Baroness Thomas

The BBC is very good at radio drama which I often catch on car journeys.  But one or two sentences in one the other day had me seeing red.

This was the 15 minute serial at the end of Woman’s Hour, which is repeated at 7.45 in the evening.  The serial was The Pursuits of Darleen Fyles, about the lives of two people with learning disabilities, acted by people who themselves have learning disabilities and are extremely good.  The script is well written, sensitive and funny, but the other day it was clear one of the script-writers hadn’t done their homework.

Darleen was sent a letter which appeared to be stopping some of her benefits.  In a conversation with her support worker, she admitted to forgetting to go to an appointment for an assessment.  The support worker said the assessment was important because it was for the Personal Independence Payment.   I pricked up my ears as I am still trying to persuade the Government to make it fairer.     Everyone had to be reassessed, he went on, to see if they are fit for work.  Oh dear.  This is seriously wrong.  The test for fitness for work is the Work Capability Assessment.   PIP is the replacement for Disability Living Allowance, and is to help people with the extra costs caused by long term health problems or disabilities.    Darleen is quite likely to be receiving DLA, and will certainly be called for a PIP assessment, but it has nothing to do with being fit for work.

Does it matter that the BBC got it wrong?  After all, it wasn’t a factual programme.  And maybe it demonstrates better than anything the vagueness amongst the general public of the whole benefits system.  But I think it does matter because the character saying the misleading words was someone who was supposed to know about the benefits system.  I just hope that the many disabled people listening to the radio realised the mistake.

3 comments for “Confusions

  1. maude elwes
    14/10/2013 at 5:06 pm

    Baroness, most of the stories used by the BBC are not properly researched. And it’s become embarrassing to say the least. Could it be they hire or buy from writers who know little or nothing about history or a British way of life? A lot like the NHS in fact. Out of touch and no idea what they are talking about. Horrific. Of course, they now broadcast so many stories about what happens in other parts of the world you would think they believe them written by Rudyard Kipling. No such luck.

    So, why not fire all those who run the show and put in fresh blood. Those free of political correctness and the need to drive their own imbecilic agenda to the point of sending us all mad.

    I like John Humphrey’s for example, but his piece on Greece this morning was so dumb and without a hint of truth to it, I was reduced to a sense of panic. When a man of ‘some’ integrity declares a group of Greeks Nazis and they in turn tell him that it is he who is the Nazi, we have come to a new low in intelligence and information gathering by our journalists.

    When I compare this to the fest I saw on Frost interviews last night, not on the BBC I hasten to add, I realise how much we have lost. And I didn’t much like Frost after he dumped his live in girlfriend and went for a title to raise his status. At that point he went down in my estimation to where he could never recover. But, he knew how to do his job. And he was triumphant.

    BBC stories are picked from the Kindergarten and the ones they float on the radio are so filled with tripe all you can do is switch it off after two minutes. There is rarely a plot, the characters act like a bunch of simpletons and they try to cover this up with an accent or two, thinking this will breathe life into the dead.

    The part in your thread opener about the DLA and the change to our benefits and welfare system doesn’t really fit on this thread. As one is dire to all of us and the other a trivia, although an irritation, is not life threatening like the hatchet job IDS and the Tory friends are hurling at Britain in a speed that will see their heads lopped off come next general election.

    On top of tat, the idiots spit out phlegm like, this welfare bashing goes down well with the public. I have to laugh so loudly when I read it, it has me off my seat. They can’t even sell that to DM readers who comment loudly when put another way. And all of them against, in the main.

    However, we should be discussing this robbery of the peoples welfare fund, loud and in your face.

  2. Honoris Causa
    14/10/2013 at 5:35 pm

    “maybe it demonstrates better than anything the vagueness amongst the general public of the whole benefits system.”

    It might have made some people think! prosaic licence… It changes regularly which may be a measure of how well managed it is. When several million payments have to be made weekly or fortnightly it wouldn’t be too good to get it wrong!

  3. MilesJSD
    22/10/2013 at 6:06 pm

    wrt (with respect to) those who are worse off ?

    vis a vis the pyramidally overtowering, majorly more-essential, multiple-human-livings-drawers’ [from-the-Common-Purse] ?

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