Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Is this How Jobcentres Operate? Beyond Belief Barely Covers it…..

with 111 comments

From written Parliamentary Evidence just out (Hat tip  NB).

 

John Longden –Personal Adviser

A Statement on events witnessed by me at Salford Jobcentre Plus and Rochdale Jobcentre Plus between 2011 and 2013

 

Summary

1.0              Managers at both district level and in the local office created a culture which encouraged staff to view the customer (benefit claimant) as an obstacle to performance. The Jobcentre operations became wholly performance led. Sanctions of customers were encouraged by managers daily, with staff being told to look at every engagement with the customer as an opportunity to take sanction action. I was personally told by a manager to “agitate” and “Inconvenience” customers in order to get them to leave the register. The staff performance management system was used inappropriately in order to increase submissions to the Decision Maker and therefore to increase sanctions on customers. Senior HR managers condoned this behaviour by refusing to issue guidelines on appropriate time limits on performance, which encouraged managers to look at short-term targets above staff development, fairness to customers and appropriate behaviour as set out in the departments own values.

Detail

2.0              Managers at Salford Jobcentre, created an environment where every action with a customer could lead to loss of benefits. They made the decision to mandate customers to all job programmes regardless of their suitability. They did this by applying a benefit direction on the customer to make them attend. The purpose was to increase the opportunity to sanction a customer, should they fail any part of the direction. My line manager reporting back from the district managers meeting stated that the message from the District Manager with regard to customers was –“let’s set them up from day 1”. Managers’ actions and words didn’t reflect the values and behaviours set down by department, they set the wrong examples and acted without any accountability.

2.1              There was an unhealthy and unprofessional working environment for staff. Managers created and encouraged a confrontational approach towards the customer and the office manager at Salford set up “DMA hit squads” to target customers for sanction action. Customers dealt with by these squads had their job search scrutinised at an almost forensic level in order to get a suspension of benefit. The Office manager would call the customer record of a job applications a “micky Mouse” job search and customers would often break down and cry or argue because they felt that they were being treated unfairly.

2.2              The office manager and her management team asked advisers to set unreasonable targets for customers to find work as part of their jobseekers agreements. This included asking customers to apply for a minimum of 6 jobs per week, regardless of their skills or experience. The aim was to find an opportunity to make a referral to the decision maker with the possibility of getting the customer sanctioned. It was distressing to see so many customers treated in such a way. The actions of the managers put the safety of staff at risk with arguments and incidents by customers a daily occurrence. Security was called frequently to restore order as were the police. Staff were asked to double the number of daily interviews they conducted in order to achieve targets and inconvenience the customer. This put stress on staff well-being and health.

2.3              Challenging targets for individual performance were used to cover ghost targets for Decision Maker. This led to perverse behaviour, such as making customers attend the jobcentre daily in the hope they would miss an appointment or be late. This would result in benefit being suspended or the claim closed. This was setting customers up to fail in order to reach targets.  Changes in the Personal Development rules gave scope for managers to threaten disciplinary action on staff who failed to make sufficient referrals to Decision Maker, rather than address any real issues about training. The Cluster manager at Rochdale Jobcentre issued office wide Performance Improvement Plans (PiP) to all staff in order to improve monthly performance figures on DMA, Programme referrals and MFA (More Frequent Attendance). I was issued with one of these PiPs to get more MFA referrals despite myself being an excellent performer. In my 23 years I had never had any PiPs or questions about my performance. I felt let down and demoralised as this was an insult to my efforts.  I was required to hit the same level of referrals to a Decision Maker each week – regardless of circumstances, or i would be marked as a poor performer. As an experienced adviser I would expect my referrals to go down over time, not go up, or stay at the same level.

2.4              Staff was told not just to increase referrals to the Decision Maker but also to focus on particular conditionality questions –such as Actively Seeking Employment, and Fail to Attend Adviser appointments as this would cause the maximum discomfort to the customer. I noticed that my own and other adviser appointments that were being booked where the customer was not informed.  These interviews had been booked by the office manager [name deleted] and by her assistant under her instruction, with the intention of closing down the claim and claiming an off-flow performance target or in order to take DMA action against the client. She had indicated clearly in the conversation box that the interview had been booked and the customer notified in person with a letter by hand, even though this could not have been the case. These fake interviews were clearly illegal action and gross misconduct. There were many instances of this happening with other advisers. I informed my line manager, [name deleted] but was accused of lying – even though I presented him with the evidence. No action taken and the bookings continued.

2.5              Staff were threatened by the cluster manager that their jobs would be taken by other people if they didn’t do what they were told. Staff were regularly told by managers to “agitate” and “inconvenience” customers. I notified the Whistleblower of these activities on more than one occasion but nothing changed.

2.6              Customers were being deliberately treated inappropriately in order to achieve performance without regard for natural justice and their welfare.  Daily signing was introduced across the board initially to anyone claiming over 6 months but gradually to include new claimants. This was done to inconvenience the customer. One customer was made to attend daily for two months and eventually broke down and wept in the office. Staff were being asked to behave in a manner that was against the departments’ values of integrity and honesty.  An environment was created where staffs’ own safety was at risk, and their respect, and professionalism was diminished.

 

 

A Timeline of some Events

3.0              Apr 2011 – summary of my personal development identified in my personal review states “John to apply DMA appropriately to attain 4% target on ASE, Availability, RE & MFA, to achieve minimum standard of 4% referral rate”.

3.1              06/05/11 – Team meeting was informed by [name deleted] (team Leader) that DMA referral target across the team was now to be 2.4% per month.

3.2              17/06/11 – Team Meeting was informed by [name deleted] that each adviser must do 2 Mandatory Work Activity referrals per month. Staff were asked to mandate customers to training by giving a direction. This was done to increase the prospect of sanctioning customers.

3.3              13/07/11 – attended culture workshop at Regional Office held by the Transformation Team. Issues raised by staff within the District were

•              Staff are expected to play the game and not rock the boat

•              Make sure all boxes are ticked rather than analyse the work we do

•              Good work is not recognised if it is not performance

•              No transparency or consistency in management behaviour

3.4              22/07/11 – managers at Salford office decide to withdraw flexi-credit for medical appointments for staff, in breach of well-being guidelines. Staff are told by Office manager [name deleted] that they are stealing money for time they are not working. This measure was confirmed by cluster manager [name deleted].

3.5              22/07/11 – spoke with my line manager [name deleted] about customer interviews that were being booked where the customer was not informed.  These interviews had been booked by the office manager [name deleted] for the intention of closing down the claim and claiming an off-flow performance target or to take DMA action against the client. She had indicated clearly in the conversation box that the interview had been booked and the customer notified in person with a letter by hand. This was clearly illegal action and gross misconduct. There were many instances of this happening with other advisers. [name deleted] accused me of lying – so showed him the evidence. No action taken and the bookings continued.

3.6              23/07/11 – I challenged the withdrawing of medical flexi-credit by raising the matter with the Senior HR Business Partner. She investigated it and found in my favour. Although she notified the district operations manager that the flexi-credit had to be restored, it was never notified to staff by any of the managers and I had to send an office communication to inform staff.

3.7              26/07/11 – Phoned the whistle-blower hotline to report the inappropriate booking of customer interviews. This action has now been assigned by [name deleted] to a member of staff whose purpose is to look at all adviser interviews across the office and rebook them at short notice for customers to attend on dates which may only be a couple of days after their last attendance – again with the intention of getting a Fail to Attend and closure of claim – to achieve high Off –Flow targets.

3.8              05/08/11 – team meeting [name deleted] reports back from the district managers meeting that DMA is falling behind the 2% target and in regard to our customers that we must “set them up from day one”.

3.9              24/08/11 – Office manager [name deleted] tells staff that any customer who attends late on their signing day is not to be signed but booked to come back in on the next day. This is to punish the customer –regardless of the reason for their late attendance- by delaying their payments sometimes by as much as 3 days

3.10              September 2011 – made aware by a member of staff that they have contacted the Whistle-blower hotline to report [name deleted] for asking staff in her team meeting to make customers sign daily so as to inconvenience them.

3.11              28/10/11 – rang RAD Whistle-blower Hotline to report that inappropriate booking of customer interviews was still continuing. Member of staff at RAD informed me that she didn’t feel that anything would be done about it, as the report went to the line manager of the person I was complaining about. They felt that this way things were able to be hushed up.

3.12              16/12/11- District Operations Manager – [name deleted] attends Salford Jobcentre. I attend a meeting with other staff in which we raised our concerns about being asked to set up customers to fail, the inappropriate booking of interviews and being asked to agitate customers. He got angry with us and said “you are hitting your targets but you don’t seem to care”. I asked how the district was planning on implementing the departments 7 cultural challenges.  [name deleted] said – “what are those?” when I explained them he said –“we do things differently in this district”. I asked him if he was aware of the way we were being told to behave to customers and he said –“I don’t see any complaints on my desk”. When I asked another question – he said “don’t get smart son”. It was one of the most dispiriting experiences I have encountered.

3.13              March 2012 – June 2012 Harassed by my line manager [name deleted] and physically threatened, which was over-heard by another member of staff.

3.14              27 June 2012 – Office Communications meeting attended by [name deleted] and [name deleted]. [name deleted] congratulates the office for their performance, he says “I live in Salford and I see the type of people you are dealing with, I see these people hanging around the precinct and shopping around town, lazy, drinking and taking drugs”. Such a bad example to set as a leader that he judges people by where they live and what they look like. [name deleted] then talks about the new sanction regime and says of the customers –“don’t forget these people are taking your money, you are civil servants, you are paid to do what you are told, if you don’t like it, someone else will take your job”.

3.15              05/07/2012 – new line manager [name deleted] tells me to stop phoning and emailing vacancies to customers and asks me to get them into the office. I ask why and she tells me that I need to “agitate” them. I ask her what she means by agitating and she says – we don’t want people to get comfortable claiming benefit, we want to inconvenience them so that they will sign off.

3.16              Sept 2012 – Start at new office Rochdale Jobcentre. Write a letter to [DWP Permanent Secretary] about the culture at Salford and how I was told to agitate customers.

3.17              Oct 2012 – Receive letter from [DWP Director of Work Services] stating that they are satisfied that there has been no inappropriate behaviour at Salford.

 

3.18              Feb 2013 – All but a handful of staff at Rochdale Jobcentre are put on Pre Performance Improvement Plans as a preliminary to disciplinary action. The PiPs are issued in order to hit monthly performance targets on programme referrals, DMA and MFA. The evidence can be checked on RM system. The instruction was made to managers by [name deleted] the cluster manager.

3.19              March 2013 – team meeting in which staff are told to increase the amount of submissions               to the Decision Maker and in particular to do more ASE (Actively Seeking Referrals).

 

People Mentioned in this document and their role

4.0              [names of DWP staff and managers deleted].

 

Advertisements

Written by Andrew Coates

January 19, 2015 at 12:27 pm

111 Responses

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Reblogged this on Britain Isn't Eating.

    A6er

    January 19, 2015 at 12:45 pm

  2. Reblogged this on | truthaholics and commented:
    Moral bankruptcy – shocking abuse of the least-privileged while Cameron and chums offer tax-breaks to the wealthiest.

    truthaholics

    January 19, 2015 at 12:52 pm

  3. I wonder what the DWP will have to say about this, or will they just fain ignorance again.

    Obi Wan Kenobi

    January 19, 2015 at 1:55 pm

  4. Obi Wan Kenobi

    January 19, 2015 at 2:03 pm

  5. Reblogged this on sdbast.

    sdbast

    January 19, 2015 at 2:32 pm

  6. Reblogged this on glynismillward189.

  7. rainbowwarriorlizzie

    January 19, 2015 at 2:46 pm

  8. The Work and Pensions Select Committee announces the second of three oral evidence sessions for its inquiry into benefit sanctions policy beyond the Oakley Review.

    You can watch the Session live on Parliament TV or on BBC Parliament Channel.

    Witnesses

    Wednesday 21 January 2014, Grimond Room, Portcullis House

    At 9.30am

    Alison Garnham, Chief Executive, Child Poverty Action Group
    Lois Race, Service Manager, Derbyshire County Council
    Dr Kayleigh Garthwaite, Durham University
    Fiona Weir, Chief Executive Officer, Gingerbread
    At 10.30am

    Ben Robinson, Head of Policy, Community Links
    Steve Hughes, Head of Economic and Social Policy, Policy Exchange
    Mark Serwotka, General Secretary, and Helen Flanagan, Vice-President DWP, Public and Commercial Services Union
    Professor David Stuckler, University of Oxford

    Purpose of the session

    The session explores:

    The local authority perspective, including the potential impacts of sanctioning on local welfare assistance provision

    The potential health impacts of sanctioning, particularly in relation to ESA claimants

    The application of conditionality and sanctions to single parent claimants

    Jobcentre Plus (JCP) staff and managers’ attitudes and approaches to conditionality and sanctioning; the impact of JCP benefit off-flow targets and sanctioning rates

    The destinations of sanctioned claimants
    Possible reforms and alternatives to the current sanctioning system

    http://dpac.uk.net/2015/01/work-and-pensions-committee-hold-evidence-session-into-benefit-sanctions/

    Obi Wan Kenobi

    January 19, 2015 at 2:52 pm

  9. Reblogged this on UNEMPLOYED IN TYNE & WEAR and commented:
    From experience, I’d say its EXACTLY how Jobcentres operate.

    untynewear

    January 19, 2015 at 2:57 pm

  10. I do love it when the truth comes out, and so becomes known to more and more people, a few people have already seen a change of attitude from the advisers in jobcentres, I will be seeing my health adviser tomorrow and will see just how they have changed their attitude toward human beings.

    It’s good news for everyone.

    enigma

    January 19, 2015 at 3:30 pm

  11. Twice as many EU immigrants claiming unemployment benefits in UK than vice versa, new research shows

    Almost 65,000 EU nationals are getting Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) in the UK compared to around 30,000 Britons claiming unemployment benefits elsewhere in the EU.

    More than 30,000 people from Slovakia, Latvia, Hungary, Poland, Lithuania and Romania are claiming unemployment benefits in the UK, the research revealed. Less than 30 Britons claim the equivalent benefits in those countries.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/immigration/11355148/Twice-as-many-EU-immigrants-claiming-unemployment-benefits-in-UK-than-vice-versa-new-research-show.html

    enigma

    January 19, 2015 at 4:29 pm

    • That’s because there are very very few British people living in those countries.

      The figure of 65,000 people from the rest of the EU claiming benefits in the UK is incredibly low if you consider the numbers of EU migrants in the country.

      “The research shows more than four times as many Britons obtain unemployment benefits in Germany as Germans do in the UK, while the number of jobless Britons receiving benefits in Ireland exceeds their Irish counterparts in the UK by a rate of five to one.

      There are not only far more Britons drawing benefits in these countries than vice versa, but frequently the benefits elsewhere in Europe are much more generous than in the UK. A Briton in France receives more than three times as much as a jobless French person in the UK.

      The research is being published after the German chancellor, Angela Merkel, visited London this month for talks with the prime minister, David Cameron, who is campaigning to “reform” EU freedom of movement as part of his attempt to rewrite the terms of Britain’s EU membership before putting the issue to a referendum in 2017, if he is still in power.

      In Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Austria, France and Ireland the number of Britons banking unemployment cheques is almost three times as high as the nationals of those countries receiving parallel UK benefits – 23,011 Britons to 8,720 nationals of those nine countries in the UK.

      The findings highlight a more nuanced and complex picture across Europe than the simplistic version painted by anti-immigration and anti-EU campaigners led by Ukip and elements in the Conservative party.

      About 2.5% of Britons in other EU countries are claiming unemployment benefits – the same level as the roughly 65,000 EU nationals claiming jobseeker’s allowance in the UK.

      Dr Roxana Barbulescu, researcher on international migration at the University of Sheffield, said the numbers claiming unemployment benefits were minuscule. “Thirty thousand people, or 2.5% of all British nationals, in other EU member states means that the overwhelming majority of Brits abroad as well as European citizens in Britain are not an undue burden for the countries in which they live.”

      The data shows an east-west split in the pattern of Britons benefiting from often more generous unemployment payments, as well as a north-south divide.

      The picture is quite different for the poorer east European countries which have joined the EU over the past decade, with hardly any Britons drawing unemployment benefits in those countries.
      In search of the only Briton in Poland claiming benefits
      Read more

      The figures for nationals of those 10 east European countries drawing jobseeker’s allowance in the UK remain modest, despite the periodical outcries about “benefits tourism”. There are only about 1,000 Romanians and 500 Bulgarians, for example, drawing jobseeker’s allowance in Britain, according to the Department for Work and Pensions. Of the almost 30,000 Britons on unemployment benefits in other EU countries, only 62 are in the 10 countries that have joined since 2004.
      Advertisement

      The pattern of Britons being treated generously in Scandinavia and northern Europe goes into reverse around the poorer south, with Italians, Spanish and Portuguese out of work in the UK outnumbering the unemployed Britons in those countries by 13,580 to 5,670.

      But, with the number of Britons in Spain three times that of Spaniards in Britain, and given the demographic differences between these two groups of migrants, the pressure on Spain’s finances is most likely to be on its health service.

      The data appears to belie British complaints amplified in the PM’s speech on immigration in November in which he demanded curbs on freedom of movement in the EU and new measures discriminating between natives and EU citizens in low-paid work, adding that the UK was getting a raw deal from the EU system of citizenship rights and reciprocal social security arrangements.

      Jean-Claude Juncker, the European commission president, told the Guardian in December that Cameron could tinker with British law on social security and migrant rights, but that enshrining discrimination in EU law was a no-go area.

      British officials concede that the government may have run up against the limits of what it can accomplish with domestic legislation and would need changes at EU level.

      Merkel, the most powerful politician in the EU, has made plain to Cameron what senior diplomats in Brussels describe as her “red lines” – the untouchability of freedom of movement.

      “It’s going to be a very, very hard act [for Cameron] to pull off,” said a diplomat. “The Germans have set their red lines. Others are saying: ‘We’re not changing things just to suit [Britain].’”

      Mediation of the British issue will fall to Donald Tusk, who chairs EU summits. The former Polish prime minister will be less than keen to agree concessions affecting the many Poles in Britain – at 15,000, the biggest single EU nationality drawing UK jobseeker’s allowance, against just two Britons recorded as receiving Polish unemployment benefit. The task will get harder in 2015 if, as many predict, Jarosław Kaczyński – a chippy, bristling rightwing nationalist – becomes Poland’s prime minister.

      Commenting on the Guardian findings, the EU commissioner for justice, consumers and gender equality, Vĕra Jourová, said: “Free movement of our citizens is essential to the European Union. It is a fundamental right and an asset to our union. Free movement of people – to work, live and travel in other EU countries – is at the core of having a strong single market and it benefits our economy and society. Abuse weakens free movement. Therefore, member states need to tackle abuse decisively where it happens and EU rules provide the tools to do this.”

      The data on those receiving unemployment benefit across the EU is just one small snapshot of the immigration and free movement issue. The different countries’ welfare systems vary hugely, complicating efforts at comparison. The payouts offer an approximate equivalent enabling rough comparisons.

      According to government figures, there are 2.7 million EU nationals in Britain and 1.3 million UK citizens living elsewhere in the EU.”

      http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/jan/19/-sp-thousands-britons-claim-benefits-eu

      Andrew Coates

      January 19, 2015 at 4:49 pm

      • We all know of the governments figures, with anything, they can’t be trusted.

        enigma

        January 19, 2015 at 5:26 pm

  12. Reblogged this on markcatlin3695's Blog.

    Mark Catlin

    January 19, 2015 at 4:39 pm

  13. Reblogged this on Wake Up Before It's Too Late and commented:
    Unbelievable…

    wakeupbeforeitstoolate

    January 19, 2015 at 4:56 pm

  14. To listen to tomorrow evening: 20/01/2015
    File on 4

    Benefit sanctions are supposed to be part of a system helping people back to work. But critics say they penalise the vulnerable and are among the reasons for the growing use of food banks. So how fair is the Government’s system of withholding state payments for those who don’t comply with welfare rules? Allan Urry hears from whistleblowers who allege some JobCentrePlus staff are setting claimants up to fail in order to meet internal performance targets. Why did a recovering amputee lose his benefits because he didn’t answer the phone?

    Reporter: Allan Urry Producer: Nicola Dowling.

    Radio Four 20.00

    38 minutes

    Andrew Coates

    January 19, 2015 at 5:25 pm

  15. In March, a new, US company, Maximus, will take on the job of assessing whether claimants are eligible for sickness and disability benefits. To listen to ministers’ excitement about the switch, it is as though this moment heralds a beautiful new dawn for the most controversial scheme in the government’s welfare reform programme.

    But how much better, or even different, this new dawn will be remains uncertain. Anyone who has followed the unhappy saga of Atos and the work capability assessment, through what has been one of the most troubled government outsourcing contracts in history, will be sceptical.

    http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jan/18/after-hated-atos-quits-will-maximus-make-work-assessments-less-arduous

    enigma

    January 19, 2015 at 5:37 pm

  16. Reblogged this on Citizens, not serfs.

    prayerwarriorpsychicnot

    January 19, 2015 at 5:58 pm

  17. Fuck, we have to stop these people. No question!

    ghost whistler

    January 19, 2015 at 6:09 pm

  18. John Longden –Personal Adviser

    A Statement on events witnessed by me at Salford Jobcentre Plus and Rochdale Jobcentre Plus between 2011 and 2013

    Every word confirmed.sadly no mention of G4s wading in also to intimidate.

    customers would often break down and cry or argue because they felt that they were being treated unfairly.

    those with disabilities too,phone the police on the spot and insist they attend.you can corroborate the scandalous behaviour above as being widespread internal policy

    ken

    January 19, 2015 at 7:26 pm

  19. Low Pay Britain: Channel 4 Dispatches was quite good.
    ZHC, fake apprenticeships, fake self-employment, crap agencies, just like wot we all keep saying…
    This must be Dave’s idea of full employment.

    http://www.channel4.com/info/press/news/low-pay-britain-channel-4-dispatches
    http://www.channel4.com/programmes/dispatches/on-demand/60547-001

    Another Fine Mess

    January 19, 2015 at 10:06 pm

    • I will have a watch – nice find.

      Press Release in full as below…

      Channel 4 Dispatches will tonight (Monday 19 January) reveal the reality of employment for many in modern Britain and the big British brands benefitting from complex schemes which allow them to save hundreds of millions of pounds on their wage bill.

      Research for the programme, led by reporter Morland Sanders, reveals that the Government’s positive headlines of rising employment figures belies a concerning reality, in which companies such as Tesco benefit from lower National Insurance contributions and agency workers at top online fashion brand ASOS can earn as little as £3.08 an hour.

      30% of the jobs created since 2008 have been part time, but Dispatches reveals that half of the UK’s part time workers earn so little that they make no National Insurance contributions at all.

      This puts workers’ future state pension in serious jeopardy, leaving them to face an uncertain future with the possibility of spending their retirement in poverty.

      As the Conservatives put jobs and economic recovery at the heart of their election strategy, Dispatches investigates the Government’s claim that almost 2 million jobs have been created, and finds that the reality for many workers is that they are in highly flexible, insecure part time work, precarious self-employment, and ultra low pay.

      Universal Jobmatch

      January 19, 2015 at 10:35 pm

      • … 30% of the jobs created since 2008 have been part time, but Dispatches reveals that half of the UK’s part time workers earn so little that they make no National Insurance contributions at all.

        This puts workers’ future state pension in serious jeopardy, leaving them to face an uncertain future with the possibility of spending their retirement in poverty. …

        The flat rate pension grants NIL STATE PENSION FOR LIFE for many reasons, but primary for less than 10 years NI contribution / credit history for those retiring from next year on and from 6 April 2016. Whereas now you get some pro rata basic state pension for 1 year NI history.
        See why under my petition, in my WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT section, at:
        https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/state-pension-at-60-now

        It is said half of the over 50s and over 60s are within the working poor far below a living wage, denied state pension payout by the raised retirement age, payable even if remain in work.

        Chris

        January 29, 2015 at 11:13 pm

    • Tesco

      Tesco is the biggest private sector employer in Britain.

      A snapshot of all customer assistant jobs being advertised on the Tesco website on one day showed 96% of the 785 posts were part time, sometimes just a few hours a week and earning contracted hours amounting to as little as £200 a month, Channel 4 Dispatches estimates that Tesco could save up to £100m a year in National Insurance contributions if staff worked their contracted hours only.

      The former HR director of Morrisons, Norman Pickavance says, “It’s a huge amount of money for every person that they have on this kind of contract – you are talking about a reduction in the order of 14% per worker so it is a huge benefit.”

      Channel 4 Dispatches also reveals that half of Britain’s part time workers aren’t earning enough to quality for National Insurance contributions, putting their future state pension at risk.

      There are 6.8m part time workers in the UK and think tank The Resolution Foundation estimate that 3.4m employees are currently earning below the NI threshold (they believe this figure will rise to 3.5m by April 2015).

      Tesco told Dispatches “Our 300,000 colleagues are at the heart of our business… For a great many, shorter hours on flexible contracts helps them fit work around other priorities like full-time education or caring responsibilities, or they have chosen to work a few hours a week after reaching retirement age… Managers are always available to colleagues to discuss how we can support them to get the hours they need.”

      Universal Jobmatch

      January 19, 2015 at 10:36 pm

    • ASOS

      The opening of the ASOS warehouse in Grimethorpe, South Yorkshire, hailed as ‘a success story’ by David Cameron, was taken as a sign that the country was moving out of recession as 3,000 jobs were created in an area with the second highest youth unemployment rate in the country. Dispatches reveals that a substantial number of workers have been hired directly from Eastern Europe rather than the local area.

      ASOS outsource the running of the warehouse to logistics company Norbert Dessantrangle. NDL use an employment agency called Qualitycourse Ltd, trading as Transline Resource Group to supply workers. In 2014 Transline were crowned Temporary Recruitment Agency of the year

      Some Transline workers who spoke to Dispatches believed they would be offered permanent jobs on completion of a temporary 12 week contract, but were laid off before completion of this period. After 12 weeks employment agency workers enjoy the same pay and conditions as permanent employees.

      Transline Resource Group also use a complex salary sacrifice scheme which involves the worker being paid partly in expenses, enabling Transline to avoid some National Insurance and PAYE contributions.

      Across the UK, companies that pay people in this way are depriving the Government of significant revenue.

      Tax Barrister Jolyon Maugham QC says, “These are hundreds of millions if not billions of pounds. That’s money that we sorely need to fund the National Health Service and indeed that we need to repair the deficit.”

      Dispatches reveals that some Transline workers at ASOS received very low wages, in one instance as low as £3.08 an hour before expenses.

      Transline told us they use apprentices and therefore the apprentice rate of national minimum wage applies – currently £2.73 per hour. The workers we spoke to on these low rates said they had no idea they were apprentices, and that they received no specialist training apart from their normal job induction.

      Referring to ASOS, Transline told Dispatches: “In the past 14 months, nearly 1,300 people we have supplied have secured permanent jobs at this site. We’re not aware of any dissatisfaction among the workforce.” It added that temporary workers earn the same as their “permanent comparators” and there are no “onerous Agency Worker Regulations which Transline would want or need to avoid on the expiry of 12 weeks service.”

      ASOS told Dispatches that running of its Barnsley site is “100% outsourced” to logistics company Norbert Dentressangle, but added: “We take all matters relating to people associated with or employed by our company extremely seriously, this includes our supply chain.” Norbert Dentressangle said it was “satisfied that the provision of labour at the Barnsley distribution centre is both legal and fully compliant”.

      Universal Jobmatch

      January 19, 2015 at 10:36 pm

      • Yes, geting paid in Expenses – What People don’t realise is that you get charged for the processing of those Expenses, and on top of that they Take twice as much for themselves!!!

        Found that out when I was at G4S. Never claimed expenses as saw no reason to give them even more money in addition to my Poor Baseline Pay.

        Gazza

        January 20, 2015 at 1:43 pm

      • I am a local young adult (27) in Barnsley. One of the many unemployed youths/young adults in the town, there are also many older people who are unemployed, but many of these end up on the sick and quite often they do end up mentally disabled from the constant poverty, unemployment, feelings of worthlessness etc.

        Upon interview for ASOS (I have warehouse experience of 2 years, and have a fork lift truck license, have used PPTs etc. – and am more than capable of physically pushing a trolley around like they do in ASOS). I was told they would not employ me as I had been unemployed for too long.

        A week after 6 coach loads of Poles were bused in. A Polish friend gained employment with them although he had been unemployed much longer than me and had no warehouse experience.

        I have nothing against the Poles, like my fellow men and women in Barnsley, they are being exploited, we all are. I do have something against ASOS though.

        Anonymous for fear of sanction

        January 21, 2015 at 11:32 pm

    • Transline Resource Group

      Transline used to supply workers to a factory in Bolton, which makes own brand pizzas for Britain’s biggest retailers. But the food industry is different as workers are protected by a Government body called the Gangmasters’ Licensing Authority, or GLA which regulates their employment.

      When the GLA inspectors called in 2013, they didn’t like what they found. Transline was running a salary sacrifice scheme, paying workers partly in expenses and partly in wages. The GLA found Transline was likely not to be paying “adequate tax and National Insurance contributions”.

      The GLA reviewed a sample of payslips and found that some workers were receiving much less than the National Minimum Wage “some… significantly so.” In fact, one worker was paid just £2.87 an hour before expenses. Transline advised the GLA that they were employing apprentices. This is significant because apprentices in their first year of work get a much lower rate of national minimum wage – in 2012 it was just £2.68 an hour.

      However, the GLA found the “workers interviewed did not consider they were employed as apprentices”. The GLA ruled that Transline had failed its licensing standard by not paying the national minimum wage, and also found Transline’s Managing Directors Paul Beaseley and Jon Taylor not “fit and proper” persons to hold a GLA licence, meaning Transline can no longer supply workers into food production. But they were free to work in other sectors, like ASOS, paying workers in similar ways.

      Transline said, “At no point have Transline paid below the national minimum wage”. They said they have invested in software which prevents a worker from being paid less than the “applicable national minimum wage” and ensures employee aren’t worse off through the salary sacrifice scheme. “Such safeguards and systems are specifically designed to ensure that Transline do not break the law.”

      Universal Jobmatch

      January 19, 2015 at 10:37 pm

      • This sounds familiar in 19th and 20th Century UK history.

        The Industrial Revolution had the truck system, where workers were paid part in wages and part in vouchers or token coins.

        Wikipaedia: (called in some dialects scrip or chit)
        Paid in kind, rather than with standard currency.
        In a prosecution brought against a Manchester cotton manufacturer in 1827, one worker gave evidence that he had received wages of only two shillings in nine months; the rest “he was obliged to take [in goods] from the manufacturer’s daughter, who was also the cashier”.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truck_system

        So the salary sacrifice scheme is the return of the
        Truck System, abolished by the British Truck Acts.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truck_Acts

        A rose is a rose by any other name ….

        Chris

        January 29, 2015 at 11:53 pm

    • MAC Professional Solutions

      Channel 4 Dispatches also went undercover to a meeting with an umbrella group, MAC Professional Solutions. Posing as the owner of a recruitment agency, our reporter was told how he could lawfully save money in PAYE and NI by employing workers through an umbrella firm.

      General Manager Patrick Shaw explained the avoidance scheme saying, “There’s tax evasion – illegal; tax avoidance which is perfectly legal. It’s, you know, helping the contractors avoid paying tax legally and we do that by use of contractor’s expenses. You’re saving money and you’re saving a good chunk of money – if I’m lucky enough to have a lot of contracts with your agency I’m making a lot of money. “

      Shaw also explained how workers on one of his avoidance schemes could be employed below the national minimum wage and would not be entitled to key rights; “They’re not classified as an employee or worker, so technically the National Minimum Wage is £6.50 doesn’t exist… To be perfectly frank, they’ve got no holiday pay rights, they’ve got no employee rights…they’ve got no worker rights.”

      Mac Professional Solutions said: “In December 2014 we underwent a review by HM Revenue and Customs and were found to be fully compliant with no issues about our operations raised… The vast majority of those that we engage with are better off as a result and none of them are compelled to do so in the first place…”

      Universal Jobmatch

      January 19, 2015 at 10:38 pm

      • What gets me is, all those people who are in paid employment but not receiving the minimum wage, they have no choice but stay in that job, just like millions of other paid workers.

        It’s slavery.

        enigma

        January 19, 2015 at 10:57 pm

  20. I assume this John Longden is an ex-employee who was dismissed? Kept his silence in order to keep his pay cheque… stayed a long time after he reported behaviour to the whistle blower line.

    Anyone got a non-redacted version of this? We needs names in order for accountability.

    Universal Jobmatch

    January 19, 2015 at 10:22 pm

    • “Dismissed” That’s what I was thinking, similar to the one a week or so ago where someone who was unfairly dismissed posted a message telling us things they shouldn’t have, I think that person just told us what was going on just because they were dismissed.

      The names need to be known really as you noted.

      enigma

      January 19, 2015 at 10:30 pm

      • I think there needs to be a balance between full DPA rights and accountability especially within scope of public sector workers.

        There is no crime for a newspaper to use someones name (even if implying them of wrong doing) – such a person has the ability to later sue for libel if was defamatory – these names need to be published… your name (plus contact details) are published on the edited electoral roll, if you are commenting on a planning application your details get published, if you are a director your name gets published, if you own a domain name your name gets published, etc. so why are names in such evidence redacted?

        Currently, you have a list of “evidence” that cannot be verified outside the committee and is basically an “empty statement”… I notice its been carefully written along the lines of the DWP having strong moral values, made me giggle a bit. You would have worked this out to not be true within your first week.

        I of course believe a disclaimer should be available stating the names used in context are all alleged by the named person.

        Ironically, within the employment contract the DWP/jobcentre Plus employee would agree to give the right for his name to be used in connection with such employment. The reason why these names are hidden is to protect the system… its not a DPA issue at all. I notice the DWP hates giving out any remotely “personal information” (such as a name) for anyone lower than District Manager grade.

        Universal Jobmatch

        January 19, 2015 at 11:26 pm

    • Hi, as he made a Whistleblower claim, he’s protrected under law. If he was sacked I anticiplate a – I am suing, DWP bluster until the last minute before the case is heard [Not withstanding the Parlimentry Evidence which is usable in Court – probably why Redacted], then a last minute offer to stop it. Knowing Gov. Depts they’ll muck that up [they do think they know the law…] so it will probably be heardat a tribunal late this year.

      Gazza

      January 20, 2015 at 1:50 pm

    • I believe I`m correct in pointing out that John Longden made an appointment to speak formally with IDS & presented him with a large file listing the ‘bullying’ & illegal machinations by JCP THEN left the post he held after no action was taken. Hardly the actions of a dismissed/disgruntled/spiteful employee looking to get their ‘last digs in’, IMO. Bear in mind that the incidents & persons he described/named were being investigated (DWP stated no evidence was found & persons named refuted the allegations – hardly a serious effort) & even his name was redacted from reports last year of his actions “to avoid jeopardising the enquiries being made” (i.e. DWP hoping to keep it an internal matter).

      Barney Turner

      January 28, 2015 at 11:30 pm

      • We all know the dwp/jobcentre lie, twist and spin things to suit their own agenda… as anyone who has ever had a ‘mandatory reconsideration’ will testify to.

        Mandy Tory

        January 28, 2015 at 11:41 pm

  21. GCHQ’s bulk surveillance of electronic communications has scooped up emails to and from journalists working for some of the US and UK’s largest media organisations, analysis of documents released by whistleblower Edward Snowden reveals.

    Emails from the BBC, Reuters, the Guardian, the New York Times, Le Monde, the Sun, NBC and the Washington Post were saved by GCHQ and shared on the agency’s intranet as part of a test exercise by the signals intelligence agency.

    The disclosure comes as the British government faces intense pressure to protect the confidential communications of reporters, MPs and lawyers from snooping.

    The journalists’ communications were among 70,000 emails harvested in the space of less than 10 minutes on one day in November 2008 by one of GCHQ’s numerous taps on the fibre-optic cables that make up the backbone of the internet.

    http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2015/jan/19/gchq-intercepted-emails-journalists-ny-times-bbc-guardian-le-monde-reuters-nbc-washington-post

    enigma

    January 19, 2015 at 10:23 pm

  22. Annos

    January 20, 2015 at 12:32 am

  23. When are you lot going to see sense – close down these fucking jobcentres and take their fucking ‘schemes’ and third-party collaborators with them: “but my “advisor” will lose their job”…. tough shit Mr Coates… nobody gives a flying fuck. Just pay benefits in the same manner as a pension – you could double at least the rate of JSA paid for in savings by the abolishment of all this unnecessary infrastructure! And let’s be honest, the only purpose jobcentres, their third-party collaborators, and their fucking ‘schemes’ serve is to harass, demean and humiliate claimants.

    Firestick

    January 20, 2015 at 5:47 am

    • While your absolutely right that the mechanism costs more than the doled out product, your attack on Mr Coates is un-saintly as had it not been for him, this very site wouldn’t be here for you to post on.

      Whats next Firestick, will you say this site should be shut down, that we are all Mr Coates co-conspirators working diligently to setup claimants to fail.

      Aim your anger at the true culprits.

      gaia

      January 20, 2015 at 10:44 am

      • Yeah gaia, seems like “Firestick has got the wrong end of the stick; maybe I am wrong, but I can’t recall Mr Coates giving a rat’s arse about “advisors” jobs!

        Digg

        January 20, 2015 at 11:21 am

      • Jobcentre advisers are looking for jobs, (on the computers meant for claimants) they know some of them will be laid off in March, when the jobcentres go Digital.

        I was in the local jobcentre this morning, I could see the change in attitudes in every adviser, there was no arguing going on, no one getting mad, it was all very quiet.

        enigma

        January 20, 2015 at 11:42 am

      • Its funny you say that enigma as that’s exactly the air I found at my local office. I didn’t really pay it to much mind at the time but now you’ve said my interest is tweaked.

        gaia

        January 21, 2015 at 9:19 am

    • The Greens offer the end of a need for the Jobcentre, with the Citizen Income that replaces the whole hated cruel benefits regime, with an automatic and universal payment, with no form filling, conditionality, in or out of work just the same.

      If you want the Jobcentres to close down, then vote Green.

      Chris

      January 29, 2015 at 11:57 pm

  24. NHS will soon be looking for volunteers, probably already is using volunteers.

    enigma

    January 20, 2015 at 8:58 am

    • Hospitals have had volunteers for ages, all that’s changed now is the addition of more roles.

      Now I know your probably thinking we will be those volunteers and while I wouldn’t at all be surprized, it will fall short from a great height and I will try to outline why.

      First up will be the usual suspects the under 24s who as is established lack communication skills so a bed manner certainly wont be found their.

      Second up are the ill and incapacitated who can hardly cope themselves let alone adjust to the stresses of a hospitals environment.

      Thirdly immigrants lack grammar as patients lack patience so no go their either.

      Fourth we have addicts who god forbid should be given such a post will now have access to expensive equipment and drugs.

      Fifth we have our criminal counterparts so no pass CRB, no pass for hospital.

      So whats left is next to nothing meaning it will be the already working public and retired that will have to fill the void.

      If the tories came out and just privatised the NHS, their would be a hanging so what is one to do to arrive at the same point. By engineering what appear incremental un-associated changes you can in essence destabilise the operation so as to reach a point whereby you say, look, we tried it your way and it didn’t work.

      All the areas affected if you research have come about by tory meddling designed to inflate the situation and thus tie hands inorder to reach the desired conclusion sooner rather than later.

      gaia

      January 20, 2015 at 11:15 am

      • Gaia, remember we have already seen the so called volunteers that were brought in from EU to work in NHS, without a CRB check.

        enigma

        January 20, 2015 at 11:25 am

      • This is fantasy enigma.

        Andrew Coates

        January 20, 2015 at 11:57 am

      • I can see the NHS using the unemployed, (workfare) they will go for the young unemployed of course. I know it shouldn’t happen.

        enigma

        January 20, 2015 at 11:48 am

      • You are skirting near racism Enigma.

        Though this is amusing, “immigrants lack grammar as patients lack patience so no go their either.”

        Andrew Coates

        January 20, 2015 at 11:57 am

      • Well that is the first time I have been told I am nearing racism.

        We should all know that the young are being targeted to work for their benefits, after all what we have seen and heard.

        If anyone can’t see what is coming after knowing what we know then as you said, most people are living in a fantasy world.

        enigma

        January 20, 2015 at 1:14 pm

      • “Barriers” can be brought down.

        enigma

        January 20, 2015 at 1:27 pm

      • enigma machine,
        I think AC meant gaia, but even then… immigration and rasicism are very different things.

        Another Fine Mess

        January 20, 2015 at 2:44 pm

      • Opps, yes I did.

        But as a general point I’m sure we know xenophobic – to put it bluntly, foreigner hating – many people are about migrants.

        Frankly it is not going to help us, or anybody else, to go on about it.

        FIght for the living wage and decent conditions for all!

        Andrew Coates

        January 20, 2015 at 4:41 pm

      • lol ‘a police officer’ is not racist 😀

        Wayne Kerr

        January 20, 2015 at 4:50 pm

      • One side of my family tree is Basque (French/Spanish) while the other is German. The only thing British about me is that I was born here. I’ve always supported free movement so racism isn’t something I have seen myself as but hey, we are all entitled to unfettered freedom of expression even if it doesn’t necessarily fit the facts when one doesn’t ask the right questions. Incase we take a journey back to WW2 my Spanish side fled the Germans and were taken in by the British to help with the fire service during the bombing raids while the other lost their lives helping the Jewish escape Germany.

        I would gather perhaps but only Mr Coates can say but he includes my earlier reference on the last post to increased protection which was my way of saying when we look at the facts rather than fiction that we all have blood on our hands so sitting in corners isn’t going to help anyone.

        gaia

        January 21, 2015 at 10:22 am

    • M.A.W c.w.r.a.p = COMPULSORY WORK RELATED ACTIVITY PROGRAMME

      VOLUNTEERS WANTED

      January 21, 2015 at 8:46 am

    • Cameron, not a chance, nor anyone one in gov.

      enigma

      January 20, 2015 at 11:09 am

      • Im sure Mr D Smith would offer this guy a lift what with caring so much about supporting people into work, no wait forget that, this person was going out of work.

        gaia

        January 20, 2015 at 11:19 am

  25. Tesco tagging energy drinks as survival shoplifting soars

    http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/tesco-forced-security-tag-energy-4956034

    https://uk.news.yahoo.com/police-criticised-over-shoplifting-response-024951407.html#QA7feKg

    Proving the point, the country hasn’t saved money on welfare reform but merely transferred it towards escalating survival crime and the NHS and tripled it.

    Crime is crime and I wont justify it but if I was faced with the prospect of weighing up being arrested and having a criminal record with starving, I know what I would choose, do you ?

    gaia

    January 20, 2015 at 10:34 am

    • Eventually it will come to how it was when Supermarkets 1st opened in the UK and how it is in some parts of Europe.. When you enter the store, you have too leave any bags and heavy coats in a set area. [supervised by a member of staff].

      philip5000

      January 20, 2015 at 10:44 am

    • You couldn’t loan us a fag, could you, Gaia 🙂 Much appreciated, Guv 🙂

      Charles Bronson - Britain's Most Violent Prisoner

      January 20, 2015 at 3:44 pm

    • The nation has indeed not saved any money on welfare reform. The DWP itself says the cost of welfare admin is rising by the billions each year, as money to the starving reduces by the billions each year.

      The Tories, according to Labour, have spent more in 5 years than Labour did in 13 years. The OECD has said child poverty was being combatted until 2010. Since then it has soared. We hear all the time of kids bin dipping for food on the way to school.

      The supermarkets and whole food industry, according to The Times, yes the rich man’s newspaper, are getting state subsidy to throw away still edible food and not donate it all to Fareshare, the source of all the foodbanks.

      So Fareshare only gets 5,000 tonnes, when 400,000 tonnes go to waste.

      The energy from waste power stations burning the food of the starving, could collect direct from households rotten food by the millions of tonnes, now wasted by going to landfill.

      Food waste is banned from landfill in many EU nations.

      Chris

      January 30, 2015 at 12:02 am

  26. Sounds like karma to me.

    Tescos – who are in deep trouble, with their massive profits not being so massive recently – holds a lot of the responsibility for society I think. The shopper mind games, the 8 hours per week contracts, taking workfare people on from far back as New Deal, forcing manufacturers to lower cost of production (generally resulting in crappier food – read: more salt, sugar, fat; and in some cases smaller packets etc) and destroying competition.

    At the moment its like a person with the flu – not so healthy – but not a long term issue. Of course, Tesco will just end up getting rid of workers and taking on workfare people and apprenticeships.

    I am not sure why anyone would steal energy drinks if genuinely starving and poor. Its like those who steal expensive perfume with an excuse of needing money for food… no, steal food instead.

    One of the problems with the UK is people mean nothing its just a number, but big business and capitalism is strongly protected. Maybe everywhere has a “police service” rather than a “police force”, however, police constables only have one major remit of preventing a “breach of the peace” (seems most public-facing police staff are nowadays PCSOs) – which basically means upholding the Queen’s Peace – or even more simpler the establishment and its rules. Pretty much all criminal offences stem from this, once you had knights, you now have magistrates. The Crown must keep the Peace otherwise its liable for all damages from the riot. Whereas in theory the Monarch should abdicate if the peace is broken, the police end up getting more powers to kill and gain back public order (IMO in a time of riot you should be able to challenge the Monarch to a duel to become King/Queen haha). Its really outdated, in brief, if you commit a crime its against the Crown and the Queen’s dignity. I am really surprised there hasn’t been an uprising the whole system is pathetic. Reminds me of the medieval kings that gave themselves the gravitas by adding a suffix to their name of “the Great”. Yeah if you say so lol

    Universal Jobmatch

    January 20, 2015 at 3:36 pm

    • Tesco Invades Denmark

      Tesco Invades Denmark

      January 20, 2015 at 3:50 pm

    • I wonder what will happen to all those Tesco Metro shops in Ipswich – like the one opposite the Morrison’s own version of the same ‘corner shop’ at the top of Civic Drive and St Matthews Street?

      They are not cheap either.

      Andrew Coates

      January 20, 2015 at 4:40 pm

      • I think multiples / supermarkets should be forced to utilise the same pricing strategy across all its stores big or small. This could be defined by market share of groceries.

        (In a similar way that telecom companies have to provide a nationwide “universal” service, and cannot opt for providing it in just a single region)

        The Tesco Metro stores are a pretty clever concept. It encourages people to travel to their large supermarkets (as Metros lack of range, expensive etc), prevent a local retailer (perhaps independent or coop) from damaging their dominance and reduces their tax bill.

        In Ipswich, our local newspaper is hailing it as an economic success that Tesco is opening back up in the town again (Tavern St) to create jobs etc. but in actual fact its just reducing the tax they are paying on the large supermarkets in the area.

        Morrisons might pull out of their small stores, so Tesco might be closing their St Matthews St store, they will retain it for a bit as the co-op is opening up at some point in Handford Road, but I think that Iceland store and the Carr St Poundland store will also shut in the next few years.

        Universal Jobmatch

        January 20, 2015 at 4:50 pm

  27. enigma:

    You commented earlier that Jobcentre advisers are looking for jobs, and about their change in attitude. I’ve noticed the same thing as well. For the last few weeks, my adviser’s been as nice as pie – real polite, as it were. Which is unusual for her because she’s normally snapping at my heels like one of the Queen’s corgis. Are they worried they’ll soon be rubbing shoulders with their us on the other side of the desk? Hope springs eternal.

    jj joop

    January 20, 2015 at 4:33 pm

    • JJ Joop

      They are all worried, of course none of them want to end up signing on with the accused unemployed, this morning I didn’t see any advisers talking to any other adviser, they are at war with each other, be it silent, there are some computers set up in the job centre for those on JSA to use while they wait to sign on etc, I noticed two advisers who I know are advisers using the computers searching for jobs, of course they weren’t using UJ, another change I have seen since I was last in there a few months ago, there used to be many people in the jobcentre waiting to sign on, all the seats were taken, there was people standing, now there was just 3 people waiting including me, which is why the advisers now have the time to use the computers to look for another job, but where are all those people who used to be waiting to sign on? paid employment?, workfare?, (in this town, 9000 people are on JSA)

      enigma

      January 20, 2015 at 8:36 pm

      • The excellent website Benefits and Work that gives advice on benefit claiming, showed that benefit claimants in many voting areas, outnumber the majority gained by the sitting MP in 2010 general election.

        If the 9000 on JSA in your own all voted in May, for such as Class War, or
        Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition, or
        The Greens,
        you would have an MP that would end the cruel benefits regime overnight in Westminster.

        An example is on my page:
        http://www.anastasia-england.me.uk/help-greens-win-big

        And most of the so-called big parties would be gone.

        Chris

        January 29, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    • I’ve noticed the same thing as well

      Me too, it’s been like that for about 6 weeks, I think they’ve been told to cool it on the number of sanctions.

      I don’t think JC advisors should be too worried about losing their jobs.
      These days there’s a mass of gov. schemes designed to ‘help them back in to work’.

      Universal Jobmatch
      The Waste Programme
      Universal Credit
      Apprenticeships and trainingships
      Workfare
      MWA and CWP
      Endless literacy and employability courses.
      Work Coaches
      Claimant Commitment
      Sanctions

      What could possibly go wrong?

      Another Fine Mess

      January 20, 2015 at 9:35 pm

  28. Another Fine Mess

    January 20, 2015 at 9:09 pm

    • My heart bled for Danielle who was sanctioned for only completing 47 out of her 48 jobseeking “steps” * a week – she was ill on a Sunday! C***S!! And what about the guy with no arms being sanctioned for not answering the phone ffs C***S!!

      * of course they jobcentre gave conflicting advice to exactly what constituted a “step”.

      Sanctioned

      January 21, 2015 at 8:25 am

      • And available for download:

        http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/fileon4

        BBC Radio 4

        January 21, 2015 at 8:37 am

      • Danielle, who is dyslexic and suffers from depression, was sanctioned 16 times in 8 months!!!

        Tobanem

        January 21, 2015 at 9:25 am

      • I thought the 48/28 steps thing was criminal.
        From memory, the guy wasn’t sanctioned for not answering his phone, he was sanctioned because the dwp went to the wrong address.

        Another Fine Mess

        January 21, 2015 at 2:25 pm

    • Now available on the iplayer:

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04yk7h6

      BBC Radio 4

      January 21, 2015 at 8:32 am

  29. This is revolting. Abominable.

    ThinkPurpose

    January 20, 2015 at 9:47 pm

  30. Reblogged this on thinkpurpose and commented:
    This is revolting.
    This is an evil system.
    This is how Abhu Ghraib was created.

    ThinkPurpose

    January 20, 2015 at 9:52 pm

  31. ‘Jobs Revival’ In Spotlight As Most Of Those Who Lose Benefits Fail To Find Work’

    http://www.welfareweekly.com/jobs-revival-spotlight-lose-benefits-fail-find-work/

    ken

    January 20, 2015 at 11:17 pm

  32. Comments from last night’s “File on Four” programme:

    “If you set out to design a system that would maximise inefficiency, and waste, and misunderstandings, you really couldn’t do any better than the DWP has done with the system it is operating”!!!

    “Ministers insist the sanctions system is helping people back to work – but they wouldn’t explain how”!!!

    “How come your are more likely to be sanctioned on the Work Programme than get a job”?

    “What is the justification of sanctioning a hundred people a day whose mental health problems mean they have been declared unfit to work”?

    “All [the above] questions which on this programme [File on Four], no minister was prepared to answer”!!!!!!

    Tobanem

    January 21, 2015 at 10:14 am

    • Blogged on it – I sat and took notes as well!

      Andrew Coates

      January 21, 2015 at 11:48 am

    • The Nazis forced Slavs several years before the Jews into unemployment and then rounded them up into forced labour camps. The system is not inefficient. It is the raison d’etre of the sanctioning and work programmes (Arbeit Macht Frei?) to force people into workfare, that is forced labour. The undermenschen (under humans) of the Nazis were barely human enough for mere slavery under the fascists.

      I don’t know why Labour have not shown up this lookalike of the benefits sytem in the UK today?

      Chris

      January 29, 2015 at 11:26 pm

  33. UK unemployment falls to 1.91m in December.

    The number of people out of work in the UK fell by 58,000 to 1.91 million.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30913960

    IDS was of course gobbing off about this on the BBC and Sky News this morning,
    what he hasn’t told you is that most of those jobs will now have been lost as a lot of them were temporary Christmas jobs.

    Obi Wan Kenobi

    January 21, 2015 at 10:14 am

  34. Posted on 20/01/2015 by http://www.refuted.org.uk

    DWP publishes official list of it’s unpaid Workfare schemes.

    Below is an official DWP list of it’s workfare schemes, that involve people claiming benefits being provided to employers as free labour, including what is referred to as ‘internships’.

    The DWP’s first response to it’s own FOI Act disclosure made today, copy below, after this post was published, was to delete a webpage cited in it’s disclosure letter and hence deny public access to the documents and information therein, forgetting that search engines keep archives/caches of web pages and documents deleted. [ DWP deleted webpage and document therein ]

    Here is the full list:

    https://docs.google.com/viewer?url=https://wwwrefuteddotorgdotuk.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/backtoworkschemes.pdf

    http://refuted.org.uk/2015/01/20/dwpworkfareschemes/

    Obi Wan Kenobi

    January 21, 2015 at 10:55 am

  35. The number of jobless rises in Scotland:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-30913628

    Tobanem

    January 21, 2015 at 11:37 am

  36. Reblogged this on Same Difference and commented:
    John Longden’s submission to MPs- the full text.

    samedifference1

    January 26, 2015 at 12:37 am

  37. Reblogged this on eegginton59.

    eegginton59

    January 26, 2015 at 9:06 am

  38. Reblogged this on L8in.

    l8in

    January 26, 2015 at 10:24 am

  39. iv just been sanctioned signed on on Friday and meant to get paid today Wednesday. im a single parent of 3 boys now this sanction has left me virtually destitute. all because they said i did not do enough to look for work when i had done more than enough applyed for 15 jobs used ujm everyday and recorded my job search but it was deemed not enough so now i have to try and find some money to do food shopping so my kids will not go hungry tonight.

    best

    January 28, 2015 at 9:58 am

    • Go to yopur local C.A.B. for a voucher for food, to take to the local food bank.

      enigma

      January 28, 2015 at 10:01 am

    • FUCK JOBCENTRE PLUS – SHUT THIS EVIL ORGANISATION DOWN – NOW!!

      – THE ANGRY FAMILY (FUCKING FUMING!!)

      The Angry Family

      January 28, 2015 at 11:00 am

  40. I have been sanctioned for three months from 21/1/15 to 21/4/15 for refusing to apply for their DWP vacancy which was a level4 dealing with the new credit benefit. As I have no office experience or skills I put that it was a mismatch of skills so they sanctioned me for three months!

    Rudy Saramandif

    January 28, 2015 at 11:49 am

    • Was that through ticking the “I do not want to apply for this vacancy because” [insert reason for an automatic sanction] on universal jobmatch?

      Nooli

      January 28, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    • Sanctioning for three months is murder by design. Medicine knows it takes an average person a month to starve to death.

      Foodbanks are not the 7 days a week, EU free cafes, providing a free hot cooked meal and hot drink, without conditionality or vouchers needed, to the working poor, poor pensioners and the unemployed.

      Jobcentres do not provide work, only benefit stoppages, but the DWP and its private contractors are themselves costing more and more billions each year, despite paying the starving less and less by the billions each year. The right wing press confirm that the benefit bill has not fallen in last 4 years.

      The Greens offer the end of the entire cruel benefits regime, by replacing all benefit with a universal and automatic (no form filling, no assessments, no work programmes or workfare) Citizen Income, irregardless if in work or not.

      The Greens then replace the moral theft of state pension, sole food money in old age, for new claimants losing it altogether on and from 6 April next year, 2016, with
      a Full Citizen State Pension,
      ignoring National Insurance history,
      so even those below the lower NI limit in part time jobs automatically get the Full State Pension by right of citizenship.

      Chris

      January 29, 2015 at 11:22 pm

      • We we having a rifle through the Foodbank collection bin in the local supermarket when we noticed about half a dozen scrumptious-looking Stollen cakes… 🙂 we were thinking of doing what it said on the tin… 😉 until we say the security guard glancing our way 😀 There was some other goodies too… anyway, it’s not like the Foodbank ‘customer’ will ever catch sight of there… likewise with charity shops where the manager keeps all the good stuff, they will either be returned to the shelf, the middle-class busy-body who runs the food bank will spirit them off, and the ‘customers’ will be left with cans of mushy peas and out-of-date cuppa soup.

        The Skinties

        January 30, 2015 at 12:30 am

  41. Absolutely disgusting. I am not shocked or surprised at all. I used to work for the dwp and whenever I tried to whistle blow It was brushed under the carpet. t’s become pretty obvious that the dwp have been up to no good since the tory despots got hold of power and all they have tried to do is destroy and fracture the safety net for working class people so they can be more easily controlled. Why the hell isn’t this a public scandal?

    colinthompson2014

    January 28, 2015 at 10:24 pm

  42. POOREST WORKERS FALL OUT OF THE NATIONAL INSURANCE SYSTEM FOR BENEIT AND STATE PENSION

    The Industrial Revolution had the truck system, where workers were paid part in wages and part in vouchers or token coins.

    Wikipaedia: (called in some dialects scrip or chit)
    Paid in kind, rather than with standard currency.
    In a prosecution brought against a Manchester cotton manufacturer in 1827, one worker gave evidence that he had received wages of only two shillings in nine months; the rest “he was obliged to take [in goods] from the manufacturer’s daughter, who was also the cashier”.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truck_system

    So the salary sacrifice scheme is the return of the
    Truck System, abolished by the British Truck Acts.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truck_Acts

    But this lack of credits or contribuitons towards National Insurance record means nil state penson, because today you get some pro rata state pension for 1 year NI record, but the flat rate pension pays nil state pension for less than 10 years NI record.

    https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/state-pension-at-60-now

    THE POOR HAVE ALL THE POWER THEY NEED

    The excellent website Benefits and Work that gives advice on benefit claiming, showed that benefit claimants in many voting areas, outnumber the majority gained by the sitting MP in 2010 general election.

    If all claimants in such marginals voted

    Class War, or
    Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition, or
    The Greens,

    you would have an MP that would end the cruel benefits regime overnight in Westminster.

    An example is on my page:
    http://www.anastasia-england.me.uk/help-greens-win-big

    And most of the so-called big parties would be gone.

    Chris

    January 31, 2015 at 7:37 pm

  43. Reblogged this on discordion {Artist Ian Pritchard} and commented:
    Rebooted this.

    Be warned, you may feeling intensely angry after reading this, I am.

    discordion

    February 11, 2016 at 2:49 pm

  44. […] and there have been MANY situations where they have been caught and exposed (heres one, another, more, oh one more!) and they take no responsability […]


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: