Welfare Rebellion is a UK campaign to co-ordinate activism against austerity and the Government’s savage benefit cuts that target vulnerability.
The campaign is created by Alex Tiffin, a blogger on the failings from the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP), the branch of the UK Government responsible for assessing and administering benefits.
“On average 48 people die a day because of austerity, that’s roughly 16,000 a year. To me, even 1 death because of a political choice is too much. That’s why I’m calling for what I am calling a Welfare Rebellion. The #PeoplesVote march proved that A to B protests matter little to the government. Therefore, we need a more proactive campaign.”
The idea for Welfare Rebellion came from the Extinction Rebellion campaign that sees non-violent civil disobedience to protest against climate breakdown. Extinction Rebellion organises gatherings up and down the country and is becoming a worldwide movement.
The challenge for Welfare Rebellion is that because most of the people that rely on benefits are vulnerable due to unemployment and/or disability physical protests in large numbers will be difficult to gather.
However, the initial strategy of Welfare Rebellion is to use social media to create a movement that leads the DWP to roll back the cuts and reform its practices. From this it is hoped that local protests can be set up and a network of national action begins.
As Tiffin argues:
“This government, like us, will be judged on our actions to fight for equality. And I for one can’t sit by and watch anymore.”