Enough Slogans: “The Rule of Six”

statement written by Ali Wilkin, interim Harmony Party UK media officer, in collaboration with the Harmony Party UK Media Working Group

What happens when you have a government that does not believe that it has any responsibility to protect its citizens from a global pandemic? A government which for a decade has explicitly organised welfare on the basis that not being able to work in conditions designed for the able-bodied is the fault of disabled people; and whose oppression of disabled people has invoked not one, but two, UN reports condemning the human rights abuses that have become normalised in this country since 2009?

You get “the rule of 6”, the latest pandemic “restriction” which serves more to confuse than to achieve the objective of limiting social contacts for public safety: only groups of 6 people can meet, (socially distanced) – unless it is at work, or at school, or at a horse race. 30 people can now go to a funeral, though it will be little comfort to those who will have to bury loved ones that did not need to die.

And once again, there is not one mention of how disabled people who are still shielding are supposed to manage. Practically every child living in poverty lives in a home with at least one disabled family member – or they are disabled themselves. Schools re-opening has predictably put a fire under pandemic outbreaks, and at the time of writing this, over 400 schools in England alone have already had to close due to outbreaks of COVID-19, within days of schools re-opening.

The government is literally telling people to gather in large groups, not small ones, when the R rate is above 1 (something which it failed to communicate to the public until it was too late for the public to react with informed consent), and while more areas of the country are placed under lockdown.

They are seemingly still pushing “herd immunity” – and they know exactly who that will kill.

Does this regime have to kill all 14 million disabled citizens before this country rises up and says enough? How many more of our elders do they have to kill? How many more people from vulnerable “minorities” – Black, Brown, Roma & Traveller people, as well as the disabled & elderly (and some from multiple of those groups) – have to die?

How much blood needs to be shed before this country chooses life over death, justice over selfishness, compassion over greed, and community over self?