Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Mandatory Work Activity Preferred Bidders: ATOS and Other Chancers…

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Mandatory Work Activity – The scheme mandates four weeks’ unpaid work for up to 30 hours a week. Although the government claims it is “community work”, its definition of this includes working “for the profit of the host  organisation.

Mandatory Work Activity Preferred Bidders. Update: Friday 13 July 2012

Following a re-let exercise for CPA 01, the preferred bidders for Mandatory Work Activity are now as follows:

CPA CPA Name Preferred Bidder
CPA1 South East Atos
CPA2 South West Rehab Group
CPA3 London Seetec
CPA4 East of England Seetec
CPA5 East Midlands Ingeus
CPA6 West Midlands ESG
CPA7 North West JHP Group
CPA8 Yorkshire and Humber BEST
CPA9 North East Ingeus
CPA10 Scotland JHP Group
CPA11 Wales Rehab Group
 
Hat-Tip to Tobanem.
 
This is the full list of the companies getting their hands on forced labour contracts.
 
Nobody will be surprised that ATOS – with their ‘record’ – got their pushy feet through the door.
 

SEETEC is one of Britain’s top 100 ‘fastest growing companies’.

Seetec Business Technology Centre is another of the select handful of companies who also made last year’s Hot 100 list. In fact, despite the ravages of the recession, this recruitment and training company comfortably made it into our top 20 again. Founded in 1984, Seetec, based in Essex, has become one of the largest and most experienced providers of government-funded welfare to work and skills-training programmes. The company employs more than 500 people across a national network of 50 employment and training centres, and helps thousands of people each year to find work or gain qualifications through a diverse portfolio of employability or skills contracts. Last year, Seetec pulled in £21.2m in sales and profits of £2.112m. This enabled the company, which is 56 per cent owned by founder Peter Cooper, to pay total dividends of £990,608. Some ten per cent of the company’s shares are owned by an employee trust .

In 2011 the Guardian reports,  Peter Cooper, was paid nearly £2m in salary and share dividends.

We reported last year that  Seetec is reportedly refusing to reimburse travel expenses for those attending their Ipswich centre for complusory interviews for less than 2 hours.

 Rehab group is an Irish and British ‘Charity’.

This scandal broke in the Irish Republic last year (Here),
 

Former Miss World Rosanna Davison helped launch the charity’s online bingo site Former Miss World Rosanna Davison helped launch the charity’s online bingo site

The Sunday Times can reveal that the Rehab Group, Ireland’s largest disability-services charity, has received more than €365m from various state agencies in the past five years.

More than €33m of it came from the Charitable Lotteries Fund, set up to compensate charities for income lost to the National Lottery. Rehab’s total income from the fund since it was established in 1997 exceeds €75m.

It emerged three weeks ago that Angela Kerins, chief executive of Rehab Group, has an annual remuneration package worth more than €400,000. The charity, which employs 3,500 people and has a €200m annual turnover, says senior executives’ salaries are not drawn from state funds.

 
 The Guardian reports this on Ingeus, “Therese Rein, managing director of Ingeus, whose company paid £3.8m in dividends last year – Rein holds around 97% of its shares.”
 
 
JHP group is a model of transparency. |Of its Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director and  Jim Chambers we know this: “Annual Compensation: There is no Annual Compensation data available.Stocks Options: There is no Stock Options data available.

Total Compensation. There is no Total Compensation data available.

 
ESG is closely linked to  Sovereign Capital, a private equity company that makes a good living from public funds,
 
ESG: Gavin Freed Chief Executive.Gavin joined esg. as CEO in September 2010, while maintaining his role as CEO of Paragon Skills which he has held since May 2007. Paragon is a sister company to esg. being part of Sovereign Capital, a leading private equity group. Gavin’s role focuses on managing the executive team in its achievement of the operational and strategic business objectives of the two companies. His involvement with both allows esg.’s predominance in the north and Paragon’s strength in the south to combine and create a powerful, national provider integrating the best of employability and skills services.

BEST (Building Engineering Services Training) is a leading UK training provider for the Building Services Engineering (BSE) sector. 

They look like a company simply cashing in on the Employment Programme bonanza  for private ‘providers’.

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18 Responses

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  1. Note, ATOS have replaced A4E for running Mandatory Work Activity in the South East – A4E lost its contract in May this year after the fraud scandal. See the following link:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-18070203

    Also note, A4E have geographically disappeared altogether from the new list of preferred bidders for Mandatory Work Activity!

    Who is next?

    Tobanem

    July 16, 2012 at 5:48 pm

  2. Just changed the style again. Went off the last one.

    Anyway, yes A4E seem to be on the slide….

    Andrew Coates

    July 17, 2012 at 11:27 am

    • One point: if SEETEC is doing the Work Programme in Suffolk and they are also going to do Mandatory Work Activity, then they are going to be the Judge and the Jailor at the same time.

      Andrew Coates

      July 18, 2012 at 11:18 am

  3. Slight change of subject here.

    The squalid death of millionairess Eva Rausing continues to make the news. Now her husband is to be charged with “preventing the lawful and decent burial of her body”.

    Lo and behold, The Telegraph reports today that half of welfare recipients applying for “state funeral hand outs” are rejected. Instead of a “decent burial”, many welfare recipients who die are given a pitiful pauper’s funeral. See the report here:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/household-bills/9403521/Paupers-funerals-increase-as-Government-rejects-half-of-welfare-applicants.html#

    As I have said before, expect to see the victims of welfare reform – alive and dead – littering the streets of cardboard city soon.

    Tobanem

    July 18, 2012 at 11:23 am

    • There is a special Paupers’ section in Ipswich cemetery. I have been to a funeral there. Obviously they will have to find a larger place.

      Andrew Coates

      July 18, 2012 at 12:12 pm

  4. A benefits worker

    On Monday 16 July, at 12pm, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) Contact Centre Services released a previously embargoed statement, explaining that its Jobseeker’s Allowance Online (JSAOL) service would be outsourced to Capita from the end of September 2012, just a few weeks away.

    The JSAOL service is currently one of several options open to people newly claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, though the Department recently stated it wants to increase online applications from 20% of all new claims (at present) to 80% over just a few months, incentivising people to apply in this way by “prioritising” online claims over telephone or clerical (paper) applications. In practice this means customers without internet access or unable to use a computer will be penalised and wait longer for their benefit to be processed, which can already take up to six weeks.

    From September this year, these online claims will be handled by agents at Capita. The decision was made with no consultation with the PCS trade union, in spite of formal consultation processes regarding privatisation and outsourcing. The information was actually released to workers and local PCS reps in workplaces before the full information had been given to the PCS Group Executive, who had received a three paragraph memo without plans or timescales from the Contact Centre Services manager just a few hours prior to the announcement to workers. It appears that the member of DWP HR who was tasked with sending this memo to the union last week was in fact on annual leave until the day of the announcement. Nevertheless, no consultation took place.

    http://www.workersliberty.org/story/2012/07/17/benefits-workers-face-privatisation

    Workers Liberty

    July 18, 2012 at 11:44 am

    • Workers Liberty :
      A benefits worker
      On Monday 16 July, at 12pm, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) Contact Centre Services released a previously embargoed statement, explaining that its Jobseeker’s Allowance Online (JSAOL) service would be outsourced to Capita from the end of September 2012, just a few weeks away.
      The JSAOL service is currently one of several options open to people newly claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, though the Department recently stated it wants to increase online applications from 20% of all new claims (at present) to 80% over just a few months, incentivising people to apply in this way by “prioritising” online claims over telephone or clerical (paper) applications. In practice this means customers without internet access or unable to use a computer will be penalised and wait longer for their benefit to be processed, which can already take up to six weeks.
      From September this year, these online claims will be handled by agents at Capita. The decision was made with no consultation with the PCS trade union, in spite of formal consultation processes regarding privatisation and outsourcing. The information was actually released to workers and local PCS reps in workplaces before the full information had been given to the PCS Group Executive, who had received a three paragraph memo without plans or timescales from the Contact Centre Services manager just a few hours prior to the announcement to workers. It appears that the member of DWP HR who was tasked with sending this memo to the union last week was in fact on annual leave until the day of the announcement. Nevertheless, no consultation took place.
      http://www.workersliberty.org/story/2012/07/17/benefits-workers-face-privatisation

      Ive been saying for ages that our government outsources and passes on far to much of our data, a claim they refuse to answer yet state to any that ask that their respective data is safe.
      CAPITA for example does a lot of things, one of them is working for finance.
      Anyone who understands the DPA will tell you it is perfectly legal under the act to pass on debters information without consent. This being the case puts any one using the online system who has an outstanding debt at great risk.

      These exemptions are being abused by all including government to force through their way but even if they dont you are still at risk of having your data intercepted before it reaches the recipent. Again government claim no way yet refuse to except my challenge of how easy it is to do and why because they know i am right and that this will be used as a convenant excuse when such happens thus absolving themselves of any wrong doing.

      To be honest even using the inhouse phones to make a claim isnt any safer as no privacy is given and often you are surrounded by strangers all capable of hearing you pass on personal and sensitive data.

      Here is just 2 examples proving that government can make no claim of safety and as such must conceed to follow the data subjects controls as is outlined in the DPA instead of quoting the social security administration act as an exemption every time someone trys to do so.
      Notice how they claim on their paperwork to notify you for consent before passing your data onto third parties, ive never received that,have you?

      Another fear of government is that if they did follow the letter of the law instead of abusing it that it would give you power and rightly so under law to block such things as passing on your info to work providers,etc.

      I myself cant currently make a claim because despite the DPA being perfectly clear that JCP refuse to announce who exactly they pass the data onto which is included in the legal definition of processing under the DPA. The DPA states that all those processing or intending to, to fully state how exactly they PROCESS your data and like i already said that includes who they share it with. LOOK ON THEIR DOCS OR WEBSITE AND TELL ME IF THEY NAME ALL THIRD PARTIES?
      GO FURTHER AND TRY AND GET THEM TO TELL YOU WITHOUT ENVOKING THE FOI ACT.

      We’ve all heard from them how it all goes down and stays within a secure tunnel known as ENCRYPTED VPN and in all likely hood encrypt it even before doing that so we are possibly looking at double encryption. Now the chances are other than use the government dont actually own that either but merely user rights so if correct would mean the moment they send it that they have outsourced it. To give you some perspective GOOGLE uses its own cutting egde tech (linux actually) and is most certainly more hi tech than the government yet even they had multiple successful hacks where personal data was stolen. As we know GOOGLE was not singled out and other hi tech software used by super big companies were hit also.

      Lastly i felt duration my saga with JCP that they breached my DP so wrote to ICO and to date have not received a single solitary reply and why, because government owns that also so might have worked out who i am and what its about as i delibrately left that part out as would any sensible person knowing that government owns it. Please be aware todate i am not in receipt of benefit but trying to make a claim but before confirming my data wish to know under the DPA WHO EXACTLY ALL THE THIRD PARTIES ARE THAT MY INFORMATION IS OR COULD BE SHARED WITH WHICH UNDER THE SAME LAW MUST BE COMPLIED WITH BEFORE HANDLING PERSONAL AND SENSITIVE DATA.

      Basically they want me to hand it over and then have me try and fight it which is far harder to do as we all know that data must be retained for a period no more than necessary yet NECESSARY is not legally defined under the DPA so if you decide to opt out at a later point they wont simply destroy the data no matter the stress it causes.

      I strongly insist for the safety of all TO NOT USE THE ONLINE SYSTEM OR PHONES as your data is at great risk. If you wish to use a phone then ask for a secure room that will contain only you and an out going phone line. They might refuse so dont be surprized as your safety is not paramount to them and in earnest they dont have the slightest clue of how the DPA works and that includes the managers.Todate not one single person i have met at JCP understands it beyond the drival they have been told.

      At the end of the day if they want us to go to a work programme they only have to ask as im more than prepared to go except it will be on my terms with the providers regarding data not governments.

      gaia

      July 20, 2012 at 2:01 pm

      • PS: also remember as they do always state it that phone conversations are recorded for training purposes. It is illegal even for government to record any personal or sensitive data being forwarded prior to your consent/agreement and that not clearly stating such is read as YOU AGREE to the terms.

        gaia

        July 20, 2012 at 2:13 pm

      • For years Private Eye has called Capita Crapita.

        So nothing’s changed there then.

        Andrew Coates

        July 21, 2012 at 11:19 am

  5. According to this guardian article, the Trussell Trust only allows the starving a maximum of 3 food parcels a year. After that you’ve had it…

    Charlie D

    July 19, 2012 at 10:42 am

    • Thanks for that Charlie.

      It sounds absolutely dire. Just to take this,

      “Most of the recipients of aid barely notice the religious backdrop to the distribution sessions. Joseph Anderson, 44, is phlegmatic about the whole process. “The reason I am here? The dole decided I missed an appointment so they suspended my money.”

      He missed the appointment because he didn’t have the £3.60 for the bus fare and didn’t feel up to the nine-mile walk to the Jobcentre. He hasn’t worked since 2010 when he lost his job with ParcelForce, and is anxious to advertise his willingness to do so through the Guardian, hoping there may be readers ready to employ him. He highlights his skills with computer software, but also stresses that he is happy to take any kind of work. “I don’t want to be on jobseeker’s [allowance]. I’ll mend computers or do cleaning – anything. It isn’t easy to find work. I’m supposed to turn up smart [to interviews], but that costs money.”

      He ran out of food six days ago and thinks at home he is down to four tins of baked beans, one tin of ravioli and four potatoes. (Later he reveals the contents of his cupboard, and laughs: “I overestimated – I only had two tins of baked beans.”) It is the first time his benefits have been sanctioned and the first time he has received a food voucher. “It’s a good service, but we aren’t exactly a third-world country. We shouldn’t need places like this,” he says.”

      Andrew Coates

      July 19, 2012 at 10:52 am

  6. Although G4S have said they are not involved in workfare schemes, their mercenary business methods require a mention here because of the way they treat their employees. (For instance, G$S personnel employed at the London Olympics will be paid less than the going rate)!

    How about this report from down under:

    In Australia, G4S guards working in county courts and magistrates courts in the state of Victoria went on strike in 2009, demanding the same pay rates as guards at other major contractors in Victoria. Their union representative said they were “trapped on poverty wages and have an employer that won’t bargain in good faith.” He added “G4S is treating its employees with the same contempt is has shown for prisoners and asylum seekers in its care”.

    See an excellent report on the global activities of G4S here:

    http://www.corporatewatch.org.uk/?lid=339

    Tobanem

    July 20, 2012 at 8:10 am

  7. ATOS is at it again.

    Now ATOS is failing to provide audio recordings to the clients of Work Capability Assessments – an amazing blunder from one of the biggest IT companies in the world. Sounds like a cover-up form the outset!

    That is plainly not good enough when such a big company is paid £100 Million by the government to do its dirty work by cutting medical benefits. And don’t forget a further £80 Million of tax-payers money has to be spent on the subsequent appeals procedure.

    As one Guardian commentator said today: “its a bit like paying G4S for Olympic security and then getting the police and army to do it anyway”!

    Grayling offers the poor excuse: “Large scale purchase of [tape recording] machines in the absence of an evaluation of the process is not effective use of public money.”

    Is it ok to hand out vast sums of tax-payers money to private business companies at the expense of the poor and the sick?

    See the report in the guardian here:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2012/jul/20/fitness-for-work-tests-technical-chaos

    Tobanem

    July 21, 2012 at 9:16 am

  8. Tobanem :
    ATOS is at it again.
    Now ATOS is failing to provide audio recordings to the clients of Work Capability Assessments – an amazing blunder from one of the biggest IT companies in the world. Sounds like a cover-up form the outset!
    That is plainly not good enough when such a big company is paid £100 Million by the government to do its dirty work by cutting medical benefits. And don’t forget a further £80 Million of tax-payers money has to be spent on the subsequent appeals procedure.
    As one Guardian commentator said today: “its a bit like paying G4S for Olympic security and then getting the police and army to do it anyway”!
    Grayling offers the poor excuse: “Large scale purchase of [tape recording] machines in the absence of an evaluation of the process is not effective use of public money.”
    Is it ok to hand out vast sums of tax-payers money to private business companies at the expense of the poor and the sick?
    See the report in the guardian here:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2012/jul/20/fitness-for-work-tests-technical-chaos

    You’ve got to love the crap that comes from ATOS and the GOV.

    Anybody body has a right to record anything but if an individual is the focus of this recording, permission must be sort first. However if you believe something of an abusive nature is ocurring you can record in secret without permission as abuse is a crime and that includes abuse of power and or position so a judge will often entertain such a recording.

    If you still find yourself at an interview with atos and without a recording machine they cannot claim you stopped the interview as even though you requested to record the event, that actually its their refusal to let you record them on another device that stops it.

    wade

    July 24, 2012 at 2:15 pm

  9. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jul/23/poll-tax-back-cameron-localism

    The poll tax is back from the dead – it’s Cameron localismThe council tax benefit ‘reform’ is yet another example of the axe being devolved – and of the poorest being hit hardest

    The Commons have long departed, the country awaits the joy of archery and weight-lifting, but the House of Lords plods on regardless and disregarded. The few peers who follow the fiendish complexity of local government finance and social security are again toiling over the monstrous deformity that is Eric Pickles’ council tax benefit “reform”. In myriad ways David Cameron’s government is intent on reprising the Thatcher revolution by slashing the state and privatising the public realm. But you might think there was one lesson from her history that he would strenuously avoid repeating – the poll tax. Amazingly, here it comes again.

    Here’s the background: on average, households pay £1,000 a year in council tax. Until now, households on low incomes were exempt or paid only according to their means, so 5.9m households received council tax benefit. From next April, the benefit is cut by 10%, which is bad enough; but then insanity takes over. Each local authority will be given the sum that was handed out in benefit in their area (less 10%) to disperse as they please. They must keep paying the full benefit to pensioners and “the vulnerable”. Each council must choose who is “vulnerable”, as the government refuses to provide its own definition. Half of the recipients are pensioners, so protecting them means all other low-income households bear the whole cut, averaging 20%. People who live in areas with a lot of pensioners or a lot of the “vulnerable” will suffer the biggest cuts, as much as 30% or more. The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) says low-income households in Haringey, north London, lose £38 a year.

    The Guardian

    July 24, 2012 at 3:21 pm

  10. i have been told by two ex colleagues, independently, that one providers’s forecasts suggest that they will not generate enough revenue form sustainability payments to pay staff and that they will start laying people off very soon…

    Shaun W

    July 25, 2012 at 7:11 am

  11. Tobanem

    July 26, 2012 at 2:25 pm


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