playing about in boats when not working due to disability

ShipsWoofy

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Is there something inherently wrong with this. I am not talking of the specific case currently highlighted and on the phone in shows. But comments from many of the general public with regards disabled types having the audacity to own a boat and actually use it kept following the same course; they should be forced to sell the boat and give the money back to the government.

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I will state my interest as it is only fair. I am what you might call disabled, I was retired from my work aged 36 I am now 39. I receive a pension and do not claim any extra benefits through choice. I could not sail alone now and my partner is brilliant and is happy to crew the boat and do all the lifting etc. She is in full time employment and has never claimed any benefits, her only time unemployed was when she first moved in with me and I supported her while she looked for work. We intend to sail slowly to the med in the hope the climate will improve my health and give me a better standard of living. I am only including this as I don't want to be called a troll, what has been said over the last few days with reference to this story has really worried me and I am now wondering if I have already been reported in the past. You will not offend me, I genuinely want to know if people think that I must be taking the micky, if I can play on boats then I should be working.. Though, I was retired from my job in engineering, rather than retired from the human race. I even told the medical board that I still went sailing.
 

colingr

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Doesn't bother me. Probably good therapy.

Upsets me when you see benefit cheats swanning around having fun at my expense but this guy seems to be pretty genuine.
 

lw395

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Its a grey area imho. There are many levels of disability. There are now few jobs for many skilled people. Being disabled from doing one job does not necessarily make you unemployable. I do get a bit annoyed by people who have taken cushy early retirement on health grounds then a little later get another job while taking the pension from the first career which is usually public sector.
The case referred to in the post above is a bit odd, to get enough pension by 36 to afford sailing?
I would take a view on individual cases.
 

Judders

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I think every disability is different, so one can only take each case on it's merits, and with the British media, one is unlikely to find out what they really are.
 

RAI

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There's a big difference between receiving a pension (earnt/paid for) and receiving disability payments and being unable to work. Most pensioners (over 65 etc.) receive pensions but are well able to sail. The benefit cheats are the people who could work, in some useful way, but prefer to claim disability. Whether they lounge around or go sailing doesn't matter - only they are more likely to get caught out sailing.
 

Bajansailor

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I do not see anything wrong in what you have described above.

I have a German friend who has progressive ankolosing (sp?) spondylitis - this is where the vertebrae of the back slowly fuse together. It is a very painful condition, and he cannot bend his back or even twist his head sideways.
He was diagnosed with this condition more than 20 years ago and he was retired (not by his own choice) from his job as a school teacher in Germany. He always loved sailing, and with diligence and hard work he and his wife built a boat and went sailing to the Caribbean where they spent a few years before returning to the Med.
I think that the boat has now been sold, as my friend can no longer look after her. But he made the most of the opportunities available, and believed in 'seizing the day' (carpe diem) while overcoming the many obstacles encountered along the way.
And he made the most of being reasonably mobile while he could.
'Good on yer mate' I say!
He is / has been an inspiration to many.
 

Judders

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Now some people are going to suggest that your German friend was, if capable of building a boat, capable of working.

Whether the state should support someone to use the time before they become fully unable to work to enjoy themselves is, I am sure, a potentially emotive topic. If they insured themselves against such a posibilty, then fair play all round!
 

BlueSkyNick

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For benefit cheats, I agree with you, which is where the couple in the news came a cropper.

I have no issue with people living aboard, drawing genuine benefits - just because they own a boat of any sort doesnt mean they can afford to own or even rent a house. At least they are putting a roof over their heads.

DogWatch has been totally open and honest, I believe, over the past few years and should have nothing to worry about.
 

ShipsWoofy

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[ QUOTE ]
Now some people are going to suggest that your German friend was, if capable of building a boat, capable of working.

Whether the state should support someone to use the time before they become fully unable to work to enjoy themselves is, I am sure, a potentially emotive topic. If they insured themselves against such a posibilty, then fair play all round!

[/ QUOTE ]I agree and on paper it would seem to be both of us (me and the german) are taking the micky. But what you don't see is my crying out in pain screwing a screw in when I have to be at an awkward angle, nor do you note that a job that might take you 10 minutes can take me all day as I have to prepare everything and talk my partner through jobs I can no longer do myself (anyone with a non-engineering bent wife will also know this can play havoc with your mental state). People also rarely see that if I have pushed myself for a day working on the boat the 4 days after were I am rubbish and can't walk.

It is also regularly ignored that there are two of us, she is fit and well and bless her, carries the bags, launches the dinghy etc. I fear people really do forget many of us, although we talk on forums about 'our' experiences and the like, do actually sail as a couple.
 

TiggerToo

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as some have noted it is very easy to cast aspersions on stuff we don't know the ins and outs of. This thread is very enlightening because some of us (DW) explains very well the position from inside. That is why courts and committees exist to make decisions and judgements. Trial by media, like lynchings should be banned. We are a civilised society after all. Sometimes I think some people would like others just to go away and die... /forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif
 

TiggerToo

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... well we can comment, but not make a judgement (at least the is what I was trying to say in my previous post)
 

Norman_E

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Quite clearly from what you have said, you are not cheating in any way. If you have a disability that made you give up work so young, and enabled you to take pension at 39, when you normally cannot do so under the age of 50, then you are quite entitled to have a boat or anything else you can afford, and good luck to you.

As for the couple in the news, if they have been cheating by claiming benefit whilst fit enough to work I hope they get forced to pay it all back plus some extra, and get jail time, pour encourager les autres.
 

KevB

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He is living off his own investment (pension) so no different from someone of say 70 going off sailing. If he was getting additional income from the government in disability allowance I think it would be different - if he is fit to sail he must be fit enough to do some kind of work... I guess the odd weekend would be ok but a slow cruise to the med would be taking the pi$$

So in my opinion this particular guy should have no worries as he is funding himself and not expecting others to do it for him whilst he is on a jolly.
 

ShipsWoofy

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It is such a minefield. I am not looking for sympathy here, I never do, honestly.

I mentioned my condition and situation as it is a worry, especially as people do look on and wonder if people are breaking the rules. The couple in question were obviously so. The irony for me, amusingly, I am better on the boat as I have hand holds everywhere and everything is lower down, light switches etc. I have had some bad times with pain at sea, but tend to be ok as long as I have a big cushion to stop any jolting.

It is just when cases as mentioned are highlighted the country seem to start looking to lynch anyone (see the racist rubbish in the royal family, where they are scraping up stuff about the queen mother now). Many on here know my situation, I used to keep it secret but if you saw me now you would realise it is impossible for me to hide it. I sail a cat, I am not sure I could cope with a tippy boat any more, though I would love a fisher or southerly, ah well.

My fear I suppose, is being dragged to court to explain my lifestyle because someone dobs me in, or I give the impression in a blog or forum message that makes me seem quite fit and healthy. I tend to miss out the horrid bits and write like I was normal.

I am only bringing it up here as I am interested in peoples perceptions and as I stated in italics, it is only fair that I declare an interest in the subject, otherwise people may not answer honestly, which is what I am interested in.
 

vyv_cox

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There is a fundamental difference between your case and theirs.

As they appear to be countrymen of mine I saw perhaps more of them on TV than many will have done. They appeared to be perfectly physically fit, no evidence that they were visually or aurally impaired and no detectable mental problem either. Although it is unwise to accept word-for-word what one sees on TV, I gained the strong impression that they were swinging the lead. As such, they deserve little sympathy and cannot in all honesty be referred to as 'disabled'.

No-one who has met you could possibly doubt that you are making the most of a very bad situation, for which you have my total support.
 

Oliveoyl

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OK, I know a lady (not very old) who has extreme osteoporosis, and as such is unfit for almost any work. She enjoys gardening - nothing strenuous, bit of planting and pruning - does that mean she should give up disability benefits and become a gardener???
 
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