Two more blows to workfare

Workfare isn't workingIn another blow to workfare, charity PDSA yesterday confirmed that they have pulled out of workfare. With immediate effect, those forced to work in their stores can walk free. This comes on the tail of two other major charities announcing their intention to steer clear of workfare last week, and is a promising sign as our week of action approaches that at least Mandatory Work Activity may soon be on its way out.

Today, Iain Duncan Smith faces another blow to his flagship Work Programme scheme, which last week was found to have been unlawful since its introduction. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) has released a report on the failing £5 billion Work Programme. The report is based on the disastrous figures released by the DWP in November 2012, which showed just 3.6% of people on the Work Programme finding work, well below the contractual minimum of 5.5%, which at the time we were told was the expected target.

In fact, the DWP has been rather coy about their expectations and are strongly criticised by the PAC for not telling us that they actually expected providers to find 11.9% of people work, and that 9.2% of people would have found work with no help at all.

Let that sink in for a moment. The Work Programme reduced the number of people expected to find work by 61%. That’s 50,000 people who would have found a job, except they got sent on the biggest programme that exists to ‘help’ people find work.

The Work Programme was worst at helping those who need the most support. Providers, such as A4E, REED and Ingeus, actually reduced the number of ESA claimants finding work by 80%, and the number of 18-24 year of JSA claimants finding work by 74%.

This is due to providers “parking” claimants who they don’t think will make them money in their payment by results system. If you only get paid for getting people into work, why spend time and money on someone who is unlikely to get a job?

For those on the Work Programme, today’s news comes as no surprise. We know providers’ unhelpful concoction of psycho-babble, coercion and CV workshops at best obstructs us from being able to find work, and is always more demoralising than helpful. We know that the scheme is set up to place the blame for unemployment on the unemployed, shifting focus away from a triple-dip recession economy and any measures that might address the fact that even if all current job vacancies were filled there would still be 2 million people unemployed. We know that the ‘black box’ approach of the Work Programme can mean anything from neglect to bullying.

The figures the government tried to hide show that the Work Programme is a barrier to people getting a job at all. The Work Programme must be scrapped, along with all the other workfare schemes Iain Duncan Smith needed emergency regulation to resuscitate just a week ago.


Comments (12)

Leave a Reply


To be honest the Work Programme is performing to my expectations. I knew it was going to be this bad. And from my own personal experience, I do feel that I would have been better off if there had been no work programme.

anthony reilly

hi im currently on a scheme with ingeous and i am made up places like boycott workfare exist i have been following you for a long time and have used some of the advice that you have given on your website like not signing anything to do with sharing my info which i must say made my advisor turned grey i am still on the scheme and am not to clear what parts are mandated because they tell me virtualy every thing is mandatory i am currently suffering with 2 hernias and depression but the scheme insists this shouldnt affect my chance of getting a job i am highly against slave labour which is what the government is trying to force upon us and i found a volunteering job and got told i would still have to go to ingeos no matter what you do or whats up with you you have got to do it i would be made up if theres any way at all that i can help stop this scandal which i think is making more people poorer and poorer and taking away any persons self respect and stripping them of there human rights.
regards anthony reilly


It does not shock me one little bit. I have been doing these programme's on and off since 80s YTS bullshit. It never worked in the 80s/90s/2000s whats make them think after 30years it would work know. We are not lazy we are just finding it hard to find work.

Its about time the MPs lead by example. How about Ian brainless smith do a placement for a month without any pay, I bet he would be crying his eyes out after 1 day.

The only way to get to the twats is to not vote for them. I bet the Conservative Party MPs wish everyday that david conman would just piss off. lol

I am not a number

The Bulgarian people brought down their Government we can do the same !!


This slightly off topic but should be of interest.

A criminal sentenced to Community Payback can do as little as 40 HOURS in total. This is considerably less hours than someone conscripted into 4 weeks Mandatory Work Activity (MWA) would have to do,

Birmingham Trades Council » More success as Sue Ryder announces withdrawal from workfare!

[...] Sue Ryder are the third charity to pull out in the last fortnight, following hot on the heels of PDSA and Sense. Already before that the government had complained that “The high profile withdrawal of [...]


Who could ever have thought that a programme ran by unqualified staff, facing a mathematically impossible challenge, without any form of intra-sector competition, could possibly fail?
I cannot believe that this isn't fraud, or at the least, breach of contract. How much more of the tax payer's money does IDS want to flush down the toilet?

Every time I go in I have to listen to someone rake the English language over the rocks, telling me why I'm not very good at finding a job.
I literally cannot state one thing, to-date, that they have done to get me closer to employment. In fact, like most, they make me less employable by taking up time I could be searching for vacancies.

I wish they'd hurry up and get to the 2nd year milestone, so we can see that they've failed again and maybe we can stop funding them to do nothing.


Hi. I had my first appointment just recently with A4e. When I got there I told the supervisor that I wouldn't sign the papers since I have the right to do so and I don't wanna disclose personal information on third parties. The supervisor threw me out and told me to speak with my advisor. When I attended Jobcentre this week I was threatened by my advisor that my call would affect my benefit. When I told her that this is not legal since I gave her the paper from the DWP provider guidance chapter 5 that clearly states in Annex 1 that "if you do not give consent this will not affect your entitlement to participate in the programme" as well as the fact that "if I am in receipt of any benefits, my entitlement to these benefits will not depend on whether I choose to give consent or not". Neither her nor the manager that I called seemed to know a thing (go figure, I seemed to know more about their job). I then signed a document that states why I failed to attend my interview stating those 2 reasons and I gave the document back to my advisor. To be honest I am really scared because If I judge by the lack of knowledge that my advisor and the manager have, no one can guarantee me that my written complain will be even read or even worse that my advisor will give the document to the complains bureau. At the moment I am waiting for an answer regarding this and I would like an advice what should I do in case I face a 4 week sanction rejecting my claim. One last thing: I wanna apply for a housing benefit since I hardly get by (all my allowance was used for rent) and I know I am eligible. What happens if by the time I apply for the housing benefit I am sanctioned? Will my claim become rejected? Will I get reduced or no money at all for the housing benefit? If anyone knows any answer to the above please reply...

DWP Newspeak And Workfare |

[...] has been shown to fail, with the Work Programme actually reducing your chances of finding a job[3], whilst the Work Experience Scheme[4], Community Action Programme[5] and Mandatory Work Activity [...]

Boycott Workfare » Blog Archive » Charities shouldn’t make people poorer – day 5 in the workfare week of action

[...] month, fellow animal charity PDSA realised that it needed to show a bit more kindness to the human beings working in its shops. Time for RSPCA [...]

Birmingham Trades Council » Combatting The Lies – Day 7 Of The Workfare Week Of Action

[...] the fact that the Work Programme is actively stopping people from getting a job is surely the only evidence we need that Work Programme providers aren’t very good at working [...]


the only thing they do is santion people they have no interest in finding people jobs as long as they get their referal fees the unemployed are just their meal ticket ..cunts !!