The Victims Of Tory Benefit Cuts


Just some of the deaths caused by Tory Benefit Cuts…

  • Terry McGarvey, 48. Dangerously ill from polycytheamia. He knew he was too ill to attend Work Capability Assessment but was afraid not to go in case benefits were stopped.
    During the session Terry asked for an ambulance.
    He died the following day.
  •  Elaine Lowe, 53. Suffering from COPD and fearful of losing her benefits.
  •  Mark Wood, 44. Doctors advice and medical reports he had complex mental health problems.
    Found fit for work, benefits stopped.
    Starved to death weighing only 5st 8lb when he died.
  • Paul Reekie, 48, the Leith poet and author. Severe depression. Found fit for work, benefits stopped.
  •  Leanne Chambers, 30. Depression for many years, became worse when called in for a WCA.
    Suicide soon afterwards.
  • Karen Sherlock, 44. Multiple health issues. Found fit for work, benefits stopped.
    Fought a long battle to access support group of ESA.
    Died a month after denial of benefits, of a heart attack.
  •  Carl Payne, 42. Father of two. Feared losing lifeline benefits due to welfare reform.
  • Tim Salter, 53. Blind, agoraphobic. Found fit for work, benefits stopped.
    Suicide by hanging.
  •  Edward Jacques, 47. HIV and Hepatitis C. History of severe depression and self-harm.
    Found fit for work, benefits stopped.
    Suicide by overdose.
  • Linda Wootton, 49 years old. Double heart and lung transplant patient. Found fit for work, benefits stopped. The refusal letter arrived as she was desperately ill in her hospital bed.
    Died nine days later.
  • Steven Cawthra, 55. Benefits stopped by the DWP, rising debts.
  •  Elenore Tatton, 39 years old. Found fit for work.
    Died a few weeks later.
  • John Walker, 57, deep in debt because of the bedroom tax.
  •  Brian McArdle, 57 years old. Disability benefits stopped.
    Fatal heart attack the next day.
  •  Stephen Hill, 53. Found fit for work, while waiting for major heart surgery.
    Died of a heart attack one month later.
  •  Jacqueline Harris, 53. Former Nurse could hardly walk. Found fit for work, benefits stopped.
  • David Barr, 28. Severe mental difficulties. Found fit for work by Atos. His appeal failed.
    Suicide. Threw himself from a bridge.
  •  David Groves, 56. Due to take work capability assessment.
    Died of a heart attack the night before. His widow claimed that it was the stress that killed him.
  •  Nicholas Peter Barker, 51. Brain haemorrhage left him paralysed down one side.
    Notified his benefits were being stopped.
    Suicide by shooting himself.
  •  Mark and Helen Mullins, 48 and 59 years old. Attempted to live on £57.50 a week, making 12 mile trips each week to get free vegetables to make soup.
    Double suicide.
  •  Richard Sanderson, 44. Unable to find a job, housing benefit cut forcing him to move, nowhere to go. Suicide.
  • Martin Rust, 36 years old. A schizophrenic. Found fit to work.
    Suicide two months later.
  •  Craig Monk, 43. A vulnerable man, partial amputee, slipped far into poverty.
    Suicide by hanging.
  •  Colin Traynor, 29, epileptic, stripped of his benefits. He appealed.
    Died. Five weeks later his family were notified he had won his appeal.
  • Elaine Christian, 57 years old. Worried about her work capability assessment.
    Suicide. Found at Holderness drain, drowned, with ten self inflicted wrist wounds.
  •  Christelle and Kayjah Pardoe, 32 years and 5 months old. Pregnant, her benefits stopped.
    Suicide. Christelle, holding her baby son, jumped from a third floor balcony.


The list above is merely the tip of the iceberg of the tragic effects of enforced ‘Austerity Measures!  The neo-liberal scum, whether they be the Tories, Fine Gael, Fianna Fail, Lib-Dems etc, care not one iota for tragedies like those listed above, in fact ideologically their Malthusian ‘principles’ actually welcome (in the words of Charles Dickens’ character Scrooge) the reduction “of the surplus population.”  It should be noted that the politicians and their monetarist idealogues who formulate such vicious measures against the most vulnerable souls in society and the wider Proletariat, invariably spend more on one night’s dining out than most claimants or workers earn in a year, (more often than not with the bill being paid by the taxpayer).


The solution to this ultra-right wing offensive against the poor can never be won within the corridors of Westminster, Stormont or Leinster House, who James Connolly, Marxist revolutionary and the founding father of Irish Republican Socialism, correctly described such assemblies as far back as 1914,when he wrote,

“Yes, friends, governments in capitalist society are but committees of the rich.”


The solution can never be found in reformism or by appealing to a cabal without the semblance of a conscience.  Only a united working-class that has already began to build a momentum, whether it be militant action against water charges, fighting evictions, direct actions and genuine fighting Trade Unions can begin to act as a catalyst for real change.  The dire and in many cases fatal alternative is to do nothing..



Alex Mcguigan




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