The campaign against Esther McVey's appointment as Secretary of State for the Department of Work and Pensions is gathering pace, with a 38 Degrees petition to 'Sack Esther McVey' claiming around one thousand signatures an hour since it was posted this week, and currently standing at over 26,000 names.*
"People are hugely offended and upset at the appointment of this Minister to this position" state the organisers, adding that "As Employment Minister Esther McVey seemed to take great delight when introducing new guidelines which lead to benefit sanctions..."
The petition also explains that "her record speaks for itself..."
• Consistently voted for reducing housing benefit for tenants deemed to have excess bedrooms aka the Bedroom Tax.
• Consistently voted against raising welfare benefits at least in line with prices
• Consistently voted against paying higher benefits over longer periods of time for those unable to work due to illness or disability
• Consistently voted for a reduction in spending on welfare benefits
In 2015, while Tory MP for the Wirral and Employment Minister, there was a huge 'Sack Esther McVey' campaign which led to her losing her seat in that year's General Election...including a song by Alun Parry, denouncing her as the 'wicked witch of the Wirral'.
McVey was re-elected as MP for Tatton last year and has now been catapulted back into welfare land, much to the horror of campaigners, activists and anyone her policies touched. This week, Jeremy Corbyn said her appointment would be "a cause for alarm for disabled people"...
Now, a new 'Sack Esther McVey Again' movement has been launched, targeting the Tatton constituency with the aim of ousting her at the next General Election. There are plans for protests in Tatton, a new song, and loads of campaign materials.
It's being fired by Salford TUC which has made the first donation of £50 towards its fighting fund, while Salford has four members on the national steering committee – Salford Labour councillors Kate Lewis and Barbara Bentham, plus Edward Garner and Alec McFadden.
A new Sack Esther McVey Facebook site called 'FesterMcVileOut' has also been set up – click here for details
*To read and sign the 38 Degrees petition – click here