Katie vs Katie – my thoughts

Katie Vs Katie

So I’m going to start with a bit of a disclaimer here. I am not a fan of Katie Hopkins (is anyone) or Katie Price, and I cannot stand Big Brother. However the recent bust up between the pair hit the headlines this week when Katie P revealed that the transport for her disabled son Harvey to attend school each day is paid for by the taxpayer, despite her being reportedly worth £40 million.

Katie H of course wasn’t happy about this. I think most people could have predicted that. She felt that if someone could afford to pay for it, they why shouldn’t they.

Now, one of the amazing things about the UK is that every single child, no matter what their needs, is offered an education. If that education is outside a certain distance, because of over subscription or because there isn’t a school close enough to cater to your child’s needs, then the local authority will fund the transport and that is what has happened to Katie’s child, Harvey.

Katie Hopkins argument is that if you can afford to pay, then you shouldn’t be taking advantage of the tax payer and should pay for it herself.

However, I don’t agree. Katie Price herself is a tax payer, and with a reported £40million worth, she has paid her fair amount of tax – I would imagine far outweighing the cost of Harvey’s transport. She continues to work and pay into the system.

There are also so many services that are free at point of contact for every single person in the country – schools, NHS, police, ambulance and fire service. I wonder if Katie Hopkins pays for any of these services – she can afford it after all, and I actually don’t see the difference.

I think its great that all these things are available to us without means testing – I also think that if they were means tested it would mean that children and adults alike miss out on some of these vital services. The families who pay the most tax would find they were then paying again to use things – would you pay into a system that you were then unable to take advantage of when you needed it most? Of course not!

We all play a part in keeping the country running, but the highest paying tax payers are the ones that pay in the most – its seems totally unfair that they should be unable to access services for disabled children – the very services which their taxes help to fund.

Transport for Harvey’s school isn’t a luxury, it is a necessity – it is the closest school that can cater to his complex needs. I for one am grateful that in this country these services exist for everyone. Yes, Harvey’s needs mean he costs the tax payer more than the average child, but no-one would dream of saying her other children shouldn’t be allowed to attend local schools (I have no idea if they do or not!) because she can afford to pay for them to go to an independent school. Is there really a difference?

What do you think? Should Katie Price foot the bill herself?

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“Katie Price Jordan (cropped)” by Phil Guest – Flickr. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Katie_Price_Jordan_(cropped).jpg#mediaviewer/File:Katie_Price_Jordan_(cropped).jpg

24 Comments:

  1. I can’t make up my mind on this. On the one hand, I can see that the same services should be accessible for everyone (I would want the same for Amy, if she ever needed it), but I’d like to think that I’d pay for them myself, if I could afford them, so that even more children can make use of them. Does that make sense? In my head it does, kind of…
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    • Andrea @ love and cake

      It makes total sense, but she has paid her taxes too, so should be entitled to use the services in my opinion

  2. I agree with you Andrea. Aside from the fact it would inevitably one long logistical nightmare for her to stray from ‘the system’ she has paid more tax in her life than most will ever earn, so why should she pay twice – just as you say.
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    • Andrea @ love and cake

      Yes, thats something I’d not thought of. I am sure Katie isn’t an isolated case, so hwo would it actually work, and where would the cut of point be?

  3. totally agree! I’ve been paying taxes for nearly 30 years so I would be pretty peed off if I was now told that I had to pay for my kids school bus as they thought I could afford it!
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  4. well i can see it from both view points and i agre that if these services are available to tax payers then she is entitled to it. BUT she could consider that with her earnings she could afford her own taxi and driver and allow that money to go back to ther system,
    hmmmm a very thought provoking post and well argued x
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  5. I would agree with Katie Hopkins’s point if Katie Price had a choice of where Harvey attends school but she doesn’t. I would agree if Katie P was sending Harvey in a taxi because she is famous. I would agree for multitude of reasons. However, as you say, Harvey has complex needs (and needs a nurse to travel with him as well) so the fact is that the LA are simply meeting their duties, like they do with any other child.
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    • Andrea @ love and cake

      All thats being provided for him is his basic right to education. If Katie P had a choice, then it would be a very different story.

  6. Agree with you here and it sounds like his needs are better met this way too. Well argued, brilliant. Thanks for linking up x
    HonestMum recently posted…This Family Flocks To Shaun The Sheep, The Movie PremiereMy Profile

  7. Great post and I totally agree (although I must admit when I first saw it on TV I was unsure what to think!)! On balance though, I thought Katie H should get off her high (rather posh) horse and get real. Katie P does pay her taxes and if she wasn’t eligable for this service then she wouldn’t be able to get it. That’s it. I am sure KH would do the same in the same position. It’s a controversial area but one you wrote about brilliantly! #brilliantblogposts
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  8. Great debate! I’d like to throw my thoughts into the pot. As I understand things from what I have read & watched on Katie P’s shows, Harvey was attending a local ‘special’ school but it was closed by the the LEA, he now attends a school that is best suited to his needs, this is some 50 miles away, coupled with the fact he needs a nurse for the journey there & back, it’s reasonable in my opinion that the bill is picked up by the tax payer in this situation. My thinking is that the money saved by closing his original school is outweighed by the transport costs that are now incurred by transporting the children affected by the closure to suitable schools.
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    • Andrea @ love and cake

      That was my understanding too, I also believe that Katie has been campaigning for a school to open closer to home, but they couldn’t secure the funding. Its not really like she is taking advantage. Its a system for everyone to benefit from.

  9. Having spoken to a friend with a son who has very complex needs, I’ve learned that the particular benefits Harvey gets is for Harvey – it is not means tested and nor does it take into account who his parents are or how much money they have. HE is entitled to an education. HE is severely disabled. HE gets this provision. When he’s older and his parents are gone, he will continue to get the support and benefits he needs in life.
    And I’d like to ask why everyone loves to criticise Katie Price but no-one is acknowledging that Dwight Yorke has never paid a penny towards his child, or had anything to do with him. Where’s the criticism for a rich footballer who is a deadbeat Dad?
    I’m not a fan of Katie Price, but I think she’s showing herself to be a better person than Katie Hopkins on Celebrity Big Brother. Hopkins loves to comment on things she doesn’t understand, and situations she’s never had to live through.
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    • Andrea @ love and cake

      Thats a really good point Donna! No-one ever mentions him do they? As I said I’m not a fan of her either, but she always seems to do the best for her children.

  10. I actually agree with you here. I cannot stand Katie Hopkins, and I feel indifferent toward Katie Price. But Katie price probably pays more in tax over 12 months than I will in my lifetime, and she should be entitled to receive the services I, too, am entitled to.
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  11. Completely agree! The money provided is for him like it would be any other child, not her or to fund her lifestyle. I find it ridiculous the poor little thing spends 3 hours a day in school transport though to be honest! Surely that means there should be provision closer to home.
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  12. Yep I hear you Andrea. My gut reaction would have been one of outrage but you are of course right Katie P has paid her dues and we would not expect her to pay for the NHS so why is this any different? Mich x
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    • Andrea @ love and cake

      I think we tend to all have a gut reaction similar to that Michelle, there is so much ‘benefit’ bashing around and we all know the country is struggling, but I do feel that there are somethings which shouldn’t be compromised on and education is one of them

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