Anyone who has been to Jobcentre Plus in Ipswich recently (in particular Door B) will notice:
- Less Security Guards (G4s)
- Jobcentre staff restricting access to those without appointment/too early
The above might not be noticeable at all times, however, its clear that there is less G4s securtity guards deployed and Jobcentre Plus staff guarding Door B.
This is just a short post to allow discussion on this issue – for example:-
- Is Jobcentre Plus reducing expenditure on G4s security guards in regards to spending cuts?
- (If so..) Are these surplus to requirements security staff being laid off / made redundant?
- Why is Door B access being restricted? Why 2 members of staff being paid to do so?
- Why are those who are “too early” being turned away and told to come back later?
- Are those who are late to appointments (perhaps a few minutes) denied access and sanctioned?
- Is this good value of taxpayers money especially in time of cut backs?
I got a shock this week – the relaxed walk in and wander to the stairs, climb the stairs, wait at “reception desk” to hand in my ES40 booklet and the mandatory 20 minutes wait to be seen to, has been replaced. No longer am I allowed to access the building freely with implied consent due to having an appointment around such time of entry. I am treated as a trespassing stranger!
Now, I have to await processing. Immediately, I must provide my full name and my ES40 or particulars of other appointment. Then its down to the two Jobcentre Plus staff to decide whether the time I have arrived is acceptable for the appointment… am I too early? Am I late? Then once clearance I have to climb the stairs… and now there is no one on “reception”. I stand 5 minutes at the “reception desk”, and only once my presence has been noted by all the staff members working on the floor does someone come out of no where (this time the person was chatting to a colleague due to perhaps boredom?) to collect my ES40. Now its the mandatory 20 minutes wait to be seen.
It seems Jobcentre control over jobseekers have stepped up a gear. Have a problem with your claim? There is absolutely no chance you are going to get in without the police being called. Likewise, if you are late by a few minutes where you would have normally blended in without a problem (still wait another 15 minutes or so) you are denied being allowed to sign on. The staff acting as security guards do not look very happy and by the time I left looked half asleep.
- Is this happening at other Jobcentres?
- What are your experiences of this?