Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

UN Report on Poverty in Britain: Welfare to Workhouses.

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Image result for alston report poverty Jaywick

Special UN Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty Philip Alston in Jaywick, Essex.

A couple of days ago I heard a group of lads talking about Universal Credit.

They’d all got caught up in its clutches and they had many a merry tale to tell.

It does not take imagination to see that poverty, they mentioned the waits for money, the on-line gibberish, and Coachy.

The DWP, our Newshawks say, always responds with stout denial to any criticism.

This must have stung sharper than a serpent’s tooth..

The report begins,

The social safety net has been badly damaged by drastic cuts to local authorities’ budgets, which have eliminated many social services, reduced policing services, closed libraries in record numbers, shrunk community and youth centres and sold off public spaces and buildings. The bottom line is that much of the glue that has held British society together since the Second World War has been deliberately removed and replaced with a harsh and uncaring ethos. A booming economy, high employment and a budget surplus have not reversed austerity, a policy pursued more as an ideological than an economic agenda.

The Guardian covered the story as following:

UN report compares Tory welfare policies to creation of workhouses

A leading United Nations poverty expert has compared Conservative welfare policies to the creation of 19th-century workhouses and warned that unless austerity is ended, the UK’s poorest people face lives that are “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short”.

Ministers in denial about impact of austerity since 2010, says poverty expert

The far-right Mail publishes the bleats and denials of the DWP and Amber Rudd.

Amber Rudd is to lodge a formal complaint over UN’s ‘barely believable’ poverty report accusing Britain of violating human rights obligations by creating ‘Dickensian’ conditions for the poor

  • UN report claims Britain is returning to ‘Dickensian’ conditions, where citizens lives are, quoting Hobbes, ‘solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short’
  • But government points out that UN research published just two months ago ranked Britain as the 15th happiest country to live in
  • DWP says Rapporteur paints ‘completely inaccurate picture’ after his whistle-stop two-week human rights fact-finding visit last November

Poverty in the UK is ‘systematic’ and ‘tragic’, says UN special rapporteur

The UK’s social safety net has been “deliberately removed and replaced with a harsh and uncaring ethos”, a report commissioned by the UN has said.

Special rapporteur on extreme poverty Philip Alston said “ideological” cuts to public services since 2010 have led to “tragic consequences”.

The report comes after Prof Alston visited UK towns and cities and made preliminary findings last November.

The government said his final report was “barely believable”.

The £95bn spent on welfare and the maintenance of the state pension showed the government took tackling poverty “extremely seriously”, a spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) said.

Prof Alston is an independent expert in human rights law and was appointed to the unpaid role by the UN Human Rights Council in June 2014. He spent nearly two weeks travelling in Britain and Northern Ireland and received more than 300 written submissions for his report.

He went on to observe

Some observers might conclude that the DWP had been tasked with “designing a digital and sanitised version of the 19th Century workhouse, made infamous by Charles Dickens”, he said.

The report cites independent experts saying that 14 million people in the UK – a fifth of the population – live in poverty, according to a new measure that takes into account costs such as housing and childcare.

In 2017, 1.5 million people experienced destitution, meaning they had less than £10 a day after housing costs, or they had to go without at least two essentials such as shelter, food, heat, light, clothing or toiletries during a one-month period.

Despite official denials, Prof Alston said he had heard accounts of people choosing between heating their homes or eating, children turning up to school with empty stomachs, increased homelessness and food bank use, and “story after story” of people who had considered or attempted suicide.

Now I’ve got a bit of respect for Human Rights. One of the greatest British radicals, Tom Paine, wrote the Rights of Man (1791), which was a founding book for our labour movement and left. My dad said they were still reading it in Glasgow in the 1930s.

Comrade Paine wrote this,

In the closing chapters of Rights of Man, Paine addresses the condition of the poor and outlines a detailed social welfare proposal predicated upon the redirection of government expenditure. From the onset, Paine asserts all citizens have an inherent claim to welfare. Paine declares welfare is not charity, but an irrevocable right.

One of the great founders of modern socialism, the Frenchman Jean Jaurès, (1859 – 1914)., did not just stand up for welfare, he defended social and human rights. Jaurès campaigned for the innocence of Dreyfus against the anti-Semites of his day. He mixed together workers’ and welfare right with socialism. He was murdered in 1914 by one of national populists of the Farrage ilk for opposing the start of the First World War.

When I read people disrespecting Professor Alston I think they are insulting our glorious forebears.

Apart from that, the present social security system, Universal Credit and all, stinks to high heaven.

This is the Report’s conclusion:

The philosophy underpinning the British welfare system has changed radically since 2010. The initial rationales for reform were to reduce overall expenditures and to promote employment as the principal “cure” for poverty.

But when large-scale poverty persisted despite a booming economy and very high levels of employment, the Government chose not to adjust course. Instead, it doubled down on a parallel agenda to reduce benefits by every means available, including constant reductions in benefit levels, ever-more-demanding conditions, harsher penalties, depersonalization, stigmatization, and virtually eliminating the option of using the legal system to vindicate rights.

The basic message, delivered in the language of managerial efficiency and automation, is that almost any alternative will be more tolerable than seeking to obtain government benefits.

This is a very far cry from any notion of a social contract, Beveridge model or otherwise, let alone of social human rights. As Thomas Hobbes observed long ago, such an approach condemns the least well off to lives that are “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short”. As the British social contract slowly evaporates, Hobbes’ prediction risks becoming the new reality.

 

58 Responses

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  1. This is one of the worst aspects of the so-called Tory ‘welfare reforms’, the calculated, deliberate imposition of a cruel and repressive system. Symbolised by the online workhouse of Universal Credit, and a future of low-pay, zero-hour jobs.

    Jeff Smith

    May 23, 2019 at 12:13 pm

  2. The real reason why tory filth Amber Rudd is lodging a complaint over the UN’s austerity report is because the blatant truth about the Torys murderous policies against the peasantry cannot be allowed to get out!

    Violet

    May 23, 2019 at 12:14 pm

    • Amber Rudd is to lodge a formal complaint over UN’s ‘barely believable’ poverty report

      She’s badly out of touch,first there was the thriving community hub when its the most depressing place then there was the work and mental health comment when stress in the workplace is rampent.

      It hardly makes good sence if shes going to mount a leadership bid,more banana skins.The conservative’s have no understanding of day to day life and bad leadership has been at the forfront of much of this,all we’ve had is divide and rule combined with cuts and spiralling poverty escalating through towns up and down the country and Universal Credit is the major player.Its the country of discontent directionless and leaderless.

      ken

      May 23, 2019 at 7:41 pm

  3. zero hour contracts

    myfinalusername

    May 23, 2019 at 1:10 pm

  4. DWP propaganda campaign in the Metro runs aground in Ipswich and such much-needed recycling is underway.

    Andrew Coates

    May 23, 2019 at 2:21 pm

    • They ought to boycott the Metro for this, just as people did withe the Sun after Hillsborough.

      Burt Sutton

      May 23, 2019 at 6:28 pm

  5. ‘If the individual were no longer compelled to prove himself on the market, as a free economic subject, the disappearance of this kind of freedom would be one of the greatest achievements of civilization. The technological processes of mechanization and standardization might release individual energy into a yet uncharted realm of freedom beyond necessity. The very structure of human existence would be altered; the individual would be liberated from the work world’s imposing upon him alien needs and alien possibilities. The individual would be free to exert autonomy over a life that would be his own’. Herbert Marcuse

    Gerald Farnley

    May 23, 2019 at 6:42 pm

  6. superted

    May 23, 2019 at 7:26 pm

    • FRESH concerns about the impact of Universal Credit changes have been raised by MSPs – on the same day the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) launched a “myth-busting” ad campaign in defence of the system.

      It is not known how much the UK Government department paid for the “Universal Credit Uncovered” campaign, which is styled in a form common to newspaper investigations and ran yesterday on six pages of the daily Metro, as well as on the title’s website.

      However, a four-page “wraparound” in the popular freesheet, which is aimed at city-dwellers and those on higher incomes, costs around £250,000.

      https://www.thenational.scot/news/17657890.myth-busting-ad-on-universal-credit-sparks-backlash/

      ken

      May 23, 2019 at 7:56 pm

  7. TUC Disabled Workers’ Conference: Anger over DWP’s universal credit ad campaign

    DNS – 23rd May 2019

    Disabled union activists have condemned the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and media managers for pressuring jobcentre workers and reporters to take part in an “unethical and misleading” campaign aimed at air-brushing the impact of universal credit.

    The National Union of Journalists (NUJ)* spoke out this week after it emerged that DWP was paying hundreds of thousands of pounds for an advertising campaign in the Metro free newspaper series as part of a nationwide campaign to “myth-bust the common inaccuracies reported on UC”.

    A leaked memo – seen by Disability News Service – says the series of Metro advertising features will be part of a wider campaign “to tackle misconceptions and improve the reputation of UC” by persuading newspapers and other media to run more positive news stories and features about universal credit (see separate story).

    The Metro campaign launched yesterday (Wednesday) after it was brought forward following the publication of extracts from the leaked memo.

    But it was launched on the same day that the UN’s special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights published a report that was deeply critical of UC (see separate story), which he said had caused severe hardship and had “built a digital barrier that obstructs access to benefits”.

    Read More:
    https://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/tuc-disabled-workers-conference-anger-over-dwps-universal-credit-ad-campaign/

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    May 23, 2019 at 7:33 pm

  8. The Work Houses have all closed down !!!

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    May 23, 2019 at 7:37 pm

  9. The DWP’s “Universal Credit Uncovered” newspaper advert backfires

    A four-page “advertisement feature” in Metro attempts to bust myths – but simply reinforces the welfare system’s problems.

    The premise of this four-page-long splurge of taxpayers’ money is that the media has been spreading MYTHS, by thoroughly reporting the well-documented and myriad problems of the government’s reformed welfare system.

    https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/welfare/2019/05/dwp-s-universal-credit-uncovered-newspaper-advert-backfires

    ken

    May 23, 2019 at 7:48 pm

    • in 20 years i have had not one person help me in to work no matter what you call them they are there to remove you from claiming benefits anyway they can even if it means braking there own rules and regs if they think they can get away with it.

      this news paper add comes from a different planet in a different galaxy in another dimension lol

      superted

      May 23, 2019 at 8:05 pm

  10. I’m not really surprised, love, since I believe the Metro is owned by the far-right Daily Mail. Two arses of the same cheek as we say in the Dales.

    Betty from Yorkshire

    May 23, 2019 at 8:01 pm

    • Thanks, I honestly did not know that!

      Andrew Coates

      May 24, 2019 at 11:11 am

      • The Metro newspaper – run by the company that owns the Daily Mail – sparked outrage last week over its decision to take hundreds of thousands of pounds from DWP in exchange for a major nine-week series of advertising features.

        https://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/newspaper-ignores-concerns-over-dwps-universal-credit-ads/

        It does go against impartiality,its hard to see how they can pubish facts regarding the effects of Universal Credit and publish that.Clearly money talkes with the Metro rather then exposing the truth.

        ken

        May 26, 2019 at 12:18 pm

  11. The 4 page DWP advert has cost the DWP around £250.000. Should be busy spending money on the DWP State Sponsored Murders cover up called Universal Credit. Brexit = The UK’s Bill Of Rights which ignores the UN & Human Rights because the UK is a law unto itself. The UK is a rogue state of Human Rights breaches. How about suicide flavoured milkshake.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    May 23, 2019 at 9:46 pm

  12. And now Amber Rudd is making a complaint about the UN report being unfair !
    Is she trying out a new career as a stand up comedian ?
    Never let it be said that the DWP don’t have a sense of humour.

    Jeff Smith

    May 23, 2019 at 10:14 pm

  13. I wonder if there is any room in politics for a party of unpleasant individuals who hate humanity ?
    You could call it quite simply, The Absolute Bastards Party.
    Then when people were voting, they would know what they were getting.

    Vernon Goodyear

    May 23, 2019 at 10:30 pm

  14. The Universal Credit Health & Well Being Form only wants to know about good things, it does not want to know anything bad like having cold or having cancer. They are very interested if you had a very nice & good shit but not if you have constipation or delexicalled. The Health & Well Being Form wants to hear the best from you like making a cv. If you put something down that is not good you will get a sanction.

    Can you carry a litre of liquid piss 50m? I’m not touching a litre of liquid piss, so no.

    Can you lift your arm to your jacket pocket? No, I am not wearing a jacket.

    Sounds like the Merlin Tick Box system.

    How about sending Universal Credit to a consultancy firm !!!! It seems the Tories have sent Universal Credit & all other Government Departments as well as child poverty & homelessness to a consultancy firm. How about giving the Food Bank contract to Serco & G4s then you can send the Food Bank PLC to a consultancy firm. Amber Useless Rudd was working at a consultancy firm in-between her latest sackings called Rocket Science Labs which has all Government Departments which are being sorted out there. Local councils are all there as well at the consultancy

    The Merlin Tick Box system is designed for everything else to fit into the Merlin Design Tick System which can be looked on as a dictatorship as is scrapping Legal Aid & getting vetted just to have an appeal. Michael Mansfield QC seems to have shit himself in Human Rights going about like some hot shot lawyer, even Ken Loach has more to say on the subject of Human Rights Breaches.

    Now Universal Credit is causing genocide within the Tory Party just like the rest of society. all in genocide together like one big happy lazy neo-liberalism family.

    The Tory Government has found a cure for Thalidomide like privatising slavery.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    May 23, 2019 at 11:37 pm

  15. Situation in skl I work in. UC Hit our town last October. Within 3 weeks 5 of our families referred to foodbank. Policy use to be of kids came in hungry unless they were free school meals we couldn’t give food. Now we regularly feed hungry kids breakfast when they arrive. Staff use to eat leftover pizza cake ect from school lunch surplus if cook made too much. Now we feel guilty…

    katrehman

    May 24, 2019 at 4:59 am

  16. We have also expanded our clothes bin into a free uniform swop shop for struggling families. I’m in a deprived ward in a town in SE ENGLAND. our families are bigger than the norm and we also have lots of special needs kids and a larger proportion of free skl meals kids

    katrehman

    May 24, 2019 at 5:03 am

    • @katrehman

      This is reality, and not the usual Tory spin. Universal Credit has caused mass hardship. Somehow the Tories managed to slip this past the majority of working class voters, under cover of getting at skivers and fake disabled. Now we see the cruel reality. The end of a social security system.

      Jeff Smith

      May 24, 2019 at 9:25 am

  17. Reblogged this on Tory Britain!.

    A6er

    May 24, 2019 at 9:03 am

  18. One potato, two potatoes, three potatoes, four. On Universal Credit there won’t be any more.

    Malcolm Durrell

    May 24, 2019 at 9:10 am

  19. Boris Johnson is the new Prime Minister & we are all going to need an interpreter.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    May 24, 2019 at 12:29 pm

  20. Suicidal Tory Party Policy.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    May 24, 2019 at 12:30 pm

  21. DWP probes universal credit fraud case
    A Department for Work and Pensions minister will investigate a fraudulent loan company that stole an applicant’s identity to apply for universal credit.

    https://www.publicfinance.co.uk/news/2019/05/dwp-probes-universal-credit-fraud-case

    superted

    May 24, 2019 at 2:05 pm

  22. UN report on eye-watering poverty in UK is a wake-up call – Jamie Clark

    the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, released his final report on his visit to the UK last year.

    It reveals eye-watering levels of poverty in the UK and the deliberate decisions our politicians have been taking that trap people in the grip of poverty.

    Being in poverty and relying on Universal Credit is like being stuck in the middle of a spider’s web with no escape route. You can climb further up the web to try and get out but something keeps dragging you back. Low pay, insecure work, zero hours contracts and a punitive social security system make it very difficult to escape. That’s the trap of poverty.

    https://www.scotsman.com/news/opinion/columnists/un-report-on-eye-watering-poverty-in-uk-is-a-wake-up-call-jamie-clark-1-4932745

    In his report on poverty in the UK, the Special Rapporteur also highlights the problem of in-work poverty.

    https://www.ft.com/content/d50bd4ec-7c87-11e9-81d2-f785092ab560

    Is Universal Credit reinforcing this in society?

    ken

    May 24, 2019 at 4:56 pm

    • Ah! But we have put Work Coaches in place to mentor clients and ensure that they all benefit from in-work progression by securing better jobs, more jobs or more hours until everybody becomes self-sufficient and no-one needs benefits from the state any more. The UK will be peopled by shiny happy people and poverty will have become a thing of the past.

      Amber Forever

      May 25, 2019 at 8:37 am

  23. Despite her successes with Universal Credit!

    Andrew Coates

    May 25, 2019 at 9:11 am

    • Amber Rudd’s majority in her constituency is 346. After the Windrush and Universal Credit scandals I doubt if she will be an MP after the next general election. Hardly worth her standing then really all things considered things being what they are.

      Jim

      May 25, 2019 at 9:54 am

      • She didn’t take the risk or reach her potential.

        ken

        May 25, 2019 at 2:44 pm

  24. At least the DWP’s latest propaganda campaign has been well and truly stuffed. We should know, they invented us to spin more of their lies.

    Zac & Sara

    May 25, 2019 at 10:02 am

  25. Working Poverty is still crap Amber. It means cheap labour. Donkey work. Stop trying to pretend that you and your Tory friends haven’t put one over on the British Working Class. You did it, you won. And you bought all those votes by making the making the working class turn on themselves, and do the dirty work for you.
    As always.

    Fred Harrington

    May 25, 2019 at 10:07 am

  26. “They had stopped now and he gave a glance up at the sky, through the trees, as though to see how much time was left. Amber, watching him, was suddenly struck with panic. Now he was going–out again into that great world with its bustle and noise and excitement–and she must stay here. She had a terrible new feeling of loneliness, as if she stood in some solitary corner at a party where she was the only stranger. Those places he had seen, she would never see; those fine things he had done, she would never do. But worst of all she would never see him again.”
    ― Kathleen Winsor, Forever Amber

    Forever Amber

    May 25, 2019 at 10:14 am

  27. Alright I admit it. We wanted to spend less money on benefits, and more money
    on tax breaks for the wealthy.
    So that they would keep on supporting us and giving us large donations.
    Then we had a brilliant idea. Why not use the working class against themselves ?
    Get them to do the dirty work for us ?
    You know how suspicious they are of each other, that people are ‘trying it on’ etc.
    How they love big groups, HP sauce on everything and causing trouble for outsiders ?
    So we started a campaign aimed at the unemployed and the disabled.
    Making them out to be skivers, for not working, or ‘trying it on’ with the disabled.
    It worked better than we could possibly ever have imagined.
    Not only with those white van morons who are just useful idiots.
    But with the ordinary working class. They started to pick up on it.
    Soon they were howling against benefits. The same benefits that people like them
    would need to use. Talk about turkeys voting for Christmas !

    Senior Tory

    May 25, 2019 at 12:45 pm

  28. Jobcentre worker reveals what happens when the DWP deems a disabled person fit for work

    “Unfortunately, we are used to dealing with people coming in all states of health and wellbeing.”

    “We work with GPs, as trying to training providers we are trying to broaden the services we can offer in a Jobcentre.

    https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/jobcentre-worker-reveals-happens-dwp-2898019

    Its concerning this presence at the GP surgery,unemployment seen as a mental health problem.Its also possible people flagging on benefits might be sent down another treatment path from everyone else.

    ken

    May 25, 2019 at 2:43 pm

  29. Could working less save the planet?

    According to a provocative new Autonomy report, reducing the working week could enhance wellbeing and avert climate breakdown.

    There’s a growing consensus that many of the problems fuelling climate change should be tackled simultaneously, improving people’s lives while rapidly reducing environmental impact. Yet increasing wellbeing often leads to more environmental destruction; more food, for example, results in the unsustainable use of soil, while access to high quality healthcare means deploying more diesel ambulances.

    A growing body of evidence suggests that longer working hours lead to greater environmental damage, from increased commuting in dirty vehicles to people purchasing wasteful goods. These findings have bolstered campaigns arguing that a shorter working week could result in a range of benefits, from improved wellbeing to increased economic productivity.

    A new report from Autonomy, a think tank focussed on the future of work, has made a provocative contribution to the debate around carbon emissions. The report’s author, Philipp Frey, used OECD and UN data on the carbon intensity and hours worked in countries across Europe to calculate how much the working week would need to be reduced in order to avert climate breakdown, if other changes – such as the creation of more green jobs, or decarbonising energy sources – weren’t made.

    The results are startling. In the UK, the working week would have to fall to as little as nine hours in order to limit warming to the planetary boundary of 2°C. Across OECD countries, the 40-hour average working week would have to fall to just over five. Reducing the working week, as the report notes, is only one tool among many that could be used simultaneously to slow environmental breakdown.

    And while working less might improve personal wellbeing, there’s no reason why people with more time wouldn’t buy more single-use plastics and drive more petrol-guzzling cars. This is why other support mechanisms are needed to help people make the most of working less, such as a universal basic income and investment in the public realm to limit environmental damage.

    Policymakers implementing a shorter working week as an environmental remedy would also need to weigh this decision against the possibility that, in order to halt environmental breakdown, people may actually need to work differently, not less.

    Talk of a green new deal aimed at creating swathes of “green” jobs in industries that support decarbonisation around the world is one example of the work that may be necessary, particularly in nations that have contributed most to greenhouse gas emissions, to confront the enormity of the environmental crisis.

    And rethinking both why and how we work should be central to overcoming environmental breakdown, while also improving wellbeing and building a more just society. More wealth has not, on average, made rich nations happier. Studies show that the better a country performs on a range of social measures, the higher its contribution to environmental breakdown – precisely the opposite of what we need.

    These problems are characteristic of an economic system that prioritises GDP growth above wellbeing and environmental stability. The growing campaign to rethink work imagines a future where an elite addiction to growth is replaced by a collective commitment to social and environmental flourishing. That’s why it’s at the forefront of a growing movement of campaigners, workers and politicians seeking a new economy.

    Could working less save the planet?

    The New Statesman

    May 25, 2019 at 2:48 pm

  30. Universal Credit fury as ‘automatic backdating of claims scrapped by DWP’
    https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/uk-news/universal-credit-fury-automatic-backdating-16323215

    superted

    May 25, 2019 at 4:47 pm

  31. ‘No Backdating of claims.’ They are already paid in arrears as it is. Another mean-minded cutback from the DWP.
    Why don’t they just make people beg outside the Jobcentre for the money ?

    Claimant Campaigner

    May 25, 2019 at 6:26 pm

  32. Or they could start a new TV programme, where claimants have to justify being on benefits, and then the viewers vote on how money they should get.

    Garry K.

    May 25, 2019 at 6:32 pm

  33. Another uplifting story.

    Kind man gives food and cash to Alvaston mum whose benefits were scrapped

    When the cash stopped she said she had nothing but dog biscuits in the cupboard

    A kind businessman has provided food and cash for an Alvaston mum whose benefits were scrapped.

    Ambar Sajjad pulled up at Alesia Robinson’s house in Bembridge Drive at lunchtime with bags of food from the Co-op.

    The 36-year-old – who has arthritis, partial hearing and learning difficulties – said she was left with hardly any money, food or electricity.

    https://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/news/local-news/alvaston-dwp-benefits-universal-credit-2880443

    ken

    May 26, 2019 at 11:53 am

  34. ‘MPs need to leave Westminster to get a true picture of poverty,’ says UN lawyer

    Special UN advisor Philip Alston tells in damning report how children are going to school with holes in their shoes while others go hungry because they can’t afford to pay for their meal.

    PUPILS going to school with holes in their shoes because parents can’t afford new ones.

    DISABLED people who had benefits cut after being ordered to “get out and work”.

    HUNGRY kids who had no money for meals at lunchtime.

    Mr Alston was scathing about a response to his report from the Department of Works and Pensions, led by Tory minister Amber Rudd.

    https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/mps-need-leave-westminster-true-16200270

    ken

    May 26, 2019 at 12:03 pm

  35. Andrew Coates

    May 26, 2019 at 12:19 pm

  36. A third of St Helens workers earn less than Real Living Wage

    Charities and trade unions have warned of a “rising tide of in-work poverty” across the country, with millions of workers struggling to make ends meet.

    The Living Wage Foundation argues that businesses paying the living wage benefit from more productive and motivated workers.

    “If we want to build a modern, dynamic economy, we need to see more businesses step up and join the over 5,000 Living Wage employers committed to pay a fair day’s pay for a hard day’s work,” said director Katherine Chapman.

    https://www.sthelensreporter.co.uk/news/a-third-of-st-helens-workers-earn-less-than-real-living-wage-1-9788128

    ken

    May 26, 2019 at 12:30 pm

  37. We decided to give our usual diet of English TV fare a miss last night and downloaded via torrent a German film Der Wald vor lauter Bäumen (The Forest from the Trees instead, What got us thinking was that when we unfortunately have to visit your UK jobcentre we see many ‘Thank You’ cards on the other side of the desk. Now in the film there is a teacher who apparently keeps receiving gifts from her pupils “and it’s not even my birthday 🙂 “. Later on in the film Melanie, in one of her many social faux pas splats out that
    this teacher buys these gifts herself. We were thinking, maybe same thing is going on in jobcentre. Those on the other side of the desk buy the ‘Thank You’ cards themselves or even for each other.

    If you are fed up of watching English TV and are interested in what fantastic fare German cinema has to offer.

    https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0386862/

    If you don’t speak German (we do!) for your convenience we found you subtitles here (you can ignore the browser add on just click ‘Download’ and just wait for the subtitles):

    https://www.opensubtitles.org/en/subtitles/3145239/der-wald-vor-lauter-baumen-en

    Guten Morgen und einen schönen Tag

    The Frankfurter Jobseekers

    May 28, 2019 at 8:55 am

    • For noobies, subtitle (.srt) files have to be in the same folder on your USB stick as the movie file and also have the same name as the movie file i.e pirate.avi and pirate.srt 😉

      Pirate

      May 28, 2019 at 9:25 am

    • Ze Melanie prezents za most zinteresting case study. In Frau Melanie zere we zee za zypical zun-zeurotypical type. Zi zould ze most pleazed zo zinvite Frau Melanie zin zor zonsultaion. Frau Melanie zould ze most zinteresing zon za zouch.

      Doctor Klaudia Braukenfuhrerstein-Glokenspeil

      May 29, 2019 at 2:03 pm

    • We watched this last night. Bertie is as deaf as a post so we need subtitles on all the time anyway. Very true to life. Maybe too true to life.. Bertie had a tear in his eye at the end.

      The Silver Surfers

      May 30, 2019 at 2:57 pm

    • We kept thinking that someone was speaking in the next room. Bertie thought is was his hearing aid at first. But when when we pressed mute on the TV it went away. We’ve never been fooled like that before.

      The Sliver Surfers

      May 30, 2019 at 3:07 pm

  38. Extreme Poverty, Systemic Immiseration of Great Britain: Ten Damning Conclusions from the New UN Poverty Report

    1. Dickensian Britain

    2. Employment is no escape from poverty

    3. Eat or heat

    https://selectra.co.uk/energy/guides/fuel-poverty-uk

    https://www.globalresearch.ca/10-damning-conclusions-new-un-poverty-report/5678692

    ken

    May 28, 2019 at 10:19 am


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