I’m fed up of being poor. I’m not even the poorest of the poor in this country, but I’m still poor. And nothing has ever changed. I’ve been poor my whole life. University promises lots, but dreams of a career fail to deliver in the real world. Cos the barriers poor people face their whole life to get to uni, are still there waiting for them once they leave…along with a student loan and astronomical overdraft to repay.
What many people forget is that poverty is stressful and time consuming. It pushes you into committing crime to save money. It drains you of creativity. It is isolating and depressing.
In this country they treat poor people as criminals rather than people who they are required to help. Housing is scarce for those with little money. Applying for state benefits leaves you feeling like a worthless individual who can’t get a proper job. The whole experience of trying to survive on benefits/low wage/no wage is scary, cos when things go wrong, you realise how little help there is out there. They don’t make it easy for you, but are there ready and waiting around the corner for you when things go wrong.
When the real problem is that poverty is not an individual problem of the fecklessness of tax-robbing individuals or single mothers who can’t keep their legs shut, as they like to make out, but it is symptomatic of class inequality that this country refuses to resolve. Don’t believe the propoganda. That’s what they want. Many people fall on hard times and need financial help; many people have genuine reasons why they are unable to work. We are not criminals. Safe and suitable housing should be a human right for all. Not a privilege for those with money. Everyone deserves to be fed, have clothes on their back, to be able to live a life with dignity.
The reason for this rant is cos I’m fed up. After almost being caught twice at the weekend dodging train fares, simply because I cannot afford to pay the ridiculous train fares we have, I find out that I am under investigation for benefit fraud. Sounds bizarre but true and all for applying for assistance with my rent. They think I’m lying. Whatever, I can prove different, but do they need to haul me and my mother into the council to have interviews under caution for which we might need to pay for solicitors and lost time from work. Treating me like a criminal for just seeking help that I was entitled to for when I was unemployed. Could they not just have been nice and asked me to provide further information in support of my claim… Arsewipes.
So what are us feminists doing about poverty in this country..? I’m not sure, please enlighten me, cos things are getting really shit. Debt is crippling, rent is unaffordable, homes being repossessed, gas and electricity prices going up, food prices up, council tax is a rip off, poor kids are hurting and killing one another, but yet we blame them cos they are evil. Join a union, I hear the socialist feminists cry. Yeah I’m sure that’s gonna help. When are we going to rise up..?