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Atos Origin Threatens Disabled Group With Legal Action

Holmey | 21.05.2011 13:55 | Health | Public sector cuts | Repression

In the manner of the school bully threatening to crush the smallest and most vulnerable kid in the class Atos Origin yesterday wrote to the webmaster and domain owner of, a web site run by a lone disabled individual, threatening legal action against them regarding libel and infringement of Atos's copyright and trademark.

After Atos Announces Atos's Legal Threat
After Atos Announces Atos's Legal Threat

2 short months ago, a lone disabled woman, (who wishes to remain anonymous and goes by the name of Aunty Admin), who lived on the south coast and was concerned about the stories she was hearing regarding severely disabled and even terminally ill individuals being found fit for work after an Atos Assessment devised an online survey to record the real life experiences of people who had been through an Atos Assessment and the After Atos Assessment survey was born, with a link to it being passed around on Facebook by friends who were also concerned.

After a couple of weeks one of her Facebook friend helped her take things a step further when he developed and hosted a web site for her, (, with this web site comprising of a Get Rid of Atos petition, the After Atos Survey, a disabled issues newsfeed, a notice board of events and protests against Atos, a support forum, an online shop where people can buy T shirts with anti Atos slogans and images on them and Aunty Admins Blog. The web site quickly became popular, hitting a record number of 2,958 hits in 1 day on May 3rd, less than 1 week after being launched.

All was fine until yesterday when the person who had developed the site for Aunty Admin received a letter signed by James Loughrey, Atos’s UK General Council, accusing the site of libel against Atos and infringement of Atos’s copyright and trademark, with this letter threatening legal action, reserving the right to do so even if After Atos comply with the demands made in this letter.

The main part of Atos’s complaint covers the web sites banner, which has a derivative image of the Atos fish logo together with the statement Atos Kills!, something Aunty Admin is happy to have on her web site as she considers Atos to be responsible for the deaths of several people who have been driven to suicide after “failing” one of their medicals but she is willing to compromise on Atos’s demands and exchange the ! to a ?, representing Atos Kills as a question, not a statement, After Atos is after all trying to answer the question of what happens to people After Atos.

This begs the question is Atos flexing it’s corporate and legal muscles against a minnow here in an attempt to prevent the answer to this question being found?

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Classic bullying tactics

22.05.2011 10:33

Well, one thing is clear - it seems that after months, years!, of protesting to what seemed like a brick wall, some people are actually taking notice of the disabled in Britain and their plight at the hands of Atos "Healthcare". And that our protests have finally been brought to the attention of Atos "Healthcare".

However, in the manner of the classical bully, instead of questioning themselves and examining exactly what they are doing and responsible for, they are lashing out in the way that some big corporations have in the past, hoping to squelch the "little guy" with threats of legal action. Knowing full well of course, that the "little guy" will not have the resources to fight back.

The basis of their legal threat obviously centres on perceived libel. However, in order to libel, the libelled person or organisation must have a name to be besmirched. Yet Atos "Healthcare" - up to now - do not have a name. As a disabled person myself, it is a constant surprise that almost no-one I speak to about Atos have ever heard of them. The constant vilification of the disabled in the media makes no mention of this organisation, preferring instead to concentrate on headlines of a "scroungers, workshy, fraudsters" nature. Quietly, unheralded, in the background, Atos "Healthcare" continue their government-sponsored soi-disant "assessments", bringing many disabled people to the edge of despair and beyond. They hide from publicity and as yet have no public name to besmirch.

If Atos "Healthcare" actually go ahead with their legal action, it could prove a great benefit to the disabled : suddenly the wider public will become aware of them and they will no longer be able to hide quietly in the background. The full glare of the publicity headlights will be on them, and suddenly there could be an invitation to public scrutiny and inspection, which they have so far eluded. I am tempted to say "Bring it on!" And let's start a fighting fund...

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