The latest performance figures suggest that the scheme is actually performing far worse than if the Government had simply done nothing at all. As ever Chris Grayling will ignore the facts and lie through his teeth that all is well with the multi-billion pound farce.
Grayling will even have the audacity to claim that the scheme is over performing in some areas, with a bold statement that for those easiest to place in employment the figure is “well above 26% in much of the country”.
Of course there is no way to check the truth of this statement as the Government are refusing to release performance figures on the Work Programme. The recent figures announced by the private Welfare to Work industry claimed that only 22% of people were finding work through the Work Programme and raised concerns that many of these jobs were temporary.
This suggests that Grayling is once again being less than honest if he says today, as reported he will, that it is “clear from feedback from the front line that a substantial majority are staying in work once they get there”.
Even if the 26% figure is true, which it isn’t, it would represent a disaster given that officials have claimed that 28% of all groups, not just the easiest to help, would be expected to find work without any ‘help’ from the Work Programme at all.
That only last year bold claims were being made that 36% of people would find long term employment due to the Work Programme (in itself a less than impressive figure) seems to have conveniently slipped Chris Grayling’s mind.
Grayling appears to be so out of touch that he doesn’t know that actually people find work everyday without the help of profit making sharks like A4e. Unlike his toff chums in the cabinet, most of us do not rely on our parents or the old school tie to find work, but fill out job applications, send out CVs and attend interviews without any so called support from Welfare to Work companies at all.
The vaguely defined ‘easiest to help’ may in fact represent the people who got jobs themselves before even really starting on the Work Programme . At the recent Public Accounts Committee hearing into the fraud infested Welfare to Work industry, MP Margaret Hodge related stories of people being bribed to fill out paperwork so that Work Programme providers could claim fat job outcome fees for those who had only just started on the programme.
That this is common practice in the industry was clearly shown by the internal memo that A4e managed to leak on their own website. This instructed staff on how to claim up to £13,000 from the government in cases where someone found a job before being fully inducted onto the Work Programme.
According to the Mail, even some of the poverty pimps so eager to profit from unemployment, are considering pulling out of the Work Programme. Spinning ever more wildly Grayling will claim this is a huge success that shows that competition in the Welfare to Work industry is working. Grayling will say that “competition means that if you’re not coming up with the results, someone else will”. Except no-one else is. With many major charities having already abandoned the scheme, and the Welfare to Work sector considering pulling out, then the question arises exactly who will Grayling hand Work Programme contracts to next – Gok fucking Wan?
Ever the opportunists, Labour have used today to point out that despite the wonderful Work Programme, the cost of Job Seekers Allowance is set to cost around a billion a year more than the Government had accounted for. This represents an increase in spending of around 20%, whilst the cost of Housing Benefits are also set to soar by over £4 billion above projections.
Grayling’s most blatant lie of the day is dismissing claims that this is down to rising unemployment as ‘nonsense’ and pretending the higher figures represent the recent small rise in meagre benefit payments. In April benefits and pensions rose by 5.1% in line with inflation, a figure which doesn’t appear to account for a 20% rise in expenditure. In any event, you would have hoped that the Government might have accounted for inflation in their spending plans. In contrast to Job Seekers Allowance, Housing Benefit has actually been subject to brutal cuts, yet still the cost is rising.
Yet again a speech from Chris Grayling brings yet another avalanche of spin, distortion and outright lies. The compulsive liar at the heart of Cameron’s Government is out of control, but there seems no mood for Number 10 to intervene. Osborne has threatened to cut yet a further £10 billion from the welfare budget. Five billion of this could be easily found by scrapping the farcical Work Programme and bringing Chris Grayling’s delusions to a swift conclusion. That George Osborne would rather force people from their homes and drive children into poverty, rather than confront the lying bastard Grayling and the fraud ridden Welfare to Work sector, tells us everything we need to know about the contemptible toffs in this Government.