Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Face-to-face Jobcentre meetings to restart.

with 306 comments

Big Universal Credit change as face-to-face Jobcentre meetings restart

The Mirror which has campaigned for the rights of claimants reports.

Universal Credit change as face-to-face meetings re-starting this month

All face-to-face Jobcentre services had been paused since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic

Brits who claim Universal Credit and other benefits could be called into face-to-face meetings at their local Jobcentres from this month.

This will follow in-person work capability assessments in May for those who claim certain health and disability benefits.

All face-to-face Jobcentre services have been paused since March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Instead, the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) have used video calls to assess some benefit claims.

Face-to-face appointments returned in England and Wales from April 12, with Scotland to follow from April 26.

The Currant Bun, which is no friend of the out-of-work, reports,

Then there is this, an opportunity for the usual chancers to make money out of claimants:

There is of course this in the news..

The i weekend

Written by Andrew Coates

April 24, 2021 at 11:59 am

306 Responses

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  1. Conditionality has been generally reintroduced from the 30 June 2020, and new and revised claimant commitments for UC claimants are being reintroduced from 1 July 2020 on a phased approach and as capacity allows (3 August 2020 for New Style and Legacy JSA new claims). Claimants can only receive sanctions for failure to meet commitments once they have a new or updated tailored claimant commitment in place.



    April 24, 2021 at 12:32 pm

  2. Face-to-face appointments are about as pointless as Conditionality and the Jobcentres themselves. One hugely costly unnecessary charade to fool middle-England and Rightwing voters into believing that the Government are doing something about the perceived problem of unemployment, whilst making the lives of Benefit claimants a misery in order to punish and deter anyone from claiming State Benefits.


    April 24, 2021 at 12:42 pm

  3. Reblogged this on Tory Britain! .


    April 24, 2021 at 12:45 pm

  4. Most of us on legacy benefits have been unemployed for quite a while and the pandemic has added on another year to that. It seems pointless trying to get the ones over sixty back into work. Not many employers will want to train someone up who is going to retire in a year or so. Trying to create a sanction doubt on someone soon to retire is just being nasty.


    April 24, 2021 at 12:59 pm

  5. Serco running the DWP’s Admin. Have all the DWP Staff left the DWP they need to get Serco in. Will the DWP & Serco staff be wearing face masks at interviews !! I doubt it. Serco will not be going on strike but have the DWP over a barrell.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    April 24, 2021 at 1:08 pm

  6. The third wave of Covid is coming from the DWP.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    April 24, 2021 at 1:09 pm

    • Will it be a Mexican wave?


      April 24, 2021 at 2:58 pm

      • All ready to Serco Wave !!

        Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

        April 24, 2021 at 4:46 pm

  7. DWP officials pocket millions in ‘performance’ bonuses despite universal credit shambles

    Senior civil servants at the Department for Work and Pensions were handed bonus payments worth up to £17,500 while thousands of administration staff were rewarded with hundreds of pounds extra.

    According to newly released figures from the government, 61 of the most senior Whitehall mandarins at the department averaged a tidy average bonus of £9,600.



    April 24, 2021 at 1:10 pm

  8. There is absolutely no point in meeting me in person just to ask if my circumstances have changed and to provide my signature to that effect. There is no point whatsoever in checking my jobsearch evidence as I will always be one step ahead of the game. There are no suitable vacancies that any Work Coach can ‘advise’ me to apply for that I most likely haven’t already applied for. The DWP might as well save time and public money by putting me on annual signing, and even then not necessarily in person.


    April 24, 2021 at 2:57 pm

    • Change Of Circumstances is a grey area that can be manipulated, for Sanctions, for Targets, slip ups along the way. A Change Of circumstances open to fraud by DWP.

      Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

      April 24, 2021 at 4:51 pm

      • Change of address, status – single/married/cohabiting, having a Lodger, starting or stopping work, I think that’s about it and none of it applies to me. Don’t change anything or it’s UC for you!


        April 24, 2021 at 6:25 pm

  9. Realistically, even with 13,500 new Work Coaches, Jobcentres are going to be hard pressed to deal will everybody on their books and so I imagine that face-to-face appointments will be spaced more than two week apart. Unless a random DWP employee takes a particular dislike to someone and turns everything into vendetta: I’ve heard of this happening with individuals being called to the Jobcentre several times a week to “rough them up” and make life even more unpleasant for them. This was what George Osborne’s risible Help-to-Work scheme for people unemployed over three years involving taking part in community work placements, such as clearing up litter and graffiti in their local areas, attending daily signings at the job centre until they find work; or participants with multiple barriers to finding work, for example literacy or numeracy problems, will be provided with intensive support to address their problems.


    Help-to-Work was all about making life more difficult and unpleasant for those affected and, like most government programmes before it, made very little difference to those affected insofar as gainful employment was concerned.



    That happened way before the coronavirus pandemic of course and considering that the mass vaccination programme against Covid in the UK is nowhere near completed bringing back appointments in person at communal Jobcentres does seem unnecessarily precipitous. And I expect that a good few of the newer Work Coaches will get pushy to the point of aggression trying to score points and impress their bosses.


    April 24, 2021 at 3:36 pm

    • I was put on to weekly signing for a few months but still got my payment fortnightly, which I thought was very unfair and said so. If you sign weekly you should be paid weekly. I think daily signing was reserved for those whom they suspected were working on the side, just ti to mess them about with different signing times every day.


      April 24, 2021 at 3:54 pm

      • if it is not your signing day then they have to pay the bus fair, they tried that with me for a week so had to pay 5 days bus fair @£15 so soon stopped that 😉


        April 24, 2021 at 4:02 pm

      • https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/reimbursement_of_bus_fares_or_fu

        Mandatory awards for travel
        An award for travel expenses must be made when the claimant:-
         attends additional appointments other than the fortnightly work search reviews when
        they are allocated to the intensive work search regime


        April 24, 2021 at 4:10 pm

      • They put you on weekly if your NFA, working without declaring or they believe your not doing enough to find work.


        April 27, 2021 at 5:45 am

      • They used to put you on daily signing if they suspected you were illegally working. I got put on weekly directly after successfully completing Skills Conditionality, a two months employability course that included a four weeks unpaid work placement. I got put on Skills Conditionality after blowing it on the Community Work Programme, so Coachey gave me a second chance in effect and I miraculously avoided a Sanction.


        April 27, 2021 at 9:35 am

  10. I think I’m suffering from Benefit stigma, can you get a sick note for that?


    April 24, 2021 at 3:41 pm

  11. @trev

    They wouldn’t want to give us early retirement and let us claim pension credit more than doubling our £74 a week jsa.
    I hope people on state pensions receive full housing benefit.


    April 24, 2021 at 4:19 pm

    • I’m still waiting for my £20 per week “uplift”, in a lump sum backdated to April 2020, if Rishi Sunak is reading this I’ll accept a cheque.


      April 24, 2021 at 4:24 pm

  12. @All

    Has anyone heard who has been awarded the contracts for the Restart programme? It was supposed to have closed on or about the 17/19 April. Reed in Partnership are still advertising for coaches, etc. But no mention now in their advertisement about bidding for said contracts.

    jj joop

    April 24, 2021 at 4:25 pm

  13. Restart Scheme
    intensive and tailored support
    Restart programme is there to support frontline services and to enable government via DWP and providers like ourselves to deliver on the government’s Plan for Jobs to support people back into work and this first contract which has been procured from the CAEHRS framework.

    The Restart programme seeks to provide intensive and tailored support to people who have spent between 12- and 18-months claiming Universal Credit under the intensive work search activity strand.

    Participants will be on programme for 1 year and key performance metrics will include employment outcomes as well as a range of customer service standards. Restart is a predominantly a payment by results model to drive sustainable employment. Pathway Group are proud to be working with lead providers to deliver on these outcomes



    April 24, 2021 at 4:41 pm

    • And proud no doubt to be getting the large fees for doing so.

      Jeff Smith

      April 24, 2021 at 6:07 pm

  14. Are the DWP not used to the New Normal instead of nothing happen with Covid.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    April 24, 2021 at 4:53 pm

  15. David Cameron 1st job while Prime Minister was with Atos, Serco. Then David Cameron continued doing his 2nd job which was being Prime Minister.

    Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

    April 24, 2021 at 4:55 pm

    • Atos get a nice £500 Million bonus from Dodgy Dave. David Cameron juggling Dodgy Dave Again.

      Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

      April 24, 2021 at 4:57 pm

      • Then you got Iain Duncan Smith Vs ATOS Part 346.

        No it was Atos, no it was Iain Duncan Smith’s DWP.

        Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

        April 24, 2021 at 4:59 pm

      • In all that time there have been 8 sacked disability ministers.

        Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

        April 24, 2021 at 5:00 pm

      • They shouted WE RESIGNED.

        Stepping Razor Sound Plate System

        April 24, 2021 at 5:01 pm

  16. 2.96 Mandation must only be used where the activity the potential Participant is required to
    undertake is reasonable for the individual and they are expected to be able to comply.

    Click to access restart-specification-itt-v1.pdf

    so i wont be going then pmsl only for the stupid ppl that will sign there contracts and if you do manage to get a job they will hound you to death for there job outcome fee for doing fuck all same as the work programme.


    April 24, 2021 at 5:25 pm

    • Once the DWP start in with these quaint little descriptions, like ‘ The Restart Offer ‘, and the ‘Participant Journey’, you know there is trouble ahead. They are just trying to hide the brutal facts of a compulsory scheme, backed up by a cruel sanction system.

      Jeff Smith

      April 24, 2021 at 6:05 pm

    • @superted: But if you don’t sign, won’t they just sanction the daylights out of you until you do sign ?

      George M

      April 24, 2021 at 6:12 pm

      • they have tried that and failed every single time and i now have it in writing from a judge that also states i dont have to sign anything.

        lies only work if you believe them but it will be mandatory you attend the skills induction but nothing else.

        i doubt it will even get mentioned as not been sent to a provider since the tribunal must have hit a nerve lol 😉


        April 24, 2021 at 6:21 pm

      • It is not a mandatory requirement for claimants to fill in or sign any provider
        forms or documents when participating in a provider led mandatory activity or

        Because it is not mandatory, there is no recorded data held detailing any
        action DWP or a provider can take against those who have declined to sign
        said forms or documents.

        Participants are required to do all they reasonably can to give themselves the
        best chance of finding work. Should a participant decline to sign the provider’s
        forms, this does not mean that they do not have to participate in the
        programme. The referral letter given to a participant by Jobcentre Plus details
        the potential consequences for failing to participate as required.


        they will not let you participate if you do not sign there contracts so doing this means they are the ones stopping you from participating and it works every single time.

        they can not process your personnel data without your permission and they cant force you to sign anything.

        if you send in that foi with your good reason letter in writing! why you could not participate it goes no further than a mandatory reconsideration.


        April 24, 2021 at 6:47 pm

      • Yes George M, usually they will.

        They will push you as far as they can and it is up to you to decide where to draw the line even if that means making a sacrifice in the meantime.
        Like super ted says, they cant mandate you sign a contract that can only be entered into of free will.

        If you want off the the merry go round, find a job. If you want the best life possible on welfare, make sacrifices, challenge the throne. If you want to be a puppet, carry on as you are.


        April 27, 2021 at 8:32 pm

  17. Chancellor launches Restart scheme to help jobless

    “The three-year scheme will be open to people who have been out of work for more than 12 months, and will provide them with regular intensive support in finding work. It will be aimed at older workers in particular.”



    April 24, 2021 at 7:08 pm

  18. Restart Programme Accounting Officer Assessment

    On this basis, the Restart Programme is expected to deliver a social benefit of more than £2 for every £1 spent. An impact evaluation will be undertaken to confirm the planned social benefit generated by the Restart Programme.

    Based on the performance of similar programmes, the value for money test is met


    the Accounting Officer must be Diane abbott


    April 24, 2021 at 7:10 pm

    • Labour said something similar about the New Deal and Flexible New Deal programmes, i.e., that they would either be self-financing or actually make a return based on successful outcomes as per getting people into jobs and paying tax. Non of the schemes were; all of the schemes cost the country a lot of money and every scheme along these lines under New Labour, who were the first to involve the private sector in welfare provision and bring in workfare, and under the Conservatives did poorly in practice and didn’t get many people into jobs which made them self-supporting and paying direct taxation on earnings.


      April 25, 2021 at 6:10 am

  19. Bleedin heck! 60 year old bloke, live London, JSA. Was ordered to attend jc last friday. Put straight on this bloody restart cobblers. 3 bloody years! Told geezer behind desk I didn’t take the jab. Just said that’s no excuse.


    April 24, 2021 at 7:30 pm

    • was your appointment a hr long by any chance, tho it is looking like there trying to eliminate the jsa legacy claimants and are trying to dump as many as possible on this thing to make you basically sign off.

      just say you will participate at the induction interview but do not sign any of there paper work as it is a contract with a 3rd party company for profit.

      see above foi on signing 3rd party provider paperwork i used that one to win my tribunal over this bollocks.


      April 24, 2021 at 9:29 pm

    • The scheme is supposed to last for three years but people on it will only be expected to attend for one year or until they get a job. To be honest it sounds like a slimmed down version of the Work Programme to me and we all know how well that went. Has the Health & Work scheme, which was supposed to last for seven years, been scrapped then? The whole kit and caboodle seems kind of knee jerk reaction to the coronavirus pandemic and commissioned hastily it seems to me, without learning from any of the glaring mistakes of previous schemes, e.g., Work Programme et al.


      April 25, 2021 at 6:29 am

      • @ Aleister

        Sunak seems to have sneaked the Restart scam in on the back of (or under the guise of) a Covid economic recovery plan when it is actually nothing of the sort. Restart is not aimed at ‘helping’ (targeting) the newly unemployed/redundant, it is specifically aimed at long-term older unemployed people who are least likely to find work, and who are therefore a form of Stock or Capital to be profited from by Private companies awarded Provider contracts, and by other companies who might profit from having a free worker for 6 months doing a mandatory unpaid ‘Work Placement’.


        April 25, 2021 at 11:40 am

      • Most unemployed will like after the recession back in 2007/8, end up back in work as they were previous to covid leaving only the original 880’000. DWP / government will easily make that money they claim on just the million claimants with enough change left over to keep the rest the entire 3 years.


        April 27, 2021 at 8:38 pm

  20. Delivery Fee
    5.4 The Delivery Fee will be an amount payable by DWP to the Provider on a monthly
    basis in respect of each month in which referrals are made and the 12 months following
    up to a maximum of 48 Months. The Delivery Fee will be calculated as follows:
     30% of the estimated Total Contract Value (TCV) as estimated by DWP.
     it will be paid monthly in arrears at a date to be agreed (without the Provider
    needing to claim);
    5.5 Where the Delivery Fee is determined by DWP in its absolute discretion as due:
     it will be paid monthly in arrears at a date to be agreed (without the Provider
    needing to claim);
     the Delivery Fee will be paid for each month throughout the period from the
    Referral Start Date up to month 48 with the amounts varying through the period
    to the total 30% of the TCV at inception of the contract;
     Each respective month is paid according to the profile below:
    Month Percentage of TCV at inception of the contract, Per
    1 2.5%
    2 2.0%
    3-12 1.0%
    13 0.75%
    14-36 0.50%
    37-47 0.25%
    48 0.50%
    5.6 DWP will conduct pre and post payment validation checks to determine whether the
    Provider is entitled to receive payment(s) against the respective monthly Delivery
    Fee Standards of the Delivery Fee in Year 1 of Restart.
    5.7 Providers will be required to submit HR/Payroll information at regular intervals upon
    which DWP will carry out checks to confirm the numbers/staff in post meet the
    expected levels.
    5.8 In addition, DWP may, at their discretion, carry out checks on a sample-basis or via
    a full census to ensure staff in post are employed by the Provider and/or SubContractor.
    5.9 DWP will recover any overpayment(s) including any associated with cost claims
    failing validation.

    48 months! that’s 4 fkn years using you as a profit unit.

    Outcome Payments
    5.10 The Funding available for Outcome Payments equates to 70% of TCV at inception of
    the contract.
    Employed Outcome Payment
    5.11 An Employed Outcome payment will be triggered when a Participant earns, in the
    547-day (365 + 182) qualifying period from the Participant’s Start Date on Restart,
    the equivalent of someone working cumulatively for 16 hours per week for 26 weeks
    earning the National Living Wage (NLW). This is called the ‘earnings threshold’.
    NOTE: The National Living Wage is reviewed annually, any changes to the rate will
    be reflected in the earnings threshold expectation for Employed Outcomes. The
    ‘earnings threshold’ used for measuring achievement of an Employed Outcome will
    be based on the NLW rate applicable at the point the Outcome criteria described
    above are met.
    5.12 DWP will track HMRC earnings data for a maximum period of 547-days, from the
    Participant’s Start Date on provision. Annex 2 contains worked examples showing
    how earnings are tracked and the Employed and Self-Employed Outcome criteria
    are met.
    5.13 For automated Employed Outcomes, any Outcome(s) must be achieved within the
    total 547 calendar days qualifying period to be eligible for a payment.

    so there going to try dump every one on zero hr contracts and the cash starts flowing at 16hrs per week what a surprise.

    now on jsa they cant do this but if you sign that contract you are waving that right to say no! and giving them the power to sanction you.

    and all it will be is sat in a providers office job searching same as the first work programme with pbr that never worked then let alone in the worst recession in 300 years pmsl.


    April 24, 2021 at 9:11 pm

  21. And what about the £20 extra a week for the legacy claimants ? That would certainly deliver a social benefit of more than £2 for every pound spent.

    Jeff Smith

    April 24, 2021 at 9:12 pm

    • You should be paid in rupees, Smith.


      April 24, 2021 at 9:19 pm

    • what about this as a idea give the job outcome payment to the claimant for finding work like £1500 year one, £1000 year 2, and £750 year 3.

      even if the job is shit that must be the best intensive to keep you in work and be less than one year benefits anyway.

      but nope it is the same old shit with a rebranded shovel it never changes.


      April 24, 2021 at 9:20 pm

  22. One specially for all the Rangers fans out there…

    RIP Les


    April 24, 2021 at 9:23 pm

  23. 6hrs 5mins here comes plod out numbered and ran away pmsl


    April 24, 2021 at 10:11 pm

    • Should have used a water cannon on the wankers.


      April 25, 2021 at 11:42 am

      • Now now trev, you shouldn’t advocate using water cannon on the Police. That’s just not British.


        April 25, 2021 at 1:22 pm

      • “Shangalang, Shangalang…”


        April 25, 2021 at 1:28 pm

  24. That’s Tigerlily on the drums at 6:05:12.


    April 24, 2021 at 10:17 pm

    • LOL! If I could play the drums think I would be more like Animal from the Muppets!


      April 25, 2021 at 10:01 am

  25. DSC_0008

    (Flawless Victory)


    April 24, 2021 at 11:38 pm

  26. Leading scientists are calling on the Government to remove all coronavirus restrictions and allow people to ‘take back control of their own lives’ when the ‘roadmap’ to freedom ends in June.

    With real-world data showing vaccines reduce the risk of death by 98 per cent and hospitalisations by more than 80 per cent, the experts say Covid-19 is being turned into a ‘mild’ disease in Britain, akin to the flu.



    April 25, 2021 at 12:21 am

    • I wish that were true. Trouble is that although about half the population have received a first does of one of the vaccines most haven’t had the second dose yet and so don’t have maximum immunity. Also protection afforded by vaccination is temporary and believed only to last for about six months or so based on other vaccines. With most of the under 45s still not vaccinated and the largest group of the population harbouring Covid-19 asymtomatically if immunity from vaccination doesn’t last very long, without periodic booster jabs, or protect people effectively as new strains of the virus develop reinfection by the original virus, or one of its new variants, could spark the contagion spreading exponentially all over again and take us back to square one.

      Until all of the adult population has been fully vaccinated the risk from coronavirus remains high.

      Based on what I’ve read it would be a very foolish thing to rush into relaxing anti-virus measures and risk throwing away the hard won recovery we are only now seeing begin which would be as tragic as it would be disastrous. The country has suffered three lockdowns and the last things we need would be to yo-yo into a series of further relaxations followed by restrictions and possible further lockdowns.


      April 25, 2021 at 6:53 am

      • There will be another Lockdown this Autumn, there are many more businesses to be destroyed yet, they want to destroy our culture so any form of entertainment… Theatre, dance, football etc. also pubs, cafes, restaurants, any place where people gather to socialise, have a good time and heaven forbid talk to one another, it’s to quash any dissent! This Shitshow is on going, it’s nothing to do with health it’s all about control… Having the jabs is not going to save you from anything, if the first or second jab doesn’t affect you the third, fourth, fifth certainly will!


        April 25, 2021 at 10:23 am

      • Who are “they” ?


        April 25, 2021 at 11:45 am

      • Do your own research and by affect I mean destroy your health!


        April 25, 2021 at 1:03 pm

      • “They want to destroy our culture…”

        Who are you talking about? Black people? Immigrants? The EU ? The UN ? Reptilian aliens? Who are “THEY” ? Explain yourself.


        April 25, 2021 at 1:18 pm

      • @Tigerlily

        “Do your own research” = Can’t provide any proof beyond the usual bs from a wingnut, flat earther forum.

        That which can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.


        April 25, 2021 at 1:36 pm

      • Bob! Like I’ve already said to Trev you need to do your own research, you’re not going to believe anything I put up here because you are brainwashed… So was i but not anymore!


        April 25, 2021 at 3:22 pm

    • “With real-world data showing vaccines reduce the risk of death by 98 per cent and hospitalisations by more than 80 per cent…”

      So you admit that vaccines are an effective means of lowering infections and fighting the Covid virus.


      April 25, 2021 at 11:49 am

      • @trev: As usual Trev, you are a lone voice of sense in a sea of stupidity.

        Jeff Smith

        April 25, 2021 at 12:43 pm

      • Thanks Jeff, but I don’t think I’m entirely alone, though it is trying when surrounded by a constant stream of nonsense and B.S. from the usual suspects.


        April 25, 2021 at 1:05 pm

      • Jeff Smith! Could you get your nose any further up Trevs arse!


        April 25, 2021 at 1:06 pm

    • Covid-19: New push for under-50s to take up jab offers


      Time to ‘man-up’ and do your bit for the human race.


      April 25, 2021 at 12:38 pm

      • @trev: That means you, Superted, Cloverleaf and Tigerlily. It’s vaccination time.

        George M

        April 25, 2021 at 12:48 pm

      • You can have mine you are most welcome!


        April 25, 2021 at 1:14 pm

      • nope and you lot are all going to get sent on the restart programme for 4 years so dont forget to sign on the dotted line like a good little profit unit.

        everyone has the right to say no now how many of you have the balls to do it in the real world cos the clock is ticking down for your induction at a provider near you.


        April 25, 2021 at 1:17 pm

  27. Secretive algorithms are shaping welfare decisions.


    April 25, 2021 at 12:56 pm

  28. There is a great deal too much foul language used on this blog.

    Reverend Green

    April 25, 2021 at 1:11 pm

    • No there fucking isn’t!


      April 25, 2021 at 1:17 pm

    • trev

      April 25, 2021 at 3:37 pm

    • @reverendgreen – Forgive him Reverend Green, Tigerlily is an ignorant fool at the best of times.

      Jeff Smith

      April 25, 2021 at 5:53 pm

  29. Eight ways to get financial help including free grants and how to claim benefits.



    April 25, 2021 at 1:29 pm

  30. Hancock, vote conservative on may 6th to 6uild 6ack 6etter.


    April 25, 2021 at 1:40 pm

  31. Britain is slowly getting back on track and building back better, says THERESE COFFEY
    Like millions of Britons, I visited a pub this week (more than one actually – we all need to do our bit to boost the economy) and it left me pumped up to see how the reopening of outdoor hospitality across England is helping publicans, punters and young people.



    April 25, 2021 at 1:42 pm

    • Oh yes, she likes to sink a few jars with the best of ’em.


      April 25, 2021 at 1:47 pm

    • Most of which could be entirely avoidable. Universal Credit and Restart could be scrapped, Unemployment Benefits could be increased to a reasonable amount and paid unconditionally, and automatically, Jobcentres could be closed and abolished, Sanctions could be abolished. Basic Income could be introduced. Or annual signing for JSA. And earlier access to State Pensions for the older unemployed. Mental Health could be greatly improved if the Political will to create a more civilized society existed. It’s all possible, all ‘do-able’. Things can be changed for the better if those in power actually cared.


      April 25, 2021 at 2:02 pm

      • There is no need for any of these expensive unemployment schemes. Just introduce Universal Basic Income.

        Jeff Smith

        April 25, 2021 at 5:56 pm

  32. Only 3.5% of people referred to Work Programme find long-term jobs

    Only one in 28 unemployed people referred to the government’s welfare-to-work programme has been found a job for six months – failing to meet the government’s target, official figures show.



    April 25, 2021 at 1:57 pm

    • superted

      April 25, 2021 at 2:00 pm

    • You may have been one of them who found employment if only you had have signed the paperwork.

      You never know Superted.


      April 25, 2021 at 2:02 pm

      • it did not stop them trying to sanction me tho but i did go for my exit report, it was blank pmsl and then the jcp found out i never went in 2 years and went ballistic 😉


        April 25, 2021 at 2:10 pm

      • @xclausx

        There’s no reason to assume that those who found employment did so as a result of being on the Work Programme.

        My provider had a nice little scam going whereby they would cut-and-paste jobs from other job boards (including the jobcentre) onto their own system to make it look like any outcome was a result of their own efforts.

        They tried it with me and I told them to stuff it. (Though I didn’t use those words) 2 hours a day, five days a week on an industrial estate 15 miles away. Don’t think so!


        April 25, 2021 at 2:35 pm

      • I was a work program a few years ago, I got a full time job out of it.


        April 25, 2021 at 2:42 pm

      • Was on


        April 25, 2021 at 2:43 pm

      • @xclausx

        How? Were you unable to do any job searching for yourself?


        April 25, 2021 at 2:51 pm

  33. I don’t read the Daily Mail. Over-priced toilet paper.


    April 25, 2021 at 2:06 pm

  34. The way to “fight back” against Covid is to follow safe distancing rules and observe lockdown measures and subsequently be vaccinated. The vaccine is not to be feared, no matter what the fear mongering alarmists may say.


    April 25, 2021 at 2:12 pm

  35. Suebi28 aka wammo aka zammo aka Billy Boyne has never worked a day in his life.


    April 25, 2021 at 2:15 pm

  36. The provider told me about it on my second day, I didn’t do any job searching.


    April 25, 2021 at 2:55 pm

    • yet another 27 ppl did it for 2 years and never got a job thats why they target the ppl most likely to get a job anyway as more profit in that.

      dont forget the long term unemployed were just parked on the wp for that reason as no money in it for them.

      if you have no work history in the last ten years nothing to put on a cv and a criminal record your fooked.

      they cant force employers to give you a job at the end of the day as that is up to the employer.


      April 25, 2021 at 3:07 pm

      • Superted I like to work, always looking for something to do, do yoiu understand that.


        April 25, 2021 at 3:12 pm

      • There are billions of us.


        April 25, 2021 at 3:13 pm

      • of Corse i do but i am not being used as a profit unit end of story done near ten years of that shit sat in a providers office doing work searches and all the other mindless crap we had to do back then like handing out cvs ect ect ect never got me nowhere.


        April 25, 2021 at 3:24 pm

      • Work, Buy, Consume, Die.


        April 25, 2021 at 10:25 pm

      • its not cheap either when you die my step dads mom just paid 5k to put her in a box dig a hole and put her in it, fkn scam that is as well but that’s what she wanted.

        im going in the brown wheelie bin for the incinerator up the road for free. 😉


        April 25, 2021 at 10:38 pm

    • @xclausx

      “The provider told me about it on my second day, I didn’t do any job searching.”

      Perhaps if you had, you would have discovered it was already listed on a jobsite. Unless they had an exclusive contract with your employer (which is unlikely) they were taking credit undeservedly.


      April 25, 2021 at 3:42 pm

      • Bob, I never did look for it on any jobsites, all I cared about was starting work again after being unemployed for a while.


        April 25, 2021 at 3:53 pm

      • @xclausx – Can I ask you a question xclausx ? I’m curious to know why you post so regularly on the blog, but say you are fully employed ? You must be the only one on here who is in full employment.

        Jeff Smith

        April 25, 2021 at 6:00 pm

  37. trev

    April 25, 2021 at 3:24 pm

  38. Just like that great ‘ man of peace ‘ Benjamin Netanyahu.


    April 25, 2021 at 4:50 pm

    • Are you now, or have you ever been an anti-semite, suebi28 ?

      George M

      April 25, 2021 at 6:02 pm

      • Are supporters of the semitic Palestinians anti- semites ?


        April 25, 2021 at 6:48 pm

      • You’ll never get a straight answer out of him George, he “doesn’t answer questions”, just twists words and always answers a question with a question, or some ‘whataboutery’. A typical Nazi, very fearful of Truth.


        April 25, 2021 at 7:14 pm

    • Oops. Double posted.


      April 25, 2021 at 8:27 pm

    • @suebi28

      I see. Deflecting coward.


      April 25, 2021 at 9:43 pm

  39. No. I’m not in any way Jewish. Are you?


    April 25, 2021 at 5:08 pm

    • I’m not Jewish and I’ve never claimed to be Jewish. I don’t have a “Jewish identity”. End of conversation.


      April 25, 2021 at 5:47 pm

  40. There’s your mum in the background


    April 25, 2021 at 7:08 pm

  41. superted

    April 25, 2021 at 7:35 pm

    • What exactly are they protesting about?


      April 25, 2021 at 8:21 pm

      • i thought it was because they changed the strength of Special Brew from 9% to 7.5% and smaller cans for the same price.



        April 25, 2021 at 8:52 pm

      • Well lockdown is beginning to become a thing of the past, we’re on our way out of it now, the pubs are reopening, Covid infections have fallen as mass vaccination is working. What’s to gripe about?


        April 25, 2021 at 9:04 pm

      • same thing happened last year tho and cases went up end of august September and there still testing ppl on mass so cant rule out a new strain coming in the the same time this year.

        just in time for the emergency powers act to get passed for another 6 months.

        furlough and the extra 20 quid a week ends in September so id not rule out anything at the moment as they keep moving the goal posts.


        April 25, 2021 at 9:20 pm

      • Its just an excuse to get rowdy and chuck things at the police.

        Reverend Green

        April 25, 2021 at 9:44 pm

    • https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9507223/Thousands-anti-lockdown-activists-march-central-London.html


      Is the BBC and Daily Mail not “mainstream” enough anymore?

      These idiots make me laugh. The live in their own bubbles and think people are too lazy to fact check their bullshit.


      April 25, 2021 at 8:37 pm

      • @suebi28

        LOL What’s the matter sweetie? Can’t take it when your bullshit is called out?

        If I were you, I’d change your user name. One whiff of sexual deviance and you’ll be sent away for “special treatment”.


        April 25, 2021 at 9:24 pm

  42. trev

    April 25, 2021 at 9:14 pm

    • suebi28

      April 25, 2021 at 9:24 pm


        suebi28 4:14pm “Fuck the Tories !”

        LOL. You make it too easy!


        April 25, 2021 at 9:40 pm

  43. suebi28

    April 25, 2021 at 9:40 pm

    • @suebi28

      I guess the irony of your last post was entirely lost on you. LOL.

      Maybe enrol in an online self awareness course.


      April 25, 2021 at 9:48 pm

  44. suebi28

    April 25, 2021 at 9:53 pm

  45. Candace Owens LOL undoubtedly one of the intellectual greats, let me guess Sarah Palin for Vice President LOL, pair of them make Trump seem like Bamber Gascoigne.


    April 25, 2021 at 10:58 pm

  46. Ek2X2woWAAs47k7


    looks like a restart programme to me providers wont give a shit about face masks and vaccines because it is all about the money.


    April 25, 2021 at 11:12 pm

    • Very depressing pictures, brings back memories of all the hours I’ve spent sitting in such shit holes; New Deal, Work Programme, Interserve, A4e, Skills for Work, Skills Conditionality, Right Steps to Work, etc, etc. Interserve, Ingeus, Standguide, Pinnacle People, on & on, over & over again, Team Building exercises, Basic Skills Assessment, CV writing, Cover Letters, Interview Techniques, Work Placements, Community Work, Charity shops, Conservation Schemes, Computer courses….blah, blah, blah. Fuck off DWP.


      April 26, 2021 at 12:11 am

  47. “You little b***ard!”: Greater Manchester Police officer punched puppy when it pooed on his carpet



    April 25, 2021 at 11:35 pm

  48. Here’s some interesting information about the Restart scheme. From what I can make out at a glance is that it’s aimed at UC claimants (doesn’t mention JSA) and the scheme is to be run for 3 years, that doesn’t mean that people will be on it for 3 years, just that it will be available to be referred to over the next 3 years, that’s what it seems to mean to me anyway.


    It also lists which Providers are running it in each region.


    April 26, 2021 at 11:13 am

    • It says that people who are referred to Restart will be on it for 12 months, not 3 or 4 years!
      And not everyone will be referred.


      April 26, 2021 at 11:20 am

      • Is it mandatory ?


        April 26, 2021 at 3:08 pm

      • I don’t think it says if it’s mandatory but I presume it will be.


        April 26, 2021 at 4:33 pm

    • @trev

      It doesn’t make any mention of East Anglia, i.e.. Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk. Or does that come under the Home Counties?

      jj joop

      April 26, 2021 at 3:43 pm

      • @ jj joop

        I don’t know, would it come under “East Central” ?


        April 26, 2021 at 4:29 pm

  49. These forced labour schemes are useless for getting people into employment. The Work Programme was nothing but an expensive failure on that basis. But it’s not really about employment, it’s much more about making sure the unemployed are being made to do something in exchange for their benefits.

    Jeff Smith

    April 26, 2021 at 12:26 pm

    • It’s about using the unemployed as pawns in a wealth transference exercise. The Jobcentre are always badgering people to do unpaid work experience in charity shops or work placements in Poundstretcher etc. under the guise of one scheme or another, but they don’t like it if you set up your own voluntary work off your own back without going through a Provider. If you tell the Jobcentre that you’re doing voluntary work for a charity organization you have to fill in a questionnaire declaring that it is unpaid and what days/hours it involves, and the Dole Clerk /Work Coach gives you a stern warning that it mustn’t interfere with your jobsearch.


      April 26, 2021 at 12:37 pm

      • ….YET I have been mandated by the DWP to work unpaid in Pets At Home 5 days a week for 4 weeks as part of the Skills Conditionality scheme that was run by a company ‘Provider’ called Pinnacle People who got funding from the Government and the EU Social Fund. The people who work for Pinnacle People got paid a wage, the company they work for made a profit, the companies using the free labour profited from it. I got my JSA, plus bus fares, nothing extra. I was also forced to do unpaid work for a charity under the Mandatory Work Activity scheme, full time 5 days a week for 2 months.


        April 26, 2021 at 1:00 pm

    • @jeffsmith: Yes, they just can’t stand the idea of people giving up on work, as they did in the 80s.

      George M

      April 26, 2021 at 1:44 pm

      • In the early 80s there was CEP (Community Enterprise Programme), a government scheme for the unemployed that involved working 3 or 4 days a week in exchange for double your dole, no signing on, no jobsearch. It was great and lead to me gaining full time employment.


        April 26, 2021 at 2:19 pm

      • In 1986 it was called the Community Programme. It was 3 days a week for £55. You are correct there was no signing on and no jobsearch.


        April 26, 2021 at 3:15 pm

  50. I’m not sure about how many people are going to do a Superted, and refuse to sign the papers. You must get sanctioned for this ? And then if they ask you again to sign, and you refuse, sanction again ? They could keep this going for ever, and what are you going to do for food and rent ?

    George M

    April 26, 2021 at 12:30 pm

    • DSC_0693_01

      if you do it then you better be prepared to take it all the way to a tribunal because the sanction will be unlawful and a sackable offence as gross misconduct in a public office.


      once you get the mr letter you then send it in to the courts and tribunal service with the sscs1 form.

      i covered the sanction with a begrudging loan and i have not been sent to any provider since.

      the dwp are not above the law simple as that none of these courses are mandatory because they need your permission to process your personnel data.


      April 26, 2021 at 1:04 pm

      • Superted that letter is for those who want or expect to be sancioned.


        April 26, 2021 at 1:12 pm

      • if i done the mr in writing and sent in the foi that supports my actions it never goes any further but i did the mr over the phone so imo thought i was stupid and not do anything about it.


        i have had a target on my back for years for doing this and every one of them has had a go at me at the jcp over the years and got no where sanction wise.

        imo most ppl would have had a mental brake down buy now but that does not work on me cos i can give as good as i get 😉


        April 26, 2021 at 1:33 pm

    • I do know that many of these schemes don’t work,, however

      George I agree with that and know many others will, superted keeps trying to tell people not to sign because they don’t have to, however he doesn’t tell you how long the appeal is. it used to be 7 months but it now could take up to over a year.


      April 26, 2021 at 1:09 pm

      • Everyone is against sanctions, would you all agree with that?


        April 26, 2021 at 1:15 pm

  51. i went to the provider on the 29 nov 2016 then they waited nearly 3 months to spring the sanction on me and got the mr letter above.

    the tribunal was on the 13,9 2017 so it does take months if not a year or more now but you will win at the end.


    April 26, 2021 at 1:20 pm

    • Superted I think in the end it’s all about not being sanctioned in the first place.


      April 26, 2021 at 1:30 pm

    • @superted – So it means months without any money ?

      George M

      April 26, 2021 at 1:33 pm

      • Yes and we can all see the result on the streets with no roof.


        April 26, 2021 at 1:38 pm

      • it was a 4 week sanction of my jsa


        April 26, 2021 at 1:40 pm

  52. you can get a hardship payment if you have been sanctioned and meet the requirements.


    i could not apply for one tho as i coved the sanction with a budgeting loan and got it 2 days after the sanction kicked in.

    you should have seen the look the wc gave me like boiling piss 😉


    April 26, 2021 at 1:45 pm

  53. @superted: Yes but how can people survive like this ? You might have made your point versus the DWP. But what good is that if you get evicted and end up on the street ?

    George M

    April 26, 2021 at 1:47 pm

    • they only stop your jsa not housing benefits but ever since i did this on the first wp and then the dwp found out 2 years later i never went put a target on my back so i either fight them or sign off.

      thats the price you will pay for doing this and they only stopped doing it when i took them to a tribunal.


      April 26, 2021 at 1:58 pm

  54. For Pete’s sake, just lower State Pension age to 60 and have done with it. Job vacancies created and Unemployment figures lowered overnight. Extra Work Coaches not needed.


    April 26, 2021 at 1:51 pm

    • @trev- And we will soon see these useless employment schemes, filled up with claimants over 60. Who should arguably be retiring, and not being made to write CVs, and take part in mind-games from the training providers. Like paper-clip chains, rolling marbles along tubes into a bucket, and the ‘shark challenge’, ( a circle is drawn on the ground and the claimants have to say how they would get across). Though my personal favourite for ironic stupidity, is the ‘self-criticism session.’ Here the claimants in a group are asked for their opinion of why others can’t get a job . e.g. ” Can anyone tell me why they think John can’t get a job ? And what more he should be doing to get one ? ”

      Jeff Smith

      April 26, 2021 at 2:39 pm

      • Patronizing, soul-destroying nonsense that takes the piss. The last course I attended, employability skills in Retail and Customer service run by Interserve, we had to split into 3 teams and construct a tower out of marshmallows and cocktail sticks, then answer written questions about the exercise, how well it went, how we planned it, how we interacted as a team to fulfill the brief, etc. etc. Absolute bullshit of the highest order.


        April 26, 2021 at 3:02 pm

      • And the fake ‘interview’ sessions, remember those ? Where you pretend to be the Managing Director of a company, and one of your fellow claimants pretends to be looking for a job. Then you switch round. And he pretends to be the Managing Director, and interviews you for a job.

        Jeff Smith

        April 26, 2021 at 3:11 pm

  55. Consultative ballot to oppose extended face to face services in Jobcentres
    26 Apr 2021
    The DWP group executive committee (GEC) has agreed to hold a consultative ballot of all members working in Jobcentres to oppose the extension of face to face services. The ballot will ask members if they would be willing to take strike action. This is a consultative ballot and not a statutory ballot. It will not commit members to strike action. The ballot will start on 5 May and end on 21 May. It will be an electronic online ballot. The GEC recommend that members VOTE YES

    The DWP reopened Jobcentres on Monday 12 April, with JSA customers, Universal Credit New Claims, 18 to 24 year olds, Interviews Under Caution and NINO interviews called into Jobcentres for face to face interviews. PCS believes that calling such large number into Jobcentre’s for face to face interviews is not safe during covid.

    Negotiations with the DWP
    The GEC has met the DWP on several occasions for detailed negotiations, including a meeting with the Permanent Secretary, Peter Schofield. The GEC has pressed for agreement to a more cautious approach and gradual approach, including the maximum number of staff being allowed to continue to work from home until the situation is safer. In particular the GEC has sought an assurance of the fullest possible Work Coach empowerment as agreed last year. The DWP has refused to give assurances on Work Coach empowerment and insist on ploughing ahead. Crucially despite intensive efforts by PCS it has not been possible to agree a national risk assessment to protect members’ safety.

    Actions by the GEC
    The GEC has –

    Organised a reps zoom meeting attended by around 150 reps and 3 members zoom meetings attended by around 550 members.
    Allocated GEC members to contact branches and consult them about members’ views and readiness to take strike action.
    Sent detailed health and safety advice to all members with section 44 legal advice
    Briefed pressure groups including DPAC highlighting our concerns.
    Briefed MPs and set up an eaction calling on the Minister Theresa Coffey to stop the extension of face to face
    Members Survey and the Media
    Over last weekend the GEC conducted a survey of members by personal email. Over 1,400 members replied. 79% felt either unsafe or unsure about returning to the workplace for face to face work. Only 20% felt safe. 185 wanted to speak to PCS for advice. Everyone one of them has been called back by a GEC member of FTO.

    The GEC has also briefed the media and we got 52 mentions in the media from BBC online Radio 2, TalkRadio, Times Radio, national newspapers including the Independent, and dozens of pieces of local coverage including Manchester Evening News and the Liverpool Echo.

    Recruitment Materials and personal emails
    The GEC have produced two posters and two recruitment leaflets. These are being sent to branches. Some members have not got a personal email recorded with PCS. The GEC Have sent a list to each branch for action.

    Further actions by the GEC
    The GEC will be holding further zoom meetings for reps and members as well as a Facebook live event. Look out for details.

    Actions for branches
    Branch must now –

    Make sure all members know about the consultative ballot
    Contact members who do not have a personal email recorded and get them to update their records
    Use the recruitment leaflets to contact every non-member and ask them to join PCS. Members who have recently joined PCS, and have joined by 12 noon on Wednesday 12 May will be included in the ballot.
    Hold branch members zoom meetings and encourage members to vote YES. Email Leeds@pcs.org.uk if you want a guest speaker.
    Follow the H&S advice from PCS and make sure risk assessments are done.
    The priority of the GEC is the safety of our members. The more members we have the stronger we are in negotiations. The more members that VOTE YES the safer we will all be.


    April 26, 2021 at 2:10 pm

    • ID Verification in Jobcentres – No Change to Guidance
      26 Apr 2021
      The group executive committee (GEC) has been contacted by members and PCS branches providing examples of face-to-face activity in Jobcentres from 12 April 2021 in England and Wales, and from today in Scotland.

      The list grew bigger by the day with reports that Legacy JSA, Proof of Earnings Self Employed, Kickstart and ID Verification had been added to 18-24-old priority group, Interviews Under Caution and National Insurance Number (NINO) activity.

      PCS has raised serious concerns regarding all face-to-face activity in Jobcentres and made it clear that we oppose what DWP are doing as we do not believe that this work can be done safely due to COVID-19. PCS is opposed to this extension of face-to-face activity and any compulsory return to the workplace for staff.

      PCS has met with DWP permanent secretary, Peter Schofield, and members of the senior management team at which we stressed our opposition to re-introducing face-to-face activity in Jobcentres and our concerns around the confusion of the Work Coach empowerment agreement from October 2020. Despite a robust case being made and a request for the department to pause what they are doing, they are still continuing with increasing face-to-face activity in Jobcentres.

      ID Verification Interviews
      The GEC was contacted by AO members in Jobcentres around the country concerned that they had been told by their local management that ID verification interviews would have to be done face-to-face. Not only that, AO members successfully working from home, have been told by their line managers that they have to return to the workplace to carry out those interviews. At our meetings this week, senior DWP management confirmed that ID verification guidance has not changed and that those interviews can still be carried out virtually either by digital or telephone. PCS welcome this clarification and would advise any member who continues to be told that ID verification interviews are face-to-face, should immediately email leeds@pcs.org.uk and we will escalate to national DWP management, who have requested that we do so.

      Negotiations with the DWP
      Although we opposed the decision of DWP to re-open Jobcentres from 12 April 2021, PCS will continue to negotiate and strongly make the case with the department that what they are doing is fundamentally wrong.

      Once again, any member who is worried or concerned about face-to-face appointments or being asked to return to the office by local management should email leeds@pcs.org.uk


      April 26, 2021 at 5:52 pm

  56. Universal Credit claimants face more sanctions cutting their benefits, says union



    April 26, 2021 at 2:20 pm

  57. Ipswich Unemployed Action can make you quite annoyed,
    But going to the Jobcentre is worse,
    There are Work Coaches there,
    Who really just don’t care,
    And some of the things they do.
    Can make you curse.

    There is always something new,
    That they want to do,
    Or some wonderful new course
    For you to try,
    But you know it’s no good,
    For you’ve been there before,
    And the courses are enough to make you cry.

    But they just don’t care,
    And they’ll argue it all day,
    As to why you should try once again.
    With a grim face they say.
    You’ll be sanctioned.
    And so you pick up the pen.

    You don’t want to do it,
    Or anything else,
    Since you came in through,
    The Jobcentre door.

    But you know that you must,
    Or you won’t have a crust,
    And you really will be piss poor.
    So sick at heart you sign the form,
    And promise to be there on Tuesday,
    Though from the way your feeling now,
    It might as well be Doomsday.

    Random Poet

    April 26, 2021 at 4:00 pm

    • Yep, that just about sums it up. Can’t wait ’til I’m 67. Time speeds up as you get older so hopefully my 60s will fly by and this nightmare will finally be over.


      April 26, 2021 at 4:20 pm

  58. @trev

    You must be young, I’m 65 and my retirement age is 66. I have to attend the jobcentre later this week so I will soon find out what they have in store for me. Putting me on another course with only ten months until retirement seems pointless but it will probably happen.
    In the past we could do a rapid reclaim at the end of a course but now it might have to be universal credit.


    April 26, 2021 at 5:31 pm

    • I’m 60, get my pension at 67, next 7 years can’t go quick enough!


      April 26, 2021 at 5:57 pm

    • @Rob

      I did an IT refresher course two years ago lasting a week with SteadFast Training. For me it was voluntary. I asked to go on it. However one guy was mandated to attend and he had only three weeks to go before his retirement. Mental isn’t it!

      jj joop

      April 26, 2021 at 7:10 pm

      • A couple of years ago I knew a 65 yr old guy who was sent on the Right Steps to Work course!


        April 26, 2021 at 7:22 pm

      • Thing is the Work Coaches are forced to meet and compete with each other insofar as far as “quotas” are concerned, i.e., they are expected to force/persuade a certain number of punters to attend Job fairs, courses and sign up for “work experience” and whatnot on a monthly basis. Same with the private providers whose rewards are supposed to be based on performance. So although I’m sure that they must know that a lot of the things they “encourage” folk to do are largely worthless, because the DWP pressures them to achieve results statistically, they go through the motions even though the things they refer people to have a slim chance of doing them any good as far as securing gainful employment is concerned.

        I reckon the DWP believes that idle hands do the Devil’s work and so want to keep the unemployed active, if not in a decent job which provides them with a living then in part-time jobs, even if working doesn’t make them significantly better off, or, failing that some kind of piss poor training, intensive job-search or various other kinds of activity to keep those involved socialised and remained used to a routine, commuting and such like.

        In some Victorian prisons some prisoners were forced to manually turn the crank of a machine which did nothing other than to force them to labour pointlessly because mental or physical effort, i.e., work of any kind whatsoever, was considered character building and good for the soul. (An idea still championed wholeheartedly by ALL political parties.) This crank machine would involve the inmate having to turn a handle on a drum which would be filled with sand or water to make it heavier. The prison guard could tighten a screw in the drum to make turning the handle harder and prisoners would be set the task of turning the handle a number of times which did nothing productive other than tire them out.

        That’s why prison officers ended up nicknamed “Screws”.

        (And why in 21st century Britain Jobcentres have Work Coaches!)


        April 27, 2021 at 7:49 am

  59. Seetec Pluss wins Restart in South West England

    Support will include regular one-to-one coaching, pro-active job search including CVs and interview preparation, vocational qualifications and 24-hour access to an online portal packed full of job search resources, vacancies and e-learning. We will also offer immediate digital support to anyone who needs to build their digital skills by providing training, equipment and connectivity so they feel motivated to engage with online job search and related activities


    same old shit different brand of shovel it never changes.


    April 26, 2021 at 6:20 pm

  60. Bad memories coming back to me of my past training courses.BTCV,CSV,instant muscle,working links,track2000,link, cad centre,ACT,Itec,Remploy, Some of them on more than one occasion.
    The worst was BTCV which I attended on four occasions. Put on placements with no hope of a paid job.


    April 26, 2021 at 6:20 pm

  61. https://www.fenews.co.uk/press-releases/67392-jobs-22-secures-major-dwp-contract-to-deliver-restart-employability-programme-in-east-central-england

    well they can fuck right off im not giving them my email or phone number end of story and they can shove there app up there ass.

    see this is the sort of shit you get when you sign there contracts as now it is all done digital so they can track every job you apply for just in case you do get a job and they get there job outcome fee.

    it is going to be a fkn disaster same as the last time.


    April 26, 2021 at 7:09 pm

    • How many unemployed people own a new enough smartphone to be able to download apps? Not me!


      April 26, 2021 at 7:18 pm

      • on every app you download it asks for permission now see how they are using this tactic to bypass the gdpr!

        it is the same as ujm and giving access to your work coach.


        April 26, 2021 at 7:24 pm

    • @superted- I see the Australians are behind this. Not encouraging, as they have a stricter system than we do. As for these phrases like ‘a warm referral ‘, it’s like selling double-glazing ! The unemployed as profit units. And you can bet their advisers will be on far better money, than the zero-hour jobs that will be on offer
      to their ‘customers.’

      Jeff Smith

      April 26, 2021 at 8:29 pm

      • They can have a Cold Referral from me, otherwise known as get stuffed !!

        George M

        April 26, 2021 at 8:32 pm

      • superted

        April 26, 2021 at 10:17 pm

  62. DWP SoS diary 1st March 2021 to 5th March 2021 inclusive

    Please kindly provide the diary of your Secretary of State Therese Coffey from Monday 1st March 2021 to Friday 5th March 2021 inclusive.



    April 26, 2021 at 8:06 pm

  63. Kickstart placement candidates CV

    Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

    RE: Kickstart placement candidates

    For your Kickstart scheme, please disclose the guidance/rules employers are expected to follow in terms of identifying potential placement candidates. How do employers
    support candidates who need help to write job application CVs or covering letters, but an employer is asking potential Kickstart candidates to apply to them directly by submitting a CV to them?

    When CV’s are sent direct to an employer how does a Jobcentre know all candidates are given consideration when these Kickstart roles, as understood, do not include an Person Specification as in the case for ordinary job vacancies. When employers ask for a CV to be sent to them directly for a Kickstart ‘vacancy’, what stops an employer only selecting a candidate for a post that the employer has an outstanding or forthcoming vacancy for and as such measures submitted Kickstart candidate CVs against a vacancy’s actual Person Specification?

    What legislation allows an employer to contact a Jobcentre and disclose the the personal details, including a person’s full name, of a person who is interested in a Kickstart
    placement as a Universal Credit claimant aged 16 to 24? Personal details obtained by an employer having a copy of UC claimant’s CV and details of the Jobcentre
    they are allocated to? Does this practice comply with the GDPR and the 2018 Data Protection Act?

    Examples of employers asking for potential candidates to submit their CV and Jobcentre details direct to them:
    More https://twitter.com/search?q=kickstart%2

    Yours faithfully,

    Frank Zola



    April 26, 2021 at 8:19 pm

  64. bob1234232

    April 26, 2021 at 9:48 pm

  65. Struggling Brits can apply for two-month ‘breathing space’ from debts from next week

    Borrowers will be protected against prosecution, debt collectors and bailiffs while they seek long-term money help



    April 27, 2021 at 4:37 am

  66. Minister seeks to play down growing accusations of Tory sleaze
    Thérèse Coffey says public does not care about makeover of Boris Johnson’s Downing Street flat.

    In an interview with Sky News, the work and pensions secretary, Thérèse Coffey, sought to play down growing accusations of sleaze, and claimed the public did not care about the makeover of the apartment after the prime minister said he would foot the £58,000 bill himself.

    She suggested that if any initial donations for the work had been made they would be declared later.


    Andrew Coates

    April 27, 2021 at 9:24 am

    • I don’t particularly care much about his flat either, I think this is a bit of a smokescreen and there are far more important things to go after Boris for, such as the Covid chumocracy cronyism ppe contracts etc. And the £20 “uplift” denied to the poorest and most vulnerable, not to mention that a decade of Tory policies (inc. Austerity and Welfare reform) have directly caused the exponential growth in foodbanks. Never mind his kitchen cupboards, he and his mates have wrecked the fucking country.


      April 27, 2021 at 9:44 am

      • Andrew Coates

        April 27, 2021 at 10:26 am

      • Typical of her, a well-paid Tory right-winger. She’s loyal to Boris, because he gave her the job of running the DWP. His remark ( if true ), ‘”No more fucking lockdowns – let the bodies pile high in their thousands!”, is appalling and disgraceful. His activities having sex with an American pole-dancer, to whom he was not married, tasteless and inappropriate. Then we have the PPE scandal, when millions were paid to Tory cronies. Now the scandal about who paid for the expensive redecoration on No.10.
        In a previous time, when there was at least some semblance of person standards in public office, these issues would have forced his resignation. Now it will just be laughed off, and Tory mouthpieces will be put in front of the media to try and defend these wretched proceedings.

        Jeff Smith

        April 27, 2021 at 1:40 pm

      • Yes he’s a disgrace and was never fit to be PM in the first place, but what I meant to say was that the flat renovation is the least of it.


        April 27, 2021 at 1:45 pm

      • Totally agree Jeff. It’s enough that we have a clown for a Prime Minister. Have you seen the foreign press about him ? A man who can’t even manage his own hairstyle. But we now have the Tories surfing along on a tidal wave of sleaze. And they couldn’t care less.

        George M

        April 27, 2021 at 1:47 pm

    • Fears grow that the Conservatives are planning a return to austerity.

      it follows the Tory Chancellor’s decision to impose a public sector pay freeze, Universal Credit cuts, and tax hikes on millions of workers at the Budget in March



      April 27, 2021 at 5:41 pm

  67. Where have all the waiters gone? Booming pubs and restaurants face staff shortage – and they won’t work for crumbs any more

    Workers in the hospitality industry are thin on the ground as we leave lockdown

    Last week Pizza Express advertised for 1,000 staff to join its 360 sites for May 17

    In London and the south east waiters’ pay has increased from £11 to £15 an hour

    Britain faces a crippling new shortage — and this one’s going to hit us in the stomach.

    Finger-clicking diners have been moaning for years that there’s never a waiter when you really want one. Right now, pub and restaurant bosses are saying the exact same thing.

    For as the hospitality industry emerges from aspic, people willing to pull pints, wait tables, or toil over hot stoves are suddenly very thin on the ground.

    The reality of a recruitment crisis emerged last week when Pizza Express announced that it’s seeking 1,000 staff to join its 360 UK sites ahead of May 17, when indoor hospitality returns.

    When the last lockdown came along, a lot of our European staff had a chance to go home for Christmas, which they have never previously been able to do because they have to work,’.

    ‘Many of them went back to Romania, or Poland, or Bulgaria, and when they got there they found out that these are not the places they left five years ago. They’ve developed enormously. It means lots of them have decided to stay [in their homelands].’

    Simultaneously, post-Brexit immigration rules mean that overseas workers seeking to come to the UK for the first time must now secure a visa. ‘We could fill our restaurants many times over with French staff, but they can’t get here,’ he adds.

    Another prominent restaurateur tells me he only discovered that many of his workers weren’t returning when he rang them a few days ago.

    ‘A lot of people went back to Europe and carried on claiming furlough, while also signing on to collect benefits from their governments. They’ve done very nicely indeed. They don’t have to pay London rent, and for the last few months have been living with Mum and Dad for free while earning even more thanks to the taxpayers of two different countries.

    So when I called them and said I wanted them back in on May 17, they laughed and basically said “Sorry, we can’t get a flight!”

    British staff have also vanished from the trade. Many younger people who lost their jobs during the pandemic appear to have moved into other professions, while more experienced staff have reassessed their priorities during lockdown and taken jobs nearer to their homes.

    You can read the full article here.

    jj joop

    April 27, 2021 at 9:58 am

    • Funnily enough I’ve just been looking at a vacancy for a waiter on Find A Job, but it says you have to have knowledge of Kashmiri cuisine, be able to speak Punjabi and have two years previous experience.


      April 27, 2021 at 1:30 pm

    • They’ve had a year off from some of these difficult, poorly-paid jobs. Now quite naturally, they don’t want to go back.

      Jeff Smith

      April 27, 2021 at 1:43 pm

    • LOL @ The Daily Mail whinging (yet again) about the effects of Capitalism and the Free Market now it’s turned around and bitten Tory darlings such as Tim Martin on the arse.

      For years they paid their staff crap wages on zero hour contracts for unsociable hours under crap conditions. When covid hit, they thought it would be cheaper to get rid of them and rehire later rather than showing loyalty to their workers by paying a percentage of their wages. Now the world has moved on and it’s going to cost them more.

      If they can’t afford it, they go bust. Tough!

      Maybe Rishi can be persuaded to roll out “Eat out to help my mates” MKII to funnel some taxpayers money their way.


      April 27, 2021 at 10:06 pm

  68. Shared chaos of “new” civil service plans
    26 Apr 2021
    The civil service has launched a “new” shared services strategy which PCS is opposing as it is a plan for job losses and more outsourcing.

    This is the third time the approach has been revised over the last 10 years, not forgetting a strategy refresh in 2019. The reason for these launches/refreshing is that the current arrangements – as we warned in 2010 – have still not achieved the large-scale cost savings and the improvements to services that the government promised would be delivered as a result of its plans.

    Time and again, ministers and senior managers have pursued failed ideas at the expense of thousands of PCS members. This has left our hard-working members with increased workloads and increased stress as they try their best to deliver a good service. These failed ideas have led to large scale outsourcing, offshoring and job losses.

    Unfortunately, learning no lessons, the new strategy appears to be more of the same. It has no less than 8 references to reducing/lowering/driving down costs and it wants to cut, in the next few years, the number of shared service units from 23 to 5. All this will mean job losses and more outsourcing. Accordingly, we are opposed to the new strategy.

    Therefore, on 6 May, we are getting together reps and full-timers from the areas affected to start planning our resistance to the changes.

    While we will bargain hard with the civil service, work with MPs, seeing what legal challenges can be mounted, in the end it will come down to what action we can take. Therefore, it is vitally important that we build a campaign and get better organised in all the shared service centres (SSC) and a key part of the 6 May meeting will be to discuss this.

    So, if you work in a shared service centre, join PCS and help us to win. If you are already a member in an SSC, get active and work with us to win. Please ask your friends and colleagues to join PCS. Together, we can win.



    April 27, 2021 at 2:09 pm

  69. @jjjoop

    Maybe this is one of the reasons that the DWP are insisting against all common sense that face-to-face interviews take place again? “Take this job on NMW at Pizza Express/Wherever or face a three month sanction for refusing”
    I can’t see those high wages for waitering lasting long if the hospitality industry works in cahoots with the DWP… or maybe I’m being a conspiracy theroist!
    The same problem must exist in the care industry I would’ve though, so a case of become a carer or else!


    April 27, 2021 at 2:12 pm

  70. Serco secures Restart contracts with DWP

    It also noted the contracts had options to extend for a further two years

    Serco highlighted the contract would actually be loss-making in 2021, with losses expected to be in the range of £5.0m-10.0m, with the contract projected to be profitable thereafter.



    April 27, 2021 at 2:46 pm

  71. Well I’ve just had my phone appointment with the Jobcentre and contrary to what I was previously told I will not be going there in person next time as they’ve just told me that they still have no date for reopening the doors to the public and so my next appointment is by phone in a fortnight’s time. As you were.


    April 27, 2021 at 3:08 pm

  72. Lucky Trev.

    Big bird

    April 27, 2021 at 3:36 pm

  73. AO Grading in Jobcentres – Job Evaluation and Grading Support (JEGS)
    27 Apr 2021
    The last meeting that PCS had with the employer on grading in Jobcentres was on 28 August 2020 at which negotiators once again requested a definitive note from management detailing what an AO job role is in Jobcentres and what clear demarcation lines are.

    Disappointingly, this has still not been forthcoming. As a result, we can no longer wait on the employer to address this situation. AO members have informed the union that they are constantly carrying out the same duties as Work Coaches (EO grade) such as Initial Evidence Interviews, Further Evidence Interviews, Habitual Resident Test, Prepare Commitment Activity and Discuss and Pay Advances.

    PCS formally requested a Job Evaluation and Grading Support (JEGS) exercise in October 2019. DWP have not enacted this, as they agreed to meet with the union in January 2020 with a view to resolving the issue. Sadly, despite agreeing to produce defined job roles for AO’s in Jobcentres at this meeting, this has not been forthcoming. As a result of the situation dragging on, PCS have advised senior Work and Health management that we will be doing our own mini-JEGS exercise. This exercise will be carried out over 6 Jobcentres, with members at those sites being asked to complete a Job Analysis Form (JAF). Members would be provided with full guidance on how to complete the JAF. Once we have the findings from the mini-JEGS exercise, we will discuss them with the employer and provide an update to our AO Jobcentre members.

    If you volunteer to provide evidence, ensure you understand the process
    In order to ensure that members who volunteer to provide the evidence for the scoring understand the process in the embedded document attached you will find a guide to how the process works. Members should ensure that they accurately record all of the duties and responsibilities which they undertake as part of their role as an AO in a Jobcentre.

    Following completion of the exercise and publication of the scoring, PCS will then discuss the outcome with senior Work and Health management. PCS have no preconceptions of what the outcome will be, however if the result is that the role scores in the higher EO band, then a number of options will be considered by Work and Health, in consultation with PCS, to make the grading suitable for the role (or roles) following the JEG.

    The six Jobcentres at which the mini-JEGS exercise will be conducted are as follows:

    Bristol Temple Street
    Newcastle City
    PCS representatives at those Jobcentres will issue a link with the JAF to all AO members at that office. The guidance on how to complete the JAF is below. Any member who intends to complete the JAF and has any questions, should contact their local PCS representative. Completed JAFs should be emailed to ian.pope@dwp.gov.uk by no later than Friday 28 May 2021.

    Awful place to work
    Admin Officer (Former Employee) – Brentwood, Essex – 30 March 2021
    I would recommend working for the DWP if you want to:
    + be bullied
    + deal with people ranting at you all day (colleagues and claimants)
    + be patronised by clueless managers who constantly tell you they are right because they have 15 years experience
    + lack of career progression
    + work in a toxic workplace culture where you are only accepted if you are part of the office clique

    Otherwise, I would steer clear
    Makes you appreciate other jobs
    Awful colleagues and poor management

    More interested in Sanctions
    Administrative Officer (Former Employee) – Arbroath – 27 October 2020
    Having worked for the DWP and formerly the Benefits Agency I can say that the current culture is more about sanctioning job seekers whereas previously it was more focused on helping people back to work. I would not work there again in the current culture.



    April 27, 2021 at 6:46 pm

  74. Whilst Covid might seem to be very gradually improving here the Jobcentres are still not back to normal and we still have to observe safe distancing and socialising rules and pubs are only serving outdoors but meanwhile the Covid situation in India is bloody grim….



    April 27, 2021 at 8:32 pm

  75. Serco awarded new contracts by DWP despite Test and Trace controversy

    Restart is due to officially launch on June 28, with people being referred to Serco and other providers from July 12 for a period of three years.



    April 27, 2021 at 8:32 pm

  76. @trev

    I have not had any phone calls from the jobcentre for almost a year. The letter I received from the jobcentre for my face to face appointment was the first contact since that time. Have you had these phone calls from the jobcentre for long?


    April 27, 2021 at 8:40 pm

    • i had a letter on the 8th feb to ring them or else buy the 16th feb as said was trying to ring me but they have not had a phone number for years now so the first letter i get from them there telling lies already.

      i dont have to ring them again until the 18th of may as bank holiday.


      April 27, 2021 at 8:47 pm

      • @superted – Get a burner phone, like they do in the spy films. Use it only once, and be careful to wipe off your fingerprints, before you throw it away.

        Jeff Smith

        April 27, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    • @ Rob
      No, they started ringing a few weeks back, think in March, I think this was the third call I’ve had, just a 5 min check that you’re still alive and your circumstances haven’t changed. The first call lasted about 20 mins. and was to verbally re-do my Claimant Commitment.


      April 27, 2021 at 8:47 pm

      • they sent out those new cc out because that is the date they can now sanction you from so if coach ask for a years worth of job search they might try a ase doubt.


        April 27, 2021 at 8:55 pm

  77. “I have acquired skills and techniques that will last me a lifetime.”- Esther’s story

    Esther was referred to the Work and Health Programme in December 2020, after being made redundant from her job prior to COVID-19. This had a negative impact to her overall confidence.

    “At first when I was applying and filling out application forms, I felt a little rusty, but with some nudges here and there I soon gained confidence in applying. I also had help with re-reading my applications and suggestions where needed. This helped to make me feel more polished. Tips on making applications quicker and easier really helped me with the application processes.

    Streamlining the process

    “Saving everything digitally in one place and copying and pasting what you need from it for each online application form can make a real difference in time saving when you are applying for more than one job at a time. This may seem obvious to some, but for me I am glad this was pointed out to me early on, rather than me working it out for myself later and X amount of application forms and stress down the line.

    “Constant communication has been key to my success. My Work Coach Stuart would call early on in the week and regularly give me a weekly direction that gave me a guide to each day and with feeling like I had accomplished goals even when I felt frustrated. Stuart has encouraged me by giving me support and telling me not to give up. Especially after a horrendous first interview for a role that I would not normally apply for. But soon after, I was back applying for jobs with a new frame of mind and knowledge of what to expect, thanks to my work coach.

    Skills to last a lifetime

    “Stuart has pushed me in a positive way to apply for roles that I would not normally apply for, sometimes these roles were way out of my comfort zone. I feel that each job I have applied for I gained more confidence each time, even if I did not get a reply. With continued support from my work coach, I feel that I have acquired interview techniques that will last me a lifetime and subsequently has given me a role that gives me stability and opportunity for growth.

    “My work coach has given me the confidence and reassurance that I can do these roles and has pushed me out of my safe place. Being on the Work and Health programme has ultimately helped me, by successfully finding a role, preparing for the interviews, giving me confidence and with it a job offer at the end.

    “My new role is going to be my career for the foreseeable future, and I am more than happy about that. If I did not have this guidance and support from everyone at the Seetec Pluss team, I would not have applied for that type of job myself and would have missed out, but I’m glad I did.”

    The Work and Health Programme is funded by the Department for Work and Pensions and the European Social Fund.

    Area: Bristol



    April 27, 2021 at 9:36 pm

    • “Stuart has pushed me in a positive way to apply for roles that I would not normally apply for, sometimes these roles were way out of my comfort zone.”

      Stuart badgered me into applying for the sort of work I’m neither interested in nor suited to because he gets paid a bonus for every person he drives off of Benefits.


      April 27, 2021 at 9:51 pm

      • @trev: Their advisers just keep going on and on, for weeks or months. It takes a strong will to resist it. It’s much easier to give in, and take that awful zero-hours job. A job these people would never have done, if they had money and a proper choice. But they are on benefits, and they don’t.

        George M

        April 27, 2021 at 10:02 pm

      • “The best defense is a good offense” is an adage that has been applied to many fields of endeavor, including games and military combat. It is also known as the strategic offensive principle of war. Generally, the idea is that proactivity (a strong offensive action) instead of a passive attitude will preoccupy the opposition and ultimately hinder its ability to mount an opposing counterattack, leading to a strategic advantage.

        What wins an unstoppable force or an immovable object?
        Hence, by terminology, an unstoppable force, in order to become unstoppable, ought to possess infinite energy. On the other hand, an immovable object is non-submissive to any force of any magnitude, from being palpable to an asteroid attack, that is, it won’t shift from its place at all.



        April 27, 2021 at 10:47 pm

    • These providers have always got the same type of publicity stories about their clients. Like stereotypes of different jobseekers. The young man just out of school / college, the older jobseeker, the female jobseeker,
      the ethnic minority jobseeker etc.etc.
      But what they don’t tell you in their glossy PR, is that the jobs are mostly low-level, minimum wage. Jobs that these people didn’t really want to do. But that as participants in the scheme, were pressured to apply for.
      With the implied threat of a sanction, always in the background.

      Jeff Smith

      April 27, 2021 at 9:54 pm

  78. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 9:49 pm

  79. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 9:54 pm

  80. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 9:55 pm

  81. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 9:57 pm

  82. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 9:58 pm

  83. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 9:59 pm

  84. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 10:00 pm

  85. zamo887878

    April 27, 2021 at 10:01 pm

  86. Work and Health programme

    Online services
    The Opportunities Hub is your very own online service. It is packed full of learning, resources and support to help you on your journey into work.

    You can access your Opportunities Hub 24 hours a day to help you organise your appointments, view your action plan and check your progress towards work


    this is looking like there using there signed contracts to force you to use there apps hubs ect 247 and also be monitored.

    i cant find this hub so it is only for those who are signed up to use it i guess.

    the last time i was at a provider job searching id print out the jobs and apply for them at home, this will not be a option because they want you to apply for jobs on there locked app/hub as far as i can see.

    and also remember these are 3rd party private company’s for profit foi requests wont work as they can refuse to answer them.

    all they need to start getting paid is a job for 16hrs a week they wont care if you have to get 4 busses there and back so you end up with nothing left as they get there money so job done.

    like ujm a coach could bombard you with jobs to apply for and if you dont apply for every one of then expect sanctions to follow.

    on jsa they cant force you to take a zero hrs job but if you sign on the dotted line this will disappear along with the travel time of 1hr 30 mins each way imo.


    April 27, 2021 at 10:05 pm

  87. zamo887878

    April 28, 2021 at 1:17 am

  88. How awful.


    April 28, 2021 at 10:18 am

  89. I remember when I was on cwp,they wanted your email as soon as you walked in the door and they emailed you a like to click on and it was the providers version of ujm the only difference was the adviser had full access to your account and the main features were how long you were on it.

    I got kicked off the course the next day so got out of it. But I would never sign their contracts again. I didn’t with the whp either.

    Big bird

    April 28, 2021 at 11:53 am

  90. A friend of mine completed a short mandatory course, three days. Then as he was leaving, they asked him if he was on Facebook. So they could keep in touch. No doubt fishing for an outcome payment, even if he got a job on his own.

    Jeff Smith

    April 28, 2021 at 12:05 pm

  91. I’m still waiting for the certificates from the last course I did with Interserve, I completed all the work and know I passed it, should be certificates in Retail and Customer Services. Also still waiting for a computer certificate from the course before that on the Right Steps to Work with Standguide. It’s all going back a couple of years so doubt I’ll ever see the certificates.


    April 28, 2021 at 12:19 pm

  92. I take it you have your Certificate of Insanity Trev ?


    April 28, 2021 at 3:13 pm

  93. Exemption from face coverings of service users attending local job centres


    Our policy states that although “face coverings are mandatory for customers in the jobcentre. If any customer says they are exempt from wearing a face covering, they should not be challenged or asked for proof, and should still be allowed into the jobcentre.”

    jj joop

    April 28, 2021 at 4:38 pm

    • I’d better wear two masks then to make up for the pillock sitting next to me who claims he can’t wear one. It’s not fair on the rest of us, should be no mask no entry.


      April 28, 2021 at 5:16 pm

      • I totally agree with you on that one, trev.

        jj joop

        April 28, 2021 at 6:57 pm

      • Or vaccination on site. No jab, no sign.

        George M

        April 28, 2021 at 7:22 pm

  94. Restart scheme: Contract Package Areas

    Looks like I’ll be pimped out to Reed in Partnership. Same applies to you Andrew! What larks we shall have.


    jj joop

    April 28, 2021 at 4:45 pm

    • All we can hope is that with so many thousands of people going on these schemes, we won’t see a return to the sanction stupidity of 2010-2013.

      Jeff Smith

      April 28, 2021 at 5:02 pm

    • Oh fook I’m in Derbyshire so it looks like I’ll be with Maximus UK, that should be fun.


      April 28, 2021 at 5:16 pm

  95. Are people still being referred to the Health and Work Scheme? Or is the new Restart Scheme the black hole that eventually swallows all and everybody from June 2021 to June 2024? To be honest I’ve never met anybody who has been on the Health and Work Scheme.


    April 28, 2021 at 5:59 pm

    • I’ve never met anyone either. In my area it was voluntary.

      jj joop

      April 28, 2021 at 6:59 pm

    • Originally the Work & Health scheme was particularly targeted at disabled claimants, and those who had a health issue, which might have made it difficult to find employment. Hence the name. But as time went by they opened it up to other long-term unemployed claimants. It has been offered voluntarily in my area. It was originally a much smaller scheme than the Work Programme. So perhaps they will extend it ?

      Jeff Smith

      April 28, 2021 at 7:36 pm

  96. you lot have the get out of jail cards all you have to do is use them, print them off and show them to ur wc and state if you are sent you wont sign anything as you are not required to buy law.

    and my tribunal letter ends it all you can not be forced to sign anything it has to be of free will and thats the law.

    since i won my case anyone going to a tribunal can use my tribunal letter as your defence as it has all ready been ruled on and the dwp lost.

    Inappropriate Referrals
    2.154 An inappropriate referral is defined as a referral made where a Participant is either not
    eligible or not suitable for the provision (see section beginning at 2.1).
    2.155 Inappropriate referrals may be identified in exceptional cases, for example where
    information regarding a claimant’s circumstances is identified after referral. They could
    be identified either before the Initial Face to Face meeting has happened (potential
    Participants) or after someone has started on the provision (Participants). In this section,
    “Participant” means both Participant and potential Participant.
    2.156 Should the eligibility and suitability criteria not be met, the Participant will be removed
    from the provision. However, if the suitability criteria are met, and the Participant meets
    the discretionary referrals criteria, the Participant will be given the choice whether to
    continue on the provision. The JCP work coach will discuss this with the Participant and
    confirm the decision via a change of circumstances notification.
    2.157 Likewise, where the eligibility criteria are met, but not the suitability criteria, the
    Participant will be given the choice to continue on the provision, unless they are already
    on another DWP contracted employment programme. In such circumstances, they will
    be removed from the Restart provision to enable them to continue on the first provision.

    sending me to a provider with my tribunal letter would be like rolling a nuke through the front door with the letter from the dwp to let me in in the first place its why they cant send me anywhere anymore 🙂

    so recommend to your wc that you are a Inappropriate Referral and if they want to carry on with it say you will give a copy of both above to everyone at the dump.

    and then there fucked its not like when i was sent on mwa i was pulled aside given 10 quid to do one and not talk to anyone 😉


    April 28, 2021 at 7:25 pm

  97. Pension dreams placed on hold – need to work indefinitely ‘all too likely’



    April 28, 2021 at 8:12 pm

  98. superted

    April 28, 2021 at 8:25 pm

  99. superted

    April 28, 2021 at 8:46 pm

    • 2k delivery fee and 3700 for a job outcome payment quality of job is not important only the 16hrs of work matters as that is when payments can be triggered.


      April 28, 2021 at 9:03 pm

  100. Just got my 65 year old body back home after my jobcentre appointment. The reason I was called in was because they have tried phoning me since February and unable to get through. Last November I received my yearly letter from the DWP asking about any changes. I usually put a tick in the no box and sign it. This time I put my new mobile number as a change but clearly they didn’t update my file.
    When I arrived the security guard who wore a face mask saw my letter and escorted me to a seat to wait to be called. Very few claimants around. I was called over by my work coach who did a good job. A piece of Perspex was in front of the desk and the chair I sat on was a good yard from the desk. The work coach put on a visor for the appointment. Because they now have my new mobile number I will receive a phone call in a fortnight instead of attending the Jobcentre. We were not allowed to exchange any documents so I will receive my claimant commitment in the post including work booklet to record jobsearch. I asked why they couldn’t use my previous cc and was told that after a year it is all erased. As I am fairly quiet spoken, my work coach had a problem understanding me. I’m not surprised with me wearing a face mask and a good yard away from a piece of Perspex and the work coach at the other side of the desk.


    April 29, 2021 at 11:16 am

    • @Rob

      Not as bad as you thought it was going to be. I bet you’re relieved.

      jj joop

      April 29, 2021 at 12:05 pm

  101. Universal Credit Video Calling Update
    29 Apr 2021
    As the union’s negotiators were not satisfied that the safety concerns we raised with DWP have been addressed satisfactorily, we have issued guidance recommending that Work Coach members should not volunteer to take part in video calling. This decision was unanimously agreed by the Group Executive Committee (GEC) meeting on 21 April 2021

    The GEC has met with management on two occasions in the past week at which we have again raised our safety concerns mainly around screen shots, unauthorised recording, social media, desk set-ups, 6 Point Plan, UCB, screening process and the Limp Drill. The GEC has been inundated with members emailing to advise of their serious concerns regarding video calling, mainly around screen shots and unauthorised recording. Although management have responded to our concerns, PCS are of the opinion that we cannot recommend that members take part in video calling at this stage. On the issue of claimants taking screen shots and unauthorised recording, management have admitted that the risk of this is impossible to eliminate. The employer has said that they believe this risk has been mitigated, as far as possible, by informing claimants that they are not allowed to record a video appointment without DWP consent and if a Work Coach suspects that a recording is being made, the appointment will be terminated immediately. Furthermore, any criminal behaviour will be reported. Work Coaches are advised to terminate the call if they feel uncomfortable. As much as this guidance will go some way to mitigate the risks, the fact that the employer has admitted that this will not eliminate the risks, means that we are still some way apart.

    Work Coach Video Appointment Survey
    DWP is currently running a video appointment survey for Work Coaches which runs from 27 April to 30 April 2021. Regrettably, DWP did not consult with PCS on this survey, with the union finding out from members contacting us. GEC negotiators robustly expressed our disappointment that we had not been consulted and felt that this was an inflammatory act on behalf of the employer, given that we recommended that Work Coaches did not volunteer for video calling. The employer is requesting that Work Coaches provide “open and honest feedback”. PCS would advise Work Coaches to complete the survey and provide “open and honest feedback” as requested.

    Participation still voluntary
    DWP have confirmed again at two meetings this week that Work Coach participation is still voluntary as video calling is still at the development stage. Hopefully this will reassure members who have contacted the GEC stating that they had been advised that participation was compulsory. Any Work Coach member who is mandated to participate in video calling against their will, should contact a local PCS representative or email leeds@pcs.org.uk immediately. Some Work Coach members have reported to the GEC that they have been told that they have to take part in training for video calling. It is not unreasonable for management to ask staff to carry out training, but Work Coaches who have not volunteered to take part in video calling are having appointments booked on their behalf once they have completed the training. PCS have raised this with the employer and stressed that this has to stop immediately. Once again, if this happening, please contact your local PCS representative or email leeds@pcs.org.uk

    Given that PCS is still not convinced that video calling is safe to carry out in its present form, we are still calling on members not to volunteer until all the risks to your safety are properly addressed to a satisfactory conclusion.

    Jobcentre Safety Ballot
    We are about to launch a consultative ballot from 5 May to 21 May 2021 on the extension of face-to-face appointments in Jobcentres. It is becoming even clearer that a large number of our Jobcentre members are concerned and worried about holding face-to-face interviews during a pandemic and video calling has exacerbated those concerns. For many Work Coaches, this will be further incentive to vote yes in the consultative ballot as recommended by the GEC.

    Negotiations with the DWP
    PCS will continue to meet with the employer in order that we make the case that video calling presents serious concerns for our Work Coach members and that everything that has to be done to alleviate those concerns to a satisfactory outcome. We will keep you updated on progress in these meetings and protecting the safety of our members.


    April 29, 2021 at 12:22 pm

    • When are the PCS union going to do something, other than have their usual talking-shop ? A proper strike for example. We had a number of strikes a couple of years ago at my local Jobcentre. But you never saw the PCS. It was always Unison, or it might have been Unite. But never the PCS.

      Jeff Smith

      April 29, 2021 at 1:59 pm

      • They are talking about gaps in the welfare state Jeff.


        April 29, 2021 at 2:50 pm

  102. @jj joop

    I am a bit relieved, I was lucky to be seen by one of the nicer work coaches. We all know that some are good and we all become aware of the nasty ones.

    When I arrived the security guard told me to use the hand sanitiser. It appears that every time a claimant leaves the jobcentre the chair and Perspex glass are sanitised. A bit like the snooker area after a session. I have a feeling Murphy and Bingham are going to be the finalists. I’m usually wrong.


    April 29, 2021 at 1:20 pm

  103. Universal Credit: How do your wages from work affect your benefit payment?



    April 29, 2021 at 1:42 pm

    • The Chancellor is facing calls to make the Covid furlough scheme permanent to help manage unemployment and protect people from poverty.

      Think tank the Resolution Foundation said the Covid crisis has highlighted huge gaps in the welfare state, including the low level of the basic safety net for families.

      It has called for a new ‘earnings insurance’ – where benefit entitlements are linked to previous earnings – for those experiencing a period of unemployment.



      April 29, 2021 at 1:50 pm

      • Is that fair or reasonable ? To talk about making the furlough payment permanent, when there are 2.2 million legacy claimants still waiting for their £20 increase ? What about making that permanent ?

        Jeff Smith

        April 29, 2021 at 2:06 pm

      • They are talking about gaps in the welfare state Jeff.


        April 29, 2021 at 2:51 pm

      • @jeffsmith: Yeah, you are 100% correct Jeff. How they have the nerve to go on about the furlough scheme, when the legacy claimants have been treated like this, I don’t know. And as for xclausx who seems to have missed the point of your comment. I notice you have a question to him further above, about why he posts on this blog if he’s working ? A question that xclausx didn’t answer. I wonder if he really is working ?
        Who would post on a blog like this if they were working, at 1.50pm on a Thursday afternoon ?

        George M

        April 29, 2021 at 3:24 pm

  104. Give unemployed free travel to help them find jobs after pandemic, urges report



    April 29, 2021 at 1:52 pm

  105. Every job-seeker should be supplied with an interview suit, shirt and tie, and suitable shoes. A lot of people don’t have these. And if you turn up at an interview in a scruffy hoodie and trainers, you are fucked. Before it even starts.

    George M

    April 29, 2021 at 2:13 pm

    • Job interview? H&M offering suits that can be hired free of charge for 24-hours

      H&M has launched a scheme that allows men to borrow a suit, free of charge for 24 hours, so that they can be dressed to impress while trying to score a new job



      April 29, 2021 at 2:22 pm

    • Oh dear the free hire of suit, shirt and tie was too much for george m.!!


      April 30, 2021 at 5:04 am

      • @xclausx- You must admit xclausx it is a bit suspicious ? You claim to be working, but somehow still post regularly on the blog. Even in the middle of the day ? Why would someone in full-time work be hanging around on a blog for the unemployed ?

        Jeff Smith

        April 30, 2021 at 11:32 am

      • Who said I was working full time? idiot.


        April 30, 2021 at 5:04 pm

    • Assuming the vaccine works any third wave would directly impact the workforce and potential employees under 40.


      April 30, 2021 at 5:23 am

      • @ Doug

        In 1918 Spanish Flu, which actually began in America, killed about 50 million people worldwide and affected the young and vigorous much more than the mature and elderly. Experts are now saying that when vaccines deny older hosts to coronavirus, because of the vaccination programme, it will mutate asymptomatically in the younger unvaccinated population until a strain evolves which affects the younger generation as badly as the original virus did older people and the elderly signalling another wave of contagion affecting young people mostly. If the under 40s are not vaccinated en masse in the same way as older people have already been, they could end up incubating a novel form of coronavirus as virulent and dangerous to them as the original virus was to older people and the elderly.

        Hopefully vaccination will prevent this from happening.


        April 30, 2021 at 11:37 am

      • Actually Aleister H1N1 took everyone irrespective of age. What was listed as striking and only in reference to experts looking back at this virus was unlike those that followed (H2N2, H3N2, and now Covid 19), it was noted it was just as prevalent in over 5s and under 40s.
        What was unique with regards H1N1 was the high mortality rate in healthy people.

        While you can never rule anything out and shouldnt, Covid 19 is currently more akin to H3N2 in who and what it attacks along with the infection and death rate.

        All we can really do is wait and see how this if it does unfold and deal with the fallout.


        May 1, 2021 at 2:29 pm

  106. Millions on benefits could get £1,040 back pay as DWP faces High Court over Covid boost



    April 29, 2021 at 4:45 pm

  107. superted

    April 29, 2021 at 6:47 pm

  108. zamo887878

    April 29, 2021 at 7:17 pm

  109. BENEFITS ROW Two million could get £1,560 benefits pay back as DWP faces Covid boost legal challenge



    April 29, 2021 at 8:04 pm

  110. Anger after watchdog appears to back away from inquiry into DWP deaths

    The equality and human rights watchdog appears to have backed away from holding a wide-ranging statutory inquiry into links between the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the deaths of disabled benefit claimants.



    April 29, 2021 at 8:07 pm

  111. Man told to leave Job Centre coach alone after stalking order breach

    Royal Wotton Bassett man Stewart Hendry, 32, is said to have bombarded his job centre-supplied life coach with 113 text messages over 12 hours last month.

    He met the woman, who works for training company Seetec, after being referred to the organisation by the job centre last year.


    well thats one way to get out of it lmfao.


    April 29, 2021 at 8:28 pm

  112. JobPath has cost €162.55m and provided just 11,334 jobs lasting at least one year – SF

    Calling for the ending of the programme the policy document states that JobPath “has failed. It has not succeeded in sourcing full-time employment that is any way sustainable or meaningful for the long-term employed.”

    The policy document concludes that job activation should be person-centred and acknowledge that no two people who are unemployed are the same.

    “JobPath does not represent this and instead, focuses solely on finding a person a job, any job, because that is what pays them.”



    April 29, 2021 at 8:35 pm

  113. Dáil hears fraud concerns connected to two companies

    He said the scheme was “demeaning, patronising and infantilising” and that the threat of having welfare cut by more than €40 hangs over people’s heads.

    He said since JobPath was introduced the number of people who have had penalty rates applied had increased from 5,000 in 2015 to 16,000 last year. Furthermore, 6,500 JobPath participants have had their dole cut



    April 29, 2021 at 8:40 pm

  114. Committee told man on JobPath scheme had his CV amended against his wishes to conceal his ethnicity

    Under the JobPath scheme many respondents told the researchers that they felt “actively and capriciously patronised, cajoled, threatened, manipulated and bullied”.

    All respondents detailed the continual threat of sanctions, which made engagement and compliance with various tasks compulsory.



    April 29, 2021 at 8:47 pm

  115. JobPath

    Jobseekers selected for referral to JobPath will receive a letter inviting them to an information session where they will receive information on the service that will be available while on JobPath.

    Following the information session, the person will have their first one to one meeting with their personal advisor. This meeting will look at their work related skills and experience, and employment preferences for the purpose of agreeing a Personal Progression Plan (PPP). This is the person’s personal plan to help in their search for sustainable full time employment. Agreement to a PPP is mandatory for persons referred to any of the Activation Services provided by the department, including the JobPath Service.

    They will also be asked to sign a consent form to allow the the JobPath Company to make contact with employers or prospective employers on behalf of the jobseeker. Agreement to the consent is not mandatory. However, it provides a number of advantages for the jobseeker.

    if you sign the restart programme contracts you might as well bend over and kiss ur ass good bye because they want complete control over all of your personnel data to try to dump you in any job possible to generate outcome payments.

    imo you will have to apply for jobs on there servers apps ect so have total control over what you can apply for or just send you jobs to apply for via the app.



    April 29, 2021 at 9:32 pm

    • Is JobPath just in Ireland or is coming over here as well?

      jj joop

      April 30, 2021 at 11:06 am

      • Let’s not start getting paranoid about foreign employment schemes. JobPath is a purely Irish government programme, for Southern Ireland only. It is not relevant to anyone claiming benefits in Northern Ireland, or anywhere else in the UK.

        Jeff Smith

        April 30, 2021 at 11:43 am

      • when you get company’s like this and signing your data rights away never ends well and you will have to sign them on the restart programme.

        these company’s are using you as a profit unit and can sanction you so basically have complete control over your benefits so do this or else and you cant say no like apply for 50 jobs this week fail to do it and get sanctioned.

        well you did sign on the dotted line to receive this treatment so if you want 3 years of hell it is up to you.


        April 30, 2021 at 12:02 pm

  116. But Superted, I understand your point about not signing. But is this really practical for people with family responsibilities ?

    George M

    April 30, 2021 at 1:05 pm

    • most of my sanction doubts has come from providers none of them can ever be trusted.

      so you will have more chances of getting sanctioned on the programme than not on it.


      April 30, 2021 at 1:11 pm

  117. I have just returned from a look at Tendance Coatsey. It was like climbing up a high mountain, looking far out over a rich landscape of political theory, and breathing in the clean, sharp air of intellectual debate.
    Then I came back to Ipswich Unemployed Action, where Superted was posting details of a Southern Irish
    employment scheme.

    ‘Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.’ Jean-Babtiste Alphonse Carr

    Jeff Smith

    April 30, 2021 at 1:28 pm

    • “Dis-moi ce que tu manges, je te dirai ce que tu es.”
      Tell me what you eat and I’ll tell you what you are.
      – Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

      George M

      April 30, 2021 at 5:11 pm

  118. jj joop

    April 30, 2021 at 1:48 pm

  119. DWP ‘spys’ on 20 million individual’s social media accounts, just because they are claiming Universal Credit and other social security benefits?
    Whilst DWP does hold some information relating to this part of your request, this information
    is exempt under Section 31(1)(a) of the Freedom of Information Act. This exemption covers
    certain information which, if released, would likely prejudice the prevention and detection of
    fraud and crime.
    In applying this exemption, DWP has balanced the public interest in withholding the
    information against the public interest in disclosing the information.
    To be helpful, and answering outside of the FOI response, I have attached a link to the DWP
    Fraud Investigators Guide which provides information on our approach to conducting



    April 30, 2021 at 1:57 pm

  120. Butlin’s and Haven announce creation of 60 Lincolnshire jobs
    It will help those at risk of long-term unemployment

    All roles will be for a minimum of 25 hours a week over a six-month placement period providing applicants with a chance to gain solid work training and experience and set them up for roles in the future.



    April 30, 2021 at 2:11 pm

  121. You seem to have touched a nerve there with xclausx Jeff. Something very odd about it. An employed man hanging around on an unemployment site ? Who would do that ? I thought he was working full-time as well, off the back of his Work Programme course. Now he’s what, part-time ?

    George M

    April 30, 2021 at 5:16 pm

    • Superted has just posted news for jobs at butlins, go for it!!


      April 30, 2021 at 5:53 pm

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