Tagged: volunteering

Another Workfare Scam In The Making ?

> When I attended to Jobcentre to sign-on last week, I was handed a form, told to fill it in and hand it to whoever signed me on. Reading through it (always read these things before filling them in) I began to suspect that all may not have been as it seems at first glance.

I’ll take you through it….



In 2009 there were around 1.75 million paid jobs in adult social care, employing 1.6 million people. Its getting bigger. Adult social care continues to grow and its estimated that by 2025 social care may need up to 2.6 million workers to fill over 3 million paid jobs. We have training and jobs NOW.

> So, the first figures are from before the recession started, and the others are a guess at what things might be like in 11 years time  (consider where you were in 2003 – did you think things could possibly get as bad as they are in 11 years time ? These figures are just wild guesses really).

Where will these jobs be, if they actually happen  ? They obviously wont all be in the North East. Will any of them ? I don’t see a great demand in the current vacancies.

By volunteering to complete this form, you can help us to develop training – and help us to help you into work.

> Note the word volunteering – I was not told it was voluntary, in fact I was given the impression that I had to complete it.

Has anyone in the Jobcentre given you any information about Social Care ? Yes/No

Would you consider a career in Social Care ?  Yes/No

If you have answered No, please explain why you would not consider this.

> Alarm bells ring !  Why should you have to explain ?

Social Care covers a very wide range of jobs – would you like to know more about the opportunities available ?  Yes/No

Would you be interested in attending an Information Session about current Training and jobs available to you ?   Yes/No

Would you like to discuss this further with your Work Coach ? Yes/No

Would you like more information emailed to you ? Yes/No

Do you have an existing DBS (CRB) check ?  Yes/No


Nat Ins Number

Email adress

Age range 18-24,  25-49, 50+

Previous Occupation

> Then comes some small print – very small print in this case…

The information we collect about you and how we use it depends mainly on the reason for your business with us. But we may use it for any of the Department’s purposes, which include – social security benefits and allowances, child support, employment and training, private pensions policy, and retirement planning.

We may get information from others to check the information you give to us and to improve our services. We may give information to other organizations as the law allows, for example to safeguard against crime.

To find out more about how we use information , visit our website http://www.dwp.gov.uk/privacypolicy or contact any of our offices.

Office use only – Interview with JCP Work coach arranged – date

> So there we are – what should we make of this ?  Perhaps I’m just getting paranoid ?

On the other hand…

The most worrying question is why you should have to justify not persuing work in the Social Care sector. 

Given the potential opportunities for various kinds of abuse, shouldn’t you also have to state why you did want to take this route ?

Once this piece of paper is in the system, it will inevitably wind up in the paws of your friendly Advisor – sorry, Work Coach – the same person who, in order to hit their targets, will be looking for any excuse to sanction you.  And if you’ve declined this route, they might well try to twist things – refusing offers of work, refusing training, etc.

The other thing that occurs to me is that this might be a backdoor Workfare recruitment ploy. You actually might want  training and a career in Social Care… what you might get is 6 months unpaid labour, mopping floors and emptying chamber pots for the greater profits of private enterprise.

As the form itself says – Social Care covers a very wide range of jobs. And who decides what falls within that range ? Guess (and it won’t be you…)

So all in all, I decided not to participate – the form itself suggests it’s voluntary. In the event, though, nobody asked me for the completed form anyway.

In the event of this happening again next time I sign, I shall decline immediately.

One other thing – the form does not carry a DWP identification code, which suggests this is not an official DWP document.

Is this just a local inititive or are these forms being handed out all over the country ? Anyone else had one ?

David Cameron Think’s He’s The Messiah – Poor And Disabled Left Waiting For A Miracle

 The life of PM David Cameron has just become a little bizarre. During his Easter Reception at Downing St, he reportedly said he was simply continuing the work of Christ when he launched the “Big Society” initiative of volunteering and civic responsibility.

“Jesus invented the Big Society 2,000 years ago, I just want to see more of it and encourage as much of it as possible.” Cameron said, adding  that the Government should seek to improve the “spiritual and moral state” of the nation and be unashamedly “evangelical”.

If that wasn’t bizarre enough, he then went onto compare himself to a company that unblocks drains. Offering his services to help the Church keep up its commitments to Jesus’ Big Society concept, he said: “If there are things that are stopping you from doing more, think of me as a giant Dyno-Rod”.

So has the PM, as one voter tweeted, “…gone mad”? Or is this the end result of what the PM has called a “difficult week” and why he had to fly off to Lanzarote? Either way, his bizarre comments do not reflect Coalition policy, and here is why.

 Dyno-Rod proudly state on their website: “Our priority is to deliver the best service we can, working to the highest standards – we know it’s what our customers expect”.
Unfortunately for Cameron, his coalition government has delivered the worst. Brutal welfare reform and spending cuts has seen living standards fall and the cost of living to rise. His priority is the wealthy – shown by tax cuts and bonuses. In addition, with George Osborne promising a year of “hard truths” and further spending cuts, people can expect things to get even tougher.

However, no matter how tough things get, the people of Britain can be assured that their suffering is all part of the continuation of Christ’s work – well, that is if Cameron is to be believed.

His assertion that he is simply doing God’s work is a refreshing change from blaming Labour, but his policies are far removed from anything Jesus ever said or did.

For instance, his claim that Jesus invented the Big Society cannot be found in any version of the bible. So, it would appears that Cameron, who claims to have a ‘strong faith’, hasn’t been reading his bible, or as he? Indeed, if Christ had created the idea behind the ‘Big Society’, that idea would have been very different to Cameron’s vision.

If Cameron is the Messiah that would make his cabinet – by default – the Twelve Apostles; who, according to scripture, were all early followers chosen to become Christs closest disciples, advance his kingdom and carry the Gospel message to the world. It’s not difficult to see the similarity between that and Cameron’s Cabinet – earlier classmates chosen to become close allies and so on. Ironically, the chosen disciples were neither scholarly nor had any exceptional skill. Indeed none were religious. Compare that, for example to Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, yet he only has a single degree in history.

That is where the similarities end. The bible has generosity and helping the poor as one of its major themes, stretching from the Old Testament to the New. Whilst Cameron has got the generosity part right with his tax cuts and bonuses for the rich, when it comes to helping the poor he has done nothing.

Cameron once said: “Let us look at the issue of dependency where we have trapped people in poverty through the extent of welfare that they have”.

Rather than helping, he has embarked on some of the biggest cuts to welfare support since the formation of the welfare state, which has led to a five-fold increase in poverty-stricken families turning to food banks.

Yet, Cameron is still insisting that he is helping. When the Archbishop of Westminster, the Most Rev Vincent Nichols, criticized the cuts to the welfare state which had left many facing destitution and hunger, Cameron responded by saying it’s “simply not true” and that welfare reform was part of his “moral mission” for the country. Moreover, in his response – written in The Daily Telegraph – he said:

“Our welfare reforms go beyond that alone: they are about giving new purpose, new opportunity, new hope – and yes, new responsibility to people who had previously been written off with no chance. Seeing these reforms through is at the heart of our long-term economic plan – and it is at the heart, too, of our social and moral mission in politics today”.

In my view, Cameron’s policies are immoral. His long-term economic plan has created unprecedented demands on food banks, has subjected people who are disabled to degrading assessments and has caused unnecessary hardship and homelessness.

Yet he continues, ignoring the fact that his reforms are not giving new purpose, new opportunity or new hope. His disciple, Ian Duncan Smith (AKA – Secretary of State for Work and Pensions) blindly follows. Writing in The Daily Telegraph, he rejected claims that welfare reform will condemn thousands to a “Dickensian” way of life. Adding:

“If you’d listened to the scaremongers, you’d be forgiven for thinking we were ripping up the welfare state and telling people to fend for themselves. In fact, what we are doing is returning the welfare state to what it was meant to be: a safety net, not a way of life”.

The poor, sick and disabled are left waiting for a miracle and used as scapegoats for our country’s economic ills, whilst David Cameron’s government continues to look after the interests of the greedy and most richest – the same people, who some may argue, caused the ‘economic crisis’ to begin with.

 By Jenny Howarth for the Welfare News Service (WNS).

Source – Welfare News Service  12 April 2014