great break and kick was just too strong.It would have been no more than Saints deserved; yet a satisfying 80 none the same.Match Summary:Saints: Tries: Greenwood (2), Swift, Vea, Makinson, Goals: Makinson (4 from 5)Warriors:Tries: Bateman, C.FarrellGoals: Smith (2 from 2)Penalties: Saints: 8Warriors: 11HT: 22-0FT: 28-12REF: Robert HicksATT: 6888Teams:Saints:1. Jonny Lomax; 2. Tommy Makinson, 17. Mark Percival, 3. Jordan Turner, 5. Adam Swift; 6. Travis Burns, 12. Jon Wilkin; 14. Alex Walmsley, 9. James Roby, 10. Kyle Amor, 21. Joe Greenwood, 11. Atelea Vea, 18. Luke Thompson.Subs: 4. Josh Jones, 8. Mose Masoe, 15. Mark Flanagan, 16. Lance Hohaia, 19. Greg Richards, 20. Paul Wellens, 22. Matty Dawson, 25. Andre Savelio.Wigan:20. Ryan Hampshire; 2. Josh Charnley, 3. Anthony Gelling, 11. Joel Tomkins, 5. Joe Burgess; 6. George Williams, 7. Matty Smith; 8. Dominic Crosby, 9. Michael McIlorum, 28. Ryan Sutton, 12. Liam Farrell, 14. John Bateman, 25. Larne Patrick.Subs: 1. Matty Bowen, 17. Tony Clubb, 22. Dominic Manfredi, 26. Logan Tomkins, 29. James Greenwood, 31. Connor Farrell.last_img read more

WIN one of our Magic Weekend Shirts2016 Members c

first_imgWIN one of our Magic Weekend Shirts!2016 Members can win one of our special replica shirts that have been designed to raise awareness of Autism as well as funds for St Helens Autism Support.All you need to do is answer our simple Magic related question and we will draw a winner at random this Friday April 22 (12pm).Q: What year and against what team was Saints’ biggest win at the Magic Weekend?Just send you answer, along with your membership number, into the club via email to Good luck!last_img

Club First Team Match

first_imgTwo first half tries from Tommy Makinson and a Lachlan Coote penalty sent Saints in at the break with a 12-4 lead after Zak Hardaker had converted two penalties for Wigan.Saints started the second half in perfect fashion with Coote latching onto a Theo Fages kick to extend the lead. Two more Saints tries followed as Kevin Naiqama pounced on a Wigan knock on to score and Jonny Lomax chased down a blocked kick to pick up and score. Hardaker scored a consolation try for Wigan, but Saints came away with the bragging rights.On Derby Day in front of a sold out home end at the Totally wicked Stadium, it was the visitors who got off to the better start forcing back to back sets on the Saints line and then winning a penalty in front of the posts which Hardaker converted.Wigan weren’t ahead for long though as a barnstorming run from Alex Walmsley caused mayhem in the Wigan defence and forced the visitors to concede a penalty and Coote levelled the game.Saints scored the first try of the night after a flowing move down the right edge finished with Lomax providing the cut out pass to Makinson who finished typically in the corner. Coote unable to convert off the touchline.From the kick off, a knock on from Fages gave Wigan excellent field position and after winning a penalty they took the two reducing the depict.Saints and Makinson were in again minutes from half time after an excellent move down Saints’ right ended with the impressive Dominic Peyroux feeding Makinson and the golden boot winner walked in at the corner for his second. Coote converting brilliantly off the touchline giving Saints an eight point lead at the break.Saints got off to a flyer in the second half as a Lomax run was stopped inches short from the line. On the next play James Bentley found Fages and his neat kick through found Coote who was there to touch down. Coote added the two to his own try extending the lead.Naiaqama was next to score as the centre pounced on the loose ball after a high bomb from Fages was knocked on by Wigan winger Joe Burgess and Naiqama was there to pick up the ball and crash his way over. Coote adding the two.The scoring didn’t stop there as the hard working Morgan Knowles charged down a Thomas Leuluai kick and Lomax had a clear run to simply touch the ball down to extend Saints lead.Wigan pulled a try back through Hardaker as the full back blocked a Saints kick and kicked the ball on to chase and pick up himself and score to get Wigan’s first and only try of the night. Hardaker adding the extras himself.But that didn’t stop Saints fans singing loud and proud at the final whistle after a hat-trick of derby day victories.Match SummarySaints: Coote, Makinson, Naiqama, Percival, Grace, Lomax, Fages, Walmsley, Bentley, Thompson, Knowles, Peyroux, LMS.Interchanges: Amor, Lees, Smith, Ashworth.Tries: Makinson (15,35) Coote (44), Naiqama ( 51), Lomax (58).Goals: Coote (4 from 5 ).Penalties: Coote (1 from 1).Wigan WariorsStarting 13: Hardaker ,Marshall, Sarginson, Gildart, Burgess,Williams, Leuluai, Navarrete, Powell, Partington, Isa, Farrell, Smithies.Interchanges: Bullock, Byrne, Hankinson, Shorrocks.Tries: Hardaker (64)Goals: Hardaker (1 from 1)Penalties: Hardaker (2 from 2)HT: 12-4 FT: 32-10 REF: B. ThalerATT: 17,088last_img read more

5th annual Rogers Wish project is a success

first_imgELIZABETHTOWN, NC (WWAY) —  October is known as Roger’s month in Elizabethtown.  Roger Grunder became a Bladen County icon best remembered for giving back to others, even when he didn’t have much for himself.The Bladen County community started a donation drive at the beginning of October in honor of Grunder and Friday folks picked up the goods.Photo courtesy: Bladen Journal- Advertisement – The fifth annual Roger’s Wish project by the Bladen Journal collected 143 blankets, 11 sleeping bags and a variety of other items like gloves, bed linens, toiletries and pillows.Organizers say the items were given to the homeless and needy in the county and also to the Sheriff’s Office to give to the homeless while on patrol.Family puts cross at scene of accident.A memorial cross for the late Roger Grunder was placed at the scene of the accident earlier this week.Click here to see the original report WWAY did on “Roger’s Wish” back in 2015.last_img read more

PAID IN FULL Family surprises school by paying lunch balances

first_img00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave Settings BOLIVIA, NC (WWAY) — Some Brunswick County families are getting a little early Christmas gift from a family who decided to zero out some debts at a local school. Parents should be getting a little phone call or message this week!The random act of kindness happened at Bolivia Elementary School. On Monday, December 18th, three generations of the Mercer family(Worth, Worth jr, and Steve) came to Bolivia Elementary to finish what another family member started.Tonya (Mercer) Rubio via SKYPE at Bolivia Elementary as the family pays off lunch balances- Advertisement – Tonia Rubio, a sister and daughter who now lives in Alaska and instrumental in having her family be part of the gift, donated $500 to the pay off lunch balances at the school. The Mercer men paid the rest for a total of more than 11 hundred dollars that will wipe out the bills for 80 students.“It relieves a lot of stress from the parents and those students,” Principal Kelly Andrews said of the act of kindness. “If they are coming daily and know they owe the cafeteria, that’s extra pressure on them that this little Christmas miracle kind of takes care of for them.”The $1,109.85 donation goes a long way into the new year for 80 students at Bolivia Elementary. Principal Andrews says she hopes more random acts of kindness will happen like this at other schools in the area.last_img read more

Help foster kids have an eggcelent Easter with Basket Bonanza

first_imgTo learn more about Foster Pantry, click here.If you have questions about the event or would like to drop off donations in advance, contact Zen Rosen at, Emily Klinefelter at or post/message on Facebook at NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Next weekend, you can celebrate Easter two weeks early with ‘Basket Bonanza: An Egg’stra Special Foster Pantry Event’.Zen Rosen is a senior at Hoggard High School and as part of his senior project, he’s teamed up with Foster Pantry, a community closet for foster parents. The goal for Basket Bonanza is to have a stuffed Easter basket or backpack for every child in the New Hanover County Foster care system. Emily Klinefelter with Foster Pantry said there are more than 400 foster kids in New Hanover County.- Advertisement – On Sunday, March 18 from 2-5 p.m., you can stop by Foster Pantry at 6841 Market Street Unit B. to drop off donations and help stuff the baskets and backpacks.Suggested donations include:– Easter baskets– Backpacks– Easter basket stuffing– Candy– Books, coloring books, puzzles– Gift Cards (to movie theaters, department stores or toy stores)– Sunglasses, hats– Nail polish, temporary tattoos, jewelry– Sidewalk chalk, art supplies, bubbles, Play-Dough– Nerf guns, Barbies, Superhero or Disney figures– Snacks (Goldfish, Teddy Grahams)– Musical instruments (like a harmonica)– New clotheslast_img read more

New Hanover County murderer granted parole

first_img According to court documents, Alston shot and killed Pernell Dewayne Joe on August 16, 1989.The shooting happened after Alston’s husband got into a fight with Joe at Dove Meadows.A jury found Alston guilty of first degree murder. She was sentenced to life in prison.Related Article: New Hanover County murderer granted paroleAlston was approved for parole via the Mutual Agreement Parole Program (MAPP), which is a scholastic and vocational program that is a three-way agreement between the Commission, the Division of Prisons and the offender.The state’s current sentencing law, Structured Sentencing, eliminates parole for crimes committed on or after October 1, 1994. However, the Commission has the responsibility of paroling offenders who were sentenced under previous sentencing guidelines. NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A woman convicted of killing a man in Wilmington in 1990 has been granted parole.Dreamer Lee Cottle Alston has been granted a parole release date of June 6, 2020 according to the North Carolina Post Release Supervision and Parole Commission.- Advertisement – last_img read more