#GE2015 More workfare, less pay

Solidarity protest at Arbroath Job Centre to support Tony Cox and affirm claimants' right to be accompanied

Solidarity protest at Arbroath Job Centre to support Tony Cox and affirm claimants’ right to be accompanied

This week the Conservatives announced in their manifesto they would introduce a new ‘community’ workfare scheme, specifically targeted at young people.

This is odd because chancellor George Osbourne had already launched just such a workfare scheme last year – and neither David Cameron, Osbourne, nor the media appear to remember it.

What does this workfare reboot really tell us? That workfare as a policy must be in enormous trouble if it has to be rebranded and relaunched on a yearly basis. Successful polices don’t need constant spin and retreads. And this tells us that the public is just not buying workfare. But then why would they when it replaces  jobs?

But then this latest ‘new’ workfare announcement is just more poorly thought out PR masquerading as a manifesto policy. A large number of workfare schemes already exist, and it is a proven fact that they do not work. They are very expensive failures. The Work Programme for example is a £5 billion failure, while the existing Community Work Placement scheme costs £235 million alone and is faltering badly with over 500 charities pledging not to take part in the scheme – and with more signing up every week.

More recently, the DWP evaluated the London Mayor’s ‘Day One Support for Young People’ (DOSfYP) workfare scheme. The DOSfYP scheme, like this new community workfare scheme presently touted by the Tories, was also targeted at young people. It cost £12 million and its chief outcome was to deter young people from claiming JSA – while making no difference to young people’s employment chances at all (see p. 28 of the evaluation here).

This post-election workfare scheme will be backed by benefit sanctions, which the Trussell Trust has linked to the huge increase in the use of foodbanks.  Among other things, workfare schemes deter people from accessing the welfare payments that they are entitled to. We see this in the fact that disengagement is now a real issue at local level, with one million unemployed people not claiming any benefit and ‘falling between the gaps’.

Our campaign has shown that once people discover a charity is using workfare, it becomes immensely damaging for its brand. People now know that implementing workfare means implementing poverty. The 500+ signatories of the Keep Volunteering Voluntary campaign also demonstrate that workfare is not what the third sector wants or needs.

Nobody, not least young people, should be sanctioned, stigmatised and sent on workfare for what are wider political and economic policy failures. Workfare and sanctions are social disasters and nobody – especially the third sector – should be involved.

Feel the same as we do? Then take action on the 25 February in solidarity with a member of the Scottish Unemployed Workers Network who was arrested coming out of Arbroath Job Centre. His only crime was advising a claimant of her rights.


Comments (5)

Leave a Reply


These schemes are just about being nasty, because that's what the Tories are all about.


agree totally. Unfortunately the good wor boycott worfare s dong t not gettng through to the publc because too many of them are thck as pig shit as can be seen here:

Boycott Worfare and others must somehow brea the conspiracy of evl of scummy rags lek the Daily Express and Daily Mail and PROVE to the public than NONE of these schemes wll EVER work because there are not enough jobs to go around and we don't have a decent economy.


Workfare is slavery and so should be illegal under slavery laws.

One day some bright Barrister is going to get an acquittal as there are two contradictory laws in place in the UK, one for the state and one for the individuals enslaving work gangs and individual servants, as well as traffickers enslaving girls and boys in the prostution trade.

There is only one way to get rid of Workfare and that is for those threatened with it, aged from 18 to 66 and older, denied state pension payout and facing the aboliton of the state pension for them for life, to vote differently on 2015.

Because the poor now outnumber all other voters in what is predicted to be the lowest voter turnout in UK history on 7 May.

This give small parties the best chance in election history.

And there is a way that these small parties could form a government and shut out all the so-called big parties into opposition in Wesminster parliament.

See how at:

jj joop

Pimp-Seetec Cambridge posted this on cv-library earlier this week. They’re expanding, apparently.

Work Placement Coordinator (Cambridge)

Salary/Rate: £21000 – £24000/annum
Location: Cambridge
Posted: 02/03/2015 (17:01)

The Role

Due to our on-going expansion we are actively seeking outgoing individuals who are passionate about helping others to get back into employment. This is a varied and busy role where you are proactively developing relationships with local businesses and organisations as well as motivating customers and helping empower them to engage in meaningful work based opportunities. Duties will include: *To promote Seetec’s products and services *Identify prospective work placement opportunities *Initiate and develop relationships with local businesses and organisations *Carry out health and safety checks on placement locations *Liaise with businesses and oganisations regarding the work placement process *Obtain and review regular feedback *Liaise and assist with marketing


All ages are hit by workfare, even disabled and chronic sick pushed off those benefits onto JSA over 60 by the raised retirement age.

The threat of workfare will indeed increase because of what is coming with Universal Credit.

There is a way to escape all this cruelty and injustice and not as you might think to keep food and fuel money.

See how at


Housing Benefit sanctions under Universal Credit (Housing Costs Element)

No longer will Housing Benefit be paid direct to landlord, but be inside your Universal Credit benefit given to you.

More at:




Hardship Payment assessments are far far meaner than JSA means testing

If you get income based Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) and get a benefit ban sanction, you can apply for non-recoverable Hardship Payments (HP).

However, under Universal Credit (UC), unlike JSA entitlement, all cash savings and liquid (liquefiable) assets and potential help from family and friends or others are taken into account.

Therefore, a Universal Credit benefit sanction can lead to loss of life savings.

At present no-one getting a Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) Hardship Payment has to repay, but under Universal Credit
the Department of Work and Pensions
can recover it directly from benefits,
through court imposed debt recovery and
attachment of earned income.

Read More at:


Universal Credit benefit sanctions to last indefinitely, not just 3 years

1) JSA and ESA sanctions
Under the current Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) sanctions regime the maximum benefit ban is 3 years (“156 weeks“) for failures to meet requirements.

Anyone sanctioned can apply for means tested reduced JSA called Hardship Payments. (HP). Under JSA and Employment Support Alowance (ESA) HP is not recoverable.

2) What about Hardship Payments (HP) and Universal Credit (UC)
All Hardship Payments under Universal Credit are recoverable, meaning they are treated like a debt by the DWP.

Therefore if someone gets a 3 year Universal Credit ban and applies and gets Hardship Payments, repayment can be made through Universal Credit.

Put more simply this means Universal Credit sanctions (aka reduced benefits) can effectively last far longer than 3 years.

Read more at: