Before the week of action even started, we had a major success with Holland & Barrett pulling out of workfare. They had been a flagship company for the government’s workfare plans, so this was a massive achievement. Well done to everyone who helped make it happen, especially Sol Fed who had co-ordinated pickets outside their shops across the UK!
The week of action has stepped up the pressure on workfare even further…
In Bath there was a picket outside WHSmith. See the photo.
In Birmingham people gathered from across the UK for a counter-conference during the Welfare to Work convention. We didn’t let the industry’s event go undisturbed and marched into the main hall during the lunch break. More on this and a full report from the counter-conference soon!
In Bournemouth leafleting at the job centre and talking to people coming in and out revealed that Bournemouth Borough Council need to be added to the list of Workfare Providers.
In Brighton on Saturday Brighton Benefits Campaign held a very successful Workfare Walk of Shame, visiting Primark, McDonalds, Argos, Superdrug and Boots. Over 30 people took part including four brave volunteers in the chain gang, 1000 leaflets were given out, and there were very positive responses from the public. More here.
In Leeds a workfare walk of shame delivered a letter to British Heart Foundation. The manager was out to lunch so the two people who received it were on Mandatory Work Activity! A leaflet was designed to appeal to people in work and jobseekers was also distributed. Download the leaflet and Letter to British Heart Foundation.
In London action in Islington targeted Barclays bank, recently added to the list of workfare providers, and in Central London a lively action visited loads of workfare providers. More about the Islington action and more about the Central London action.
In Oxford, The Holland & Barrett manager paused to berate the demonstration, but protestors saw it as an amusing admission of defeat! Customers and members of the public signed letters of complaint to the two companies targeted, asking those companies to pull out of workfare. About 15 people took part in the action, including concerned public services users, trade union members and unemployed workers at risk of workfare. More here.
In Liverpool a series of actions have taken place including a picket of A4e’s “fraud-shop” and communications blockade. Support the next communications blockade this Friday! More here.
More to come!
Brighton – 11am, Friday 13th, Picket of A4e and communications blockade. Meet at the clocktower. More info.
Edinburgh – 12 noon 14th July. More info.
Leeds – Workfare walk of shame on Thursday. More here.
Liverpool – On Friday the 13th of July, we continue our Communications blockade of Workfare implementers & profiteers A4e.See the Facebook event for how to take part (wherever you are!).
London, Hackney – Action on 14th July. More info.
London, Croydon – Action on 14th July. Meet 1pm outside of main Entrance to Whitgift Centre, North End Croydon. See the Facebook event.
Everywhere – Dial-a-provider! There have been call outs for communication blockades throughout the week. It’s not too late to take part. See details here for: Charities day 1 | Private Companies day 2 | Charities day 3.