No tears as “callous” Esther McVey quits

Esther mcvey iain duncan smith crop  wide

Anti-poverty campaigners are glad to see the back of her

Graham Martin's photo

15th November 2018 by Graham Martin 2 Comments

“Callous” Esther McVey won’t be missed as she resigned from government, say anti-poverty campaigners.

She walked from her post as work and pensions secretary in Theresa May’s embattled Tory government over the UK’s draft Brexit agreement with the EU.

Leave-supporting McVey resigned, saying “I cannot reconcile the terms of the proposed deal with the promises we made to the country in our manifesto at the last election. This is, at its heart, a matter of public trust.”

However, anti-poverty campaigners are glad to see the back of her – not least for her defence of Universal Credit, which has been accused of plunging millions into poverty and fuelling foodbank use.

She is a hate figure among disabled activists for her “callous” approach to welfare when she previously served as minister for disabled people.

The former TV presenter – who used a speech at the last Tory party cobference to reveal she had been a Barnardo’s child - famously claimed that the use of foodbanks was right because “we are all” having to pay back the national debt.

She also said that benefits sanctions teach job seekers to look for work seriously. 

Bill Scott, policy director of disability charity Inclusion Scotland, said: “I think I can safely say that she will not be missed. In both her terms as a minister at the DWP Esther McVey displayed a callous disregard for the needs and rights of disabled people combined with a laissez faire approach to the use of “facts” and statistics in support of her ideologically driven policies.”

There was also controversy during her time at the Department for Work and Pensions.

Charities were warned they must respect the “standing and reputation” of the Tory minister – or else.

Groups working to deliver the Westminster government’s Work Programme were told they must not be critical of her – a clause in the contract for delivering the programme stipulates signed-up charities must “pay the utmost regard to the standing and reputation” DWP.

Her resignation was greeted with harsh words from Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon.

She tweeted: “I just hope that Esther McVey takes the travesty that is Universal Credit out the door with her.”

16th November 2018 by RealFreedom

"Groups working to deliver the Westminster government’s Work Programme were told they must not be critical of her – a clause in the contract for delivering the programme stipulates signed-up charities must “pay the utmost regard to the standing and reputation”.The EXACT same wording was used in DWP contracts under the last Labour government. SCVO (publishers of TFN) were happy to sign a contract containing this EXACT same clause in 2006 when delivering a New Deal contract.But this does not fit the Marxist ranting of activists playing at pretendy journalism, so you don't report that.Clearly Esther McVey has got more morals and ethics than you have.

17th November 2018 by Chris

@ReaflFreedom: Maybe SCVO (publishers of TFN) have changed their minds in the last 12 years? Is that not allowed? Would it maybe, even, be laudable...As far as I can see from their website, SCVO no longer delivers DWP projects (although I am willing to be corrected on that one), so perhaps they have not only changed their minds but voted with their feet as well?