Tuesday, 18 July 2017

We aren't being served...

More problems with the UK welfare state deliberately targeting the deaf and disabled in the cull of support and benefits.

Quote from TB*: "You know what the sad and foolish thing is? All this cruelty - forms, reassessments, appeals, tribunals, cuts, sanctions forced labour, etc etc just soak up the little remaining energy that many deaf and disabled people will have in reserve, meaning that they will have no energy left for looking for the few jobs that employers will grudgingly give them. It is a full blown festival of blame-the-victims. Meanwhile RNID (AOHL charity), wear a blank, indifferent expression while engaging in wilful blindness toward this issue."


Most simply do not understand AOHL is NOT a rights campaigning charity, it is a 'service-provision' based charity mainly, that in most part determines the direction of own provision, which in itself is unsettling as there are few comparisons on it's effectiveness. As such, it has to work within the system, that doesn't compute if you challenge that system, so they don't. They support medical intervention/research and alleviation of hearing loss.  We are just the 'clients', or 'stakeholders', and with little input either.

Unfortunately its sub-heading "We represent 10m in the UK, (1 in 6), with hearing loss.." is their undoing, as it then suggests it IS a rights based charity, (and has a mandate to represent too). The cultural 'Deaf' area challenged that and lost, then left the AOHL altogether, along with their only BSL-using CEO who was ousted by vested interests at the RNID for being too close to the cultural deaf concept.   He was gagged for years by the RNID from publishing a book to put his side.. Unfortunately he appeared to have accepted a 'golden handshake' to do that.

Neither claims by the RNID/AOHL are actual or true statements, if AOHL would stop suggesting it has our mandate, (It has never sought it, asked for it, or would get it),  it would help clarify things a lot more. At the very most all they could claim is to represent 30K or so registered as its members, but hardly any are actually deaf if their annual AGM's or open meets are anything to go by.  Feedback by its membership is almost non-extant, or listened to.  It's a stand-alone charity, and tax-exempt 'not for profit' business, with a £40m plus turnover. Right *!?  I don't buy it either !

The power of the AOHL is in that systems accept/respect what they say, including statistics they provide etc. In many areas are the sole source of own statistics.  It is questionable, but very successful spin given no other charity in the UK has such access to the systems, or makes the amount of money. They effectively head-hunted the best of other charities then drove them out of business by cherry-picking the most profitable and sustainable areas they ran.   

It was charitable asset-stripping, using corporate means. They turned our issue into a client-customer-support set up where campaigning has little place.  All grass roots could do was watch, because there is no deaf or HoH unity to counter it. They are the leaders in the corporate approaches to charity, but first they had to minimise/neutralise our participation to make that work, because deaf are all about rights and empowerment, not the misery of loss, we wanted confrontation, and to challenge the discriminatory systems. AOHL is solely responsible for marketing our issue but without our actual inclusion.  In most part we aren't even the 'face/image' of our own issue, we won't participate in the poor me approach.. an issue when a charity needs that image to to raise funds.  No one donates to people that call them patronising.

It is a great shame, and a source of constant frustration they won't use that power in supporting those who cannot fight for themselves. Throw in a few low-key campaigns about hearing aids or captions, they feel this justifies their apathy of everything else, including daily issues we have to confront and manage to survive.  More threats to the vulnerable, where the issue is not disabled watching TV and lazing about, but employers openly flouting the access laws with impunity, and the state arm attacking the deaf and disabled, and ending up responsible for many disabled actually dead before their time.   With Brexit, they also avoid being taken to task by the Human Rights court too,where a petition from the UK has claimed the UK welfare minister is directly responsible for the deaths of over 3,000 disabled people, others put the figures as twice that.

As TB* says, Mental Health sufferers are the bottom of the pile. They represent 25% of the population. The fair and logical thing to address MH in the deaf and HoH, is to force through access to local service provisions their hearing neighbours have no issue obtaining. Because your hearing is poor it is an excuse to 'deport' the client 100s of miles away. Thus making the issue worse. AOHL and a few others run these places, thus making it more difficult for deaf to access local help.  All this plays into the Deaf V HoH thing too, where 'Deaf' are demanding 'specialisation' at every turn, when all they need is access to a  terp.  Those with MH just end up in deaf exclusive areas not returned to their families or locale.

Deaf MH support is negative and need addressing.  It also needs the respective charities to stop playing games with communication needs to score points over each other.  Guess who gets the worst end ? WE DO !

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