Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Posts Tagged ‘Jobsearch

Suffolk Libraries – a Key Resource for the Unemployed – Face Cuts.

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Image result for libraries under threat protests

Libraries are a key resource for the unemployed.

We use them to do our Jobsearch (part of the 35 hours we have to carry out as part of our ‘Jobseekers Agreement’.

We use their Internet services (where they are available) to write CVs, to upload CVs, apply for jobs and look around the web for posts.

We use them for books on how to do this, and for help from staff about the best way to do it.

This resource is under threat.

Libraries lose a quarter of staff as hundreds close. BBC.

Almost 8,000 jobs in UK libraries have disappeared in six years, about a quarter of the overall total, an investigation by the BBC has revealed.

Over the same period, some 15,500 volunteers have been recruited and 343 libraries have closed, leading to fears over the future of the profession.

Children’s author Alan Gibbons said the public library service faced the “greatest crisis in its history”.

The government said it funded the roll-out of wi-fi to help libraries adapt.

The BBC has compiled data from 207 authorities responsible for running libraries through the Freedom of Information Act. Our analysis shows:

  • Some 343 libraries closed. Of those, 132 were mobile services, while 207 were based in buildings (and there were four others, such as home delivery services)
  • The number of closures in England is higher than the government’s official estimate of 110 buildings shut
  • A further 111 closures are planned this year
  • The number of paid staff in libraries fell from 31,977 in 2010 to 24,044 now, a drop of 7,933 (25%) for the 182 library authorities that provided comparable data
  • A further 174 libraries have been transferred to community groups, while 50 have been handed to external organisations to run. In some areas, such as Lincolnshire and Surrey, the move has led to legal challenges and protests from residents.

Now we have this in Suffolk.

Suffolk Libraries face £230,000 budget cut as bosses call for more public support to save all 44 branches

Anybody who uses Ipswich central Library knows the strain they are already under.

To say the least there are ‘problems’ about the Net service.

How people who rely on smaller libraries manage is hard to tell, it must be hard.

Tory-run Suffolk County Council seems determined to make our lives worse:

Suffolk County Council’s Scrutiny Committee will be discussing the council’s budget proposals on 30 November.

These proposals include a further reduction to the Suffolk Libraries budget of £230,000 for 2017-18. This follows a cut of £350,000 for the current year (2016-2017) which Suffolk Libraries accepted with reluctance.

Alison Wheeler, Chief Executive of Suffolk Libraries, said: “We recognise that public-sector funding is decreasing, and in response Suffolk Libraries has since 2011, with stringencies and economies, saved more than 30% of the original library budget without affecting local services.”

“In terms of relative cost – for every £1 spent by the Council, less than 1 penny is spent on the library service. The library service actively contributes to several of the county’s key priorities which include support for vulnerable people, raising educational attainment, supporting small businesses and empowering communities.”

“Suffolk Libraries is now in its fifth year of operation and each year it has lived within its means and saved increasing amounts of council tax. This has only been done with the sustained hard work of library staff, help from community groups, local volunteers and support from library customers.”

“With this extraordinary support, we have together ensured that all Suffolk libraries are still open, local library opening hours have been sustained and the services people enjoy, and which we know make a difference to people’s lives, have continued to flourish.”

Tony Brown, Chair of Suffolk Libraries Board added “Over the past year we have made it clear that it would be impossible to make further cuts without having an effect on services. We pledged to work constructively with the council on the longer-term future of the county’s library service and offered them a plan in June in which we suggested ways we could save money over a longer period, and which would allow us to keep library opening hours intact.”

“Five months later, it’s disappointing to see that the council’s budget proposals do not reflect the alternative plans we presented. The larger sums required will almost certainly mean we can’t carry on providing the library service in the same way.”

“However, we are still in discussion about the final sum. People will be consulted on any changes and we will strive to minimise the impact on customers, and ensure that people will still have access to the same wide range of services and activities in their community.”

“Suffolk Libraries’ Board is committed to keeping libraries open and for local services to flourish. The Suffolk community has shown a huge amount of support for local libraries over the past few years, and this has never been more needed, or valued.”

Want to show your support for your library service? Email us at help@suffolklibraries.co.uk, tweet @suffolklibrary or comment on our Facebook page. You can also contact Suffolk County Council.


Written by Andrew Coates

November 23, 2016 at 11:44 am

35 Hours JobSearch: We Publish the Mad DWP Guidelines.

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35 hours a week jobsearch tool-235 hours a week jobsearch tool-1










From JJ.


Read closely: it is a ‘time and motion’ study designed to trap people in a remorseless set of tasks for 35 hours a week.

“Phoning employers may take one or two hours per day” – that’s an awful lot of nuisance calls!

Application forms – one to one and a half hours. That’s a lot of slow-paced filling-in.

Jobsearch on-line up to two hours a day – that’s a lot of time-wasting when you’re already registered with ULM and other sites.

And so it goes, in mind-bogglingly meticulous detail.

Down to competency based application forms, researching ‘volunteering’ and ‘work experience’.

Work Coachy is looking at your every move!


Benefit Sanctions, 4,500 Hit in Manchester.

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The Manchester Evening News reported this week.

Hard-up jobless people in Greater Manchester have been hammered hardest by benefit sanctions in the UK, according to a new report.

Around 4,500 people – 8 per cent of the region’s Jobseekers’ Allowance claimants – have had their payments frozen or stopped completely as part of the government crackdown.

That compared with just 6 per cent of jobseekers in other areas since October 2012.

As part of the tough new regime, claimants face having their payments stopped if job centre staff class them as ‘unavailable for work’.

But critics say the broad brush approach has unfairly penalised many people with legitimate training or childcare commitments.

However, the analysis by think tank New Economy shows that most of those affected were sanctioned because they failed to turn up to appointments intended to help them find work.

The second highest reason for a sanction was because claimants were unable to show they were looking for job.

I looked at the last item and thought…..

In Ipswich the Jobcentre has a few computers, about 4, looking lonely,  when I last looked for jobsearch.

Ipswich Central Library computer system is in chaos.

Most of the computers are out of order (3 days now).

There is fierce competition to use the few terminals (using a new system)  that work – 8 of them downstairs.

This is for thousands of people who have to 35 hours jobsearch a week (and some now who have to do 40 Hours!)

So a lot of people in Ipswich are going to find it hard to show how they are looking for a job.

Supervised Jobsearch Pilot to Begin in East Anglia in October.

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The supervised Jobsearch scheme (putting people in a jobsearching Prison and made to ‘job search’ for  35 hours a week) is set to begin in East Anglia this October.

This “pilot scheme’ is

In return for receiving their benefit, some Jobseeker’s Allowance claimants will be required to undertake supervised jobsearch activity under a new trial to be introduced next year.

Under the trials selected jobseekers will be required to attend a local centre where they will receive expert support and supervision while they search and apply for jobs. They will be required to attend the centre for 35 hours a week for up to 6 months.

Two pilots are due to be run: one targeting the very long-term unemployed, and the other focusing on claimants who are identified as likely to benefit from this intensive regime early on in their claim.

Attendance at the centres will be mandatory and failure to participate without good reason will lead to a benefit sanction.

Pilots are expected to be running by the end of 2014, and each of the pilots is expected to have around 3,000 participants.



More information (Supervised Jobsearch Pilot Scheme) Regulations 2014.

This is believed to be a model of the the new Jobsearch centres (Supervisors’ office in the centre, Jobseekers’ cells circling around it):


Written by Andrew Coates

September 3, 2014 at 4:13 pm

35 Hour a Week Jobsearch: Prison for Jobseekers.

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Model Jobsearch Facility: One ‘Job Coach’ can supervise 200 Cells.

The Supervised Jobsearch Pilot Scheme

(From Refuted Thanks J J Joop)

3.  (1)  The Supervised Jobsearch Pilot Scheme is prescribed for the purposes of section 17A(1) (schemes for assisting persons to obtain employment: “work for your benefit” schemes etc) of the Jobseekers Act 1995.

(2) The Supervised Jobsearch Pilot Scheme (“the Scheme”) is a scheme—

(a) that is designed to provide support and assistance to a claimant in their search to find employment, in a supervised environment, for up to 35 hours per week over a period of up to 13 weeks; and

(b) which involves an initial interview with the Scheme provider to discuss what the claimant is required to do by way of participation in the Scheme and may also involve training or other activity to help improve a claimant’s job search skills, help preparing for job interviews and assistance with job applications and preparing a curriculum vitae.http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukdsi/2014/9780111115367

Pilot to operate until 30th April 2015 within:

a) East Anglia; – (b) Black Country; – (c) Mercia;- (d) Surrey & Sussex; – (e) West Yorkshire.

New 35 hour per week Job Search commitments confirmed – Universal Credit http://consentarchive.wordpress.com/2013/02/15/thirtyfive/

JSA Claimant Commitment: DWP internal guidance disclosed, 45+ documentshttp://refuted.org.uk/2013/11/13/jsacommitment/

Written by Andrew Coates

June 8, 2014 at 9:41 am

Universal Job Search IS to be Made Compulsory.

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Jobseekers in England, Scotland and Wales will have to use a new government website that can automatically tell jobcentres about their applications – or risk losing their benefit payments.

The Welfare Secretary Iain Duncan Smith told political correspondent Ross Hawkins on Radio 4’s The World at One programme, that the new site can automatically send people vacancies – and demand explanations from them if they do not apply.

Iain Duncan Smith explained that if a job adviser thinks the reasons that you have given for not applying for a job are “specious” then “he may call you in and say I really think that you ought to be applying for these jobs.”

When asked about issuing electronic cards that would restrict claimants in spending their benefits payments, he said that “giving people cash sometimes can actually lead to further problems”.

He stressed that the scheme would only affect specific claimants.

From The BBC.

Hearing this there was a brief report on the ‘problems’ the site had faced, fake job ads and phone-sex jobs.

There was nothing about concerns about privacy and surveillance.

That in many parts of the country there is no easy access to the Internet, or if there is public access it is often (as in Suffolk) unable to work with the DWP’s site.

Nor indeed about the simple fact that many many unemployed people cannot access the site, or even if they could, would not know how to use computers well enough to use it properly.

His comments on the ‘Cash Card’ were said to apply only to specific groups, such as drug addicts.

How specific this could be was not elaborated.

Those who hold the ‘technology’ in this area have been lobbying for this.

There’s little doubt the Government  are working on something that will reward companies who live off the unemployed.



Written by Andrew Coates

December 20, 2012 at 4:06 pm