DAN’s Sick Note

I saw this on Disabled People Fight Back Blog and I thought to myself: I wrote that.

Whilst i’m very pleased to see that it has gone into public ownership and is still promoted through DAN and Dennis in particular I just thought it would be good if I could claim my own part in our collective history.

So, DAN’s Sick Note….. It goes like this:

DAN’s Sick Note

DAN is sick of:

Politicians who attack minorities – that they see as easy targets – for public spending cuts and biased media / press coverage that negatively portrays Disabled People as lazy scroungers and benefits cheats

Lack of access to meaningful education and training, leading to a lack of qualifications and job skills.

Work in hostile environments where employers continue to discriminate; i.e. Against disabled employees that need part-time and flexi-time work due to impairments, and don’t have mechanisms that allow Disabled People to be absent without prior notification, for their impairment / condition.

The lack of support to help us get to work and function in the workplace; e.g. regular breaks , shorter hours and a working week that can be adapted to suit our needs.

DAN wants:

Politicians, press and media to wake up to the damage their words do

Access to meaningful education and training, leading to proper qualifications and job skills

Justice in the workplace with real penalties for discriminatory employers

A positive approach to the inclusion of Disabled People especially those with invisible or fluctuating impairments / conditions

Solutions to poverty rather than policies that compound it

A fair and just system that enabled Disabled People who seek work and a non punitive system for those Disabled People who cannot currently work.

Decent jobs with adequate incomes.

DAN’s Sick Note is a response to political jibes about Sick Note Britain. They are distributed by disabled activists on actions to inform the public about the reasons for our continuing discontent.

You can sign up in support of our  Sick Note below or via Facebook here

Having said this is mine I’m not sure if it hasn’t been changed since I drafted it. I must check. I remember writing it because Peter Hain, then an important cabinet minister in Blair’s version of a labour party, said it and I could just see this being taken up as a cudgel with which to beat disabled people. The tories have of cause built on it with their own version ‘Broken Britain’ which is a label that accelerates the perceived need for welfare reform which penalises disabled people. Maybe this calls for a ‘We’re Not Broke – This Needs Fixing’ statement.

In appraising why I had to say I wrote that I came to the conclusion that the joy of being involved in a network like DAN’s is that you do get the chance to take personal responsibility and are able to take the credit for it. This felt like a new experience. This felt like pride creeping out. Disability Pride. Do I understand it?


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