Friday, 13 January 2012

E-mail to my MP following Sue Marsh on NewsNight

On 13 January 2012 00:32, Ian Jones wrote:
Dear The Right Honourable Theresa May MP,

I am sitting here watching Newsnight listening to Chris Grayling MP making statements which in my experience are completely unreasonable.

He states that the governments core objective is to help Disabled People back into work. Perhaps at our meeting you might like to explain why this aim doesn't apply to me? My DEA has only ever suggested applying to one company -LOCOG!! You may remember my experiences with LOCOG which have taken me to a Job Tribunal previously at which LOCOG gave evidence demonstrating they failed to make reasonable adjustments at my interview. However, LOCOG have again made their view of my worth plain to see by appointing an American into a position I applied for before the closing date for applications had passed. I can understand why our job market is open to EU citizens but in a recession can we not try to give the few jobs out there to the Queens subjects? To head off your question, by comparing my cv to the lucky American's on Linked In it is obvious he has no additional skills or experience over and above mine and I further argue he is less skilled and experienced than me.

Mr Grayling also said that this country has an appallingly low level of people with disabilities in work. I know, as it seems that disabled people are put to the back of any queue for jobs (yes, even behind Americans). I believe my skills and experience should make me very employable but I am obviously disabled which doesn't help at interviews because I am different to the other candidates and at an interview different is rarely good.

Also, not all disabled people are the same. I have a mental handicap and an associated learning difficulty. The disability statistics collected do not analyse whether the type of disability you have makes you more or less employable nor do they analyse the seniority of the job the disabled person is given. I have worked as the CFO of a billion $company and do not believe that a job in a call centre (Centrica only operates a guaranteed interview scheme for low level jobs) is a good use of my intellect, experience or potential, although I can't even get a call centre job! I call on you to be concerned about the level of job routinely offered to disabled people.

How is your government going to get me back to work if it is one of your core aims, and how can you be sure that there is no glass ceiling operating for disabled people if you do not even collect the relevant statistics?

Perhaps you might be able to explain something else to me. I paid into the country via NI payments for 24 years. I then got the opportunity to work in Abu Dhabi for nearly 2 years. How can it be fair that I do not qualify for contributory benefits after coming back. I paid in to the system and whilst I was in Abu Dhabi my ill-health Pension (which is not enough to live on (but enough to disqualify me from benefits)) was taxed. However, it is my understanding that a gap in your NI record is frowned upon more than using tax payers money on ornamental ponds at your country retreat. I have contributed more than my fair share (based upon average earnings).

Also, why is an ill-health pension means tested when an old age pension isn't? Why am I being penalised for making provision for my old age and responsibly buying insurance to cover me against the unforeseen?

That suggests age discrimination to me? Can you please comment?

I have paid into this country and not claimed disability benefits I was eligible for whilst in gainful employment. I want to work, I can work but can't find work. Instead of demonising me and the rest of the disabled population are you able to offer me/ us any hope?

Please do not suggest the 2 ticks scheme as a remedy for my problems. LOCOG have routinely failed to live up to the commitments they gave to the scheme but have neither been punished or embarrassed and just this week the Charity Livability have failed for the second time to honour their commitments. Please, please, please either withdraw this scheme or make it fit for purpose.

Yours sincerely

Ian Jones

Sent from my iPhone

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