Next Monday, 25th September, the Coalition Against the Welfare Reform Bill will be Strolling and Rolling across Manchester to lobby the Labour Party Conference.
The Bill will see disabled people be threatened with the loss of benefits and pushed into unsuitable work or medical treatments. The bill fails to address major issues such as incorrect medical assessments, discrimination by employers, a lack of support and a lack of trust. The bill will also see housing benefit abolished, a major issue for many disabled people. Alex Kemp, NUS Disabled Students' Officer says:
"We are very concerned about the Welfare Reforms proposed by New Labour. We know that implementation of these reforms would lead to further abject poverty for disabled people. We know that disabled people will be forced into work that they cannot do and do not want to do. Its about the government sat up and realised that, as disabled people, we know what is best for us - we are the experts on our own lives".
The Coalition is a wide and diverse grouping, the new coalition comprises many different user led disability groups: it includes the British Council of Disabled People (BCODP) which represents some 80 groups run by disabled people in the UK which between them have a total membership of around 350,000 disabled people, UK Coalition of People living with HIV and AIDs, National Union of Journalists (Disabled Members' Council), Spinal Injury Association, Disabled Peoples Action Network (DAN), People First, National Union of Students Disabled Students (NUS DS) campaign, Trade Union Disability Alliance, Spinal Injury Association Network, Developmental Adult Neuro-Diversity Association, People First, Alliance for Inclusive Education, Hull and East Riding Mental Health Action Group (MHAG), Greater Manchester Coalition of Disabled People, Sheffield Welfare Action Network and many more.
The Stroll and Roll will start at 3pm from Exchange Square, (opposite Arndale Centre) on Corporation St
There will be a rally/static protest from 4 pm at the G-MEX centre on Lower Mosley St (Labour Party Conference Location)
The demonstrations will be followed by a Labour Party Conference Fringe Meeting and Launch of the CAWRB, 8pm in the Chetham Suite at the Novatel Hotel, Portland St