Anti Benefits Cuts Campaign 2010 - Mental Health Survivors in the UK campaigning against cuts to Welfare Benefits
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PRESENT – Six Pridesters
APOLOGIES – Two
A banner for the demo.
The STICKERS have been distributed to Brighton, Belfast, Edinburgh and Peckham. Also individuals have been handing them out and sticking them all around London. It was considered a good entry for our campaign, there won’t be any more now.
Two folk will draft a Press Release this week.
Some initial research for the ‘tool kit’ to assist people who are called in for assessment interviews has been done. An outfit called ‘’B + W’’ - (Benefits and Work) – who have produced a document called “The Best Possible : A guide to the limited capability for work assessment”, by Steve Donnison & Holiday Whitehead was identified. It costs £20 to download the whole document. It was suggested that we might pay to download it and study it, it was also suggested that we produce a flier with ‘advice on where to get advice’. Further research to be done.
We thought that SHNEWS and ASYLUM mag will be very interested in what we are doing, first hit for them will be the Press Release. Can anyone follow that up by phone?
We have still to contact the Direct Action Network (DAN), so folks to chase them up. Do we want to invite them to join our protest?
Film-making volunteers at Core Arts, who are coming to film the event. The plan is to make a short documentary-style film and put it on YouTube.
Core Council meeting is coming up on Tues 6th October where we will speak about the issues, the demo, the effigy-making group and hand out stickers. Interest is catching on there.
The effigy will be made on Core premises with members of Core and anyone else who wants to get involved.
Next meeting for the effigy-making group is TUESDAY 28/9/2010 12pm at CORE ARTS (meet front-of-house).
Large faces of Nick Clegg and David Cameron for the effigy, DEBBIE will liaise with him about that. We will go with ROBERT’S idea of using a string of real sausages for the entrials. A rope will be bought for the hanging and also to tie the effigy to 4 bicycles for the quartering. The group decided not to take any payment for making the effigy. So far we have 2 possible cyclists to do the quartering – ROBERT suggested TED and JOHN ACTIVE. Who to liaise with them? 2 more cyclists are needed to commit. There was discussion about where exactly we could hang the effigy, Marble Arch itself was ruled out as although it is an attractive idea, we probably wouldn’t have time to do all the things we are planning to do before intervention by the police. Therefore it was agreed to stick to the original idea and either use the branch of a tree near to Speakers’ Corner, or hold the effigy up hanging from a pole. We will bring a plastic crate for people to stand on as a soapbox . £50.00 was loned to spend on materials for the effigy. Receipts to the next meeting.
Van hire turned out to be expensive. A ‘man with van’ could pick up all the stuff (effigy, banners, plastic crate for soapbox, megaphone, etc) from one address and transport it to Hyde Park on the day. Who to arrange this?
FUNDS MAD CHICKS bank account – there is £1,000.00 there. A meet with the Chicks rep will sort this out. MANY MANY THANKS TO MAD CHICKS.
Recent activities/current plans of the Disability Rights movement, are being researched. At the moment groups are being emailed publicising the big Disability Rights demo planned for 12/9/2010, to take place in Birmingham (to coincide with the Conservative Party Conference).
SCHEDULE – it was decided by the group to rearrange the schedule of events at the demo –
1. Announce the Medication Strike and threaten further strikes at 1pm.
2. Announce the launch of the toolkit. ROBERT to liaise with DENISE about this.
3. Two minute scream. What time?
4. Hanging, drawing and quartering of the effigy. ROBERT has requested that he carries out the ‘drawing’. ROBERT also suggested burning the remains of the effigy to end with.
A cheap megaphone will be bought on eBay – which we can use in future protests.
PUBLICITY – Press Release is being worked on.
A widespread mail mailout will be done.
A box of fliers and stamped envelopes would be taken to the Survivors’ Poetry office and use their mailout list to target London survivors (which has proved effective before in getting survivors along to the inaugural MAD CHICKS event at the Union Chapel). The same is also possible for Core Arts.
The next MAD PRIDE meeting will focus further on publicity.
An interview is being given on WEDS 29/9/2010 on RESONANCE FM about Mad Pride. MARK suggested that we email the press release to Disability News Release. He estimated that half of all survivor benefits claimants will be affected. We will buy a mobile phone to circulate amongst ourselves to field enquiries/give interviews. The number should be put on all publicity. A page on Facebook called ‘Medication Strike 1971’ which references our action.
NEXT MEETING : SUNDAY 10TH OCTOBER, 2pm, at POGO’S.
MAD PRIDE FORUM : http://madpride.co.uk/forum
Notes by DEBBIE.
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