UK Uncut Protest Brings Oxford Circus To Standstill
London's Oxford Circus, one of the capital's busiest shopping streets, was brought to a standstill today as people in wheelchairs chained themselves together in protest at the Government's controversial welfare reforms.
Members of direct action group UK Uncut and disability campaign groups chanted, waved banners and banged drums in the middle of the thoroughfare, blocking off its link with Regent Street.
The groups are voicing their anger at the impact of the Welfare Reform Bill, warning that hundreds of thousands of families will lose their homes or become "imprisoned" inside.
Earlier the protesters also brought disruption to part of the Tube network as they travelled from Holborn underground station.
A protester in a wheelchair and police during the demonstration
A Government spokesperson said: "This Government is absolutely committed to supporting disabled people and we continue to spend more than £40bn a year on disabled people and their services.
"Households where someone receives Disability Living Allowance will be exempt from the Benefit Cap and we are giving Local Authorities an additional £190m over four years to ensure vulnerable people are supported through the housing benefit reform, so we are not expecting people to become homeless.
"The introduction of the Universal Credit, from 2013 will see a simpler and fairer system of support for disabled people. More importantly there will be no cash losers at the point of transition to Universal Credit and disabled adults in greatest need and severely disabled children will receive more support than now."