Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Strive ‘Training’ Scheme that Fines 10 for a ‘Tut’ Under Investigation but Workfare Abuse Continues.

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This story broke last week (signaled here Hat-Tip Enigma):

A NORTH Ayrshire Council scheme designed to help out people who are searching for work has been lambasted for fining people who attend it for as little as tutting or having their hands in their pockets.

And the Department of Work and Pensions has now suspended referrals to the STRIVE programme pending investigation into the workings of the fines system.

North Ayrshire Council have hit back at the claims and have backed their programme but one person who attended the course, who wishes to remain anonymous, has hit out at the fines system and explained what it is like.

Herald.

Scheme that fines jobless 10p for tuts is investigated

JOB seekers in Ayrshire are worried they might be sanctioned for tutting.

It comes as details emerge of a controversial “job readiness” programme that fines those taking part for as little as chewing gum and having their hands in their pockets.

The Department for Work and Pensions yesterday suspended referrals to the STRIVE programme in North Ayrshire while it investigated the claims.

The Lennox Partnership, which operates the programme, also runs similar courses with similar fines for West Dunbartonshire and Renfrew councils. It has also been asked to deliver the course four times nationally for service provider Ingeus, although no fines are involved in those courses.

Fines start off as little as 10p for tutting, or having hands in pockets, but can rise up to £1 for swearing or £5 for using phones.

One job seeker told our sister paper, the Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald, that the fines had even left one of his fellow course mates in debt. “Now most of these fines are really cheap for things like hands in pockets etc … but checking your phone or having it go off outside of break time is an instant £5 fine and if you don’t pay it on the spot you get kicked off the course … and since the Job Centre sent me there, getting kicked off the course is an instant sanction.

“One person got fined when their phone went off but only had £3 and had to borrow the rest from other people on the course.”

The Lennox Partnership insisted that non-payment of a fine would not lead to sanctions, and said no one on the programme has been sanctioned.

A spokeswoman for the partnership said: “The fine system replicates behaviours that would not be acceptable in most workplaces and is utilised as a preventative measure to change those behaviours, which could subsequently impact on clients both securing and sustaining work.

“We have been delivering STRIVE in North Ayrshire since 2011 and the fine system has been an integral part of all delivery. Our success rates have seen 80 per cent of graduates securing employment and 84 per cent retention rates with employers across a range of industry sectors. This demonstrates the success of STRIVE and what we are trying to achieve.”

Unemployed people taking part in STRIVE must wear “business dress”, and, according to the Lennox Partnership’s website, obey: “the same rules / disciplines that would be expected during a probationary period in a new job”.

The aim of the course is to “empower participants and develop the soft skills, the attitudes and behaviours that employers in the job market are seeking”.

Kim McLauchlan, a 19-year-old from Kilwinning, who went through the programme recently and now works as a chef, told The National she had found the experience rewarding: “I was such a quiet person. I’d be the last person to speak in a group. They helped me get the confidence to do the job I’m doing today.”

STRIVE fines were all part of the “learning process”, she said.

A spokesman for North Ayrshire Council, defending the scheme, said: “The STRIVE programme has an extremely successful track record with 90 per cent of candidates on our most recent programme going on to secure employment. Most participants find the course highly beneficial and carry forward the skills learned into their working life.”

“The ‘fine’ system is used as a preventative measure to change behaviours and instil a professional attitude that employers will be impressed with.

“Any monies collected go towards a fund to provide provision for interview clothing, haircuts and interview travel expenses.”

A Department for Work and Pensions spokesman said: “We have suspended the referral of claimants to North Ayrshire Council’s STRIVE programme while we investigate these claims.”

The Void has looked at the scandal.

Even the DWP are appalled, with the Daily Record reporting they have suspended referrals to the STRIVE  programme run by the Lennox Partnership.  Those behind the schme are unrepentent, with North Ayrshire Council claiming that they are just trying to “change behaviours and instil a professional attitude”.  Participants who refuse to pay the fines are required to leave the course raising fears they may face benefit sanctions for refusing to take part in ‘work related activity’

You can tell the Lennox Partnership what you think of this vile practice on twitter @TheLennoxP.

This however is yet to face a serious investigation:

The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) insists it is a voluntary scheme known as a “sector-based work academy”, which offers benefit recipients a chance to gain work experience with the possibility of a job at the end.

However McGregor, who has eight years’ experience working in the care sector, said he felt he was being “railroaded” into taking part in the scheme, which is taking place at Kyle Court and Hillside View Care Homes in Paisley.

A letter sent to him states in certain circumstances benefits may be stopped if the claimant, without good reason, does not “take the opportunity of a place on an employment programme or training scheme”.

McGregor said he refused to participate in the scheme as a matter of principle and that he was only promised a “one-to-one” interview at the end of the scheme.

He said: “I went on a people handling course for one day, then I was meant to start and do a 36-hour week for six weeks without any pay, apart from my unemployment money.

“I used to earn £110 a night for a 12-hour shift, but they are expecting me to do 36 hours for £73.10, it is absolutely shocking.

“You are looking after people who are vulnerable – such as taking them to the toilet.

“I have no qualms about the job, I did that job for years, but I want to be paid for it.

“They are saying it is six weeks probationary, but they could pay me – and at the end of that time if they don’t think I am fit to work there they can tell me to go somewhere else.”

He added: “They didn’t ask what days would suit you, it was basically you were to work to their rota.

“I don’t know how they can turn round and say it is completely voluntary.”

Sarah Glynn, of the Scottish Unemployed Workers’ Network, said they were against the principle of anyone being made to work for their benefits.

“A lot of things are branded as work experience and they are not, they are free labour,” she said. “Do you need work experience stacking shelves? That is not work experience, that is exploitation.

“It is affecting the whole labour market as these are jobs that people should be paid for.

“Even if people have no qualifications and they have come straight from school, they shouldn’t be asked to work for nothing – if they are working they should be paid for it, it should just be a basic principle.”

Glynn said she had made a complaint to the Care Inspectorate over the scheme, which confirmed the issue had been raised and information was being carefully assessed.

The DWP said all participating claimants had to meet eligibility criteria including identification and disclosure checks, references and a successful application form and interview to ensure they were suitable for working with elderly and vulnerable people.

It confirmed that once participants agreed to take place in a DWP “sector-based work academy” they could risk being sanctioned if they failed to meet conditions. These can include a failure to meet “basic standards of good behaviour”, according to the letter sent to McGregor.

The Herald.

Is it just because my dad was Scottish but is it true that because the Scots are pretty stroppy and likely to complain that these scandals come out so quickly?

I would bet there’s plenty going on in the rest of the country.

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Written by Andrew Coates

April 4, 2016 at 9:59 am

70 Responses

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  1. The people who set these things up should come and see what a 12 hour shift looks like in a care home. I’ve done it in the past. It’s exhausting. Then you have to leave the premises when your shift is up. No hanging around to have a rest before you drive, cycle or walk home.

    Come and watch a night shift. That’s even harder. And stay awake.

    This is the reason why I will never ask for help for my own condition. No one is going to be paid a slave wage to wash my feet, or worse. And if they’re not being paid at all? God help us. Is that what us vulnerable people are facing now. The guy’s right to speak up. Of course he wants to be paid. I’d want someone to be properly paid as well. It’s safer for all of us.

    tellthetruth1

    April 4, 2016 at 10:20 am

  2. Meanwhile these thieves seem to be doing pretty nicely:

    David Cameron’s father and senior Tory figures named in ‘Panama Papers’ leak
    More than 11 million documents show how the rich and powerful conceal their wealth .

    David Cameron’s father, senior Tory peers and former Conservative MPs are among the hundreds of individuals named in an unprecedented leak of confidential documents showing how the world’s richest people shield their wealth offshore.

    Though he is not named in the reports himself, the British Prime Minister is linked to the so-called “Panama Papers” by his late father Ian Cameron, who died in 2010.

    According to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, which coordinated the research into the 11 million secret files handed over by an anonymous source, Mr Cameron used Mossack Fonseca’s services to shield his investment fund, Blairmore Holdings Inc.
    Read more
    Leaked documents reveal how super-rich hide their money

    A 2006 prospectus for Blairmore Holdings Inc described Mr Cameron, a stockbroker and multi-millionaire, as “instrumental in [its] formation”.

    It said the fund “should be managed and conducted so that it does not become resident in the United Kingdom for UK taxation purposes”.

    The ICIJ said there was no suggestion that the individuals named in the Panama Papers had done anything illegal. David Cameron did not respond to a request for comment when approached by the Guardian.

    Three senior Tory figures were also named in the papers, including the former party donor and MP Lord Ashcroft.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/david-cameron-father-and-senior-tory-figures-named-in-panama-papers-leak-a6967116.html

    Andrew Coates

    April 4, 2016 at 11:54 am

    • Of course, tax avoidance is not illegal. Of course!

      Tobanem

      April 4, 2016 at 12:40 pm

      • Just so everyone understands the size of the data haul, think if the cargo area taken up by a Bedford van and times it by 1,000/1,200 times.

        I am sure there are plenty more little nuggets to surface… let alone what pops up in the next leak that appears.

        Gazza

        April 4, 2016 at 3:14 pm

    • It isn’t surprising is it. the greedy will always take advantage.

      enigma

      April 4, 2016 at 3:52 pm

    • “Mossack Fonseca” – And The Guardian keeps up the Pressure

      Shock News Just in ConCon [Let Them Eat Cake/We’re All In it Together Party] Donors/Backers ‘Allegedly’ using Most Excellent No Questions Asked Services of “Mossack Fonseca”

      Arron Banks
      Lord Bilimoria
      Juniper Equities Trading
      Lord Astor of Hever
      Sir Edward du Cann
      Sir Tony Baldry
      Howard Flight
      The Fleming family
      David Rowland
      Anthony Bamford
      Michael Mates
      Tony Buckingham

      Gazza

      April 4, 2016 at 4:47 pm

    • Panama Papers: Leaks spur global investigations.

      Authorities across the world are being spurred into action after a huge leak of confidential documents revealed how tax havens are used to hide wealth.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-35960329

      Also on BBC

      The Panama legal firm at the heart of a massive data leak kept clients who were subject to international sanctions, documents show.

      enigma

      April 4, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    • Panama Papers: mass protests in Iceland call for prime minister to quit – live

      The biggest-ever leak of secret information involves 11m documents from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca. Here’s how the story is being covered around the world.

      Kremlin dismisses revelations in Panama Papers as ‘Putinphobia’
      What are the Panama Papers? A guide to the biggest data leak in history.

      http://www.theguardian.com/news/live/2016/apr/04/panama-papers-global-reaction-to-huge-leak-of-offshore-tax-files-live

      enigma

      April 4, 2016 at 7:12 pm

  3. BRIBERY

    Do you remember the sleaze scandal that rocked the Work Programme before it even started? Some of the big Workfare players had given massive donations (bribes) to the Tory party and then received lucrative Workfare contracts worth millions of pounds in return.

    Now there is a story about more bribery. Although not to do with Workfare, bribery is bribery – wherever it appears.

    Quote from the report: “An investigation revealed breaches of the Bribery Act 2010, which forbids bribes being paid to gain business”.

    I don’t recall any Workfare providers being charged under that Act? Do you?

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-35955233

    Tobanem

    April 4, 2016 at 12:03 pm

  4. New Work and Pensions Secretary Stephen Crabb ‘wants to get government out of private-sector contracts’

    DISABILITY campaigners have given a cautious welcome to plans by the new Work and Pensions Secretary Stephen Crabb to end government contracts with private firms as part of a radical overhaul of the welfare system.

    http://www.thenational.scot/news/new-work-and-pensions-secretary-stephen-crabb-wants-to-get-government-out-of-private-sector-contracts.15888

    ken

    April 4, 2016 at 1:03 pm

    • Can anyone say “UN Report”?

      Gazza

      April 4, 2016 at 3:15 pm

      • Yep, somethings going on.

        enigma

        April 4, 2016 at 3:29 pm

      • Yep, somethings going on

        Been thinking that since the still nonsensical resignation.

        Another Fine Recession

        April 4, 2016 at 4:31 pm

  5. So called “work experience” is affecting the whole labour market. as if every unemployed person has never worked. it’s no wonder ………………

    enigma

    April 4, 2016 at 3:04 pm

    • “…and if you think you have the necessary EXPERIENCE for this role, please submit your CV…”

      Yeah, yeah, but employers are not interested in mickey-mouse workfare experience. There are too many people with that detail on their CV after being dumped on government schemes, so they all end up back at square one as far as the competition goes with other Jobseekers. No one has any net advantage at the end of the day – especially when there are no new jobs being created!

      Only real jobs created in the real world will get real people back to real work in the real world.

      Tobanem

      April 4, 2016 at 3:23 pm

  6. Police Warn: Don’t be Unkind or Hurtful Online

    The police are coming down hard on anyone making threats, or extorting money, or involved in blackmail.

    I wonder what the police would have to say about the recent STRIVE “fines” – or the endless threats made to benefit claimants at every turn theses days?

    I also wonder what the police would have to say about the unkind and hurtful benefit sanctions suffered by thousands of victims thus far – including unkind and hurtful deaths?

    http://stv.tv/news/west-central/1348554-police-warn-social-media-users-over-hurtful-and-unkind-posts/

    Hold on, this is just another import from America:

    http://www.infowars.com/university-of-missouri-police-ask-students-to-report-hurtful-speech/

    Tobanem

    April 4, 2016 at 5:30 pm

    • Yeah, You know things are real bad when you can be thrown in the slammer for ‘hurting someone’s feelings!

      9/11 WAS AN INSIDE JOB – FIRE CANNOT MELT STEEL!!

      POLICE STATE 101 – TOTAL GLOBAL ENSLAVEMENT. OWN IT NOW ON HIGH-QUALITY DVD!!

      Alex Jones

      April 4, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    • Hey, Tobanem! Was that post really necessary you fat fuck?

      Free Speech

      April 4, 2016 at 7:08 pm

      • “FAO Free Speech”

        I assume your prosaic comment is an attempt at satire?

        Tobanem

        April 5, 2016 at 7:52 am

      • We’re coming for you, “Free Speech”.

        Speech Squad

        April 5, 2016 at 7:55 am

    • Send roon thi’ mu’der squad!

      Taggart

      April 4, 2016 at 7:15 pm

    • Talk about ‘job creation’ for the filth and their cohorts in the legal ‘profession’. The failed lawyers in Parliament churn out more and more horseshit ‘laws’ to keep their lawyer buddies and coppers in business – it is one big club, and we aren’t in it. It is like the Jack Nicolson comment in the film the Devil’s Advocate: “How are you going to take over the world?”, “Lawyers”. Notice how the goalposts are always being moved; hate speech > hurtful speech > expletives > ‘naughty’ words > ?

      Function Creep

      April 5, 2016 at 4:32 pm

      • ‘unnecessary speech’? What is that all about when it is at home?

        Function Creep

        April 5, 2016 at 4:34 pm

  7. Ian Hislop reveals “extraordinary moment” Iain Duncan Smith cried in new BBC documentary

    “IDS actually broke down. He we wept in front of me,” says the Have I Got News For You panellist of the former Work and Pensions secretary

    The documentary is scheduled to air this Thursday 7 April on BBC2. In the interview, Duncan Smith recounts meeting a 19-year-old woman who had given up hope of working. Wiping away tears, he says that the woman reminded him of his daughter.

    http://www.radiotimes.com/news/2016-04-04/ian-hislop-reveals-extraordinary-moment-iain-duncan-smith-cried-in-new-bbc-documentary

    ken

    April 4, 2016 at 8:55 pm

  8. OT: Pension

    Well well well – truth will out… or When it Rains, it Pours….

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-35960926
    Millions of younger workers to be ‘worse off’ under new state pension

    Now I personally take the view that this is inaccurate, it will not just be the young….

    Gazza

    April 4, 2016 at 9:04 pm

    • Will there be a pension when those who are 30 or even 40/50 reach 70 – 80. as is the case of the safety net

      enigma

      April 5, 2016 at 10:56 am

      • enigma

        No. Or more to the point, No is the planned outcome by the ConCons.

        Gazza

        April 5, 2016 at 12:13 pm

      • It would appear the impact of the New Pensions has been understated…. Why am I not surprised.

        h/t to Refuted:

        http://www.theguardian.com/money/2016/feb/20/20-million-lose-out-pension-reform
        20 million – mainly low-earners – to lose out under pension reform
        Experts say low-earners will bear the cost of reform that promised to be fairer and simpler – and its impact will be greater than that of tax credits, which forced U-turn

        “Twenty million people will lose out from the introduction of a new flat-rate state pension with the burden falling most heavily on low-paid private sector workers, according to analysis by leading pension experts.

        The startling figure, part of research by pension consultants Hymans Robertson, comes just before the new deal for pensioners is to be introduced in April. It appears to undermine government claims that the reforms will create a fairer, as well as a simpler, system.

        The company also warns that the policy could have wider and graver repercussions for government than its attempts to slash credits for working people, which forced chancellor George Osborne to perform a spectacular U-turn in his budget last November.

        Chris Noon, a partner at Hymans Robertson, told the Observer that research had revealed that while there would be winners among middle-to-higher earners from this April, the costs of these rises would fall on lower earners in the form of lower pensions in years to come for about 20 million people. “Within the private sector, it’s the low paid – those earning less than around £15,000 – that will be hit hardest. Gordon Brown made changes to the way the low paid accrue state pension, which resulted in employees with earnings below around £15,000 accruing relatively large amounts.

        “Under the new rules, this population will be significantly affected. For example, for someone earning around £15,000 with a working life of 20 years, they will be looking at a drop of around £1,200 per annum. If that same person worked for 50 years they will be looking at £2,500 less per annum in state pension than they would have been entitled to under the old system.” Noon said more people would be affected than by cuts to tax credits. “With tax credits we’re seeing around three million people lose out, with a £4bn saving for the Treasury. With state pension changes, we’re seeing 20 million people lose, with an £8bn saving for the government.”

        “This is a much bigger issue affecting larger swaths of the population – and again, it impacts the lower paid. The only difference is tax credits affect individual’s incomes here and now, whereas state pension changes will hit them in the future.”

        ME: I have no words for the loathing and hatred I feel for the scumy ConCons (and lets not forget the Liberals hand in all this) doing this to other less fortunate people.

        Gazza

        April 7, 2016 at 12:24 am

      • And we still have that WASPI – Women Against State Pension Inequality Campaign crap of which the SNP’s Mhairi Black is chairperson – who would have thought? Women wanting a pension at 60 whilst men have to toil on (if they survive) until 65. The poor little dears pretending that why weren’t give fair warning lol Do you need the Government to write and tell you when your passport expires, your MOT expires or your driving licence expires? People can find these things out for themselves. I never got a letter from the Government to tell me that the speed limit on the trunk road approach to my town had been reduced. They just put up a sign and people worked it out for themselves. Information about the increase in the retirement age of women was in the public domain for two decades. I worked in an environment where women discussed the issue and were aware of the facts from the time it became law. Women who were active in their Trades Union knew about the changes. If people cut themselves off from the world possibly it passed them by but any women not living in a cave was probably well aware that the pension age was being rolled back from 2010 in stages. It is insulting to women in general to describe them as ill informed, unaware and naive in regard to the changes in the pipeline for two to three decades.

        Tiberman

        April 7, 2016 at 7:45 am

      • And we still have that WASPI – Women Against State Pension Inequality Campaign crap of which the SNP’s Mhairi Black is chairperson – who would have thought? Women wanting a pension at 60 whilst men have to toil on (if they survive) until 65. The poor little dears pretending that they weren’t give fair warning lol Do you need the Government to write and tell you when your passport expires, your MOT expires or your driving licence expires? People can find these things out for themselves. I never got a letter from the Government to tell me that the speed limit on the trunk road approach to my town had been reduced. They just put up a sign and people worked it out for themselves. Information about the increase in the retirement age of women was in the public domain for two decades. I worked in an environment where women discussed the issue and were aware of the facts from the time it became law. Women who were active in their Trades Union knew about the changes. If people cut themselves off from the world possibly it passed them by but any women not living in a cave was probably well aware that the pension age was being rolled back from 2010 in stages. It is insulting to women in general to describe them as ill informed, unaware and naive in regard to the changes in the pipeline for two to three decades.

        Tiberman

        April 7, 2016 at 7:46 am

  9. Just when you think the DWP can’t get any worse. Or capitalism.

    And apparently IDS shed a tear while being interviewed by Ian Hislop over the circumstances of a 19yo in poverty.

    ghost whistler

    April 5, 2016 at 8:23 am

    • Which is why I have serious doubts about watching the programme….

      Apart from Deep Space 9 being on at the same time.

      Andrew Coates

      April 5, 2016 at 4:53 pm

      • What about Diagnosis Murder?

        jj joop

        April 7, 2016 at 7:08 am

  10. OT: Employment (or more accurately, lack thereof of stable employment)

    No one will be surprised at this:

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/apr/05/self-employed-freedom-underpaid-contractors
    Being self-employed means freedom. Freedom to be abused and underpaid
    Aditya Chakrabortty

    “Across Britain, firms are laying off permanent staff in favour of contractors – then treating them unfairly

    Here are two things you probably know. First, huge swaths of Britain’s workforce aren’t paid enough to live on and rely on benefits to get by. Second, there’s sod all chance of this changing. David Cameron’s hardly likely to take on business, the trade unions get punier by the day and work is becoming so insecure that those doing it dare not challenge their bosses.”

    Gazza

    April 5, 2016 at 10:52 am

  11. Public Accounts Committee urges DWP to challenge fit-to-work test contractors.

    The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) “appears to have repeatedly misjudged what contractors can deliver and the uncertainties underlying what can be achieved”, according to the Public Accounts Committee’s (PAC) latest report on health and disability assessments.

    The report examines delivery of assessments for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), and Personal Independence Payments (PIP). It finds that despite reductions in the backlog of assessments, and a major contractor change after the early termination of Atos’ contract in 2015, claimants are “still not receiving an acceptable level of service from contractors”.

    There are “particular concerns for claimants with fluctuating and mental health conditions,” it says.

    http://www.civilserviceworld.com/articles/news/public-accounts-committee-urges-dwp-challenge-fit-work-test-contractors

    enigma

    April 5, 2016 at 11:47 am

  12. THE NEXT ASSAULT ON THE SICK AND DISABLED

    Don’t relax over the new Work and Pensions Secretary’s plan not to make changes to PIP.

    “…the plan is to continue using the discredited perversion of ‘biopsychosocial’ theories (that claim illness is a personal choice and is all in the mind) as the basis for any assessment of a claimant’s illness; to put anyone with “mild or moderate” health conditions such as cancer or Parkinson’s on the welfare-to-work treadmill, with sanctions applied if they fail to participate (even if that failure is due to their illness); and to have all sickness benefit reduced to the same level as Jobseekers’ Allowance.”

    http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2016/04/05/brace-yourself-for-the-next-assault-on-the-sick-and-disabled/

    Tobanem

    April 5, 2016 at 1:23 pm

    • Anything that prevents someone leading an average life is a disability,no “Alternative” attempt to say or argue otherwise is not going to cut it,exactly where this sort of cobblers belongs is in the Tribunal Courts.

      ken

      April 5, 2016 at 9:14 pm

    • It is not “the concern” by the “concerns“.

      Perhaps the person who wrote that statement ought to go on one the Strive courses to get this right.

      Andrew Coates

      April 5, 2016 at 3:45 pm

      • & as for the investigation by the DWP? we’ll see.

        enigma

        April 5, 2016 at 7:27 pm

  13. And it’s not “It is not “the concern” by the “concerns“.” but It is not “the concern” [but] the “concerns“. 😉

    Grammar & Spelling Nazi

    April 5, 2016 at 4:23 pm

    • Perhaps Mr Coates ought to go on one the Strive courses to get this right. 😀

      Grammar & Spelling Nazi

      April 5, 2016 at 4:24 pm

      • Perhaps Mr Coates ought to go on [of] one the Strive courses to get this right.😀

        Grammar & Spelling Nazi

        April 5, 2016 at 4:24 pm

  14. By Odins beard…..

    Andrew Coates

    April 5, 2016 at 4:54 pm

  15. Unscripted remarks come as Justice Department confirms it is examining US links to leaked documents from Panama-based tax firm Mossack Fonseca

    http://www.theguardian.com/news/2016/apr/05/justice-department-panama-papers-mossack-fonseca-us-investigation

    enigma

    April 5, 2016 at 7:13 pm

  16. Tobanem

    April 6, 2016 at 8:02 am

    • Meanwhile, here in the UK, internet users are being jailed for posting ‘unnecessary’ comments on social media.

      Molly Tov

      April 6, 2016 at 8:10 am

      • Give me an example of a person being jailed for posting ‘unnecessary’ comments on social media. True, people have been jailed for posting threats to kill and harm others on social media. But what exactly do you mean by ‘unnecessary’ comments?

        mahi mahi

        April 6, 2016 at 8:24 am

      • mahi mahi

        police charged a man with incitement when he emailed No.10 about treatment at hands of Gov and he blamed CammiePiggie directly as PM.

        Check Google for links – one report was in the Mirror, it was last year.

        Its gone silent since then so I suspect the charges were dropped, no reasonable prospect of a conviction and not in the public interest is what CPS told the piggies – but the purpose of the charge was to stop direct criticism of the ConCons, which it hasen’t

        Gazza

        April 6, 2016 at 10:23 am

  17. Some time ago, the well known children’s author Enid Blyton was put on the spot when asked why are all your villains working class?

    It’s a question that has always stuck in my mind.

    Wonder what she would say about the banking scandals, politicians snouts in the trough, Workfare bribery, and the Panama Papers if she was alive today?

    Tobanem

    April 6, 2016 at 11:35 am

    • This is a crisis rooted deep in Tory attitudes
      John McDonnell

      The Panama Papers highlight the growing concern that there is one rule for the very rich and another for everyone else. For when individuals and companies manipulate the tax rules to reduce their tax bill, this understandably outrages those ordinary people paying the price of deficit reduction, and businesses who play by the rules. They, reasonably, expect a level playing field. The Panama Papers have destroyed any illusion of fairness in our tax system.

      http://www.theguardian.com/news/commentisfree/2016/apr/05/panama-papers-tory-attitudes-john-mcdonnell

      enigma

      April 6, 2016 at 11:42 am

      • “Enigma”

        I note The Guardian’s incisive question to Cameron at the start of the report: “Is he happy to have donors linked to tax avoidance”?

        And don’t forget, some former Tory donors went on to subsequently receive lucrative Work Programme contracts. The words sleaze and bribery come to mind!

        Tobanem

        April 6, 2016 at 12:04 pm

      • I would point out that there will be groups who will not be happy at the spotlight being shone on all this – that’s in addition to the usual suspects… CIA/Mossad/KGB/MI5 &6 and any other intelligence organisation that have used this ‘Facilitator’ to hide funds used for nefarious reasons. The CIA was lazy in some way during the cold war – what’s the bet that records on say, Hondourous/Bay of Pigs money being channeled through such a place – you know under the auspices of the Transatlantic Freindship &, as for KGB they would dare to place their funds out there in plain site for their own missdeeeds….

        I suspect there is a hell of a lot of frantic couriors flying around the world right now on very urgent urgent ‘Facilitation’ missions to other ‘Havens’

        Remember of course that the Current headlines that have emerged so far is from just 10% of the 1000 Bedford van sized print outs

        Gazza

        April 6, 2016 at 12:44 pm

      • They won’t be in Bedford vans though; they will all be on the one CD 😀

        Tealeafin

        April 6, 2016 at 4:20 pm

      • I’ve not followed this Panama stuff, but isn’t there 11m docs?
        1 CD would be only 60 Bytes per doc. Even if was all on DVDs, you’d still need a large boxed set!

        Another Fine Recession

        April 6, 2016 at 10:04 pm

      • enigma

        April 7, 2016 at 9:43 am

      • I make that to be 546 4.76 gigabyte DVDs or 3714 700 megabyte CDs or 1000 Bedford vans 😀

        Rachel Riley

        April 7, 2016 at 10:55 am

    • Wind in the Willows is worse.

      Think of the ‘Wild Wood’, and when they- the weasels – take over Toad Hall.

      Clearly a revolutionary unemployed and working class mob.

      Andrew Coates

      April 6, 2016 at 4:01 pm

  18. It is scum like this that give disabled people a bad name. Despicable!

    A couple who claimed £64,000 in benefits for severe disabilities have been caught on camera lifting heavy hanging baskets at their local florist.
    Arthur McCarroll, 58, and his wife Susan, 65, were targeted by undercover investigators from the Department for Work and Pensions.

    McCarroll claimed it took him four minutes to walk just three metres (9.8ft) and said he was so ‘severely disabled’ he was in danger of falling on a daily basis.

    The pair from Larch Road in Kingswinford were both handed suspended sentences at Dudley Magistrates Court.

    The video, which was shown to the court, shows the husband and wife walking freely across the road carrying hanging baskets. It also captured Arthur loading heavy boxes into a car.

    Susan McCarroll had wrongly claimed £35,040 in disability benefits since 2002 while her husband received £29,203. Both pleaded guilty to fraud.

    McCarroll was sentenced to 36 weeks in prison suspended for two years while his wife was handed a 26-week sentence suspended for two years.

    They were also both given a six-week curfew from 7pm until 7am.

    His wife said she was unable to walk, couldn’t cook a meal and needed help going to the toilet as well as getting in and out of bed and chairs.

    Disability benefits couple caught lifting heavy items

    Maria

    April 7, 2016 at 8:02 am

  19. North Ayrshire Council have this week made a spectacular u-turn and suspended recruitment to the STRIVE course following the revelations about their ‘fines’ system

    But

    As North Ayrshire Council make a u-turn on the issue, the Herald can reveal that those attending the course this week are STILL being fined despite national derision of the way in which the scheme implements the system which has been described as “Victorian”.

    A course attendee, who doesn’t wish to be named due to fear he could be sanctioned for talking out, said: “I think its good they have stopped referrals as we are still being made to pay fines even after the story came out. Everyone seemed chuffed it came out but people who ran the course were seen laughing at the article by some of the others on course.”

    http://www.ardrossanherald.com/news/14407607.Job_course_suspended_by/

    enigma

    April 7, 2016 at 10:16 am

    • I would have to question the Legality of this STRIVE business.

      DWP itself has indicated in its own guidance to staff that only a DWP DM can autherise stopping of a claimants payment – forcing someone to sign up to this is fraud on them when they are ‘Fined’, also the Fines in the letter of the law have no standing, let alone getting a DWP DM to agree that it is reasonable that a fine for hands in pockets is reasonable, I don’t think I need go on as I am sure as everyone can see how illegal this whole thing is.

      I pray someone has gone to the police about this.

      Gazza

      April 7, 2016 at 11:05 am

      • Even the DWP DM couldn’t twist this around with the usual: “Whilst you are claiming unemployment benefits we expect you to do all you can to find work”. The actions of the Lennox Partnership are CRIMINAL – pure and simple. These white-collar criminals should be PROSECUTED. They are guilty of obtaining money through menace. They are no different to a mugger holding a knife to your throat in the street. The intent is the same. Whether or not a criminal wears a tracksuit or a collar and tie they should be treated no differently.

        The Prosecutors

        April 7, 2016 at 12:30 pm

    • Crimestoppers

      April 7, 2016 at 12:33 pm

      • Reported 😀

        The Krays

        April 7, 2016 at 12:42 pm

      • How long will it take for law enforcement to act on my information?

        It may take some time for the police to act on the information you have given. There may be many reasons for this:

        The information may be crucial to a larger investigation and any action may take place much later on.
        The information may remain on file and help to solve crime at a later date.

        Even if you don’t see a quick resolution, don’t think your information hasn’t been of use to Crimestoppers – every piece of information helps. 😀

        The Krays

        April 7, 2016 at 12:45 pm

      • If the filth have got time to kick in the doors of internet user posting ‘unnecessary’ comment on social media they have got the time to investigate this criminal activity.

        A course attendee, who doesn’t wish to be named due to fear he could be sanctioned for talking out, said: “I think its good they have stopped referrals as we are still being made to pay fines even after the story came out. Everyone seemed chuffed it came out but people who ran the course were seen laughing at the article by some of the others on course.” – time to wipe the smile from these smug fuckers smarmy faces!

        Bover

        April 7, 2016 at 12:49 pm

      • Give Information Online
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        Forgotten something? If you want to add something to the information you just gave us, please don’t click back in the browser. If there is something you need to add please fill out a new form.

        We’d like to thank you for joining the fight against crime in your community. Don’t worry if you don’t hear from us. It doesn’t mean your information wasn’t valuable. We receive thousands of pieces of information every day and it’s impossible for us to reply to everyone individually.
        What happens next?

        Your submission is being turned into an anonymous report which doesn’t disclose your identity. It is then sent to the relevant law enforcement agency with the legal responsibility to investigate crimes, make arrests and charge people in order to bring them to justice.
        How does law enforcement process my information?

        They will thoroughly research the report before they can act on it. Law enforcement need to ensure it is correct and not given maliciously in order to set someone up.

        The police cannot get a search warrant or make an arrest based only on anonymous information – there needs to be other intelligence to support it. The research they do on Crimestoppers’ information means they can use it with confidence. Once this is done, the police will allocate it to an appropriate officer/team to deal with. This could mean more research or action may be taken.
        How long will it take for law enforcement to act on my information?

        It may take some time for the police to act on the information you have given. There may be many reasons for this:

        The information may be crucial to a larger investigation and any action may take place much later on.
        The information may remain on file and help to solve crime at a later date.

        Even if you don’t see a quick resolution, don’t think your information hasn’t been of use to Crimestoppers – every piece of information helps.

        Grass Whistler

        April 7, 2016 at 12:53 pm


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