Tag Archives: Equality Act 2010

Persecution

I was having a chat to my Mum the other day and I had a light bulb moment.  One so huge I couldn’t believe I’d reached the age of 50 without giving it a second’s thought and it was this:

Women are the most persecuted people on the planet.  Bar none.

It seems so obvious yet it had never before crossed my mind.  We have been stoned, executed, tortured daily in our millions by our spouses, bricked up behind walls, raped regularly (usually by our spouses), imprisoned (often by our spouses), kept as ‘chattles’ (ie owned), denied basic human rights, denied the right to vote, denied a voice, denied education and kept in poverty not to mention domestic slavery for millennia.

Here in the West we think of the persecution of women as being either historical or something which happens elsewhere, yet it’s happening right here and right now in every country across the world. Even in good old Blighty. The recent rise in human trafficking predominantly affects women who are sold as both sex and domestic slaves but it doesn’t even really make the headlines. The case of the Rochdale paedophile ring recently shown in the tv drama Three Girls highlights very well that women are still blamed for their own abuse even here in the UK.  Women are still being paid less than men for the same job but apparently it’s our fault.  Working mothers are predominantly the ones who take days off to look after sick children or to take their kids to the dentist or doctor like their work is unimportant compared to men’s, and full-time working mothers still do the majority of child care in the home.  How often does the father pack the children’s suitcases when you go on your hols?

Women are seen as ‘weak’ because we are more emotional than men.  We can’t just be seen as different, we have to be portrayed as ‘less than’ and the only way women can rise to the top in our society is to act like a man.  Even though men have, historically, made an absolute sodding mess of running the world they are still seen as somehow superior and their lack of nurture and empathy as a strength when it is anything but.

I’m currently being financially persecuted because I am a disabled woman. The recent change to the pension age for women in the UK has discriminated against me yet I can find absolutely no-one who will take on my case. Not only that but the Equality Act actually allows the discrimination. The very law which exists to ensure everyone is treated equally allows me, as a disabled woman, to be treated differently to everyone else but….hey….it’s fine.  In fact, so dismissed has my discrimination been that 11 out of the 11 Solicitors I’ve contacted to take on my case haven’t even bothered to reply to me, not even a bog standard automated email.  Mind you, neither did the Women & Equalities Commission, Lilberty nor the Shadow Pensions’ Minister (who is female).  Women are so conditioned to our inequality that I’m actually made to feel like I’m whining.  Why can’t I just play nice and accept the situation?  Don’t I know how much it would cost to legally fight for my right to be treated the same as a man?!

This morning I briefly wrote about this subject on my Facebook page and my male cousin, the father of 3 daughters, commented “but Jak, I believe women shouldn’t have been given the vote….or car keys!”  Of course he was joking, but I bet he wouldn’t be laughing if his 23 year old daughter had been stoned to death by her husband, or his 17 year old daughter had been raped walking home after school in winter then been blamed for walking alone in the dark and not only that for doing it wearing a skirt (like walking the street wearing whatever the hell we like without being attacked shouldn’t be a fundamental human right).

Our children are quite rightly taught in school about persecution of peoples. About the horrendous Holocaust and the equally horrendous African slave trade. Yet nothing, not a jot, is taught about the biggest persecution of all…….that of women.

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No fight left

It’s been 5 weeks since the human rights organization Liberty said they might be interested in taking my disability discrimination case and I finally managed to get through to their advice line on Thursday.  It wasn’t good news.  They’re not going to represent me after all and I’m absolutely gutted.

It’s 2017.  How can the Equality Act, which is supposed to protect my rights and treat everyone equally, allow me, as a disabled woman, to be treated differently to everyone else?  How can everyone else be paid a health insurance until they’re 65 but allow mine to stop at 60 leaving me with five years to live in abject poverty?  The unfairness of that makes my blood boil and the fact that no-one gives a shit makes me even more furious.

I’ve tried every single avenue in the past two years and gotten nowhere.  And I’m exhausted.  I seem to’ve spent my entire life fighting and I’m not sure I’ve got any fight left.

I fought to have my depression recognized as a teenager.
I fought for five years to have my back pain recognized as a physical, not a psychological, problem.
I fought for a year to stop my ex-husband taking my home off me.
I fought to have my M.E. recognized as a physical, not a mental, illness.
I fought to receive even basic medical care, and failed.
I fought to receive basic social care, and failed.
I fought to be ill health retired from my job.
I fought to receive welfare benefits for the first 8 years of my illness.
I fought to keep my Permanent Health Insurance for the first 6 years of my illness.
I fought the builder who agreed to sell me a house, took £4000 of my money then raised the price of the house by £50,000 which I couldn’t afford, and lost.
I fought to have my EDS diagnosed.
I fought to have my MCAD diagnosed.
I lost the fight to have either illness treated in any way.
I fought the company who installed my gas fire and gave me carbon monoxide poisoning.
I fought my Permanent Health Insurance company for two years when they tried to take my money off me.
I fought when the Government said I was fit for work and tried to take my sickness benefits off me.
I fought my Permanent Health Insurance company when they tried to take my money off me for a second time.
And I’ve fought every single day of the past 23 years just to survive.

I’m so tired.  So tired of having to do everything alone and not receiving any help.  Tired of no-one giving a crap.  Tired of being treated like I don’t matter.  Tired of being ripped off.  Tired of the injustice, the money worries and the hardship.  Tired of the fight.

I don’t know where to go from here.  I suppose I should just give up but I’m left with this boiling rage that I can be shit on from a great height and I’m just supposed to lie down in the muck and die.  I can’t accept it.  It’s not right.  It’s not FAIR goddammit!  And I hate unfairness.

So if anyone has any bright ideas let me know.  Or if anyone has a friend or relative working for a Legal 500 law firm who specializes in discrimination cases and who hasn’t already ignored me, let me know that too.  Or pray, if you think it will do any good.  I need some help, I need it now and I don’t care where it comes from!