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Remembering the victims of ATOS: Candle lit vigil

pseudonym | 05.09.2013 15:47 | Social Struggles | Oxford

Press release from Oxford People's assembly about their candlelit vigil on Friday 6 September.

A number of Oxford residents will gather at Broad Street on Friday, 6 September 2013, at 8pm
for a different kind of remembrance ceremony, marking the thousands of lives lost to the ATOS
regime. Gina Ravens of Disabled People Against the Cuts will speak before a candle lighting
ceremony and a minute of silence. 10,600 people between January 2011 and November 2011
died within six weeks of their work capability assessment. But the true figure is even higher,
because those declared fit for work have their cases closed and are not tracked.

This event is meant to remember people like Elenore Tatton, mother of three, who was told by
ATOS to go get a job just weeks before she died of the brain tumour she had had since the age
of 15; Nicholas Barker, who took his own life on 10 December 2012 after worrying about how he
would survive after his benefits were stopped; Cecila Burns , a cancer sufferer in Northern
Ireland, who died just weeks after getting her benefits reinstated after successfully appealing
against ATOS; and Linda Wooton, who died of complications from a heart and lung transplant
only 9 days after ATOS pronounced her fit for work and cut her benefits.

Dan Fearnley, a member of Oxford People’s Assembly, said, “Although this Day of
Remembrance is a national event, I felt I had to take it on and organise the Oxford event because
it is just shattering to me how that many people can suffer and die unfairly and it be ignored in our society. It’s not just about anger at the callous system that is causing this tragedy. I think this
human toll needs to be marked respectfully, so I volunteered.”

About Us:
Oxford People’s Assembly locally echoes the call for a People's Assembly Against Austerity to
bring together campaigns against cuts and privatisation with trade unionists in a movement for
social justice. It is building support and local input to return to the national People’s Assembly
next Spring.

pseudonym

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