Another rocky week for workfare

Outside Pizza Hut, Oxford Circus

Pizza Hut’s restaurants faced protests across the UK about its involvement. Photo: Howard Jones

More evidence has emerged revealing the people who are really profiting from workfare. The Guardian exposed that Conservative Party donors have benefited from £73 million in “welfare to work” contracts, including a scheme which awarded an £800 bonus for every workfare placement organised. Embarrassingly, one of those implicated is the Director of Iain Duncan Smith’s ironically named “Centre for Social Justice”. But we know that Labour are at it as well. More on this soon.

Eager to cash in, Bournemouth College have been caught advertising people on the Work Programme to businesses on ‘a try before you buy’ basis. Local activists raised the alarm, and the College has since changed this offensive sales pitch on their website, but not before the original advert was saved in all its glory here.

You know workfare is in trouble when right wing industry think-tank CESI has admitted “It could prove to be a very expensive failure if it doesn’t get people into jobs.” This is in light of recent DWP research showing that Mandatory Work Activity has “zero effect” on helping people find work.

Regardless, the government intends to roll out the Community Action Programme, forcing people who have been out of work for three years to work without pay for six months or have their benefits stripped from them. That’s 1.06 million people who will be forced to work for no money. This will massively depress wages and job opportunities affecting everyone – employed or not.

But your actions are making people listen, and stopping workfare’s progress. The campaign has received another boost with yet another high street brand pulling out. Sol Fed stepped up the pressure on Pizza Hut which confirmed it was pulling out. In a statement, the company’s PR agent said: “None of our restaurants currently take part in the ‘workfare’ scheme… and we have no plans to change our hiring practices.”

Well done everyone. Let’s keep the pressure on. Let’s keep on winning!


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Protest Against Workfare Profiteers ESG on Friday | Birmingham Against The Cuts

[...] protests against the use of workfare have seen companies like Holland & Barrett and Pizza Hut pull out of the schemes entirely, and continued pressure on the companies involved will see these schemes [...]


It is not just workfare that should be boycotted but also the humiliating and demoralizing programmes that imply the unemployed need behavioural changes to get a job because they are using this tactic also to sanction benefits even though as some enteries I have read e.g. a fifty five year old who was told they needed to change their attitude in order to secure a job, yet denies that in all of their working life was ever given such a label by employers. It makes you wonder what kind of employers are looking for workers, certainly not the kind I would like to work for.