Life With ME On The Dutch Benefits Hamster Wheel

By Rob O’Brien.

Two years ago, my Dutch father-in-law dropped a casual reference to the British award-winning film I, Daniel Blake after hearing about our latest round with the Dutch government over sick pay benefits. “It sounds a lot like that British film where he gets trapped in the system,” he said.

I thought about this when me and my wife, who suffers from a condition called ME, were planning our next move in a two-year battle with the UWV, the government body charged with assessing and administering sick pay benefits in the Netherlands. I, Daniel Blake follows a man who is unable to work due to a medical condition and is forced to navigate an absurd and punishing benefits system. He fumbles around in a bureaucratic labyrinth that strips claimants of their humanity and reduces them to numbers. And we seem to be in the same boat.

To read the rest of this story, click on the link below:

https://rob-obrien.medium.com/life-with-me-on-the-dutch-benefits-hamster-wheel-2d2f6907250

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