Universal Jobmatch: The IT Shambles at the DWP

Reports are suggesting that thousands of unemployed people may be forced to sign up to Universal Jobmatch this week despite the site being so poorly constructed that registration is near impossible at times.

Several Jobcentres are believed to have threatened people with a ‘Jobseekers Direction’ unless they register with the new government job search website and allow DWP snoops access to their account.  This unprecedented and chilling intrusion means that anyone claiming benefits could now be forced to sign away their rights under the Data Protection Act or face poverty and possible homelessness due to having benefits sanctioned.

It will not just be unemployed people who face being stripped of their privacy rights should this continue.  When Universal Credit is launched next year millions of people, whether single parents,or those who are sick, disabled or working part time, will be expected to constantly prove they are seeking ‘more or better paid work’ to satisfy benefit conditions.  With DWP staff already over-stretched it seems certain that Universal Jobmatch will be the mechanism used to police and monitor claimant’s jobsearch.

Universal Jobmatch is a job matching website where employers can browse the CVs of claimants and use the DWP to threaten people into applying for jobs.  Jobcentre staff can also select job vacancies which claimants must then apply for or face losing benefits.

Already many employers have refused to use the service due to concerns about being overwhelmed by mass spam job applications.  Many of the jobs on offer are part time, self-employed or appear to be recruitment agencies simply attempting to hoover up personal details of claimants for their databases.  Barely any checks are made to see if an employer is genuine leading to fears that the site could be exploited by everyone from illegal gang masters to abusive ex-partners.  Over the weekend the vacancy pictured above appeared for an ‘elimination specialist’  with MI6 quoting a reference number of 007.

Despite this some Jobcentres are attempting to sign people up by force in direct contravention of DWP guidelines insisting the scheme is not (yet) mandatory.  Other claimants have reported that their Jobcentre barely seem to have heard of the scheme.  Perhaps most importantly, the website simply doesn’t work.  The site constantly times out with accessing job vacancies and registration just not possible at times.  Claimants mandated to sign up to the site could find themselves stripped of benefits merely because the shabby Universal Jobmatch website is virtually unusable.

Claimants may be expected to do one of two things.  Firstly they could be ordered to register with Universal Jobmatch and secondly to tick the box which allows Jobcentre staff to access their accounts.  Unless forced to under threat of sanctions the best advice is to do neither.  There is no need to register with the website to view and apply for most of the vacancies.

The DWP are attempting to launch a crude surveillance system of jobseeking activity on the cheap.  If Universal Jobmatch fails then upcoming plans to force part time workers into endless jobsearch, or compel unemployed people to spend 35 hours a week looking for non-existent jobs, are likely to prove unworkable.

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308 responses to “Universal Jobmatch: The IT Shambles at the DWP

  1. George Orwell's ghost

    Been in today. Dozens of jobs in my town the employer listed as “confidential” application instructions tell me to “see description”. The description only gives a general overview of the job, no instructions or contact information. Job Centre Plus staff said they cannot help, have no idea where the job came from and blamed it on the teething of the universal job match. Great for all those extra seasonal jobs going this week huh. Hopefully I don’t get sanctioned for not meeting my 40 jobs a week quota.

    • 40 jobs a week? – which sadistic git of an advisor gave you that target to hit?

      • Is it really possible to find 8 jobs every weekday to apply for everywhere in Great Britain? Is this super-activity going to be expected from people living in isolated, rural areas miles away from Jobcentres and internet connections? I mean nobody can meet expectations like that day in and day out, week in and week out, month after month, can they? Not even with unlimited internet at home and a computer? IDS and Fraud really have gone off the deep end here. Why haven’t saner voices reined them in?

      • 40 a week! thats ridiculous i apply for around 5 or 6 a week and have no probs.

    • I noticed quite a few jobs without contact details – what a bloody mess :(

    • 40 jobs a week? you need to show them the law.

      In the jobseekers regulations 1996 (2004 amendment)

      in order to have the best chance of getting employment
      claimants are expected to have to take more than two steps in any
      week unless taking one or two steps is all that it is reasonable
      for them to do in that week1. 1 JS Act 95, s 7(1); JSA Regs, reg
      18(1)

      3 steps per week. and you actually dont have to apply for the jobs. just writing to the employer or looking at a newspaper if you see anything is a step to find work….

  2. Please understand that all this is part and parcel of the dismantling of the benefits system, and a return to feudalism/indentured labour.
    Action is required, but I see nothing except words. Like this.
    But I am gettin older, and have serious health issues.
    So I don’t count and can be wholly ignored. I am expected to die quietly.
    And that will please the likes of InDrunkenShit, Lord Fraud & The Claggeron ruling over this ConDemNation?

  3. This may be of interest to people on the Work Programme regardless of which Provider their with, if they try to sign you up for Universal Jobmatch or try to coherse you into signing away your rights under The Data Protection Act 1998.

    http://www.donotsign.com/anyworkprogrammedocuments/

    “I confirm there is no requirement for any
    Work Programme participant to sign any
    documents from the provider…“

    From: DWP Labour Market Decisions (Appeals and Sanctions) letter 20 July 2012

  4. What a terrible site. Often part-time jobs don’t specify their hours and could be one for hour one day a week! Plus distance doesn’t really inform you whether or not you can get to a job if you have no transport and have to rely on walking, trains and buses; sometimes it is possible to get to a job ten or fifteen miles away and sometimes not. If they start making us apply for jobs based on “how the crow flies” distances we non-car claimants could end up in a world of shit.

    The real question is: Can we be forced to upload our CV details to the site?

    If we can’t – and how can anyone “force” you to divulge you personal details to a commercially constructed website hosted overseas? – then the purpose of Universal Jobmatch is largely defeated. Without that information the system won’t know anything about you, probably not even where you are geographically, and so won’t be able to “match” you to any vacancies you want to avoid applying for. Registering is neither here nor there it’s giving the DWP access to your account and uploading personal information to the site where the danger lies and because of the Data Protection Act 1998 how can they sanction you for not agreeing to do so?

  5. I just registered and received this email:

    “Thank you for registering for the Government Gateway.

    The Government Gateway is the UK’s centralised registration service for e-Government services. To find out which Government Services are available on-line please go to http://www.gateway.gov.uk/. You may enrol for the on-line Services at any time; however, some services need to be activated before you can use them. For these services you will receive a letter confirming your Activation code and instructions on how to activate the service, within seven days of enrolling.”

    Do they mean an email when they say letter? Or will I eventually get an actual letter from the DWP once I’ve told the Jobcentre my email address and Universal Jobmatch details which then get linked to my actual name and address in their database?

    • You must have turned of receipt of cookies on your system. Enable cookies and the system will give you a nice little numeric bar code as your identifier in IDS’s Brave New World rather than the pointless email you last received.

  6. You can search jobs on it without registering but I’d recommend using an alternative site altogether.

  7. I tried to do some jobsearch at my WP provider earlier. Needless to say UJ was as bad as ever – worse even. Several times I selected a job only to end up with a “503 service unavailable” message, other times the page simply timed out. Fortunately the staff member overseeing the session accepts the site is all but useless at the moment so we weren’t pressed about the fact none of us could apply for any jobs on UJ.

  8. The site is a joke- I also got the 503 error message coming up. Anyone who uploads their CV to this site should be very worried about it being possible for anyone to masquerade as an employer and search the site’s database of personal details.

  9. —-OBI WAN’S HEALTH WARNING—-
    Use of the UJM system could seriously damage your life.

  10. If a site like this is so fucked up from the word go how on earth can Universal Credit ever be “digital by default”? Seriously, this is never going to work is it? IDS should be taken out and shot. Same thing with David Freud only thing being he ought to be tortured first!

    • If their Universal Credit IT system goes down, I can foresee them blaming a scapegoat as usual, releasing a statement saying: “Our Universal Credit IT system has been hacked and destroyed by Marxist cyber terrorists opposed to our welfare reforms because they will get the unemployed back into work and off benefits. Therefore we will be unable to pay people their benefits for an indefinite period of time, until we can get the system back up and running again. So welfare claimants will have to go to foodbanks, Churches, charities and homeless shelters for help until we can resolve the situation.” Then, the next move will be to use the system going down as an opportunity to eliminate the benefit system for good, by never restoring the IT system or the old system.

  11. If anyone can masquerade as an employer, you could be forced to attend an interview under the threat of sanction, where the prospective “employer” turns out to be a sicko who will know where you and your family live thanks to all your details being online and you could end up like the Black gangster in the basement in Pulp Fiction.

  12. My friend has been made homeless, had to move areas and went to change his signing on details. He was treated absolutely disgustingly.

    The advisor told him off as he needed an address and they wouldnt accept his c/o address as it was his ex wifes address. He has used her address for the last 4 years for post as they are still amicable with each other. The advisor said she didnt believe him that anyone would stay friendly with an ex and was he back living with her!! She asked him to prove where his belongings were kept so he went and got his one and only bag of possessions and tipped them out on the job centre floor.

    He was upset and ashamed as she wanted to look through his stuff to try and disprove his claim that he was homeless. Other advisors were laughing at him sat at their desks. Eventually the floor manager walked past and told the advisor off and apologised to my friend.

    My friend suffers from severe mental health problems and failed the ATOS medical joke and is left in the signing on system. The advisor told him they had to make a new list of jobs etc he could do and what his priorities were. Obviously housing is his main problem and he tried to explain he sleeps where he can and sofa surfs which leaves him moving around areas a lot. She got cross as she didnt know what to fill in on her p.c.eventually she agreed to put his ex wifes address down as a c/o.

    Next came this new job search site. She told him he has to use it 5 times a week, apply for at least 40 jobs a week and attend the work programme with working links. Considering he has no home and the local library was closed due to the cuts he is unable to access a computer. The closest library is 26 miles away and costs £8.50 on the bus. He knows that he will end up with no money soon and just doesnt know where to turn.

    He tried to refuse this but she said he MUST use this site for job search or his benefits will be stopped until he conformed as he obviously was not seriously looking for work. This man is at breaking point. He lost his flat due to the housing benefit rules for the under 35s. His mental health has deterioted so much since losing his esa and he feels at the end of the road. Hardly someone they are giving supportive help into the world of work.

    This is just one person and I dread to think how many more around the country can be added to this. This government and it supporters need to be stopped before the papers are full of avoidable deaths, poverty and destitution in the U.K in 2012.

    • That is simply ridiculous! Your friend must surely be able to appeal against instructions like that. Without a venue with hours of access to a computer, telephone, stationary, stamps and transport to and from that venue nobody could fulfil a requirement like that. Get him to appeal and also send him to see his MP and a CAB advisor.

    • If I was him I’d go to the newspapers and publicise his plight. I’d point the finger at the Jobcentre, Jobcentre adviser, and the government in order to highlight the cruelty of the system.

      • Newspaper(s) would maybe be a good idea as well as any variation of MP/CAB, but depending on not everyone being able to face having to go over it all a second time after living through it once – it’s more work to do getting people to sit up & listen but this is ‘not ok’ (words have started to fail me).

        If stories like this one could be made public along with the (Chapter 3) regulations due to come into force via as part of the whole UC (Yuk) it can only help to show up what’s starting to happen already – none of the draconian changes coming up ahead are really being talked about in the mainstream – or am I just missing it? I don’t think the only people who would find proposals and current moves to leave people ‘high & dry’ objectionable are those directly affected …

        It’s not a good time for many people at the moment & they’re probably preoccupied with their own ‘worries/concerns’ even if they have jobs and homes – but there will be lots who know someone who could end up badly affected. Does anyone have a printing press??

        • Shirley, I think that you have just coined a new word for a future dictionary. I look forward to the new definition of “Yuk” in the O.E.D. The origin of it belongs to you. Seriously. Genius.

          • something survived...

            My friend at college (Tuesday nights) is being hassled by the authorities including JCP and Housing Benefit/Council. They want her to do ‘ jobs’. She is a single mum, young, pregnant. She has a relative look after the kid on Tuesday nights for no pay, but it’s only available that night and no other times. Her nearest library got closed in the cuts. Buses are expensive so in the day she’d have to go to the library in the city and bring the child with her; which can be very distracting for her, other users and staff at libraries, the child might cry all the time. She has to apply for ridiculous jobs like bricklayer or postgraduate-level mathematics lecturer. The more realistic ones like shelf stacker, she has no childcare cover. Employers for those jobs even a worse one moving empty cardboard boxes at the back of the supermarket, say they will not hire a pregnant young single mum. The JCP want her to drop out of college but it is nights and also the only time her relative is able to give the unpaid childcare. The college wants her to do more classes but she can’t due to a) No childcare b) no money c) JCP won’t let her. On benefits she can not get around weekly to the city library by bus with a child, let alone drag it round all week with her travelling on spec to every employer in 3 counties, as they want her to do. From the employers’ point of view they do not want a random woman turning up unannounced, with a young child, asking them to employ her. JCP threatened to sanction her for all the following reasons: Not having enough to afford fulltime paid childcare; Being pregnant a 2nd time; Not having a partner; saying the ‘until your youngest child is 5 you don’t have to look for work’ rule applies to her; travel and library access being ‘barriers’ they blame on HER; going to college; saying she wants to be a social worker; failure to get the box-shifting job they made her apply for. Anyway it’s got worse and worse, they said they’d stop HB and get her evicted for non-payment of rent (related to not getting jobs, ironic as if she GOT a job they’d stop it too; and related to being a single mother.). the JCP said she had to leave college (first to go to college in her family!) in order to have Tuesday nights ‘free’ for that mystery job offer to come along. Though the JCP don’t phone at night because they go home at 5; the libraries are not open at night; she has no computer; she has a kid and is about to have another. Her relative can’t change shifts to be free a different night. It got her justifiably paranoid for a while and they then bullied her till she has stopped coming to college. She might drop out all together. so she can’t be a social worker if she doesn’t get the qualification after finishing the course. Making her of course even less employable. With 2 kids to look after she will be less able or likely to do the job. AFTER she stopped coming to class the DWP/JCP pursued her for ‘being a student’. If Britain is broken, the government are the ones holding the hammer.

            • Very brave aren’t they targeting a vulnerable pregnant single mum.. Yet, they seem to pussy foot around drug addicts and alocholics. I also hate to say this but I do hope all this stress does not result in blood pressure. If I were your friend I would make a holy show of them and go to her local tabloids without any qualms at all.

    • That is totally ILLEGAL – tell him to go see a solicitor – she won’t have a job for much longer.

      • Bet she will – IDS will probably award her the JCP employee of the year prize, for being the nastiest adviser in the country!

    • another typical example of jobcentre bullying trying to dictate,this is taken from the jobseekers act.

      6 Availability for employment.

      For the purposes of this Act, a person is available for employment if he is willing and able to take up immediately any employed earner’s employment.

      Subsection (1) is subject to such provisions as may be made by regulations; and those regulations may, in particular, provide that a person—

      may restrict his availability for employment in any week in such ways as maybe prescribed; or

      may restrict his availability for employment in any week in such circumstances as may be prescribed (for example, on grounds of conscience,religious conviction or physical or mental condition or because he is caring for another person) and in such ways as may be prescribed.

      The following are examples of restrictions for which provision may be made by the regulations—

      restrictions on the nature of the employment for which a person is available;

      restrictions on the periods for which he is available;

      restrictions on the terms or conditions of employment for which he is available;

      restrictions on the locality or localities within which he is available.

      also your friend sounds like he/she may be entitled to cover under the equality act,which the above is compiled from.people with these problems don’t have to put up with this and jobcentre plus staff shouldn’t be dictating what they think is right.conditions such as mental health problems are marked down in red writing with good reason.if they start just say “under reasonable adjustments under the equality act”

  13. Pingback: Universal Jobmatch: The IT Shambles at the DWP | Welfare, Disability, Politics and People's Right's | Scoop.it

  14. It seems IDS’s rant at Owen Jones on QT about people being “parked on benefits” was based on lies, or at best false fifures. This “parking” of claimants is one of the phenomena used to justify and reationalise the current raft of benefit reforms, but it may well be a myth.

    http://mikesivier.wordpress.com/2012/11/26/iain-duncan-smiths-question-time-lies-exposed/

    • It’s no myth – we actually got this phrase from the Private Providers themselves.

      • He is probably correct on this point. The so-called New Deal under that cretin Blunkett ‘parked’ me as I had been unemployed for such a long time so they didn’t bother helping me whilst those who were near the labour market got talked too! This is happening now as well. It is obivous that the providers can’t find work for hardly anyone since the economy is totally failing to provide enough vacancies for all those who are unemployed but try saying to the MORONS in government and you will be dubbed ‘workshy’.

    • The argument about “huge numbers …” of people being “parked” on sickness benefits refers to the (quite significant) group of people who, after diagnosis (via a GP or Consultant) were eligible to receive Incapacity Benefit – meaning they weren’t well enough to commit to regularly trying to work (it would worsen their health and/or put them at risk).

      IB didn’t place limits on any voluntary work or other contributions to communities nor was there (alongside receiving a not-huge sum to live on but one which took into account health-related needs), there was no ‘requirement’ to undergo ‘reviews’. This was because this situation was so different from receiving a ‘sick note’ from a GP and then being expected to ‘get better/return to work’. Most in this situation would be in fairly regular contact with a medical professional(s) anyway, due to the fact that they were not in the best of health. It’s been a bit akin to the way that before now, unemployed people had to make a commitment to sign regularly but would otherwise mainly be ‘trusted’ to use their own judgement as to how much job searching they did/when and how. (The argument has always been that some would just accept living on an extremely or a just a very small amount (IB) – even though their circumstances might have improved & they were able to in some way(s) recover BUT that most people (or at least their GP) can tell whether they are in fact ill enough to be considered ‘exempt’ or have recovered..

      So, technically “parked” could be used as a term to describe the (small numbers) for whom IB could have been detrimental but it has worked out as the best solution for many ill people until now. These are the people who are now being declared either ‘fit for work’ or ‘not fit but capable of doing some Work Related Activity’ In Large Numbers. The ‘WRAG’ group are being asked to comply with t&c’s like those that anyone on JSA has must do – even though they are considered ‘not fit to work’ – they are going to be ‘asked’ to agree to follow this set of rules in order to ….? prepare for work they have been found not fit to do (even under the new rules) – and under pain of sanctions.

      The variation on IB now being ushered in makes the old system look like a utopian paradise, whereas in fact it only treated ill people in a (relatively) humane and reasonable way. In contrast, the new ‘rules’ which involve putting the GP’s/health professionals’ advice to one side and deciding that people with (sometimes) a mix of debilitating physical and/or mental health conditions should be responded to as if they just have a common cold. Those who are being put into the (also mis-named) ‘support’ group’ (at least in the first instance, before appeals) – are a tiny number of those who were previously receiving IB. It’s not because the “parking” issue was hiding huge numbers who were fully recovered yet still claiming but it IS because the paramaters for being found eligible to be put into this group (and not subject to constant harassment from this time on) are so narrow and have been (guess what?) set up in such a way that to fall within them is next to impossible). (Sounds familiar).

  15. MultiSkilledSingleDad

    As a single parent, I can’t afford to make a stand and lose my JSA, but I will do whatever I can to help make this stupid new system fair for everyone.

    As for the new Jobsearch…. the lack of information regarding job hours is RIDICULOUS. I can only work during normal school hours, and not during evenings and weekends. If the government wants parents (or other people with caring responsibilities) to find suitable work we need to know what the bloody working day is!!

    Even if the employer has been careful enough to include ‘some’ information about hours, but they’re hours I can’t work, the only option I have from the pull-down menu is “I am not interested in this job at this time”, which I fear is going to get me sanctioned!

    So I’ve registered with Universal Jobmatch, but I search for jobs whilst LOGGED OUT on a different internet browser (in my case, Safari). That way, I can look at the job descriptions anonymously and ‘vet’ the ones that are useful to look at only whilst LOGGED ON to Jobmatch on Internet Explorer.

    Luckily, I’m computer and web savvy, so I know these workarounds. I feel so sorry for people who people who are less techie. The other day, I was on a course with a guy who lacked the basic confidence to log onto a college computer by just entering a username and password. I’m sure he’s not unique.

    So far, I have filled up my Activity Log with four pages of useless CV tweaking. This has been wholly unintentional, but I doubt that my job adviser is going to be too impressed by it!

    As much as possible, I’m job hunting the traditional way, and entering my notes onto the Activity Log. So I type in things like ‘Checked the local paper’, ‘Phoned so-and-so’, ‘Sent off my CV and covering letter’, etc. It’s rather like the old paper method, but with SEVERAL MILLION POUNDS worth of computer programming. Brilliant!

    Since the new system went up, I’ve only found one job online that is suitable for me to apply for.

    Mostly, I’ve been wasting a LOT of time sat at my computer looking at a white screen which says “HTTP Error 503. The service is unavailable.”

    What an absolute shambles!! I feel for those people who have been told they have to get on a bus and go to a library or internet cafe, for THIS USELESS CRAPPY SYSTEM!!

    Absolutely no jobs were available in my local area until 10 a.m. this morning, but when Jobmatch finally worked it showed 4 new jobs. Out of interest, I went down to the JobCentre (I’m one of the lucky few who live within 2 minutes walking distance of their JC), and I checked their machines. They had four new jobs too, but they were four DIFFERENT new jobs! FFS!!

    I don’t have to sign on again until next week. I’m still undecided whether or not to make my activity log visible to the adviser, or just print it off. Any advice would be appreciated. For instance, if I make it visible, can I untick the box and make it invisible again? I don’t like the idea of someone checking my activity without my permission.

    And do I HAVE to give the advisor my Government gateway User ID next week? (FFS… they are the government… they sent me the damn thing!!)

    I’ve uploaded my CV, but there’s NO WAY IN HELL I’m making it searchable. I might as well leave my front door open with a sign saying ‘Help Yourself’ on it. So, if my CV isn’t public (i.e. not searchable), is it seen by the employer when I apply for a job on Jobmatch? So far, the one job I have applied for, it wasn’t clear whether or not the CV was successfully attached. Anybody know?

    • What I intend to do is to refuse verbal directions (which can be denied by the other party later putting you into a “my word against your word” situation) and if I get told that anything is mandatory will demand an official signed letter confirming that this is so: I definitely won’t be doing anything on the Universal Jobmatch site until (1) I know that it is compulsory and that (2) everybody is going to be forced to do everything I’m being asked to do. I will never agree to make my CV searchable or give anyone permission to surveil what I do on the site assuming I use it at all.

      (Besides, if it was mandatory and legal for anyone to access your account why do you have to explicitly grant them permission before they can peruse your account? Surely seeking permission from you signals the choice lies with you and that you can agree or refuse the option without penalty?)

      If I were you I wouldn’t volunteer permission for anyone to view your account and withdraw it later or you’ll be assumed be trying to hide something you’ve done rather than objecting on principle and demanding rights afforded you by the Data Protection Act 1998.

    • Surely it’s no based solely on Internet Explorer? What about those of us that are ‘allergic’ to Windoze and IE? (Both have serious security issues). I’m a Linux user, and use Firefox with the ixquick search engine – it’s far more secure than Google, doesn’t collect any data from you, not even IP address, so making it impossible for people to ‘snoop’. (Well, I’m sure that some people, like the government could, but why make it easy?).

      I have no intention of signing up for this, as it’s not (yet) mandatory, and it will be difficult to make it both mandatory and also comply with the Data Protection Act and also EU privacy laws.

  16. Anyone under 25 better read this full article in the Telegraph for 25/11/12.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/9696904/Its-time-for-a-new-Beveridge.html#

  17. I would never ever upload my cv onto that site. It will be seen by the employer, they can go and look at your details. YOU do not need to sign up If you do you are just making yourself a target to be sanctioned, they will track how often you visit the site, and ask why arent you applying for these jobs. This is just a way to sanction you..

  18. Right, I don’t normally do self-promotional spamming, but I’ve designed a quick leaflet that people can give out at jobcentres to let other claimants know about their right to refuse to sign up: http://nothingiseverlost.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/jobmatch-leaflet.doc
    It’s not the greatest leaflet ever, but it’s a word document, so you should be able to edit it pretty easily if you want to improve it, or just to add contact details. I don’t really understand why people seem to use PDFs so much, but if for some reason you want it as a PDF instead, here you go: http://nothingiseverlost.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/jobmatch-leaflet.pdf

  19. MultiSkilledSingleDad

    Like many people, I have already signed up to Universal Jobmatch, and since I can’t go backwards I have to deal with it. Whilst I have no doubt many people will be unfairly sanctioned because of Universal Jobmatch, I don’t plan on being one of them.

    As I said before, I’m not going to set my CV to ‘public’. Only employers I want to work for will get to see it (exactly the same risk as the paper method).

    At the moment I’m abiding by my Jobseeker’s Agreement, no less. I look at every part-time job that passes through my local Jobcentre, and I do my research. I probably know more about those jobs than most of the Job Advisers. In the past Job Advisors have tried picking out inappropriate jobs on their screen, saying I should apply for this or that because it looked like a job that ‘anyone could do’, but I’ve been able to tell them (i) where the job is based, (ii) who the employer is, (iii) how many hours it is, etc BEFORE they’ve even had the chance to bring up the job details (I’ve got a good memory!) and I’ve been one step ahead of them every time, with an honest iron-clad reason why the job is unsuitable for me.

    However, from now on they won’t have the same screen in front of them -that’s ALL they knew the last time I signed on… no training had yet been given! So F knows what’s gonna on!

    I’m looking forward to seeing what happens next. In my humble opinion, people who are on JSA should be allowed to continue to ‘Jobseek’ on paper IF they are not willing/able to deal with the online method. I’m pushing on with the online method because (a) I think I can handle it, (b) I have no other bloody choice now.

    My advice, for what it is worth, is this: if you’re not going to sign up to Jobmatch, fair enough. But, whatever you do, cover your arse. Swamp your Job Advisor with your notes and diaries and Job-section clippings and print-outs from their machines covered in your notes.

    You’ve got to cover your arse, because these bastards in the DWP have been told to save money by taking away your entitled benefit, and you know how much Cameron enjoys ‘spinning’ the Jobless figures. “10,000 less people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance”…. yeah, because 10,000 people have been sanctioned. TWAT!!

  20. Universal Jobmatch

    The DWP has published a guide to Universal Jobmatch here .

  21. God help the people that aren’t even online.
    Lambs to the slaughter.

    • I’m not online – I don’t even have a phone. How can it be right to ask me to do an impossible number of hours looking for work every week and then punish me when I fail?

      • But that is the plan – increase the “conditionality” so much that it becomes impossible to claim benefits. And, when nobody is claiming them, why not just get rid of them altogether.

  22. With most browsers you can block cookies from being accepted from particular sites. For example I use the free Opera browser which allows you to block cookies associated with sites and/or individual web pages. With Opera you simply right click on a web page from a site whose cookies you want blocked, select “Edit site preferences…” from the dialog menu, click the “cookies” tab from the dialog window, check the “Delete new cookies when exiting Opera” and pick the “Never accept cookies” option before clicking the “OK” button. Close the browser and the next time you open it you won’t ever again download any cookies from that site unless you want to. (You may have to repeat this process on Universal Jobmatch because it seems to redirect you using differing URLs.) You can much the same thing with Firefox and Chrome. The only trouble is that some cookies are used for navigationalpurposes and so Universal Jobmatch might not work properly – as if that’s likely – but at least you’ll not be tracked!

    That’s the way the cookie crumbles, folks!

    • MultiSkilledSingleDad

      Owch, it even hurts my head.

      I can imagine how much head-spinning is going on out there… I think we’re successfully scaring people off using Jobmatch!! All this technobabble…..it’s just too much for the average Joe to take on. It’s not fair.

      I really really hate this. Letter to my MP I think.

    • There’s a free tool called Karen’s Cookie Viewer (search for it with that name) that you can keep on your computer – perhaps on the desktop. It shows you the ‘cookies’ on your computer, who they are from and how long they are designed to last. You can delete one or all. To delete all you run the cursor down the list to highlight them and click on delete. It doesn’t stop them being loaded but you can be selective about which ones to delete. I delete them all from time to time. I also usually run CCleaner (also free) and the IE delete function.

      majorgeeks.com has some other free tools of various sorts. Not everything there is free.

      I believe the woman who made Karen’s Cookie Viewer (Karen) died a year or two ago. I don’t know how long her website will stay up so it would be best to get yours whilst you can.

  23. I can’t afford a computer, internet or smart phone. The only way I can get online is one hour a day, three times a week, at my local library when one of their two workstations is free. How will I be able to look for work for 35 hours a week? I do the best I can, have worked, and do want to work but employers are rejecting my applications. How can they sanction me for living in the country and being too poor to be able to do what’s expected of me? What the fuck is going on? How can it be right to ask for the impossible?

    • The whole idea of the Universal Jobmatch and Universal Credit is to make the conditions so difficult to meet, that many people fail to meet them and get sanctioned.
      IDS has lost the plot, and we will be paying for his lunacy.
      People just wont do anything about him, so I’m afraid we are all gonna sink.
      2013 – it will be benefit sanctions galore, and IDS will be jubilant.

      IDS MUST BE STOPPED NOW!!

      • Thing is the Jobcentre I sign at services about 2,000 people and so if 22% of them need internet access (the government claims the 78% of us are already online) that means 22/100 x 2,000 = 440 people will need internet access for 35 hours a week and the Jobcentre will need to provide 440 computers. one for each client, to give everybody seven hours time online to do their Jobsearch! Plus the Jobcentres will have to pay transport costs for Jobseekers summoned to attend them on non signing days. God only knows how many workstations will be necessary when part-time workers are also expected to search for additional jobs or jobs with more hours in order to keep their tax credits and housing benefit.

        How could this madness ever have been allowed to get this far?

    • MultiSkilledSingleDad

      Sorry to depress you, but they’ve thought of that. I’ve just found a Twitter post from Mildenhall Jobcentre ‏:

      “No computer access? Use ours. We have a PC available for all jobsearch related activity & to make JSA claims. Book through Jobcentre staff”

      Doesn’t help much if you live in a rural area. I guess on signing-on day, you’ll have to take in a packed lunch and stay there all day and do enough Universal Jobmatching for a fortnight.

      • They wont be expecting many “customers” to traipse into the jobcentre though, but is there as a token PC so nobody had an excuse for being able to carry out 35 hours of jobsearch activity a week! Cunts!

      • Ok if the JC has 500 PCs just lying idle.

  24. A Question. Do they track your IP address as well as job seeking activity?

    • Of course, IP addresses are recorded by default on Apache servers.

    • Yes. In addition to their own tracking systems, they also use WebTrends… to put this in to perspective… it can produce a heatmap of where your mouse is and logs everything from link clicks to any alert boxes etc.

      • Yes its the Webtrend cookie with the ClearText IP in it. Does via Javascript so even if running via VPN etc tries to capture your IP address

        • I meant to say tries ot capture your real IP address of course :D

          • There is a Javascript technique to capture you real IP address if you are behind a proxy/VPN, but you would have to be the lowest of the the low to employ such a method. Hello Universal Jobmatch! :-)

          • If they can capturing your IP address then it is a simple matter to reverse DNS it to reveal who your ISP is? Are you really connecting from the library or jobcentre? Or do you have a secret internet connection at home? :-) All would be revealed? This Universal Jobmatch site is sounding dodgier by the minute. :-)

          • Well they can find out your hostname.

            if you are with Virgin Media you are done for. The host name alone contains your location (town) and breaks down to the nearest green box (as far as I am aware). You cannot obviously work out where without insider information… however, you can make educated guesses by comparing searched postcodes and VM hostnames…

        • It also pads your location and search details in a certain cookie (url encoded) despite this being sent in the GET query string (i.e. not necessary.. other than to track longer term)

    • If you dont block their cookies answer is Yes. Can elborate if required. At least one cookie has IP in clear text in it.

      • Also of course servers they are using capture IP addresses connecting to them and write to logs. Its running on F5 Big IP infrastructure.

      • Mobile broadband and Smart phones use dynamic IPs and so are less likely to identify their users. Also for people with routers connected to landlines you might consider using the free OpenDNS service to mask your identity; it’s very easy to set up routers to do this.

        http://www.opendns.com

        • They will still capture your “device” information though. A smart phone on £71 (£56.25 if you are under 25) a week?! :-) Even though the DWP expects everyone to have an internet connection and a smart ‘phone to apply for jobs and Universal Credit having an internet connection and/or a smart-phone will raise a “red flag”. Talk about contradicting yourself! :-)

    • If you’re sensible and use the Firefox browser you can add the ixquick search engine which does NOT collect IP addresses (www.ixquick.com). It’s easy to add to Firefox, and also to make it your browser homepage. Think about changing your operating system to one of the Linux distributions, (and, bonus, most are free of coast, as well as free in the sense that they are Open Source, and almost virus free) as they are generally more secure than Windoze, need no anti-virus (but wise to install one to protect your poor Windoze using friends) Even if you want to continue using Windoze, it’s a wise move to ditch Internet Explorer and install Firefox, as Firefox is a lot more secure than IE.

  25. Its going to be like a volcano just waiting to blow.

  26. Maybe they can open the job centre’s and libraries 7 days a week?

  27. Like (the former) DirectGov jobs… the site is coded in ASP.NET

    The web application uses Application Objects, Cookies (client side), VIEWSTATE and sessions.

    • Yes and running F5 Big IP infrasturcture on front end that will be logging IP etc. Appears to be ASP.Net 4.0 site from some of the viewstate info etc.

  28. Another Fake Job on Universal Jobmatch is this :

    https://jobsearch.direct.gov.uk/GetJob.aspx?JobID=267162

    Appears to be Identity theft attempt & possibly Advance Fee Fraud.

  29. 100 % fake job attempting ID theft/Advance fee fraud. search ‘Montcalm fake’ in Google & look at first few hits. The email address is least of the warning signs :D

  30. How many will fall victim to that scam because of being forced to join that crappy website? That kind of scam can land the victim with a criminal record, making him or her de facto unemployable.

  31. Why not use the anonymising Tor browser to hide your identity?

    http://www.torproject.org

    • But if you are logged in they know who you are anyway. Besides, since this site uses so much cookie and javascript tracking techniques it is unlikely to work in something as bolted down as TorBrowser.

  32. @Rosa All great suggestions you make to protect identity while using universal jobmatch. I use similar myself ;)

  33. I know this is not really relevant but on Russia Today channel there is a slot called The Max Keiser report and he tells you what your own news won’t tell you about the British economy. It starts at 9.20am for half an hour and is repeated throughout the day, so if you can get this channel it is worth watching.

  34. On Sky News this morning in the newspsaper review, Eamon Holmes and Michelle Dewbury highlighted the fact that the Work Programme Private Providers are only are only getting one person in seven into work, Michelle who went to one of these Providers to see what they acually do asked them in a meeting:

    What is your ultimate goal?

    Their Answer was: To make profit.

    So there you have it, proof that their not in it to get anybody jobs.

  35. I’ve just downloaded the TOR browser. It’s a free Firefox based browser that hides your identity although, when I visited Universal Jobmatch, I noticed it does save about four session cookies for navigational purposes and so as long as you don’t search using your exact postcode by just entering the name of a town or area or whatever, nobody should be able to track you! To be honest Universal Jobmatch is such a shit site I won’t be using it at all unless I have to. TotalJobs.com is better; if you register with Reed expect to get spammed about training courses and stuff.

  36. According to the Financial Times fewer than five out of every 100 jobseekers are finding work through the government’s employment scheme, according to industry executives and that some companies paid to find jobs are doing much worse than their rivals. Two senior figures in employment services told the FT they expect the government to miss its target of finding sustainable jobs for 5.5 per cent of people going through the £5bn Work Programme in its first year. Mark Hoban, the employment minister, will confirm the actual figure – which some believe could be as low as 3 per cent – when he publishes official statistics on Tuesday… in ten minutes at the time of writing these words in fact!

  37. I use indeed job alerts – but I don’t know my arse from my elbow when it comes to IP addresses, cookies etc. And I’ve never given my EXACT postcode, just the first 4 (In my case) digits.

    Mind you, even the results for that are garbage, so I usually use an L1 postcode when doing my searches. But for some reason, the default area is always 20miles?! I know I’m meant to include a 90minutes by public transport area – that wouldn’t get me 20 miles ffs!

    It’s just a load o’shite. I’m at the WP tomorrow, wonder what they’ll say about it, when I (again) point out the shortcomings of the whole jobseeking system?

    • Hardly worth going to the WP, sport. You’ve only got a 3.53% chance of getting a job through it. Currently more than 96 people out of every 100 on the WP will go through the scheme and come out the other end 2 years later without finding sustainable work. Then it’s likely to be a sentence of six months workfare picking up dog shit in parks and whatnot.

      Don’t get too attached to your WP provider because they might have their WP contract cancelled for under-performance next year!

  38. Well, now everybody will know what we all know. Here’s a tweet from Nick Robinson: “Work Programme for long term unemployed not working. Stats to show only 3% success rate. Ministers insist will improve.”

  39. The BBC are asking people to tell them of their experience’s on the Work Programme, go to the link below and scroll down to the bottom of the page.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20499836

  40. Radio 4 are now discussing Beverage and the Welfare state.

    • … & top item on news: Work Programme failed to meet (their own stated) targets after a spend of £435 million up to now, so it’s not always true that if you look after the pennies the pounds will look after themselves …

      IDS is on the R4 programme later on (before 1pm?) to offer helpful advice and platitudes.

      • And people wonder why the welfare state costs the country £200 billion a year to run.

        When governments waste amounts of money like that is it any wonder?

        • “waste of money”?! :-) not when you are diverting £BILLIONS of hard-working taxpayers ££CASH££ into the bank accounts of parasitical “providers” :-) Some of us are doing very well out the the “work programme”, thank you very much! Waste of money, I don’t think so :-)

      • I think this was the amount I heard … ? It’s a lot of money anyway.

    • Yes, I’ve been listening all morning:

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01p0fpg

  41. Why not register as an “employer”?… on EDon they used to manually verify the first few jobs posted then thereafter you are “trusted”.

    Now anyone who registers may post a job vacancy automatically to go live… just because they have T&Cs not worth the paper its (not) written on!

    make sure the job advert is obviously fake not to fool anyone.

  42. I already registered and so far have viewed a few hundred vacancies and clicked on ‘Does Not Match My Job Skils’ on every single one of them! They can browse my CV all they want, and they can make me apply for as many jobs as they like, but it makes no difference, I am unemployable! LOL. Besides which, I very much doubt that they have the resources, the funds, the manpower, to effectively monitor any of it. It’s a joke and will be completely unworkable. There’ll be millions like me who have no job skills, no references, no CSCS card, no experience, no driving licence, and a criminal record = UNEMPLOYABLE. If everyone clicks on ‘Does not match my skills’ or ‘job is too far away’ it will clog up the system. hahaha BUT by the fact that you have gone on there and done that, it PROVES you are jobsearching! win win.To meet my obligation of applying for 5 jobs per week, I simply log on to CV Library and click click click hey presto I’ve applied for jobs and received a confirmation email, then they can’t sanction me. It’s easy.

    • The UJM system is not monitored, it’s a Job Bot that uses a logical preset format. If you have clicked on ‘Does not match my job skills’ you have just got yourself an automatic sanction, just clicking this 3 times will get you a 3 year sanction – enjoy!

      • So the people responsible for UJ expect you to apply for jobs you know you aren’t qualified to do? Now we know how IDS and co ended up running the country I suppose! :)

      • Landless Peasant

        Rubbish! They can’t sanction you for not having the relevant job skills. And in any case, I’ve already asked them to sanction me but they didn’t.

        • Seriously, Why on earth would you want sanctioned?

          • Landless Peasant

            I told the Jobcentre that I would prefer to be sanctioned rather than attend the Work Programme. I found it too depressing and stressful, and was not (am not) prepared to continue being bullied in that way, so I said I would prefer to take the option of living on Hardship Allowance instead. They made me make a signed written statement to that effect, though I did request to be transferred to another Work Programme Provider if possible. I stopped attending the Work Programme and eventually received a letter from DWP saying they were taking no action. That was about 3 months ago and I still haven’t been back to the Work Programme, and still haven’t received any further instruction. Am still in receipt of full JSA.

    • I wouldn’t relax just yet, because what they’ve got planned next, is to time limit benefits just like they do in the United States, if they get a majority at the next election. What that will mean is, when you’ve claimed benefits for a certain amount of time – usually a couple of years, you will not be eligible to claim anymore. They will gladly leave you completely destitute and homeless. I suspect your experience in criminal world is going to come in real handy soon….

      • Landless Peasant

        For your information, my “experience in the criminal world” relates to falling foul of the law when I was a lad, 30+ years ago, but still shows up (and looks bad) on a CRB check, so affects any applications that demand an Enhanced Disclosure, so fuck you patronising bastard.

        • I misunderstood, my apologies, it was not meant to be patronising or judgmental. I just meant to make the point that they are planning to make this system much worse in the near future which will leave crime which I’ve been informed also includes begging, as the only way for all those who can’t find work to survive soon.

        • Now now, lets not have any of this on Jonny Void – we should all be directing our anger at IDS, as he is winning if we are all at each other’s throats. We are most of us fighting for the same thing – rights and survival of the unemployed. R33 is a good guy, and makes a lot of good posts here, so address your fuck you’s to IDS please

        • They wanted to begin this from the start. Anyone remember the plan to cut Housing Benefit by 10% if you’re unemployed for a year? The Liberal Democrats stopped that one, although let the “Bedroom Tax” get onto the Statute Book. If Cameron managed to get a majority in 2015 who knows what the fuck he’ll do? Although as far as I can see the Tories have no real chance of wining an election after the things they’ve done, especially if Osborne remains Chancellor.

      • Thing is now that the Work Programme has shown how difficult it is for long term unemployed people to get into work, even when monitored and “helped” by the private sector, how can they justify time-limiting benefits when the Work Programme itself proves 100% that exclusion from paid work is not a personal failure but the result of economic conditions over which the unemployed have no control. Time-limiting benefits wouldn’t get people into jobs, it would only make them suffer.

        • You know that & so does anyone who is even vaguely sane or has an ounce of compassion, but they have been making a convincing case for black being white (and vice versa) for quite a while now. And continually bringing ‘so called’ moral arguments into play to say that the only way to deal with anyone who has the brass neck to be/come unemployed is to penalise them. Capital ‘P’.

          On the radio yesterday IDS showed his true colours in a slip of the tongue (or was it – he just couldn’t think of another phrase to use). He said something like ‘… of course it’s best if people remain married and their children grow up living with … those who sired them’. He couldn’t think of the words for ‘both parents’. So it looks as though compassion for anyone who isn’t in his own social circle is unlikely. It’s sad to say but it looks as IDS Doesn’t Even Consider That We Are Human … (He didn’t get where he is today by knowing much about anyone who’s life is so far removed from his own that money could be a problem day-to-day).

          There’s been attempts to pretend this is about ‘we care’ and want to help, but not that convincingly and might not even be any need to try soon now that the whole approach of ‘removing benefits’ as a means to ‘help’ and/or openly to punish for not ‘trying hard enough’ has is already in force. It’s being more widely accepted by commentators and ordinary people (though how they can accept this argument and sleep at night is not something I can understand either). There are people (I still think) who might not know how much this is happening already but others who do are just not that horrified about it. Either because of a serious empathy problem or their political views allow them to believe that thinking in this way if ‘fair’ even if it’s a bit tough. Fair but tough does not apply to removing the means for someone to survive in the conventionally accepted way – the punishment does not fit the ‘?crime’.

          So whoever chooses to support and align themselves with policies like time-limiting benefits & all the other ‘sanctions’ in use as we speak is implicitly agreeing that they would be happy for it to happen to anyone. QED they would be okay about it happening to their neighbours/friends/themselves & their children. (Maybe they say to themselves ‘it’s fine as long as it’s happening to people I don’t know & I feel pretty safe myself – I would never be irresponsible enough to be at risk of these policies anyway’). It’s compassion at a society-wide level that we might need to be concerned abut because if we end up with this being the majority view it’s not going to be easy to get back to ‘before’ things went this far … (going to start building a time machine now).

  43. That isn’t true – most jobs are not able to be applied for as you state unless you register. Most admin jobs need to have your cv uploaded. I haven’t played ball yet but already I find the site stupid and I will not be signing away my data protection rights either. Out of the hundreds of vacancies I have found three that can be applied to directly. Evil site.

    • Check out Totaljobs.com. That’s what I use and it doesn’t look over your shoulder although, if you want to, will accept CVs and make them searchable to employers. Which I wouldn’t ever want to do myself but there may be some who may.

    • Landless Peasant

      What isn’t true? I didn’t apply for any jobs on the UJM, I always fulfill my Jobcentre obligation by applying for jobs on CV Library. I have just started using the UJM site in order to show that I am doing jobsearch, that’s all.

  44. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)

    I went JCP last week.

    Did a jobsearch at the job point and found vacancy a (now known as job ref) with ‘see job description’ in the How to Apply section.

    There was no details on how to apply.

    15 minutes of watching my adviser pee-ing about with the new system (“which will take a while for us staff to get used to”) later, my adviser smiled and shouted “I found it!”

    contact Mr ….
    contact@meerkat.co.uk

    Is this some kind of joke?

    I googled meerkat jobs.
    It’s a company in Wales, and the website looks like one I could invent. Have a look, please do!

    By the way, I’ve been sanctioned for the 2nd time.

  45. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)

    I went JCP last week.

    Did a jobsearch at the job point and found vacancy a (now known as job ref) with ‘see job description’ in the How to Apply section.

    There were no details on how to apply.

    15 minutes of watching my adviser pee-ing about with the new system (“which will take a while for us staff to get used to”) later, my adviser smiled and shouted “I found it!”

    contact Mr ….
    contact@meerkat.co.uk

    Is this some kind of joke?

    I googled meerkat jobs.
    It’s a company in Wales, and the website looks like one I could invent. Have a look, please do!

    By the way, I’ve been sanctioned for the 2nd time.

    • Meerkat.co.uk appears to have shit up shop!

    • Domain name:
      meerkatrecruitment.co.uk

      Registrant:
      meerkat recruitment ltd

      Registrant type:
      UK Sole Trader

      Registrant’s address:
      41 Anchor Road
      Dinas Powys
      Vale of Glamorgan
      CF64 1SL
      United Kingdom

      Registrar:
      UK Webhosting Ltd [Tag = UKWEBHOSTING]
      URL: http://www.tsohost.co.uk

      Relevant dates:
      Registered on: 07-Jun-2012
      Expiry date: 07-Jun-2014
      Last updated: 07-Jun-2012

      Registration status:
      Registered until expiry date.

      Name servers:
      ns1.tsohost.co.uk 195.62.28.14
      ns2.tsohost.co.uk 213.229.99.228
      ns3.tsohost.co.uk 95.142.154.15

      “The team at Meerkat Recruitment have over 10 years experience in the Recruitment Industry” – yeah, sure :-) And the jobcentre are sanctioning claimants for not sending off their personal details to these fly-by-night whatever they are.

    • The links on the sites don’t even – you could knock this site up in Frontpage in couple of minutes – it has got “dodgy” written all over it.

  46. Louise

    You state out of the hundreds of jobs on the site there are only 3 you could apply to directly, probably because the others are made up jobs.

  47. Contact Mr Meerkat – Simples!

  48. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)

    The DWP are seriously taking the pee.

    All I want is a job, so that I can provide for my family & pay my bills.

    What is the motive behind the DWPs activities?

    Why complicate something that should, & can be so simple?

  49. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)

    The DWP are seriously taking the pee.

    All I want is a job, so that I can provide for my family & pay my bills.

    What is the motive behind the DWPs activities?

    Why complicate something that should, & can be so simple?

    & thanks Meerkat.

    Life is trippy…

    Meerkat commenting on the post about Meerkat Recruitment has made me laugh. Are you sure it’s not your website?

  50. What a nightmare. Having finally managed to sign up it and upload a CV etc, I ran a search for admin jobs in my area and received a measly single page of results including vacancies for Registered Nurses and Disability Care Workers. I tried playing around with the search criteria, but the results were just as inaccurate and obviously incomplete.

    I decided to instead use the jobpoints at the local jobcentre, and found 6 jobs that were relevant and worth applying for in the space of 2-3 minutes. Fantastic. Only I can’t find most of them on Universal Jobmatch. There’s no facility to search by job reference no. And when I try searching for a specific jobtitle (both with quotes and without) I just get a page of irrelevant results.

    I did manage to find one of the jobs on Universal Jobmatch. Only to receive an incomprehensible error page when I hit the ‘apply’ button. Brilliant.

    How on earth did this site get rolled out in such an appalling condition? Didn’t anyone spend even 2 minutes testing it from the users point of view? Pathetic. Just pathetic.

  51. Martyn Rossiter-Houldsworth

    When I signed on yesterday at Alnwick Job Centre ,a member of staff with bad attitude said “I had to sign up to Universal” I pointed out that one of her colleagues had previously said I dont ! Instead I can hand in a downloaded copy of my CV in person,for my advisor to retain ! This women would not have it and threatened me about the benefits that I get.My reply was that I dont get any benefits in turn she said then it will affect your NI contributions.I further pointed out that I have already met my NI quota in relation to gaining my pension.Now she was really in a bad mood and just wanted me out ! I sign on at the job centre in Alnwick because I thought the people their would help me back into employment,I was obviously wrong.Universal WILL NOT be getting my details !

    • This is typical of most jobcentres – all high and mighty, and primed ready to trot out the sanctions line for non compliance.
      This is what they are paid to do, in the hope that they can make your life so difficult that they can then entrap you and sanction your benefits. It comes from the top of the DWP, ie, IDS and Fraud, and as it rolls down the hill it gains extra added bile and vileness from JCP staff, who get a pure kick out of inflicting misery on “scroungers and bums”.
      As long as IDS stays at the helm, this sanctions regime is gonna get worse and worse!
      Now the Work Programme has been deemed a failure, IDS will concentrate even more on sanctions and punishments to deny benefits to claimants. You will only have to fart soon and it will mean a 3 year sanction.

      Sanctions, sanctions, sanctions – thats what its all about now.

      “Benefit Sanctions, from the Department of Work and Pensions, You know you want one – so why resist?” Their new motto?

  52. You don’t have to give them your CV either, though it might be wise for you to let them ‘have sight’ of it if they ask, as they may just do that to check that you actually have a CV – but with the contact info it’s wise to use one of the web based e-mail adresses, (hotmail, gmail etc) as these are throwaway, and with UJ being so lax in a security sense, you need to be sure that you can restrict the amount of spam you will get to an account you can just ditch.

  53. I don’t intend signing up to a site with such lax security. The fact that people can post advertisements for jobs like the one in the article shows just how lax it is, and I suspect that the claims that UJ is a data miner’s paradise are only too true. The fact that Monster are so bad at security too is another worry, as well as their being based in the USA, where the data protection laws of the UK and EU aren’t worth diddly-squat. There is also the whole ‘surveillance society’ thing about it too, and that is particulalry concerning, as it will mean that UK citizens will become the most spied-on citizens in the world. There are already huge numbers of CCTV cameras in the UK, and now this proposal for a vast cross-referenced database that gives anyone with access to the system control of your details. It won’t be too long before the system is mired in scandal, as you cannot possibly maintain the security of such a system when thousands of people have access to it. Many of them will be poorly paid, and quite possibly short of cash/heavily in debt and vulnerable to being bribed to provide all kinds of data about people registered.

    That we don’t yet know all the details should not deter us from starting to spread doubt about it. And if anyone in government tries to reassure us about the system, we need to regard that with extreme suspicion. This isn’t ID cards, this is something far worse.

    As yet, it’s not compulsory to sign up to UJ, and anyone would be well withing their rights to refuse stating worries over the lack of security on the system, as well as the basic fact that IT IS NOT COMPULSORY. Making it compulsory will be quite difficult, but if you sign away your rights in fear, then you only have yourself to blame. Even if you do decline to sign up and get a Jobseekeer’s Direction which you ignore, you still have to be referred before you will get a sanction, and that buys you time. In that time you can get advice and arm yourself with the facts. Please don’t give in to pressure, you are allowed to refuse, and though they probably won’t like it very much, there is little they can do apart from threaten and cajole, and most probably won’t do that.

    Most likely, the worst you have to fear, at the moment, is fear itself. Think rationally. Please don’t be the turkeys that voted for Christmas.

  54. Oh, yeah, I forgot. In order for Universal Jobmatch to fail we need to make it fail. There are various ways we can do that. 1) don’t sign up to it 2) create multiple accounts as an ‘employer’ and post as many bogus jobs as you can 3) bombard your elected representatives with e-mails etc flagging up worries about the system, e.g. the security of personal data, and potential to miusue that data – turn the government’s worry/red herring about terrorism back on them, after all, a good case could be made that this government is terrorising a section of the population, in my opinion 4) Pray that IDS has a brain haemmorage or becomes even more demented than he already is, to the point that even other politicians realise that he’s unfit for office.

    • “4) Pray that IDS has a brain haemmorage or becomes even more demented than he already is, to the point that even other politicians realise that he’s unfit for office.”

      The more evil and psycopathic IDS becomes, the more Ca-moron loves him and praises him – I mean, he couldnt even get IDS out the DWP at the last reshuffle, so that means that he probably wants him there in all reality, as all the hatred is directed at IDS instead of Ca-moron.
      If Ca-moron REALLY wanted IDS out, he would have him out – simple as that.
      The only way IDS will be gone is if someone “removes” him forcefully, as IDS is hellbent on staying and destroying people’s lives as long as he possibly can. He is making the poor pay for his rejection by the people 10 years or so back when he failed at Tory leadership. Its all a vindictive vendetta by IDS against the poor in general, to help make his corporate bumchums even richer.
      He’ll probably get a knighthood and a place in the Lords for his “services” to society!

    • Oh, and also – if IDS goes, someone like Lord Fraud or Mark Hoban would replace him – so we would be no better off, as these 2 are just as rabid against the unemployed as IDS is, and they too want to inflict as much misery and suffering on us as they can.
      The whole Tory party needs to be kicked out – not just IDS.

      If Labour get back in, better hope and pray that Liam Byrne aint IDS’s replacement, or its back to more of the same, as Byrne is just as much in favour of Workfare and sanctions and IDS is. Byrne is a danger to the unemployed – he must not be allowed anywhere near the DWP!!

      • Byrne want regional benefit caps, i.e., lower rates in poorer areas, so that everybody on benefits is kept as poor as possible wherever they live in order to “encourage” them into work. He’s a little shit and scarcely better than that other slaphead IDS.

  55. sibrydionmawr

    Instead of waiting for ids to have a brain haemorrhage, just call the care quality commission who will ask you ‘do you know anyone who needs a mental health assessment and you could put ids’s name forward.

  56. Website went down earlier. Talks now that the website has been hacked.
    My computer almost got damaged when I clicked an job advertisement on the Universal Jobmatch website that has an inframe in the job description.

    Lucky enough it was a proof of concept going to a harmless website but it could have been a website that could have hacked your PC or downloaded a virus OR an inline web form to apply for the job which appears to be official to steal your identity.

    The site is dangerous… there is no check to the content of the job description. You could embed a youtube video.

      • Make sure that your anti-virus is up to date, and use a browser like Firefox as it’s more secure than IE. Also, use the ixquick search engine rather than Google, which collects a lot of information about you. If you can, and aren’t attached to Windoze like it was a third arm, change the operating system you use to one of the Linux distributions – they are not only free, as in costing nothing, but immune to all Windoze nasties, (viruses, trojans, worms etc), and have the added benefit of not further enriching the bastard bosses of corporate multi-nationals, coming to a government near you soon!

        I’m not completely sure how to protect youorself against the government snoops that will be watching you if you’re daft enough to sign up when it’s not yet compulsory, but there is information on how to avoid disclosing personal information whilst online on Indymedia websites.

  57. What isn’t true is the fact that you can use the job match site pretty well without registering. It probably depends on the kind of work you are looking for but for admin jobs almost all have to be applied online using the Universal job match system.

    I know there are other sites far better, I use them. I used to use the other job centre site though because the job centre seemed to demand it, regardless of the fact that the worst jobs are advertised there. The job centre seem obsessed with the fact that you use the government website. So it doesn’t matter if you use other sites, if you can’t use the government one without registering you are leaving yourself open to sanctioning which is what I am worried about. I can’t say to my advisor ‘look, I applied to all these jobs’ because I can’t access them any more. I found two that gave me either an address or a website to apply from. They went down on my job log. Other jobs from other places also went down but I suspect that isn’t what they will be looking for. Job Centre didn’t say anything about new system last signing on but I going tomorrow. I expect something will be said then. I am also noticing that there are not so many jobs being advertised in the usual places that I apply from, I wonder if that is because they had a bit of a recruitment drive for Universal job match and that is free where the others probably aren’t. If so that will end up meaning more people out of work.

    Even if I’m not going to be registering it wouldn’t be so bad if I could show that I had applied to their jobs anyway, but I can’t because I haven’t been able too! That is the point I made earlier but I was in a hurry. The whole thing makes me sick and nervous. I am unemployed, that’s it. I didn’t commit any crime, so don’t need to be put under extreme online surveillance. My data is mine. Period. And I demand the same rights as anyone else. To have to sign them away is surely illegal? And the way they get you to sign the ‘accept cookies’ box just to find out what they are. That is outrageous, even more so when apparently they are on your computer before you even do that. Of course they can change the law especially for low grade people like the unemployed. Or can they?

    It seems like any party can do what they like. I see Labour carrying on with the draconian measures, they are very quiet and were being pretty mean themselves before the Cons got in. They were slightly better but that is all. The press hates the unemployed and they have spread that across all media. No one thinks that they will be next to lose their job when really anyone over 50 will be lucky if they ever have a job again, as will the younger people starting out or trying too. Hatred for the victims of the recession is endemic. It is our fault people.

    The thing is, what are we going to do about it all? Something? Anything? Or are we all happy to be sitting ducks and the fall guys for everyone to blame? Many people I see at the job centre and at the work programme just seem to roll over no matter what is asked of them.

    • Louise,

      I feel exactly the same as you do & there must be (?thousands) of others feeling the same – under attack. Even before the (UJ) Yuk went live on 19th JCP weren’t on my xmas list but more so now.

      Ironically it started to prevent me from job searching as much as I need to do (in the last couple of weeks) – which is an added worry as losing focus on this & not doing it ‘properly’ isn’t really an option (for my reasons not theirs). Also I would be shooting myself in the foot & there are other’s at JCP waiting to hand me the gun (as it were). The whole – ‘we are watching you & if you put a foot wrong …’ shtick has the opposite effect for me (it did at school, unfortunately) – it makes (me) feel I can get less done, not more. But I’m sure the rules weren’t designed around how they would make unemployed people feel (even I realise that).

      I also agree with your last comments & it’s taking up a lot of my ‘thinking time’. Most of the things people are suggesting are probably what we should try (other than registering). That’s all I can add for now, but if the land of unemployed people was a workplace & it had a union there would be something happening just based on strength of feeling so I’m sure the strength of feeling & attempts to stand against it (the Yuk) will soon start to be clear – even to such dimwits as we are up against.

      • Editor’s note: I think that should be ‘Not registering’ – must have been a Fraudian slip …

      • There may not be a union specifically for the unemployed, but there are two that encourage membership by the unemployed. Both the IWW and the IWA encourage membership by the unemployed. Neither have a huge membership in the UK, and are international unions, but both are also grass roots unions with no paid hierarchy or officials out of touch with the ordinary membership. They are very much about self-help and self organisation, qualities that both IDA and Cameron claim to value highly, though I suspect they may well have a rethink if people do organise themselves in opposition.

        There needs to be an organised opposition, and that will take time to get going, but there are things we can all do to start the ball rolling. All of us reading or posting on this blog have access to computers and the internet, we can, as a start, e-mail all politicians and voice our displeasure, (politely!). It may not be much, but the sheer volume of e-mails should convince even the most rabid hater of the poor. Politicians rely on votes, and I know it doesn’t achieve much, but they need votes to preserve any kind of legitemacy. I don’t think we can rely on any Tories changing their spots, and not too many Labour either, but of if there is a groundswell of opiniion reaching them at their inboxes they are more likely to be persuaded by this than by any blog on the internet. It’s not much, but it’s a start.

      • The totalitarian atmosphere of “work programmes”, the put-a-foot-wrong-and-you-are-sanctioned, living in fear of “brown envelopes dropping through the letter box” and the Orwellian surveillance techniques such as “Universal Jobmatch” are not conducive to a effective jobsearch. It beggars belief how anyone can have the mindset and focus to jobsearch living under such oppressive and fearful conditions.

        • So it’s not just me then (!).
          In theory I understand what whoever it was meant when they said “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” but were they on JSA at the time?The brown-envelope-through-the-door nowadays is the as good as a physical manifestation of ‘fear itself’. (I might not have understood them properly if I’m honest).

          It is a good idea to try to get everyone to stand together (in a unionised way) couldn’t disagree with this & have written to my MP (specifically about disability issues but could amend the letter to include objections to the UC -related madness).

          What would ‘e-mailing all politicians’ involve? How long would this take? Could someone offer to do it for me as I think I need a long lie-down….??

    • But I didn’t say that you could use the site without registering! I HAVE registered.

      • ‘There is no need to register with the website to view and apply for most of the vacancies.’ is what it says in the original post and what I am saying isn’t true (for the kind of jobs I am looking for at least), I’m not questioning anyone else’s responses to the post or anything else in the blog post which was great and really helpful.

  58. I have also found that many jobs require you to use the “apply” button and do not contain any other contact details, so you have to register and upload a CV to be able to apply for these jobs.

    One of the reasons why people dont want to do anything about all this is that they are shit scared of being sanctioned – IDS has drummed the word “Sanctions” into people’s heads so hard that they must dream about being sanctioned now. I am becoming sick and tired with the constant threats of sanctions from JCP and the work programme – everything they get you to sign, keeps reminding you about the sanctions for non-compliance.

    I think under Labour, if Liam Byrne has anything to do with it, workfare will be continued, as will draconian sanctions. He might not like the work programme, but he still wants to appear as tough as IDS – I watched him speak about it at the Labour Party Conference.

  59. Larry

    Not one bit of your link is true regarding benefit scroungers, if Ed Milliband really has fallen for the right wing press’ rhetoric then it shows he has not got a mind of his own and is taking away the only decent thing his party stands for at present. If statutory press regulation comes into force and is effective, then perhaps unemployed people can sue the right wing press en masse.
    As for regional benefits, we all know that they will not rise for those in London only go down for those in other areas. Rented housing in towns and cities across the country is assessed on the average taking London rates into account, so too is the assessment for withdrawal of bedroom tax.

    • Every single politician wants the unemployed housed in the worst accommodation possible locally. Labour especially have been pushing this idea because they think that looking tough on benefit claimants will be good for them electorally. If Labour get in next time expect no changes to a single thing the Tories have done, expect the same things, e.g., workfare, work programme’s, surveillance etc., and even worse things because (1) abusing benefit claimants is popular with the electorate and (2) they really believe that if things get hard enough and unbearable enough for the workless somehow or other they will shift themselves and get themselves into employment, which we all know is not true as the failure of the Work Programme demonstrates!

      • Yes, although I will always be a Labour voter – we have to remember that all this conditionality and increased use of sanctions started under Labour when James Purnell was employment secretary and Tony McNulty was his little henchman. They wanted to be seen to be tough on the unemployed, and IDS has taken what they started and added his share of venom to it.
        I just can’t see why Labour want to carry on with Workfare, knowing how unpopular it is, and how many paid jobs it displaces, and surely they must realise that sanctions are not the be all and end all to reduce the claimant count – they might do this, but crime and destitution will just rise instead.

  60. Sadly this state of affairs is largely because people on the margins of society usually don’t vote. Labour is still far too fixated on being electable rather than operating to a set of principles and moral values.

  61. Universal Jobmatch latest… your computer might be at risk!

    http://intensiveactivity.wordpress.com/2012/11/28/universal-jobmatch-security-woes-and-test-jobs/

    Oh and so many test vacancy postings to push up the new job count.

  62. Do not even think about signing into this site….Print and hand this to your advisor as just one of the reason you have concerns about signing up…do not give up your rights to protect you Data.
    http://www.metro.co.uk/news/505511-monster-job-site-hit-by-biggest-hacking-theft-in-british-history

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/6961880.stm

    http://www.securitypark.co.uk/security_article262556.html

  63. Larry

    The civil servants who are being apologists for a right wing agenda in councils,whether they are labour or lib dem, know their jobs are as safe as houses. A bit of insecurity for them would not go amiss.

    • On the contrary, the Jobcentre staff are fighting for their own jobs, and I can see a bit further down the road there won’t be any Jobcentres. It will all be done online and they’ll all be made redundant. The Tories are privatising the Benefits service. That’s why, in my experience, the Jobcentre staff are merely going through the motions and don’t really seem to give a fuck. They’ve already lost their Pensions, whilst privately employed ‘advisers’ are taking their jobs.

  64. There is one answer,one common denominator in all of this.one so such easy solution and yet why do I feel that my comment is not going to travel very far ! I urge you,really urge you to look at the UKIP website and the policies contained within.Please take the time out and read through the pages of their website.Mr Farage seems to be the only person in Britain ,with high profile left that makes ANY common sense anymore.
    I can remember the way we used to be and there was nothing wrong in having a “Gas Board” an “Electricity Board” or a “Water Board” Nothing wrong with the “Rates System ” either, or Labour Exchange,not that many needed that dept anyway ! Please,vote UKIP .

    • Fuck off !!!…….Farage is another Multi house arsehole, state sponsored scrounger….That Plane he was in never hit the fucking ground hard enough as far as i’m concerned……Now away and party political broadcast somewhere else…..

    • That was a Party Election Broadcast on behalf of the UK Independence Party.

    • Vote UKIP ? Why the hell would I do that? They’re a bunch of “I-pay-my-taxes” Right-wing nutjobs ! UKIP = failed Tory

  65. Well said Sibrydionmawr 11.26am and stevie 777 8.32pm.

  66. M

    We are not promoting party politics on this site as far as I am aware, the main area of concern for the unemployed is human rights and what future parties may or may not have in store for them regarding future employment or the continuation of a welfare state , none of which ukip addresses as far as I am aware, Although I personally agree with some of their policies, I’m not sure the good outweigh the bad and in power they could renege on their manifesto promises like all the mainstream parties have done.

  67. Another fun aspect of this is that my experience is entirely in a field which barely appears on ‘Universal’ Jobmatch – if they want me to find a job through it, I’m highly unlikely to be able to do so. Neither will I be able to just take any job going, because I have to cover childcare costs, but I won’t be eligible for any sort of working tax credits because of my partner’s income and, being in London I need a certain minimum (not much below my previous earnings) in order not to be paying to work. Yes, I know I’m not the worst off by a long shot, but I am continually astounded by the whole system’s failure to recognise that trying to find a job when you have childcare commitments is not that same as when you don’t.

    • Claudia..#
      I was a Spray painter for twenty years, had to give it up because i developed Asthma and contact dermatitis, so that is a Job i can never go back to….I cant be around those Chemicals no more, but according to the Jobmatch set-up i’ll be matched with Paint sprayer jobs as it’s what my CV basically says it’s what i do……. and if i fail to apply.????….Guess!!!
      Where is the option that say’s I’m Not applying for this job because it makes me ill???

      • Also where is the option that says :

        (a) ‘This Job is a fake one’ . Ive tweeted about a couple of them ( Now removed once DWP,Monster & JCP saw my tweets.)

        (b) ‘This Job Breaks JCP Rules’ like example 1 I posted below.

        (c) ‘This Job is expired’ a number of which I have tweeted about recently.

        (d) ‘This Job is Test Data’ like example 2 I posted below.

        (e) ‘Job Advert broken’ like example I tweeted about this morning & now fixed.

        Universal Jobmatch system is an utter shambles in all respects IMHO.

        All I suspect it is intended to be is an ‘Automated Sanction Engine’ . A new tool for JCP ‘Advisers’ to try find excuses to sanction all at touch of a button. If the Work Programme figures next summer are hailed by IDS as great due to the ‘Off Benefit’ figure I think we can guess how most of it will be achieved ;-)

      • What will happen is that thy will send you for other jobs, e.g., mikman, postman, factory worker, warehouse worker etc., which may well be just as unsuitable and as bad for you. The purpose of Universal Jobmatch, at least as far as the unemployed are concerned, isn’t to get you into work similar to the kind of things you are qualified in or have done in the past but to drive you off Jobseeker’s Allowance in any way possible, either into literally any kind of job or by means of a sanction.

        Incredibly malicious and very, very nasty.

    • You’re expected to apply for every job that you might be able to do, no matter how poorly paid or unskilled, within a 90 minute journey from wherever you live. No ifs. No buts. And if you don’t you get sanctioned.

  68. Example 1 for the ‘Super’ Jobs on Universal Jobmatch : https://twitter.com/davesmith40uk/status/274203836254654464 :D

  69. Example 2 of the ‘Super’ Jobs on Universal Jobmatch : https://twitter.com/davesmith40uk/status/274205199135043584 . A LOT more on there DWP,Monster & JCP which I will be gradually tweeting about :D

  70. Can i ask, .. I’ve just been on the universal jobmatch website ( i am not signing up to it yet, scared of being sanctioned again), so i bypassed the log in bit, .. it took me to the old orange coloured Direct.gov site that I’m familiar with, Q:Is that the same site I’d have been directed to, had i signed in with my gateway passcode?. It was quite noticeable that it wasn’t exactly the same as the old site, gone were lots of the old job descriptions, Ref No’s, pension details, work pattern, duration, Additional criteria etc. And you only had a scroll down menu asking you why you didn’t apply. So once you’ve clicked on the job whilst browsing, you HAVE to explain why you are not applying for it on thier 6 or 7 reasons ( no “other” option i noticed). If this is the same site as the official Universal Jobmatch site, I am not impressed with it.

    • It’s the same site, because you havn’t fully signed up you only get limited use…..It’s a shambles..Nothing more than a self service sanctions device…get one question wrong and you will be automatically sanctioned….

      Hold out as long as it’s not Mandatory, if they make it mandatory then what can you do….if they send you 50 jobs a week, you will have to apply, even though the jobs on it are shit and possibly fake….all it does is take you away from actually applying for real jobs on real job sites for grown ups..This is where the 35 hours a week jobsearch will come in…they will be able to monitor when you logged in and for how long….miss one hour…Red card…yer out of here

      • This is right. Later on, if you register with the site, the software will send you a list of any jobs you could do within 90 minutes of your home. It won’t try to “match” you with jobs if you’re unemployed. So if you happen to be a professional engineer, say, you might get an occasional match with a vacancy in your field, but you’ll also be sent vacancies for every menial low paid position that you appear to be physically capable of doing within a huge area whether you like it or not, whether the pay is decent or not, and whether the hours are good or not. And if you get forced into a low-paid part-time job, later on you’ll be expected to spend hours a week searching for another job or jobs, just like you were when you were unemployed, because IDS wants everybody to earn at least 35 hours on the minimum wage. If you don’t satisfy this requirement you get stripped of benefit. So if you work 20 hours a week part time and receive a wage less than 35 hours on the minimum wage you’ll have to do 15 hours of jobsearch every week to keep your benefits.

        It really might become that bad.

        Steer clear of Universal Jobmatch if you possibly can.

  71. i think the media would be very interested in the breach of data protection the DWP are trying to fool everybody with.

    This will be hard for them to police.

    This most definitely is as an earlier poster says a tool for IDS and his merry men to get good figs out in June, Sanctions are going to be rife as will be homelessness.

    • who do you think will listen/publicise it (in a good way)? – I thought about writing to the Grauniad’s letter page – then gave up. This ought to be the top item on every news programme/radio news/paper – as well as on Twitter (which not everyone visits). This & the shameful treament of ill and disabled people going alongside it.

      It feels as if it’s going ‘under the radar’ – like the elephant in the room. Will more people only take notice of what’s happening when there are more street people and obviously hungry people standing around outside the sandwich shops at lunch-time than in them I wonder?

      • If they plan to starve us to death then may i suggest they watch the process…anyone effected by sanctions for months/years should just sit in front of those gates at downing street and make them watch the consequences of their actions….maybe then we will raise enough awareness….at least Bobby Sands and co had the courage of their convictions…

  72. You can set your c.v to private so that anyone posing as an employer can not get access to it. If the job centre so much as change that setting without your permission they have breached the Data Protection Act 1998 and the person who does that can and will be arrested and charged. When you go into the job centre explain that you have set your cv to private due to your personal safety and privacy concerns. As long as you apply for work you are fine and as long as you find a good amount of jobs or at least try they will leave you alone

  73. I predict Foodbank will be the new Asda next year for the poor of this country. Welcome to the new Tory led Britain.

  74. 200 comments and counting … :-)

  75. Stevie777 – 9.53pm

    With regards to starving yourself and having it televised, forget it they will only have you sanctioned under the mental health act and removed to a secure hospital. I was told I was going to be evicted while waiting for housing benefit rent arrears to be paid by the council ,who were withholding them because I had been sanctioned by dwp , but at the time was still eligible on a nil income basis so eventually all was paid back when the housing benefit came through. Instead of our STASI LABOUR controlled housing association (which has been reclassified as a none profit making charity but is run by ex council employees and business) taking me to court if I was facing eviction, a case they would have lost due to my entitlement,they said I was vulnerable because of impending non-eviction and had me detained under the mental health act for something I did not owe. They detained me twice on these grounds and once for refusing to take medication they had forced on me in the hospital. The third detention I refused to eat, lost pounds, I called in the police regarding illegal detainment who did nothing the staff just told them I was loopy, the charities involved with these so called hospitals do nothing, as far as they are concerned you are mentally ill and that includes the charity mind, who have withdrawn their pamphlets on what to do when sectioned and forced into hospital and all their other pamphlets just tell you what they can’t do to help as opposed to what they can do, they just uphold the status quo.
    The same disinterest is shown by the care quality commision and health trusts and ombudsmen. Because of this I suffer from agorophobia which is stress related, the hospital have me down as delusional.

    With the withdrawal of housing benefit for extra bedrooms and my inability to pay the extra out of benefits will see me facing legitimate eviction, because I refuse to move from my home where I have lived for thirty years and is within walking distance of my family ,to be thrown into a one bedroom shoe box which will not enable me to have my grandchildren stay as I do now. You had only to be 60 years old to be exempt from such a move but now age concern and the other charities relating to age have moved the goal posts to 62 and increasing. SO MUCH FOR CHARITIES .
    government mouthpieces.

    • Guy…sounds like a horror story mate…sorry to hear that…..i was at the housing yesterday to ask some question on the bedroom tax…they couldn’t answer because they have had no briefings or training on this issue…told me to call back in the February.. WTF…

      • Re the extra bedroom reduction in housing benefit; It makes me mad when you ask the right questions in advance to try and prepare and see if you can protect yourself but they either don’t know or won’t tell you information about changes. People need to know now and not in February or probably even in April when the letter falls on your mat if they will have to move. Some might be able to do something about it even if most won’t. But usually the first you hear about changes which lead you to have less money is when it happens, there will be many who will have no idea that this is in the pipeline.

        Any withdrawal of housing benefits will lead to people being evicted but also being liable for thousands of pounds in rent which they just don’t have. They will be taken to court which could lead to bankruptcy etc. Not to mention that county court judgements mean you won’t get a private landlord to rehouse you anyway. Living in private sector housing is so insecure at the best of time. This will be a nightmare. People with no money and no where to go can’t just move. It takes thousands of pounds – six weeks deposit and 4 weeks rent in advance, not to mention removal costs. Many people (me) are not liable for re-housing even though we receive full benefits as we have no dependants. So we could literally be on the streets. I hate that these stupid wally’s who have no idea about real life have so much power which they abuse.

        The government could free itself overnight from a lot of money being paid out in benefits. NO ONE working should need them. They do need them though because major companies pay a pittance and those working even full time have to claim tax credits and housing benefits. The employers should pay. Companies like Tesco are using free labour from the job centre, plus their workers are being subsidised by other workers. Make the employers pay their workers so the state isn’t, and make the big companies pay their tax. That should help claw back a penny or two.

        Work should pay but it doesn’t and it won’t under IDS’s schemes either. Benefits are not too high but wages far too low. Salaries are lower in many cases than 15 years ago.

        • Wow Louise! You do seem to have a handle on this. You succinctly say what I’m sure that many here are trying to articulate. I could be in love… :)

    • Too right, Guy why do people keep coming out with this shite, “chain yourself to the jobcentre railings and starve yourself to death”. Straight off to the looney bin! Going along with any of this shite is either going to get you criminalised or marked down as a nutter! We have to operate and fucntion without touching the bars of our cages – and our cages are very small indeed.

      Sent from my padded cell

      • Sectioned…
        Given the Choices…Money stopped for 13 weeks, six months or three years or a bed with three square meals a day, a roof over your head, heating and access to internet and library etc….what would you prefer….Choices, Choices….Choose wisely Sectioned. ;-)

        Prisoners are treated better than the sick and Disabled and unemployed in this shithole of a country…

        I’ve been in a loony bin myself and trust me, i never went hungry nor did i want for Heating unlike today.

        • Prisoner Cell Block H

          You are talking like someone who has never been sent down. The same old Daily Heil: “three meals a day and a roof over your head. prisoners are better off then pensioners” complete and utter shite. Losing your liberty is no joke. Ask anyone who has been through this “process”; the whole judicial system is designed to break a person. You have people on whining about how they are being “ground down” by the DWP/ATOS/whoever. Not saying a visit to ATOS is fun but If you think attending a “work focused interview” is traumatic you should try a trip through the just-ice system. Try doing a “stretch”, it isn’t any fun, trust me!

  76. Stevie777

    The housing are not telling the truth all housing associations and councils were briefed on the bedroom tax last year.

  77. Ed milliband has decided to criticize the wp programmes yet not a mention about people being sanctioned.

  78. Stevie777 and sectioned

    Go ahead make fun of my expose, there were people like me who were not mentally ill, that chose to go into mental hospitals voluntarily to allieviate themselves of poverty, the place was full of them ,I was not one of them. It was penpushing liars that applied to have me sectioned for fighting against government work schemes and showing them up for what they were.

    • Guy…
      I’m On your side..
      I dont know where you thought i was making fun of your “expose”….please feel free to point it out…..I’ll stop short of saying sorry because you appear to have picked me up wrong…cant speak for Sectioned though i dont see where he made fun of you either…??

  79. @ sibrydionmawr | November 28, 2012 at 11:21 am

    It would be great if the 2.5 million (or is it 3 million?) unemployed could be organised to vote in the same way. They could have quite an effect on the make up of the next government. It’s a wonder certain stupid and corrupt MPs don’t realise this could happen. It could happen if it could be organised. If people with relevant blogs urged readers to vote for the party that had the best policies in their manifesto for the next election – and warned the parties that not implementing those points when they were in power would result in a massacre for them at the next election after that one – it could make some of the idiots begin to think that they had better be a bit nicer to the unemployed.

    If part-time workers could also be roped in there would be many more millions.

    • It would have to be a campaign that also had a presence on the street, the internet is useful, but is no substitute for face-to-face contact with others. It would also be a very hard slog, as many are actually quite apathetic, something the government is only too well aware of, and actually relies on in order to get away with their schemes. Many people want ‘someone’ to do something, but when it comes to getting up off their backsides and actually doing something themselves it’s a different matter. It’s a rather scary aspect of human nature, and one that can eventually let some really horiffic things happen, such as what happened in Germany in the 1930s and 40s. Though nothing as severely nasty as that is happening here yet, that could change oh so easily. Already the poor and disabled, and the unemployed are being demonised, and will in all proabability be allowed to starve, or forced into desperate acts.

      I hope very much that those that say they care will take real heed at what is happening before their eyes, and not convince themselves that it will not be allowed to go too far. This government is evil, and the Labour Party must share the responsibility of it getting to this situation. However, despite my loathing of the Labour Party as an institution I still believe that there are still a few members with some human and humane credentials. They need to stand up and be counted.

      I’ve suggested this before, but I’ll repeat it. A good place to start is to join a union like the IWW as they are positive about unemployed workers, as is the IWA, Union dues are also cheap at £1 a month for unwaged people. It may take a while to find others in your area, but gradually over time connections will be made. I’ve only recently joined the IWW, so it’s early days. I’ve also tried to contact various groups in my locality about holding some kind of sustained action, but as is often the case, many of these groups are quite tardy and also cliquey in their approach, or turn out to be Trots masquerading as anti-cuts groups.

      In order to radicalise people there needs to be an effective support group ready and waiting for when the shit hits the fan and a previously apathetic person is sanctioned, or forced to undertake activiites that really offend them. It certainly tends to focus their minds, and that is the point at which they are likely to be able to access a non-judgemental support group that can, at the very least empathise, and from that point begin to build a culture of resistance

  80. To stevie777 and sectioned

    I wonder what your convictions are?

  81. For those of you concerned about your online privacy, this link could prove of interest/help
    https://techtoolsforactivism.org/content/browsing-internet-safely

  82. Stevie777

    You and sectioned seem to think being sectioned is a good thing, bed, food etc etc, good luck to you if that’s your thing it’s certainly not mine.

    • Prisoner Cell Block H

      Anyone who is coming out with this shite that being LOCKED UP in a mental hospital/prison is a good thing is talking out of a hole in their arse. It is one of the most stressful and traumatic experiences a person can suffer.

      • Prisoner Cell Block H

        PS I don’t think anyone on here is even suggesting that. And NOBODY should be forced into a position where they feel they would be better locked up just to get a bed for the night. What happened to you Guy is utterly disgraceful and despicable.

    • Guy..
      I never said anything about being sectioned is a good thing….if you read my post i think you can see i’m saying it’s the better of two evils…..
      Just for the Record, you say you were sectioned because of a money or debt issue,…
      Quote Guy Fawkes..”they said I was vulnerable because of impending non-eviction and had me detained under the mental health act for something I did not owe”….

      I find that very hard to believe…

  83. something survived...

    That fake job ad for an SIS Target Elimination Specialist. wish it was real.
    I did work a day as a pest exterminator and didn’t catch anything. However Ive found several pests now and they are in Downing Street. I’d do this job
    just point me in the direction of IDS, Grayling, Hoban, etc. If they can sanction our benefits then can we sanction their lives?

    Joke.

    If they want me to work in the security services I’d point out that the people’s security is at risk from the government so if they want to go looking for terrorists, the terrorists are right there sitting at the top.
    You can take medicines to deal with IBS, have they developed one to get rid of IDS? ‘National security': nation is made up of ordinary people. People’s security means not being starved or punished by this illegitimate ‘government’. Therefore people’s personal data is an Official Secret, people’s access to benefits is a right (for health and safety), being made destitute is a ‘terrorist act’, IDS = traitor.

    Try changing a few words: changing ‘poor’ to ‘black’ and see how many people would still agree the policy is a good idea. ‘We have to deal with the causes of blackness and stop people being black, by taking away their benefits until they become white, or until they die’. Is IDS really a reboot of Hermann Goering, or Josef Goebbels? Is Atos the spawn of Dr Mengele?…
    Well enough to work to death, or sick enough to be sent to die/experiments? Treason is being done to the people of this country, by those that call themselves a government. Arbeit Macht Frei they should have above the jobcentres and work (death) programmes, workfare providers… That wall of jobseekers they claim to have found jobs for, they should have a wall of ‘People we are proud to have killed by our system’. People who were evicted, starved or frozen to death, people who killed themselves, people pursued on the internet by violent ex-partners who tracked them down via Universal Jobmatch and murdered them. People who were declared fit for work then died of heart attacks, cancer or strokes. People sanctioned and made destitute. People sent to workfare while terminally ill so the government could squeeze every last drop of work out of them. People sent to dangerous jobs where they got killed.
    Kids who died in accidents caused because their parents were on workfare or forced McJobs and couldn’t get childcare so had to leave the children alone. Adults whose carers were sent to workfare, and the adults were given to state ‘carers’ who abused or killed them. People who died because of an accident caused by a workfare worker with no training.
    The victims will just snowball!

    Say IDS has a stroke but for some reason does not get the private care he’d get from his rank/wealth/ job. He gets sent to a state hospital/home and all the paid staff have been sacked because they are too expensive to pay their wages. Fear not, for they have all been replaced by workfare people. They ‘forget’ to feed or wash him or take him to the toilet, they have had no training anyway, can’t waste money on training. They are all hungry themselves so eat his food. Their workfare dole has to pay for their own uniforms. Left in a pile of his own No. 1 and No. 2,
    not just a metaphor, IDS is slowly starved, not turned, covered in bedsores. The doctor has been replaced by a computer that was programmed by whoever wrote Universal Jobmatch, while they were drinking meths. The computer sends messages blaming him for his own condition and saying he should hurry up and get better or die, as he is bedblocking and Chris Grayling or Tessa Jowell could use the bed.
    As they had no training, one day a member of the workfare staff thinks it is okay to leave him face down in a pillow for several hours. However he ought to be delighted as then he can be recycled into fertiliser or Soylent Green. The doctor-computer says, Well done thank you for your contribution to BrokenBritain. Your survivors will be billed for your care…

  84. Pingback: Universal Jobmatch: The IT Shambles at the DWP | the void | Disability Campaigning | Scoop.it

  85. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)

    Judging by the lack of reaction to ALL the absurdity the State (as a whole) throws at ‘commoners’, the above post is the opinion of a pessimist.

    An optomist (think tank) will say 2% of Work Programme participants disagree with you, something survived. They. Are. The majority.

    2% is considered to be a majority.

    2% of 100%.

    WAKEY WAKEY! The ‘economy’ isn’t going to recover until 2020, I read this in ’09.

    It’s only 2012 and I’m on my 2nd sanction.

  86. I am not legally trained but if you think this is useful use it and post it to any relevant site or blog. It might give others ideas for improving it:

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    I am trying to find a job. I search for jobs. I apply for any for which I am qualified. I even apply for some for which I am not qualified but which I believe I could do. I do not need to register on the Universal Jobmatch site.

    You must be aware that the internet is used by malicious and mischievous people who try to trick others into giving up valuable personal information which can be used for criminal purposes.

    The first Principle of the Data Protection Act, 1998, gives me the legal right to withhold personal information. I do not give my consent for my personal information to be given to commercial organisations which I choose not to give it to. It is not necessary for me to give away this right for the purposes of searching for a job. This is particularly important in offering protection against my personal information being used by criminals.

    Monster Jobs has been hacked into before and will be hacked into again.

    Government sites have been hacked into before and will be hacked into again.

    Information held by the Government, and supposedly kept secure, has been lost and made public – and will be again.

    I have no faith in the ability of Monster Jobs or in the Government to keep my personal information safe.

    There is an admittance on the Universal Jobmatch site that the security of personal information cannot be guaranteed.

    There is no guarantee that personal information cannot be transferred to any country in the world, which is against the Eighth Principle of the Data Protection Act, 1998.

    My rights to the privacy of my personal information are also guaranteed under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

    Anyone registering with the Universal Jobmatch site could be open to exploitation by unscrupulous and fake employers. To get a job, one needs to give the potential employer their name, address, date of birth, NI number and bank details. Job seekers will be forced to hand over this information to anyone who claims to be an employer and who claims to be offering a job to the job seeker. We have already seen bogus job advertisements, including one supposedly for MI6 and another one with a Thailand email address which was a clear attempt at identity theft, and which were not intercepted before appearing on the Universal Jobmatch site. The administrators of that site are clearly incapable of running it correctly and there is no guarantee that matters will improve: every Government-sponsored computerised system has been found to be faulty, and this one follows that pattern.

    Job seekers are asked to make their personal information public but the Government will not and cannot offer any protection for it nor does it offer any compensation for the job seekers whose information will be used for criminal purposes.

    Because of everything alluded to above I most strongly object to being forced to register with Universal Jobmatch. It is an infringement of my rights under the Data Protection Act, 1998 and the European Convention on Human Rights, and will not enhance my ability to find a job. It will leave me vulnerable to criminal activity and could put me in danger in ways that are yet to be determined.

    I would only register with the Universal Jobmatch site if I receive a signed letter from a member of the Job Centre or the Department for Work and Pensions which acknowledges my objections and which states that I am being forced or compelled to register on the Universal Jobmatch site under the threat of sanctions.

    The letter must contain a complete copy of this letter and must allude to it. It must also agree that I will be entitled to compensation if my personal details are used for criminal purposes or in some way that harms me, my reputation or my prospects.

    If I do not receive that letter it will be obvious that there is no legality in the compulsory registration on the Universal Jobmatch site.

    If I receive that letter, it will be tacit agreement that the one signing it, or the organisation they represent, will be liable for the payment or provision of any compensation or any other form of redress obtained by me, or by others on my behalf, for the forced loss of my rights under the Data Protection Act, 1998 and/or under the European Convention on Human Rights, or for any loss or inconvenience caused by criminal or mischievous activity because of my personal details being on the Universal Jobmatch site.

    I repeat that I am trying to find work, I search in various ways and places and I do not need to register on the Universal Jobmatch site but would do so under protest (and maintaining my rights) if given the guarantees I have asked for in this letter and the acknowledgement that I was being coerced by threat of sanctions.

    Yours faithfully,

    —————-

    If a Job Programme provider tries to force you, you could substitute their name for the JC or DWP.

    If you have already given consent or signed up and want to withdraw your permission I could post another version for that purpose if someone wants it.

    ——-
    By using this you are not refusing. You are asking for your conditions to be met. They are reasonable conditions if their demand is legal. If their damand is legal they should have no fear of giving the asked for guarantee of compensation because, if it’s legal, there would be no case for compensation and they wouldn’t be risking anything.

  87. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)

    Ned. Read the post above. Your letter will be laughed at, if it is read at all.

    A poster has composed a letter which goes over the States head, on the ‘Charities have questions to answer…’ blog by Johnny Void.

    Another poster has done the ‘WP referrals x £400 =’ maths and created an itemised receipt, I think it’s in the same post.

    Have a read. Then think about the effectiveness of your stencil letter.

    It is illegal to work for little or no reward. & it is blatantly unacceptable to use £300+ millions of taxpayer generated revenue – to get a worse result than if the money hadn’t been spent (paid to sCameron & co social circle of friends, noblemen, elite & willing servents of the state).

    Leveson petition reached 60,000 signatures. We cant raise 1,000 comments let alone signatures.

    It’s not going to be an easy task at all.

  88. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)
  89. Stevie 777

    You can believe what you, like but I know what the truth is and I was sectioned because I am a political activist and the so called rent debt and impending eviction was lies to put me there. I doubt I would have complained to ombudsmen level for the fun of it regarding my sectioning but like all government departments that set out to fit you up, they are not going to uphold your complaint.

  90. USTU

    Is it any wonder you cannot reach 1,000 signatures when the site is full of pisstakers who discredit those who do try to perform some political activism, which is obvious requires numbers or serious thinkers not idiots.

    • Guy Fawkes..
      i take it your “piss taker” comment was directed at me……Sectioned because you are a political activist..????….I smell bullshit..

  91. United StereoTypes of Unemployment (U.S.T.U.)

    They will always be around, Guy Fawkes.

    Focus on the ‘silent’ readers, & future readers. Don’t let the negatives distract you.

  92. So do I but it’s coming from your direction not mine.

    • Guido…
      you were obviously section because you needed it……you have a very high opinion of yerself if we’re supposed to believe this crap…Aye right Che….

  93. What is being politically active have to do with having a high opinion of yourself – perhaps your inaction shows what a low opinion you have of yourself.

    • What do you know of my actions……what the fuck do you know about me…..Fuck all….that’s what you know about me….what extent do you go to when, as you say” you are being politically active????…..Just by reading back on your post’s, it’s quite clear to me you like the sound of your own fucking voice and are not prepared to listen to reason……No wonder you were sectioned……Crank!!

  94. I’ve read your posts too and there was no signs of political activity in the form of defiance of government diktats or sanctions from you. Those that know me know I have done plenty regarding political activism, they also know I was illegally sanctioned, I also have proof that says I was. You too appear to like the sound of your own voice 777. didn’t hear much of the voice of reason coming from it.

    • So what you are saying is, the Council, The Police, the doctors and Nurses and Ambulance people were all in cahoots and working for the Government when you got sanctioned…Fuck off!!….

      As far as me showing signs of Defiance of government ditktats or sanctions…what fucking good does it do for anyone if i talk about it here….I’ll take my own form activism to the streets if and when the time is right….

      Your just pissed because i said Bobby Sands had the courage of his conviction to fight Thatcher….he and many others used the only weapon the Government couldn’t take from them…their Lives…would you go to those extremes for your beliefs….????

      either fight the good fight or accept your fate….there is no middle ground in this War with these Bastards.

      We could all go online and talk about it until the cows come home, we could all walk the streets with our placards and mega phones. a million people marched to stop the War, well guess what….the government thumbed it’s nose at those people and went to fucking War anyway….

      Direct action is what is required.,….not namby pamby tut tuts..

  95. come on leave this please folks. this ain’t the place.

  96. No to universal jobmatch

    Go on the sick with anxiety and stress due to these draconian measures being implemented, you cannot sleep, eat and are constantly worried that you cannot get a job and you and your family are going to be punished with sanctions.

  97. But even if doctors sign you on the sick because of anxiety/stress, Atos find you fit for work and mind says work helps mental illness.

  98. Could anyone clarify this. If you still haven’t managed to get a job on the WP by the 2 year mark, the next step is a mandatory 30 hours community action stint. Would the 35 hours job search be still applied together with the 30 hour community work. Thats makes 65 hours per week!

  99. The work programme has been shown to be failing, it hit the headlines last week as being well under their target .. was it 3% of people finding work via the WP?. I really can’t see this mythical 35 hours a week job hunt becoming reality, there simply aren’t enough PC’s at the library and Work programme centre’s for it to work.
    But who knows with this government, .. already the poor are killing themselves because of this new Welfare act, and that hasn’t even started yet.

  100. https://jobsearch.direct.gov.uk/Account/InfoTermsConditions.aspx

    Could some one have a look at the Terms and conditions Clause 8…8.1 and 8.2
    “8. General

    8.1 This service and the use of it are governed by ENGLISH Law. The ENGLISH Court system shall have exclusive authority over any disputes connected to or arising out of the use of this service.

    8.2 If you use information or services provided on the site from outside the UK, you do so at your own risk and you are responsible for checking local laws and not doing anything to break them.

    Now, I Live in Scotland and i’m under Scottish Law, so were do i stand????

    Also, does Anyone have a list of The Cookies in the UJ site and maybe a bit of detail as to what they do…
    I’m thinking of asking my local authority if it would be ok for me to use one of their computers in the library and would it be ok if i install these cookies.

    obviously i wont let on what the site is, i’m kinda looking for a YES/NO answer from them

  101. I have trying for a week now to look for work on universal jobmatch and will not for the life of me let me, it lets me log-on but go-no further!? This is proving to be a problem and so could you please email me a guide or help resolve this situation asap. Thankyou yours sincerely miss davis

    • No to universal jobmatch

      Don’t worry Sarah its the same for me aswel. Its a complete farce. A friend of mine signed on today and he told them that the new site is no good and he cant use it, and his adviser was completely understanding about it. The advisers probably hear it all day every day.

  102. What a crock of shit, usual “lets bad mouth the government for making it harder for long term claimants to reap the reward of sitting at home and doing nothing!. Its about time something like this was introduced!, lets hope it catches out the scroungers who have too much time on their hands and decide to fill it starting blogs like this to scare monger people. Get a grip!, its simple, if your speading in a car and get caught you get fined!, if your doing wrong on JSA and get caught likewise!, its called JSA for a reason, Jobseekers Allowance, and if your seeking employment your safe as houses!!!. Its high time people got real!.

    • Sven would you be happy to send off your personal details blind to a possible identity theft farming operation?

      And how many are scroungers? 3% to 8% of 2.5 million jobseekers according to official DWP figures.

    • All That Sparkles Isn't Gold

      With all due respect Sven the UJM is truelly awful. I reside not too far from Preston, yet when I specify my area within 20 miles I am given jobs in Exeter and Dorset. Nothing in the area shows up. The system is not fit for purpose. I use Indeed or Trovit. Infact due to Indeed I found a vacancy I was just previously telephone interviewed for (initial stage). I am not a scrounger and it is insulting for you to brand everyone as one. My previous job was covering the UK for a jewellery manufacturer, starting at 4 am Monday to arrive at 9am for my first call and travelling the region all week to arrive back late Friday night. I worked bloody hard and gave 1000% to my job, loyalty to a career get one nowhere these days.

      • This is down to the horrible press unemployed people are getting now and quite frankly it is annoying.
        It is all to easy to call someone a scrounger because they are unemployed before finding out the reason why etc.
        The UJ system is broken and flawed, no employer vetting procedure in place (this is why bogus idenity theft job posts have been showing up), the distance calculator is way off and half the time there are no contact details to apply for the jobs.
        I am going to stick to using other job boards that seem to have got it right.

  103. If an independent web developer & IT security expert looked and tested this site they would hold there heads in despair and condemn the system.
    Whoever setup the job distance calculation system needs some basic geography lessons.

  104. No to universal jobmatch

    I signed on today and told my adviser about the poor UJ system, and she was well aware that it was a waste of time. So everyone dont dispair – even the advisers know its shite!

  105. WITHOUT PREJUDICE – Jobseekers fight back at Tory Jobseeker Dictatorship Methods.

    Yes here we ago again!! Iain Duncan Smith’s, (Universal COCK SCRATCH), how much more can we downgrade job seekers and make them feel like shit? If the new humiliating diary monotoring your every daily movements just to get a mere existence payment, is not degrading enough for you and your out of work, then yes!!! – Sign up for an Identity theft government gateway account and in turn: (Come and have your personal details stolen on the Web with (NEW) – Universal Cock and Snatch Scratch). Guaranteed to make a Cock of you and certainly Snatch your personal details, (Expertly engineered by stuck up Tory Boys with no idea of poverty or what BEING unlucky and at the bottom end of life is about. As they were all born with silver spoons up thier arses!!!)

    We really want a job, We really want to work,but what we don’t want is the filthy injustice degrading treatment and ‘You claiming scum looks’ from G4S and Job Centre Staff. So yes!!!………
    Let the Tories and the Employment Service make you feel like ‘ common flushable toilet waste’ with a further abundance of ‘dictatorship, ideas… the latest insult to Job Seekers… UNIVERSAL COCK SCRATCH!! What is next??? Ah yes!!! have a usb slot surgically and permaenently embedded and available in the side of your head so you can relay every movement to the DWP!!! The government’s austerity plans!! (SIMPLE) – Make it even more of a headache for claimants. Make it so shit, that possibly they just won’t bother at all. :) God I feel better now!!! Thanks :) UNIVERSAL COCK SCRATCH!!! WHAT A LOAD OF DICTATING SHITE!!!! :)

  106. Moan, Moan, Moan, look at me!, lowest I’ve been in years, so you “tax payers” bail me out because I signed up to a car loan, mortgate, or whatever other habits you’ve signed up to then expect the rest of the working population to bail you out!. “I am a administrator, a sales man, a driver” no!!, if your unemployed and you want to work get to a warehouse and pack some banana’s!!!!, I dont see you doing that??. Its all too easy to throw weight behind the negativity of Universal Jobmatch, get behind it and in time if it has failed THEN stand up and be noticed!. I know theres a lot of people that are signing on that are genuinely in a pickle!, thats what the system is there for!, however I guarentee you there are a lot I’d guess 80/90% that are screwing the system without even knowing it!. its simple, if you want JSA then get on with it!, if you use Universal Jobmatch and you do it correctly it will work for you. Give it time to sort all the bugs, Rome wasnt built in a day!, most of all stop moaning and start looking for bloody work!.

    • we are looking for work, the reason we are complaining about UJ is due to the fact the system is broken yet we are expected to use it for the majority of job searching with threats of benefits being taken away.
      If they gave us time whilst they fixed it we would not be complaining

    • Start looking for work? The last time I was forced to suffer the indignity of New Deal I applied for 250 jobs in 13 weeks, and sent out 20 CVs and ‘spec. letters per day, and didn’t get one single interview. I am unemployable, and so are many others, and it is high time the government recognized that fact and left people alone! After all, JSA only accounts for around 2% of the Welfare bill, and it is our money to begin with. The Industrial Revolution is over and now they owe us a living, and don’t you ever forget it. The persecution and demonization of the unemployed is entirely political and serves to keep the workers in fear, whilst punishing the unemployed for not consuming enough, and simultaneously provides a convenient scapegoat for failing policies in a failed system. All politicians know perfectly well that full employment in a Capitalist system is an impossibility. Capitalism needs unemployment in order to function. There has to be more workers than jobs in order to maintain the balance of power in favour of the Capitalists and not the workers, otherwise it seizes to be Capitalism and becomes Communism. Do you see?

  107. Show me one JC+ advisor that has sanctioned anyone in the past 2 weeks since its launch!!!. you may get the odd cock that threatens as in trying to pre-empt you that it will if your not using it right effect your benefits, but I guarentee you there will have been not one sanction since its launch 2 weeks ago!. Its there to wangle out the people sat pretending to the world and sometimes themselves that they are doing all they can to look for work!, its there to re-educate the good folk of england that we no longer require a pen and paper!, we can through the power of the internet do things online without having to write it all down!. its there to stop the people sat drinking skol and shooting up on the good tax payers money doing so!. and that as far as I and the rest of the population that truelly do get on with it are concerned are all good things. I am more than sure that if you walked in to an advisor interview and said “I think its poor, but I am looking on indeed ect ect” and you give them verbal asurances, that they will most probably agree with you for the time being!. but sitting there and saying “its crap” and having nothing to back it up with deserves a sanction of benefit. “have you been looking for work?” “no” “why” Universal jobmatch is crap” “so what else have you done?” “nowt” sanction. get on with it using other sites and come back to Universal jobmatch when its fixed!. I got on it on day one, I was lucky, I have my CV on their and although I agree at the minute it isnt great I can see it coming good.

    • so has the jobmatch system come back with anything for you?
      have had 4 interview in last 6 days and got one next week without using the UJ.
      The main thing that disturbs me about the UJ system is in the terms and conditions where it says it cannot stop anyone outside of the UJ system getting hold of your CV and it cannot stop spam being sent to your account.
      That is a huge security hole that needs fixing before I login into it.

  108. I’ve been reading the article for a few days with interest. And thought I might put some peoples minds at rest. I came across the official DWP union website and this article for its members.

    http://www.pcs.org.uk/en/department_for_work_and_pensions_group/dwp-news.cfm/id/D34395B0-26B7-4E67-81B32F80CFEBB3E8

    Print it off and shove in your advisors face, because even there managers are saying it is not mandatory,

  109. here we go “union” bregade are in……. well done Steve, you’ve now jumped on the bandwagon of the few that feel it necesary to fill in a 12 page booklet in order to leave a desk to have a shit in a toilet in order to keep “jobs” in place!. get real man!, get your head out of the unions arse and start living in the real world!. I can understand peoples reservations with the “cookies” and the “terms and conditions” as I’ve stated before if anyone prefers indeed I am more than sure if they sit and explain this to their advisor the advisor will sympathise and most probably agree, if not seek their manager and they will!. Sorry steve but unions smunions, crock of horse manure the lot of them!.

    • Sven I would like to see how you can defend the site after this :

      Fake ad

      A fake ad posted by a group of hackers seeking to draw attention to the security flaws was able to harvest the personal details of over 70 jobseekers.

      Using clearly false details the hackers registered as an employer and gained access to the site posting a fake ad for a cleaning job which went live seemingly unvetted.

      They were then able to quickly harvest personal information including passwords and passport and driving licence scans that can be used to for identity fraud or allow them to illegally access email and even online bank accounts of applicants.

      Claimants are not obliged to sign up to the new site which allows jobseeker staff to monitor their activity and ensure they are applying for jobs. Despite this, many jobseekers say they were told to sign up to the site when they visited the jobcentre and were not aware that they could refuse.

      http://www.channel4.com/news/hackers-use-government-jobs-site-to-steal-your-data

      I trust you feel safe now.

    • Unions are our last hope. They are needed now more than ever. We face the greatest threat to our way of life since WW2. This is the most evil government since the days of King John and his Barons.

      • Unions are a double edged sword nowadays and have much of there power curtailed.
        Also the finances of some unions are rather dubious to say the least.
        Not to say they are not useful, just be wary which ones you join and which ones you can trust.

  110. chennel4.com is your source for this utter madness of a report?. let me think….. when asked to register for Universal Jobmatch are you ever asked to put passport details in? national insurance number?, no. at the jobcentre customers are told catagorically to remove all personal information from their cv’s before they upload them and have them as basically a canvas to sell the person. There is also a tick box to keep the CV private as aposed to public!, all is there for all to read and make their own minds up but as per people wander into jobcentres and expect the staff there to do everything for them in order to find them work and ensure their benefits are paid nicely into their banks for them!. as I have previously stated more than once I feel for the few of us that are indeed struggling to make ends meet, but some people need to get a grip, move with the times, and stop moaning!. indeed is my prefered engine, I believe it is better than UJ at the minute, a lot of people prefer red sauce to brown, but when something new comes out from heinz they may switch over. I am telling you all now that if you are doing your bit to find sustainable employment, not one person who works jc+ will stop your benefits. It is impossible!! the guy sat behind the desk may be a cock and may take paperwork to sanction your benefirt, but it has to pass through 2 more sets of hands before it gets to the part where it is actually deemed a sanction!. 3 people arnt wrong, one maybe, two possibly but 3, no. its OUR responsibility to ensure we are adhereing to the terms and conditions of jobseekers allowance in order to get our benefits, and in my current situation with the cost of council tax, rent ect if they deem it necesary to skip onehanded down Rotherham market whilst juggling traffic cones, so be it I will!. negativity is met with negativity! there are floors in everyday life, moaning will not fix it, every one pulling together and doing their small bit in this jigsaw of life will help!. More than happy to discuss.

    • The DWP have admitted that bogus jobs have been put on there and somehow they are going to fix it (I somehow think they are in above there heads and just do not want to admit it).
      The daily mail picked up on this as well (seems to be your style of newspaper sven).

  111. I’ve just tried to log into the government website to look at my jobsearch matches. I can’t log in. Says my Id and password don’t match even though I have used it previously. So I requested a new password. Got new password still not working, so I decided to request a new sign in code but you had to put in the new password and your email address to do it. Success got the same activation code that I already had. Tried the activation code and new password.. NO joy. does not work. So I clicked onto the page for help as it says and call their customer help desk. Yes use the little cash that you do get from the jobseekers allowance to call their helpdesk, never mind the employers your expected to call. I don’t have a telephone and only a pay as you go mobile.. It sends you to a webpage that does not have a “can’t sign in because your system is screwed up and we can charge you for our incompetence”. Just a “if you have lost your password or sign in activation code”. which low and behold takes you back to the ask for another password ect! Really! I can see a wonderful sign on date ahead.

    I do go to other sites to apply for jobs. Hate this site and all of it’s functions. Useless.

  112. So far Monster have emailed me twice saying here are the latest vacancies that match my criteria, but when I looked at them not one single vacancy matched my criteria! Not one. There wasn’t one single vacancy that I could apply for. There was everything from Registered Nurse to HGV Driver, but nothing that matched my skills and experience.

    • keep logs of all these jobs you cannot apply for (make photo copies if you can afford it as well) and take a copy into your next signing on day.
      Also defo keep a copy of any bogus or jobs that do not seem right as well.
      Need to keep proof that the system is flawed.

    • I find the vacancy has usually expired!!

  113. I run a construction recruitment agency. Just thought you should know that Universal Jobmatch is causing us a major headache, too. We used the old Jobcentre site as a perfect way to reach our potential candidates, and it feels like it’s been pulled out from under us like a rug. We can barely ever log in, and when we do we can’t post up new vacancies most of the time due to a technical bug – for which the solution is to ‘copy and paste things in to notepad first’ which doesn’t work anyway and was a laughable answer to a supposedly ‘urgent issue being worked on by our team’. The worst part is that we’ve experienced a serious and noticable decline in the amount of people calling us for our positions – and obviously we rely on having candidates before we can do anything with the jobs we work to find. Our business is suffering as a direct result of Universal Jobmatch. Out of frustration at having no contact number to call and my e-mails being responded to by robots, I have contacted my local MP – this resulted in a phonecall from a local rep but it was just the lady from the Jobcentre who admitted there was nothing she could do about it. I would be interested in hearing from other companies or agencies experiencing similar issues, with the intention of building up a head of steam for a two-pronged assault. lee@frontline-construction.co.uk

  114. Thought some of you might find this information useful:

    Regarding the part of Universal Jobmatch where you have to choose a ‘Reason for NOT applying for a job’, your answer is only viewable by a DWP adviser if they (or another DWP adviser) have selected the job for you. Only in these instances will your ‘reason’ appear in your Activity History and may be viewed by an adviser -if you have given them permission, of course (it’s NOT mandatory!!)

    For all other jobs (the jobs you look at but were NOT recommended by your DWP advisor) whatever ‘reason’ you choose is secret and is only viewable by yourself. If the job is unsuitable for you, you don’t need to leave a reason why you haven’t applied for it (although you may wish to leave a reason for your own reference).

    In this respect, at least, the DWP is not spying on you!

    • so if you do not put a tick in the consent box the dwp cannot do anything anyway.
      or can they?
      never know with this sneaky parade of evil

  115. anyone noticed that most jobs on this wretched thing are on other job boards and they are all expired?
    happened to 90% of the ones I have looked at.

  116. From the Independent Newspaper today 20/12/2012

    Unemployed to be forced to sign up to Universal Jobmatch website at the centre of security concerns.

    Unemployed people will be forced to join up to a government site at the centre of security concerns – as well as posting their CVs online – or face losing their jobseeker’s allowance from the new year, it has been announced.

    The Universal Jobmatch site was criticised after hackers demonstrated its vulnerability to attack and Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith admitted that thousands of fake job adverts had been blocked, but that some had got through and had to be removed.

    But, speaking this morning, Mr Duncan Smith said that joining it would become compulsory, regardless of whether or not they search for jobs via other means. He said: “We have been clear that this is not mandatory yet and there will be no sanctions for not joining…but mandation will begin in the new year.”

    The removal of benefit payments will be at the discretion of job centre staff. But some jobseekers have complained that they do not want to upload sensitive information – such as that included in their CV – to a site over which there have been security fears.

    Unemployed people will be forced to join up to a government site at the centre of security concerns – as well as posting their CVs online – or face losing their jobseeker’s allowance from the new year, it has been announced.

    The Universal Jobmatch site was criticised after hackers demonstrated its vulnerability to attack and Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith admitted that thousands of fake job adverts had been blocked, but that some had got through and had to be removed.

    But, speaking this morning, Mr Duncan Smith said that joining it would become compulsory, regardless of whether or not they search for jobs via other means. He said: “We have been clear that this is not mandatory yet and there will be no sanctions for not joining…but mandation will begin in the new year.”

    The removal of benefit payments will be at the discretion of job centre staff. But some jobseekers have complained that they do not want to upload sensitive information – such as that included in their CV – to a site over which there have been security fears.

    Unemployed people will be forced to join up to a government site at the centre of security concerns – as well as posting their CVs online – or face losing their jobseeker’s allowance from the new year, it has been announced.

    The Universal Jobmatch site was criticised after hackers demonstrated its vulnerability to attack and Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Iain Duncan Smith admitted that thousands of fake job adverts had been blocked, but that some had got through and had to be removed.

    But, speaking this morning, Mr Duncan Smith said that joining it would become compulsory, regardless of whether or not they search for jobs via other means. He said: “We have been clear that this is not mandatory yet and there will be no sanctions for not joining…but mandation will begin in the new year.”

    The removal of benefit payments will be at the discretion of job centre staff. But some jobseekers have complained that they do not want to upload sensitive information – such as that included in their CV – to a site over which there have been security fears.

    • put a basic cv up with no phone number or address; just an email address and a disclaimer saying address will be supplied to genuine employers only.
      unless they sanction you for that

  117. if you have not ticked give consent for dwp access, how will they know your cv is up there or not?
    hmmmmmmmmm

  118. Pingback: 2012: A Year of Lies and Blunders at the DWP Part 2 | the void

  119. well then, the job centre tried to force me onto this universal jobs match.

    i stood my ground with her, quoted data protection, statutory obligation etc. she then said she was going to sanction me until i mentioned i would take it up with the information commissionaires office. she went away for advice and came back saying it is not mandatory but soon will be

    she then threatened me at my next signing to change my job seekers agreement to 30 job applications a day

    i am going to use regulation 18 of the job seekers allowance regulations against her on that one but

    ANYBODY GOT ANY TIPS FOR MY ARSENAL WHEN I GO UP AGAINST THIS FACIST

    • best thing to do is be careful I would say as it looks as though she is going to try and make you slip up one way or the other.
      in situations like these you have to work out if you can afford to be sanctioned for standing your ground.

  120. may i ask how a job seekers agreement can dictate job centre policy when it is totally against the statutory legislation, which is

    The Jobseeker’s Allowance Regulations 1996

    and in particular regulation 18, which states

    Steps to be taken by persons actively seeking employment18.—(1) For the purposes of section 7(1) (actively seeking employment) a person shall be expected to have to take more than one step on one occasion in any week unless taking one step on one occasion is all that it is reasonable for that person to do in that week.

    in the regulation it states is states one step

    so how can a benefit adviser under the job seekers agreement which is not a statutory instrument override The Jobseeker’s Allowance Regulations 1996 by dictating the minimum amount of jobs applied for each day

    • keith, you’re right here and these 1996 regs were amended in 2004 to more than two steps a week. I’ve made a new claim for jsa in december after this UJ site went live and was concerned how an advisor was able to write 15-20 things to find work a week on the agreement form under “my responsibilities” (it used to be 3 steps a week in this little box)
      I didnt question this until i read the legislation and it seems from a freedom of information request its stll law until april 2013 when the jobseekers allowance regulations 2013 come into effect when its stated a jobseeker must do 35 hours a week of jobseeking. I’m going to ask them at the jobcentre soon which amendment to those 1996 regulations they are using because i cannot find anything on the satute books
      As far as registering on Universal jobsmatch you dont have to although they could issue with a Direction to register but whatever you do dont allow the dwp access (dont tick the box).
      my advisor told me to log into my UJM site at the jobcentre pc’s and printout all my jobsearches. I refused this because i wrote them all down in my booklet.

  121. Is there anything we can do to complain about being called skivers in newspapers? I am getting pretty pissed off with it (scuse language).

  122. Saw this on the Guardian website, think it sums up the shambles and deliberately intimidating trap that is Universal Jobmatch.

    I have had my first experience of this “monitored” system and I have to say it fails miserably. Had I not been fortunate enough to have decent people in the job centre (who think its a shambles to) I would have been immediately sanctioned, though I have been warned a second instance would have to be from “errors, in data entry”
    Problems are and include:
    *It does not log job searches, or even when you log in! you have to individually save (literally press 2 lots of save buttons) every single job you have seen then pick from a box and save all those to, which I found out today does not show up for the job adviser when they are looking, so your going to get sanctioned.
    *It only logs on the days that you press these buttons! so if you are like me who works on post it notes jotting down as you go along THEN go and spend a couple of hours entering the data it only shows as having spend 1 instance looking for work, which you then get sanctioned for.
    *The layout of the website is horrific! nothing is clearly defined, for example, doing external job searches you would have thought they would have a nice clean, highlighted set of links to lead you to these tools rather than sticking a data entry box in the corner, which I missed instead opting to save the similar jobs on their site, and referring to *2 again if you decide to do this in bulk you get 1 time stamp and a sanction.
    *Continuing the 3rd point, aside from looking at job advertisements you will also ask around and follow the leads up as you get information to prove whether its viable, or even exists.
    Unless you are going to enter every instance you do like researched phone number and address, gave a phone call, sent in details.
    Where you would normally say “over a period of days (05/01/2013 > 09/01/2013) I did xxx + yyy + zzz”, this again does not stack well even though it is an organic process, and you’ve guessed it, 1 data entry and a sanction.
    My conclusion of the system is that is has only one purpose and that is to trick people in to making mistakes and it will do that very well pushing millions of people in to poverty especially those who are not tech savvy and people who have learning difficulties.
    I am dyslexic, no point hiding it but I am certainly not stupid, I am qualified to a high degree, technologically up to date and practised, and the latter of my work history has involved being astute and requiring attention to detail so its not very often things evade me.
    But this website is a shambles, I would not have paid a developer for turning over such a poor counter-intuitive product.
    I expect the queues at food banks to be around the block by spring this year and people to be out on the street in no time.
    After all, any government that can consider a man with no legs and an arm missing from war fit for work, as well as those with long term cancer, serious mental issues, and many other disabilities will have no trouble freeing their conscience of the burden of people out on the streets.

    • Trying to work out what they mean by 1 data entry and a sanction?
      I am using the activity log to write down each job search I do (using outside agencys etc such as reed etc), this logs each entry with a date stamp ( I have about 40 entries at present).
      From what I am reading or trying to work out will I get a sanction for this?
      It seems as though the guardian user/reader has ticked the consent box?
      you get a sanction from ‘errors in data entry’?
      that makes no sense to me at all

      • tonydawson567052457

        I do a bit of web building myself and working with databases and automation. And I have to say the level of expertise put in to the site is a joke! I am self taught and by no means an expert but this site fails to data-log anything or meet any requirements!

        So far I have seen it fail to log days “access data” which should show when you are doing a job search; AKA on 01/01/13 did search for XXX + YYY.

        It does not and has never logged anything you select from the drop down boxes on individual job advertisements, so you cant go flagging the fact 80% of them are chaff.

        And the box you can type in also fails to list anything you do most times.

        So what is the point of having a site, spending time on it and entering data when none of it is available for the pillocks in the job centre?

        • So they can say you have not done any job searches and have not logged anything so a sanction is imposed.
          I use google chrome and the activity log does work for me, although printing out the activity log is a mess (as I refuse to allow dwp access I have to give them print outs)>

  123. I went to log on today, and was told that i need to accept the new terms and conditions. I’m wondering if they have sneaked in some small print which will make sure I incure some sanction. I cannot afford to lose money so i am going to steer clear of UJM until i know more. I will stay with tried and trusted agency sites. This whole UJM website is absolutely horrendous to navigate. On other sites I can send a cover note with my applications, and give the employer some personal friendly info about me. No such thing exists on the UJM site. And if you look at any particular job , and decide for whatever reason it’s not for you, you HAVE to give a reason in the drop down menu. It’s like having a man in a uniform stood next to you, asking why you didn’t apply for that particular job. I hate it.

  124. I am currently on job seekers I attended a universal jobsearch group which was mandatory I was told the site records all job search yet when I use it it not only doesn’t register my search’s but it say’s I haven’t even been on the site as a result of this I was sanction for 4 weeks told I was not intitled to anything and asked to fill out a form of all jobsearch’s in a month I explained I couldn’t remember as I was trying to see my father who had had a stroke and they sanctioned me after reading up about sanctions I have found out that they are ment to look at such things as family problems etc but they don’t even if u appeal they find a loop hole iv have since spoken to two jsa advisors that I personaly know and they have said by the end of this year 90% of ppl on benifits will be sanctioned as they have to meet targets further more on giving dwp access to universal jobsearch they can also access ur emails and I strongly dissagree with this as my email is linked to my bank and various other private things does any1 know a way how I can remove the approval for this without loosin more benifits

    • Ok you have to use the activity log to record what you do on UJM (or copy and paste search and job links to an A4 sheet).
      You should be able to appeal the sanction (they should give you details on how to appeal).
      They cannot access force you to give dwp access & they cannot access your emails.
      But they will need your email address you used to sign up with UJM to see if you have actually signed up for it.
      I would speak to CAB and appeal.

  125. great put up, very informative. I ponder why the other specialists of this sector
    don’t realize this. You should continue your writing. I’m sure, you have a
    huge readers’ base already!

  126. Pingback: Universal Jobmatch – update | The Thurrock Heckler

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  128. hELLO THERE
    I am just completing a sanction of 1 month for something unexplained from 3 years ago!!!! Anyway….

    I believe they have created faux reasons to have me in the jobcentre to ask me about the tick box on the site. There have been noted left in my casepapers to alert staff to ask. I have never ticked it and will never tick it. But all in all i think i have had it mentioned to me now on over 8 or 9 occaions!!! WTF.

    • A sanction from something 3 years ago – what the hell!!
      What was it that cause a sanction?
      Yeah they probably do have niggly reasons to get you in the jobcentre – sounds as though JCP are going further down this route to hassle people :(

  129. What a waste of time.The worst website I have ever been on.create a cv takes hours ,and when you look oft it ,it’s not there ,all the jobs are on indeed any way .its so slow and clunky ,and anyone that isn’t computer literate is going to have a hard time .pile of shit!!!

  130. I also like “website cannot display page”.after 20 minutes of clunking about .love it

  131. Reblogged this on My Life In Endwood and commented:
    I too am facing the perils of Universal Jobmatch, and of the DWP and their Job Seekers Allowance. Way to go indecision, look where you’ve landed me now!

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