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Boycott Workfare is a UK-wide campaign to end forced unpaid work for people who receive welfare. Workfare profits the rich by providing free labour, whilst threatening the poor by taking away welfare rights if people refuse to work without a living wage. We are a grassroots campaign, formed in 2010 by people with experience of workfare and those concerned about its impact. We expose and take action against companies and organisations profiting from workfare; encourage organisations to pledge to boycott it; and actively inform people of their rights.

Government abandons new workfare scheme

Posted: June 1st, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Info on schemes | 13 Comments »
Time to start combating the hit squads

Time to start combating the hit squads

The government appears to have abandoned their previous plans for compulsory 6 month workfare placements for everyone finishing the 2 years on the Work Programme. There was no mention of it when they announced their post-Work Programme plans yesterday, which is a victory for all anti-workfare campaigns. By us all putting pressure on workfare providers there are no longer enough companies and charities who are willing to be involved to make such a huge scheme possible.

Unfortunately the government are planning to go ahead with their other plan of intensified Job Seeker Agreements and pointless activities for when we finish the Work Programme. They are threatening daily meetings with advisors and referrals to Mandatory Work Activity (which is already struggling to cope with current placements) – all coordinated by the sinister sounding “hit squads”. On top of this they are planning to throw another £30 million at the likes of A4e to provide “training schemes” which normally involve little training, and just provides another opportunity to sanction us.

Pushing people out of the welfare system is what this new scheme for people finishing the Work Programme is all about. As the Department for Work and Pensions admits:

“The programme comes after Jobcentres involved in a trailblazer found that claimants targeted by an intensive approach were much less likely to stay on benefit.”

They do not even pretend these measures are there to help people into work. Instead they are there to provide more opportunities to sanction us and to take away our only financial support.


13 Comments on “Government abandons new workfare scheme”

  1. 1 dalekcat said at 6:48 pm on June 1st, 2013:

    Are you sure they’ve abandoned the 6 month thing? Only at my last appointment at working links (22 may) they said I’d be finishing with them soon and then going on the 6 month work placement.

  2. 2 Jeff said at 10:47 pm on June 1st, 2013:

    These “hit squads” will use the Exit Reports to help direct their fire. Has anyone got one of these reports yet? They should include:

    “28. any changes in attitude and background you have noticed whilst having worked with the participant for 2 years and any known reasons for these changes.

    “the level of compliance you have seen from the participant, including any possible reasons you might consider to be behind this behaviour and which may be useful in determining further support for the participant.

    “29. Participants should be provided with a copy of the Exit Report you send to Jobcentre Plus.”

    http://www.dwp.gov.uk/docs/wp-pg-chapter-10.pdf

  3. 3 ian said at 9:20 am on June 2nd, 2013:

    By questioning workfare providers on health and safety is perhaps one of the most effective ways to make them think about companies participating in this slave labour scheme. Providing PPE “Personal protective equipment”. Providing basic training I.E manual handling, ensuring sufficient adequate instructions on how to carry out work safely, safe use of machinery, safe use of chemicals and much more. Need advice on any health and safety issues then contact me at betsy234@hotmail.co.uk

  4. 4 Eowyn Rohan said at 5:05 pm on June 2nd, 2013:

    Although addressing additional compliance with Job Centre Plus Staff after the Work Programme will not be a major hastle (unless the staff get out of line and directly blame the candidate for being unemployed), I doubt whether candidates should take seriously the nature of any “Exit Report ” produced by any Welfare To Work Clerk. After all, the W2W Clerks are not Professional Careers Advisors.

  5. 5 Lord Stapleton said at 11:44 am on June 5th, 2013:

    I seriously recommend anyone exiting the work programme withdraws their consent for their ‘provider’ to gather or share their personal details under the Data Protection Act 1998.

    This government is going to be extremely embarassed by the amount of people providers have failed to help back into employment and will cause further reason for them to axe the whole scheme. Well, any sensible prime minister would do that if only to save the money wasted by the private sector!

    Claimants leave the benefit system because they get so utterly fed up with the way they are treated, now by both the private sector AND the public sector. They probably move onto petty crime and since successive governments have done nothing to improve our economy whilst increasing all our taxes, who blames them?

    My work programme ‘provider’ informed the job centre of certain legitimate activities in a deliberate attempt to raise doubts and suspicion about my claim for JSA in an attempt to get my benefits stopped. Of course, we can all see the implicit collusion between the job centre and work programme providers, and must act to stop this form of discrimination.

    This government is creating a massive amount of discontent and will undoubtedly feel a backlash at some point. We need more rights for the legitimate unemployed!

  6. 6 Birmingham Trades Council » Workfare Week of Action 6th-14th July said at 2:23 am on June 26th, 2013:

    […] wanted everyone finishing it to be sent to do six months of forced unpaid work. But all mention of this punitive scheme has now disappeared: a powerful testament to the strength of your […]

  7. 7 Workfare Week of Action 6th-14th July said at 7:20 pm on June 28th, 2013:

    […] wanted everyone finishing it to be sent to do six months of forced unpaid work. But all mention of this punitive scheme has now disappeared: a powerful testament to the strength of your […]

  8. 8 Boycott Workfare » Blog Archive » Workfare Week of Action 6th-14th July said at 8:57 am on July 4th, 2013:

    […] wanted everyone finishing it to be sent to do six months of forced unpaid work. But all mention of this punitive scheme has now disappeared: a powerful testament to the strength of your […]

  9. 9 Eowyn Rohan said at 1:36 pm on July 9th, 2013:

    Re: Hit Squads

    Dont let the term frighten anyone…. the Hit Squads simply comprise ordinary Front Line Advisers who have received some training, and have been promoted into a Hit Squad.

  10. 10 ghost whistler said at 2:05 pm on July 9th, 2013:

    Let’s see; 5 days a week compulsory attendance at £4.40 return ticket (assuming I don’t have to attend early when return tickets aren’t available). That’s £22 a week out of £71 JSA. Thanks, it’s not like that money helps me live!

  11. 11 Birmingham Trades Council » Workfare Week of Action Round-up said at 2:12 am on July 19th, 2013:

    […] with people at Job Centres is a really important way to combat the government’s new hit squads – and to bring down workfare. Groups have made plans to continue such events beyond the Week […]

  12. 12 george said at 5:58 pm on August 23rd, 2013:

    Unfortunately the government are planning to go ahead with their other plan of intensified Job Seeker Agreements and pointless activities for when we finish the Work Programme. They are threatening daily meetings with advisors and referrals to Mandatory Work Activity (which is already struggling to cope with current placements) – all coordinated by the sinister sounding “hit squads”.

    The whole lot of em should be sacked.Total waste and misuse of tax payers money.

  13. 13 george said at 6:00 pm on August 23rd, 2013:

    Let’s see; 5 days a week compulsory attendance at £4.40 return ticket (assuming I don’t have to attend early when return tickets aren’t available). That’s £22 a week out of £71 JSA. Thanks, it’s not like that money helps me live!
    —————————————————-
    Its outside of your normal fortnightly signing times so the dwp will have to reimburse you, its in their regs somewhere.


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