I’m sure that more disabled children survive now into adulthood than say, 50 years ago and more able bodied adults survive disabling conditions (long or short term), but I have no statistics. It must be in large part a product of advancing health care; we can do so much more now than then.
Society tends have ambivalent attitudes toward disability that range from inappropriate sentimentalisation through to indifference and plain hostility.
But, and its a big BUT – there is something intrinsically wrong when those who govern put systems in place that treats vulnerable people and their families with such disdain whilst claiming to care.
Take Fred Hazel and his son James as one example of the cockeyed logic that pervades and doubly wastes our money – we not only pay for a redundant service, but the provider spirits away all the taxes it should have paid. All round it is lose, lose situation except for investors of the international provider.
If this was just a single instance it would be reprehensible, but sadly it is far from being the only one . Couple this to the mangled ‘bedroom tax’ and this country is further degrading those who are least able to fight the system.
I remember an estate agent once informing, in my presence, an incompetent solicitor that he would not employ him as a petrol pump attendant. I thought it was a bit harsh – on petrol pump attendants. The level of incompetence of our representatives is of that order – mind blowing and worse – they tell you they are doing what is needed as if we caused the problem. It would not be so bad if it were isolated. NHS, immigration, banks, education – all our fault because we voted in the previous administration.
My experience is that disabled persons who are capable of work and have the cognitive competence to enter the workplace would willingly do so and not withstanding the lack of suitable jobs there is still the struggle with the procurement process.
As for those who have a genuine incapacity for work the system is broken. Any system that treats its ‘clients’ to indignity, stress, confusion and arbitrary decision making has to be, at the very least, wrong and potentially an infringement of human rights.
If we can not take care of our most vulnerable children, elderly, disabled, unwell, jobless, dispossessed etc we can not claim to be truly civilised.