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Campaigners across Midlands to march against ATOS

Campaigners plan to march outside ATOS offices across the region today, over claims the company is forcing sick people to work.

The protests will take place outside the company’s buildings in Nottingham, Birmingham, Worcester and Stoke-on-Trent.

Protests against ATOS in Chesterfield last year Credit: ITV News Central

ATOS, which decides who is eligible for disability benefits, says it uses accredited doctors and nurses to assess people.

It will not be the first time protests against ATOS have been staged, after marches took place in Chesterfield last year.

Benefit Street stars tell of 'mad' reaction to the doco

Deirdre Kelly - known as White Dee - contributor on Benefit Street Credit: PA Pictures

The contributors of the TV show Benefit Street that is set in Birmingham's James Turner Street have told a live debate of the 'mad' reaction to the documentary. The series has been criticised for allegedly demonising people living on benefits.

One of the mainstays of the show Deirdre Kelly - known as White Dee - told the live debate that response to the show had been 90% positive.

'Benefits Street' residents to appear in new documentary

'White Dee' from 'Benefits Street' Credit: PA

Residents of 'Benefits Street' will be given the chance to respond to critics in a follow-up documentary to the series which was set in Birmingham.

The show followed people living on benefits in Birmingham's James Turner Street over a 12 month period and attracted widespread media attention. It also prompted debate in parliament over welfare dependancy.

The one-off documentary, 'Benefits Street: The Last Word', will feature regulars from the show, who will discuss their experience of living on benefits and the reaction to the series.

A Channel 4 spokesman said a live debate which aims to "shine a spotlight on the range of issues brought to the fore by Benefits Street" will follow the documentary.

Seven charged over 'Benefits Street' drug raids

James Turner Street has been the subject of a controversial Channel 4 documentary Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Police say they have charged several people with drug offences following a series of raids carried out in James Turner Street, Winson Green, Birmingham last year.

The street most recently featured in the Channel 4 documentary 'Benefits Street.'

The drugs raids took place in June 2013 and several people were arrested. On Wednesday they were charged with several offences and have been bailed to appear in court next month.


Channel 4 defends 'Benefits Street'

Channel 4 has defended the third episode of its controversial documentary 'Benefits Street'.

Concerns were raised by a local community over children participating in the documentary.

Channel 4 says all under 16s who took part did so with permission from the appropriate parties.

Love Production's Benefits Street charts the lives of people on James Turner Street in Winson Green, Birmingham.

What is the benefit cap?

How will the benefits cap affect you? Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

From 15th July, the new benefit cap will be rolled out nationally, arriving in Birmingham in September.

What is the benefit cap?

The benefit cap will affect the amount of benefit that people of working age (16-64) can claim.

The full list of benefits that count towards the cap:

**How much is the benefit cap?

**£500 per week for couples (with or without children living with them) £500 per week for single parents whose children live with them

£350 a week for single adults who don't have children, or whose children don't live with them

Benefit mum: I can't afford to work

A mum from Birmingham who gets £32,000 per year in benefits says she can't afford to work because of the costs of putting her seven children in after school clubs. Clare Bache's annual income of £32,000 from benefits is due to drop to around £26,000 following a changes to the system.

Ms Bache says the father of the children left seven years ago and doesn't pay anything towards his children.

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