Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Banned For Blog: YMCA Suppresses Dissent.

with 15 comments


This morning I went to Dencora House, Ipswich. For my ‘New Deal’ induction at YMCA Training. A little while in and I was summoned. YMCA manager and colleague. Copies of this Blog, and the Ipswich Unemployed Action’s, on the table. Nervous type. Points to print-out. Picture of medieval Bastille. Legend, “Storm Dencora House“. Liked he it not. Or calling it a “detention centre”. Oh dear. Next, famous (hundreds of viewings), New Deal: YMCA Training, A Major Scandal. 

Finally, their account of  this,  

“I have placed this website as the Home Page on all computers at Dencora House today. Hopefully some of my fellow detainees here will read it. There has also been print outs of your articles left around the centre. The staff have been going round ripping them off the walls. They then get put up again. 

People who merely found this site as the home page have been undertaking these actions on their own. Hopefully more people will involve themselves in such sabotage. If we make it too much hassle for them to treat us like this then they will be forced to stop!”

Apparently, the chief said, some people are upset about this kerfuffle. Deary me.

The upshot is I face being suspended from all benefits for exercising my (see YMCA Induction Pack), “freedom of conscience”. Apparently human rights do not apply to the out-of-work on the New Deal. Still no doubt they’ll find some way of justifying themselves. YMCA Mission Statement, “Motivated by its Christian faith, YMCA Training’s mission is to inspire individuals to develop their talents and potential and so transform the communities in which they live and work.” Needs some creative re-writing.

Oh yes, one of our many invisible supporters  tells us that they’ve blocked their computers’ access to our Blog.

Some faith.


Written by Andrew Coates

June 1, 2009 at 10:46 am

Posted in Ipswich, Unemployment, YMCA

Tagged with

15 Responses

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  1. Have advertised this on my blog comrades, it really is shocking….


    June 1, 2009 at 11:43 am

  2. […] Andrew Coates: YMCA suppresses dissent June 1, 2009 Andrew Coates (Tendance Coatesy) faces being suspended from all benefits for exercising my (see YMCA Induction Pack), “freedom of […]

  3. I can’t believe they did that.

    Not sure how they can justify it – I am yet to come across a section in the contract which allows this.

    In order for you to be kicked off benefits they will have to have “exited” you which requires a dismissal form. The Jobcentre will accept it regardless of what it says.

    I can’t see how someones account which was posted on here has anything to do with you – I mean you didn’t change the homepage: you weren’t even there!

    I will check to see whether the Jobcentre can legally terminate your claim and add any sanctions etc. The likely thing will be is you being required to do a rapid reclaim or to re-sign on.

    Make sure their reasons you have obtained on paper. Of course they will try the “slander” and “libel” route… but everything is justified with sources:

    * trading without planning consent: local government (IBC)

    * distance between disabled parking and the building: google maps and live maps etc.

    Thank you for adding it to the harpymarx blog, it is very much appreciated.

    This was the worst decision that YMCA Training have ever made.

    Oh dear, wrong move...

    June 1, 2009 at 1:33 pm

  4. Almost unbelievable, but then this is 2009!! Well done on getting noticed though and best wishes on keeping the benefits and continuing to be a thorn in their side!


    June 1, 2009 at 2:41 pm

  5. Not that I endorse their actions but I understand them. They know that Ipswich Unemployed Action are closing in on them and Andrew’s attendance was too dangerous for their future reputation, however, as a consequence (remember, all actions have consequences) they have increased the damage already. That damage will however increase in the upcoming days and weeks.

    Today hasn’t ended yet however we have seen a record number of hits and unique visitors. This is without Dencora House access as the blog has been banned there.

    We are far from even being a month old and without any expenditure on advertising etc. we have already had a huge impact.

    Warning: over the Summer and Winter months the impact will increase beyond all recognition.


    June 1, 2009 at 5:00 pm

  6. Dan, there has to be a campaign or protest or something as the ‘preferred bidders’ have been chosen for the Flexible New Deal.

    If the YMCA get away with this crap then others will surely follow suit?


    June 2, 2009 at 9:16 am

    • YMCA doesn’t appear to have been the first, they just followed the likes of a4e etc.

      In regards to Andrew being banned from the course for a blog… sadly, it will always be the way…

      If you are “jobless” than your opinion isn’t required or listened to. As a procedure you fill in paperwork for a Decision Maker etc. but no one reads it and takes any notice – they have a procedure that if you don’t respond then you automatically get sanctions.

      Being “exited”, you are meant to be told of the reason for dismissal, then you are supposed to be invited back for an interview another day BEFORE benefits are stopped. In mine and Andrew’s case, it appears that no further meeting before being dismissed has taken place.

      I agree with a protest.

      Trouble is with FND: not respecting freedom of expression even though a major human rights violation is relatively a minor thing compared with what is expected on FND – Forced labour etc. so the issue is only going to get worse and I bet there will be no such things as trivial dismissals any more when that happens.


      June 2, 2009 at 10:07 am

    • As a typical Government they have not thought through the F.N.D – They didn’t look back at the problems of New Deal and try to solve them.

      If they give him a 26 week sanction (6 months!) then I advise that he sues the Jobcentre Plus under HRA’98.


      June 2, 2009 at 10:12 am

    • You may find it interesting that when I signed on today… (instead of yesterday as I had to bring ID – It was funny that after closely inspecting the form she still required me to tell her it was a P45: maybe I expected too much but surely Jobcentre Plus staff all know what a P45 is and what it looks like?)… I was told I have an upcoming New Deal appointment.


      June 4, 2009 at 8:13 pm

  7. What reason was you given for your exemption, were you given this in writing? If not, you are at grave risk of the Job Centre reneging on your exemption.

    Another Job Centre has queried why you were exempt, or excluded as they call it: To be told by Ipswich Job Centre that we do not exclude people from New Deal training and that no one has been excluded from YMCA Training due to problems they experienced with the training provider!


    October 10, 2009 at 2:01 pm

  8. I received, some months back now, a reapplication for JSA which I’ve got, and have complied with all their requirements. I am presently actively seeking work etc.

    Andrew Coates

    October 12, 2009 at 10:17 am

  9. […] appalling, blogs and freedom of speech are under attack. There have been numerous attempts to shut bloggers up, for example, criticising private companies in charge of welfare to work […]

  10. Thanks Harpy, I hear you had a good time with Madame Miaow over Xmas.

    Andrew Coates

    January 7, 2010 at 10:15 am

  11. […] have all heard how a certain someone was exited from Dencora House in 2009 for saying “Storm Dencora House!” after 30 minutes under Health and Safety grounds. […]

  12. always the same with these “new deal” escapades,they are looking nervous because they know their behavior is unjustified unfair provocative in tone condescending and unlawful,try putting in a written complaint they will be in a ball of sweat awaiting its contents.

    when the chase is cut to these schemes are pointless rubbish,they have no contents that will benefit anyone,its no good stating this is your requirement to continue receiving state benefits,it requires signing away your right to privacy which is a legal right that they totally treat with flagrancy. to state “so we can help you” this is complete rubbish too its used as an excuse to bully even more.i have seen and heard “tutors” shouting their heads off at people,these individuals’ deserve no place to be working with vulnerable unemployed people who are often in no fit state,anyone they think will poke the nest and cause “stings'” they dont want back in the future.


    September 16, 2010 at 3:02 pm

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