Work and Pensions secretary Esther McVey openly taunts Universal Credit users with shameless plug for restaurant.

Just when you think Esther McVey couldn’t sink any lower, she does. After weeks of reports and evidence proving that Universal Credit claimants can’t afford basic food items, she does this…

Sunday 24th June started like a normal day for me. Breakfast just isn’t a meal that I can afford to budget for. I’m so used to not having it I don’t even notice, my boys have theirs so I’m happy.


I wasn’t online much, so it wasn’t until later I noticed that Esther McVey had sent at tweet out at 9.34am. Now Esther isn’t known for compassion or discreet but, after the news of the past few weeks that Universal Credit is driving more and more people to foodbanks, her tweet really was just plain callous.

Not only can you see that she’s bragging about being able to eat out for breakfast, she’s absolutely shameless in plugging the establishment.

Her meal costs more than I spend in a week

Part of the menu the Cha Bar in Knutsford

Now, she’s bragging about “the big breakfast” that the Cha Bar in Knutsford sell. The cost of that particular meal is a staggering £8.50 but for just £1 you can add an glass of orange juice too!

My entire fortnightly food budget is about £10.50 (click here to see)and, many others on Universal Credit are in the same situation. How she has the gall to flaunt so openly I do not know.

The recent National Audit Office (NAO) report, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) destitution report and figures from national foodbank charity Trussell Trust, all cite that Universal Credit is causing foodbank use to sky rocket. Esther McVey’s decision to tweet this out can only be seen as one thing: She doesn’t care.

Fit to lead?

To me, this raises an important question. Should she be leading the government department that is responsible for the well-being of millions of vulnerable people? My answer would be no.

Just last Thursday 20th June, she made a statement to parliament were she attempted to spin the awful National Audit Office (NAO) report on the roll-out of Universal Credit, as proof that it’s all going well. When MPs pointed out that the report clearly shows it’s shambles, she just claimed they NAO had out of date information.

She repeatedly lied by saying that the report states the roll-out should be sped up when, in-fact it states the opposite; it should be halted immediately until the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) resolve the numerous problems it already has.

Hostile towards the disabled


The DWP has now lost no less than two High Court cases regarding their welfare reform policies towards disabled claimants. The latest one states that they are discriminatory against disabled claimants. The court was told that Esther McVey intends to appeal the decision. Only could she appeal a decision calling them discriminatory. The United Nations UN have similarly called Universal Credit discriminatory but that was shrugged off with almost a laugh.

McVey has attempted to say that she dropped her appeal against Decembers High Court ruling as an act of compassion. The judges ruled that the assessment criteria for Personal Independent (PIP) claimants with mental health conditions were unfair and the DWP was told to back pay all claimants.

It’s now nearly July, and the first of 220,00 payments are still not expected until after summer, as I previously reported.

Should a woman so hostile to disabled people really be responsible for the support they receive? I think not.

images (2)My thoughts

All in all, it’s been a car crash week for Esther McVey and the Department for Work and Pensions. Somehow undeterred they carry on as if nothing has happened. People are now waking up to the realisation that the Tories “flagship” welfare reform policies are not working.

Their position that Universal Credit is changing lives for the better is no longer sustainable, nor has it it been for a long time. The only difference now is, that people have seen proof of it’s hostile and harmful effects and are speaking out against it.

Like Iain Duncan Smith, Esther McVey is shamelessly pushing forward with the reforms without a care for anyone but herself. With tweets like those on Sunday I cannot see her being able to carry on for long.

Theresa May hasn’t spoken about any of the reports blasting benefits reforms and it makes you wonder how long she will put up with it until she acts. She is in a weak postition and the loss of another high profile cabinet memeber is something she can ill afford.

But, I’m sure I’d rather the bad press for sacking Esther McVey than anymore blood on my hands…

Alex @RespectIsVital

You can find me on Facebook by searching: Universal Credit Sufferer

I do not get paid for writing but, I try to research and write the best I can. If you’d like to make a donation this would help me in maintaining my independence and carrying on with this. You can donate via PayPal below.




  1. I have spoke to people that are suffering on universal credit and are having to make hsrd decisions on paying bills or feeding themselves and there children.i feel we seem to o be moving back to Victorian times when the poor died at a early age due to not getting the medical treatment that was not available and the right nutrition which they couldn’t afford.
    My heart goes out to people that in my opinion are suffering today I will tell u why imI walking in there shoes I lost my job in 2016 so decided to go and make a claim I was told that it would be receiving UVC I had no idea what this benefit was about until I saw my coach advisor he told me that I would have to apply for jobs 35 hours a week or I would sanction also said I wouldn’t be receive any money for 6 weeks .
    I sat there and felt sick when I left the job centre I cried so much thinking what am I going to do with no money CHRISTMAS upon me I have 2 grand children what will do just kept crying and had to explain to my grand children that nanny can’t buy presents imI u can imagine how I felt I prayed to God please let me find a job I found a part-time job in April 2017 and felt very happy but I was told that I would still have to visit job centre as they were helping me with money as I wasn’t earning enough the thought of going there made me feel sick .I feel the for me going there is to told I have to find a full time job .
    I have health problems just had a operation on the 29 June this year and have to take time off work they wanted med cert which I got a relative to take there with the evidence that I had the OP
    Now waiting to get a response from them .
    I have had the toughest 2 years with working and running up and down to the job centre and felt I was being controlled .
    I struggle with money as I don’t earn a lot do that’s why I know how people are feeling when they talk about how they are finding it so hard to cope and look so depressed and with children to feed it must be a nightmare.
    My heart goes out to o all the people today that are feeling dispair and don’t know which way to turn I do hope that there will be a change when they s government realise what they are doing to the poor it desgracful .
    Maybe they should try and go without food and try and live like the homeless who feel no one care well I do and many more people like myself do I hope u find this interesting and useful.

    Thank u for reading this.

  2. My simple comment is that no wonder people are committing suicide, children being neglected. This government is slowly killing people, communities.

  3. I’m not on UC yet but I’m an ESA (Support Group) claimant with mental ill-health and I’m shitting myself over the migration to UC. Every brown envelope that comes through my letterbox sends panic through me and I’m sure that’s what every claimant feels whilst the government is run by the heartless, self-serving Tories who have no idea what it’s like in the real world for people forced by illness, disability or misfortune to need to claim benefits. And, quite frankly, I dislike the use of the word ‘benefit’ being used at all when it is really ‘social security’ or, at the very least, ‘welfare’ that most of us have paid into the system to get in times of misfortune.

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