Surviving on a shoestring? Stuck in the benefits trap? Why not share your experiences with the world

From our experience, the assumption that people living on benefits don’t want to work simply isn’t true. We know that trying to survive on a very low income in the UK is a tricky business. Which is why we are working with OXFAM to find people who would be willing to share their experiences and frustrations on what it’s really like trying to survive in the system.

We’d like to hear from women and men who’d be up for taking part in a blog to record your experiences, tips and ideas as the Government makes decisions that affect your lives. We also want people who are happy to talk to the media. We think it’s time that the public and politicians see what it’s really like to survive in Britain today.

If you are struggling with the system, whether in work or on JSA, receiving housing benefit, incapacity benefits, are a single parent finding it hard to get by or have recently lost your job and can commit to volunteering with us as a blogger for the next few months, please send an email to sdransfield@oxfam.org.uk

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One response to “Surviving on a shoestring? Stuck in the benefits trap? Why not share your experiences with the world

  1. I am sufficiently intrigued by the assumptions and precepts proffered in this thread to make a comment which I hope you will find constructive. Defining people living ( – because it is a matter of surviving on what is allowed for us to surivive on -) with social support as ‘feckless scroungers’ requires a blinkered approach and notions that only a rarified oxygen of privileged positions -which are totally unmerited and unaffordable in this 21st century ambience, such as those of David Cameron, might adhere to. DC is therefore himself an anachronism which throws up its own quirks and eccentricities which are not in keeping with this day and age. This nebulous bond which Cameron seeks to forge with the British public appears to require him to lean on people to conform to type and fit the precepts of his own delusions therefore. Just as people in a position of disadvantage need to eat, we also need to find the wherewithal to survive in this obnoxious rat-race by whatever means we can. The sheer numbers of people involved in this poverty trap is almost entirely down to the blinkered notions of previous administrations, with particular reference to a certain Norman Tebbitt who made assumptions about the availabilities of both bicycles and ‘work’ back in the 1980s. So when DC touches base, these are the delusory and self-defeating traditions that he is clinging on to.

    The current coalition was at great pains to point out that having noble objectives like the eradication of poverty can also be self-defeating. We out here are simply not stupid enough to ignore the observation that in each instance it was not the measures which were at fault but the measurers themselves, who it is conjectured have removed the ladder which aided their own haulage out of mediocrity and despair – the ladder which had enabled a degree of social mobility which we simply do not have today.

    The price of liberty is eternal vigilance. Likewise for social justice. Without the watch and eternal vigilance afforded by the previous administration, this ConDem coalition is busy jettisoning Everything by way of achievement that has happened in the last 13 years.

    Now anyone who thinks we will just stand by and let this happen can think again! Oxfam was the first large charity to put its Executives in Rolls Royces, the million pound bracket. I will not therefore be listening very intently when anyone at Oxfam seeks to pronounce on where claimants, the disabled, the mentally ill, or the Fathers with their new-found Paternity Leave might be coming from. Not from the ranks of Privilege, you can be sure of that, unless you are David Cameron, in which case you portray yourself in your own terms and damn the perspectives of anyone from a different back-ground to yourself…

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