Alex Tiffin born Alexander MacDonald Tiffin is a British Journalist and Disability Campaigner. He gained prominence by highlighting his struggles on the UK welfare benefit; Universal Credit.
He lives in Culbokie a small village in the Scottish Highlands and has his children at weekends.
Early Life[edit | edit source]
Whilst growing up he learned to play the bagpipes and was part of the Scottish Judo Team reaching the grade of 18th Mon by age 15. He attended Alness Academy achieving 8 standard grades before leaving school at 16 to join the British Army.
After leaving the army his was in work before becoming disabled in 2011.
In 2016 he converted to Islam having been Christian before. He attends Inverness Masjid which is the most northerly Mosque in the United Kingdom.
Health[edit | edit source]
Tiffin is confined to wheelchair as he suffers from Functional Neurological Disorder and damage to the disks in his spine. He also suffers from Borderline Personality Disorder and Crohns Disease.
He writes about various struggles he has faced since becoming disabled.
Criminal Charges[edit | edit source]
On 7th June 2017 Tiffin sparked a terrorist alert in his then current hometown of Invergordon. He had sent a text message to a friend at his local mosque threatening to kill “unbelievers.” Tiffin was arrested without incident and held on remand whilst he was investigated.
After a police and intelligence service investigation into Tiffin’s background, his computer and contacts, the conclusion was that he was “an idiot not a terrorist”. It transpired that Tiffin had suffered a severe mental health episode following a relationship breakdown and was attempting suicide by cop. He was admonished in July 2018 having had no further incidents and due to the fact it was down to a mental health episode.
Activism and Journalism 2018 -[edit | edit source]
In May 2018 Tiffin joined Twitter under the handle @RespectIsVital. He first put out a tweet outlining how he was left with £10.50 for two weeks food due to the UK's new welfare benefit, Universal Credit. The tweet was quickly picked up after it was retweeted by Actor Hugh Grant
This led to him starting his own blog; Life of a Universal Credit Sufferer. In his blog he documented his life detailing his regular foodbank trips and lack of heating due to having no money. As he used foodbanks frequently, he started a campaign to get more people to donate to them. He had help from Hugh Grant who then got former England Footballer Gary Lineker to join in too.
His first journalistic piece came on The New Statesman website. Since this article he has began writing his own news articles on his website, some of which have been picked up by national newspapers and their online sites.
Left leaning news site, Evolve Politics then reached out and offered to let him write for them and he has since written several articles on UK political events. Due to his health he does this on a voluntary basis as he can sometimes be unable to function for long periods of time.
Most notably he uncovered that the Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey was the victim of Identity Fraud as she had been listed the company secretary of a bogus company. Despite this, Mcvey attacked Tiffin on social media for which she received a big backlash.
References[edit | edit source]
- "Universal Credit Sufferer". Universal Credit Sufferer. 2018-06-10. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "I suffer from Functional Neurological Disorder - FND, but what exactly is that?". Universal Credit Sufferer. 2018-07-04. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Ex-soldier who sparked Highland terror alert told to behave or face jail | Press and Journal". Press and Journal. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Alex Tiffin - @RespectIsVital, Author at Universal Credit Sufferer". Universal Credit Sufferer. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Former soldier described as 'an idiot not a terrorist' admonished for threatening to kill 'unbelievers' | Press and Journal". Press and Journal. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Alex Tiffin on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Meet the Universal Credit blogger inspiring Hugh Grant's foodbank donations". The Big Issue. 2018-06-21. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Tesco and Shell to improbe disbaled driver help at their petrol pumps". Universal Credit Sufferer. 2018-07-18. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "My Universal Credit diary: "With six days to go, I have nothing left"". www.newstatesman.com. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Jobcentre Staff Told By DWP Not To Record Number Of People They Send To Foodbanks". HuffPost UK. 2018-08-07. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "Universal Credit Sufferer". Universal Credit Sufferer. 2018-07-26. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- "EXCLUSIVE: Tory DWP Secretary Esther McVey 'fails to declare official link to shady £20m Political Campaigning Firm' | Evolve Politics". Evolve Politics. 2018-11-03. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
- RT Producers (2018-08-14), Interview with Blogger Alex Tiffin, retrieved 2018-11-12
- Evolve Politics (2018-10-12), Evolve Politics writer Alex Tiffin shares his personal Universal Credit horror story live on LBC, retrieved 2018-11-12
External Links[edit | edit source]
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Category:Journalists Category:Disabled Journalists Category:Journalism Category:Bloggers Category:Reporters and correspondents by nationality Category:Reporters and correspondents Category:Activist journalists
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