Tag Archives: Welfare reform

Atos Ahoy!

To the list of undesirable attributes displayed by Atos, such as incompetence, heartlessness and arrogance, we can now add dishonesty.

I’ve read many accounts of work assessments being carried out by people who have a very tenuous grasp of honesty, but the Advertising Standards Authority’s latest findings speak to a corporate disdain for the truth.

The parts of the ad in contention were

Each year Atos Healthcare process over 1.2 million referrals for medical advice completing over 800,000 face-to-face medical assessments”  and  “our 1700+ healthcare professionals

The ASA upheld the complaint and said that the ad must not appear again in its current form.

That was on the 4th of April and yet, today, the 8th of April, I visited the Atos website, and took this screenshot:

You should be able to see the detail if you click on the image, but in case you can’t, here’s a close-up of the relevant part:

They’ve not changed a single word.

EDIT TO ADD: Still no change, as of 19th April.

That the advertisement was misleading is bad enough, but Atos compounded the aforementioned arrogance by not even bothering to respond to the ASA, which was itself a breach of the  Committee of Advertising Practice code.

The DWP need to address this issue too, and a FOI request has been made.


Pretend Journalist Writes Garbage

Rod Liddle, already known to many of us as a misogynist, racist, religious bigot and liar, has now targeted disabled people. In today’s Sun “newspaper” (and yes, the scare quotes are in the right place) he has denounced most disabled,especially those who claim disability benefits, as “pretend disabled”.

Here are a few quotes from his diatribe, as collated by the Political Scrapbook blog.

“My New Year’s resolution for 2012 was to become disabled. Nothing too serious, maybe just a bit of a bad back or one of those newly invented illnesses which make you a bit peaky for decades – fibromyalgia, or M.E.”

“And being disabled is incredibly fashionable. The number of people who claim to be disabled has doubled in the past ten years.”

“I think we should all pretend to be disabled for a month or so, claim benefits and hope this persuades the authorities to sort out the mess.”

“It has become easier to claim those benefits, partly as a consequence of the disablement charities who, out of their own self-interest, insist that an ever-greater proportion of the population is disabled.”

Even if Liddle were to pass the exams necessary to make an accurate diagnosis, he could not possibly examine enough people to make such a gross generalisation remotely worthwhile.
Of course, Liddle isn’t the only one picking on the disabled. The ConDem government, while pushing their Welfare “reforms”, continue to brief against the most vulnerable in society. Liddle just can’t resist such an easy target for his vitriol.

Update: If you are on Facebook, there’s a page called Justice for people with Fibromyalgia/M.E against Rob Liddle (columinist), where you can add your voice to the growing number of people angered by this clown.

There’s also a petition that people in the UK can sign, about recognising the illnesses that Liddle writes off as “pretend”: http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/20035