Well, it’s confirmed that the UK has the poorest folk’s in Western Europe. Where do I start? Should it be back in 2002 when I divorced my ex wife, but then the CSA (Child Support Agency) started the long road of helping to ruin my mind? Well no, lets skip that as I was relatively healthy up until 2009.
In April 2009 a good friend helped me get employment as art technician at Tong High School, Bradford. The day before I was due to start my left eye completely went red. A few other things happened over the following months. I eventually thought it was the job, but I did enjoy the job, so, letting my friend down I left and went to work at Airedale Hospital as a healthcare support worker, I was also involved with improvements (as that is my manufacturing experience) and given the title of ‘lean champion’ and it worked well! The full story of fact’s are here
Right, the above has taken you through about eight years with much detail in the links (blue!). What followed was; illness, loss of job, loss of home and bankruptcy. During that period I was advised that being a single male with no dependants (as my sons dont live with me), I should go to the Citizens Advice Bureau. Hmmm.
The CAB referred me to Shelter yet during this time I was starting to be quite ill. During a visit to Bradford council’s open move’s (part of Incommunities) the very nice lady asked if I had any illness, well yes but they don’t know what it is. Also The CAB had phoned and asked if I was ex forces, again it’s a yes. and everything changed.
I was put in touch with ex forces charity Ssafa, boy did they help, and at a furious pace. So, the government had no interest in helping me, even though I was slowly getting worse with my illness, thank goodness the charities were there. In a lovely area I got my flat, that I feel sure help’s with my mind. Ssafa helped me furnish my new home, and still do. They have been absolutely terrific and I would love to repay them.
Being diagnosed as a one in ten Sarcoidosis sufferer. about one in 100,000 of the population in the UK, is very rare. During this time, and my loss of employment, the ATOS failed me, the assessor actually asked me what Sarcoidosis is! Huh…
In November 2012, I managed to achieved employment through Leeds Remploy, crazy thing is, my medics and the disability section at the benefits office were actually worried that I was going in to work and with a 95 minute commute to and from work in Leeds, a long way by public transport and walking, especially when I need to rest my sarcoid after any form of exercise.
So, as my employers could see and witnessed, sarcoid attacked me without any notice at all. Finally, after 10 months employment which included 53 days sick. Long term sick – yet again, occurred.
June 2014 and that report arrives saying the UK has the poorest folks section in Western Europe. It doesn’t come as a surprise to me as I have experienced what crap genuine ill folk’s have to go through. Atos assessors and their tick box’s over-ruling what the professional medics say…
Various folk’s tell me to pull myself together, to keep my chin up, it isn’t that bad etc. as I don’t live in certain other countries. No I don’t live in another country, I live in the United Kingdom, that has the poorest section of folk’s in Western Europe yet wealth is growing at 15%/year. Foodbanks and charities are stretched to fuck. My thought; what if I had never been in the Royal Air Force between 1983 and 1985? jeez, scary shit as also my sarcoid can be very nasty.
Maybe some folks need to actually step outside of their protective bubbles and see what it is like – in the UK for a very many folks. I do what I can to help myself. Though it is meant well, for fuck’s sake stop lecturing me on the perspective and hindsight side of thing’s as they are shit!? Illness and death is not a competition, charity starts at home, yet this is the UK.
Many thanks to the folk’s who have been brilliant, and still are…