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Workfare Can Be Broken – Join the Week of Action and help make it happen

February 5, 2013

From Boycott Workfare

Take part in the week of action against workfare 18-24 March

The Government is pushing ahead with increasingly savage workfare policies despite the fierce resistance to the scheme causing many high street names and national charities to pull out.

Unemployed people can now be sentenced to six months compulsory unpaid work as part of the Community Action Programme. On December 3rd last year – International Disabled People’s Day – the DWP introduced forced work for sick and disabled claimants.

Companies such as Superdrug, Argos and McDonalds, who have all been quick to take on unpaid workers on government schemes, have seen a year of boycotts, pickets, demonstrations and occupations due to their involvement in the scheme. Many national charities have pulled out as a result of protests, but some, such as The Conservation Volunteers (TCV), Salvation Army and Sue Ryder Foundation are unrepentent about their army of government subsidised unpaid workers. Many of the new workfare programmes depend on charities like these to provide placements.

Workfare can be broken by showing these organisations that the public have clearly rejected unpaid work. Evidence has shown that mandatory work has no impact in actually helping someone find a job, the stated aim of the scheme. Instead workfare is used to replace real jobs, with some companies even caught taking on unpaid workers to fill temporary Christmas positions.

Join Boycott Workfare on 18-24 March for a week of action against workfare exploiters everywhere. Take action in a town or city near you, join in online and show all those who profit from forced labour that we mean it when we say “if you exploit us, we will shut you down”.

Organise now and contact Boycott Workfare on Facebook or info[at] to be added to the national list of actions.

Please share, tweet and spread the word!

12 Comments leave one →
  1. rainbowwarriorlizzie permalink
    February 6, 2013 1:37 am


  2. February 12, 2013 6:45 pm

    Why not start now by telling those companies that still use workfare slaves what you think: @RSPCA_official, @TCVtweets, @PDSA_HQ, @salvationarmyuk, @Sue_Ryder

  3. Landless Peasant permalink
    February 15, 2013 1:03 pm

    Since the High Court ruling in Cait Reilley’s favour, NO ONE IS LEGALLY OBLIGED TO ATTEND THE WORK PROGRAMME until new Regulations have been passed & implemented. YOU CANNOT BE SANCTIONED for non-attendance at the moment. I have it confirmed in writing from my Work Programme provider, but they are not making this widely known, only to those who ask ! SPREAD THE WORD. DON’T ATTEND. DO NOT COMPLY. THEY CAN’T TOUCH YOU.

    Excerpt from letter:

    “You are correct, you are not legally required to attend in the interim period, however I can advise you that ESE Regulations will be re-written at the soonest available opportunity.

    As recent as today the High Courts have made a decision regarding the mandation issues to programmes, in favour of DWP, So I’m sure normal business will resume very soon and I will keep you updated on this as far as attending appointments…

    I would suggest that anyone genuinely interested in securing employment would utilise every opportunity available to do this, and if this involved visiting a Work Coach/Employment Advisor they would take this opportunity.

    Those who don’t, who choose to avoid being proactive ,as you rightly say will not have their JSA sanctioned but may struggle to secure sustainable employment.

    The DWP are currently notifying all relevant parties as to their current and future situations, but I am happy to answer any queries from anyone concerned about recent developments if asked.

    We will be happy to see you again once the new regulations are in place.”

  4. Landless Peasant permalink
    February 15, 2013 1:05 pm

    Please contact your MP ASAP and ask him/her to sign Early Day Motion 1072 tabled by John McDonnell (LAB) to nullify the Government’s Workfare Regulations.

  5. Obi Wan Kenobi permalink
    March 2, 2013 12:04 pm

    Pass this on to every website you can and get as many people to sign this as you can.


    Scrap Universal Jobmatch.

  6. steve cross permalink
    March 13, 2013 9:47 pm

    I am sick of treatment in JobCentre. Usually, smug and accusing. Last Adviser I spoke to was actually ok but only because he was so out of touch. He claimed he wasn’t too good with computers! 2013 in a Govt Office and uncomfortable at his Computer. I said Its a good thing he wasn’t sat at my side of the desk then. Most of the Advisers seem to still hold with the idea that Jobs are actually out there – Betterware, Kleeneeze, Taxi Driving, Leaflet Distribution, Couriers, Dog Walkers, etc are Self Employment. Not Jobs. Yes Call Me Dave – a Nation of Entrepreneurs – a Sick Joke. I will do your Laundry, you walk my Dog, and my son will run you to Town. Really are we a Top Industrial Country or stepping back to Downton Abbey?
    Anyway, where on Fylde Coast and when are the Protests taking place anyone please?

  7. October 29, 2013 5:52 pm

    Benefit Sanctions Must Be Stopped Without Exceptions in UK?
    Petition Calling For Benefit Sanctions To Be Scrapped Hits Nearly 2000 Signatures In First Few Hours

  8. January 20, 2014 12:03 am

    ATOS National Demo. February 19th 2014

  9. AWP permalink
    February 21, 2014 1:40 pm

    Universal Jobmatch uses two network servers –



    * Both these sub-pages via Google diagnotics test page show in blue text the hosted network links connected to both sites. Click on these (blue text) network links to discover more information…

    ** Channel Four News and The Guardian Newspaper have been e-mailed this information on February 21st about UJM having remote connections to malware infested host networks.

  10. KAPTAINKRIP permalink
    November 20, 2014 10:00 pm

    The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has carried out 60 secret reviews into benefit-related deaths in less than three years, Disability News Service (DNS) can reveal.
    DWP released the figures in response to a series of Freedom of Information Act (FoI) requests by DNS.
    It said in one response that DWP had carried out “60 peer reviews following the death of a customer” since February 2012.
    There have been numerous reports of disabled people whose deaths have been linked to the employment and support allowance (ESA) claim process, or the refusal or removal of ESA and other benefits, including the writer Paul Reekie, who killed himself in 2010, and the deaths of Nick Barker, Jacqueline Harris, Ms DE, and Brian McArdle.
    The Scottish-based, user-led campaign group Black Triangle has collected more than 40 examples of people – most of them disabled – who appear to have died as a result of being found “fit for work” through a work capability assessment (WCA), or having their entitlement to benefits otherwise refused or removed.
    Many of the cases became widely-known through media reports of inquests, but in the case of Ms DE, the Mental Welfare Commission for Scotland concluded that the WCA process and the subsequent denial of ESA was at least a “major factor in her decision to take her own life”.
    But DWP has consistently denied any connection between the coalition’s welfare reforms and cuts and the deaths of benefit claimants.
    This week, DWP also released guidance used by its staff to decide whether a peer review was necessary, and guidance for authors of a peer review.
    This reveals that the role of a review is to “determine whether local and national standards have been followed or need to be revised/improved”, while a review must be carried out in every case where “suicide is associated with DWP activity”.
    It also says that peer reviews might also be considered in cases involving “customers with additional needs/vulnerable customers”.
    As with previous FoI requests by DNS and many other disabled campaigners, DWP refused to answer some of the questions because it claimed that it planned to publish information itself “in due course”.
    It also said it had only begun to keep national records of internal reviews since February 2012, and that it was too expensive to find figures from local and district records showing how many such reviews there had been before that date.
    Another of the FoI responses stated that it was too expensive to produce information showing how many letters DWP has received from coroners expressing concern that a death may have been linked to the non-payment or withdrawal of a benefit.
    Bob Ellard, speaking on behalf of the steering group of Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC), said the disclosure that DWP had investigated 60 claimant deaths since 2012 was a “damming revelation”.
    He called for an urgent independent inquiry into the suicides and other deaths of benefit claimants.
    Ellard said: “We still don’t know enough about this as the DWP continue to use the small print in the FoI laws to prevent disclosure of information that is in the public interest.
    “We are calling for the deaths and suicides of benefit claimants to be urgently investigated by an independent authority.
    “We believe that these tragic deaths are as a direct result of [Conservative work and pensions secretary] Iain Duncan Smith’s policies and we want him to be called to account.”.
    John McArdle, co-founder of Black Triangle, said that if 60 people had died in a major accident there would have been “hell to pay” and a “massive inquiry”.
    He said NHS figures showed a general rise in self-harm and suicide, which Black Triangle (BT) believes is connected with the effects of “cuts and austerity”.
    McArdle said he would like to know how many coroners had made recommendations to DWP in the wake of inquests into benefit-related suicides and other deaths.
    He said: “I think the public has a right to know whether coroners have made these recommendations to prevent similar tragedies happening again.”.
    DNS reported last month how DWP had repeatedly contradicted its own position on benefit-related deaths.
    It originally stated, in an FoI response, that it did not hold any records on deaths linked to, or partially caused by, the withdrawal or non-payment of disability benefits.
    Mark Harper, the Conservative minister for disabled people, later told DNS that he did not “accept the premise” that DWP should collect and analyse reports of such deaths.
    But the Liberal Democrat DWP minister Steve Webb appeared to contradict Harper when he said the following week that when the department becomes aware of worrying cases “they do get looked at”.
    A DWP spokesman finally told DNS last month that it carries out reviews into individual cases, where it is “appropriate”.WRITE TO YOUR MPSPREAD THE WORD ABOUTTHIS AS WIDELY AS YOU CAN BRDS

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