Criticising Government Policy Online Is “Unacceptable Intimidation” According To Treasury

byteback-fb1As pointed out by @refuted, the Treasury’s claim that a recent anti-workfare social media storm was “unacceptable intimidation” comes just days after an Upper Tribunal judge endorsed this kind of criticism as “legitimate political expression”.

The comments came after news broke that Bristol IT company Byteback had pulled out of workfare a week after being visited by George Osborne to sing the praises of the scheme.  Hundreds of people had contacted Byteback on social media expressing dismay at their involvement in forced work after some fierce questioning from @andygale on twitter caused them to refer to their unpaid workers as ’employees of the state’.

Shortly after this bombardment, and in a huge embarrassment for Osborne, Byteback apologised for their involvement in his grubby scheme and promised “no more involvement ever with workfare”.

This prompted a tantrum from the Treasury who took to the national press to complain of the “unacceptable intimidation” Byteback had faced online, referring to it as “outrageous”.  Yet in Byteback’s comments above it seems that what finally prompted them to withdraw from workfare was a phone call from someone called Robin.  According to the company themselves “we had a good chat with Robin who explained in details the issues surrounding workfare”.  Byteback even thanked Robin for this conversation, saying that they had been “ill informed about workfare”.  Well done Robin!

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It tells us everything we need to know about the Tory Party’s true attitude to civil liberties that a friendly phone call criticising Government policy is branded “unacceptable intimidation”.  Osborne seems to think the people running Byteback are fucking idiots, who are incapable of making decisions on their own based on new information.  He isn’t the only senior Tory who thinks this way either.

The DWP were back in court again this week as part of Iain Duncan Smith’s desperate attempt to keep the names of charities and companies using workfare a state secret.  The department were appealing an earlier decision by the First Tribunal (pdf) that these organisations should be named.  Part of their appeal was that the previous tribunal decision had not recognised that some comments made on the internet about workfare exploiters were really, really mean and had made the Salvation Army cry or something.

The judge was unimpressed, saying that: “the thrust of those blogs was well within the bounds of legitimate political expression within a democratic society”, despite acknowledging that “the occasional comment overstepped the bounds of decency”.  The miserable cunt.

The DWP also once again argued that if the public were told who is using workfare then the four week Mandatory Work Activity scheme would collapse.  Again they were rebuffed in a damning verdict in which the judge repeatedly pointed out that an appeal to the Upper Tribunal is supposed to be used to correct errors in law, not as an attempt to re-argue the facts.

As Boycott Workfare point out, the DWP seem to be “playing a delaying game anything to slow down the release of the list of all the businesses and organisations  profiting from the use of workfare.”  They are right to be shitting themselves, anger against unpaid work schemes and the benefit sanctions they are backed with, is growing fast.

George Osborne and Iain Duncan Smith seem genuinely astonished that so many people are appalled by forced and unpaid work.  But what is really making them furious is the devastating impact that mass collective action has had on their workfare policies. Those outside of the political classes, or the rich they serve, are not supposed to have any real political power.  That’s the kind of shit that gets toffs killed if you let it get out of hand.

To view the Upper Tribunal judgement visit: http://refuted.org.uk/2014/07/22/workfarenameandshame/

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136 responses to “Criticising Government Policy Online Is “Unacceptable Intimidation” According To Treasury

  1. Reblogged this on UNEMPLOYED IN TYNE & WEAR and commented:
    Cant help thinking this might be a pivotal moment. Mass demonstrations on the streets might be ignored by the media and government, but online action against at least some employers is now seen to be effective.

    The way ahead ?

    • GEOFF REYNOLDS

      “EACH AND EVERY DECISION OF ANY JUDGE, FEATURED AT WHATEVER LEVEL, IN ANY CASE CONCERNING THE DWP, IS JUST A PAPER EXERCISE.”

      THE OUTCOME IS KNOWN EVEN BEFORE THE CASE SETS FOOT IN A COURTROOM…………

      “OUR UK LEGAL SYSTEM IS NOTHING MORE THAN A CAREFULLY ORCHESTRATED SHAM TO DECEIVE THE CLAIMANT AND PUT MONEY BACK INTO THE TREASURY.

      WE HAVE A PROTECTED STATUS UNDER NUMEROUS DISABILITY LAWS.

      THEY CONTINUE TO FLOUT LEGISLATION TO PUNISH THOSE IN MOST NEED, BENDING RULES TO FIT THEIR TWISTED AGENDA OF KOWTOWING TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE COMPANIES WHO CROSS OUR EMINENT POLITICIANS PALMS WITH GOLD TO BRING ABOUT CHANGE…………………..

      “LET THE LITIGATION BEGIN AND THE LEVEL OF CORRUPTION BE EXPOSED”

  2. Reblogged this on Vox Political and commented:
    Of course, to the Coalition, anything that criticises the government is “unacceptable intimidation”, in the same way that anything that supports the government’s policies has total factual accuracy because Iain Duncan Smith firmly believes it to be true.
    Byteback are to be commended for what they have done, and should be held up as an example to other Workfare participants.

  3. Donated my wine money for the week. Keep up the good work.

    • Glances guiltily at unopened bottle of wine. Seriously many thanks, to you and everyone else who has donated recently and in the past, it really does make a difference and helps keep this blog going. For some reason I’d convinced myself that there was no way to find contact details via paypal of the people who’ve donated, but have just realised that’s bollocks of course I can, so apologies if you haven’t heard from me, you will. Also, please don’t donate unless you genuinely feel you can afford it, I’m skint but not destitute/sanctioned and know there’s people doing a lot worse then me.

      • My liver thanks you for the respite. Anyway, I’m in a position to donate, which is better than most. Also, if I lose my job I want people like you and those who read this blog looking out for the likes of me. My office begins its day with a dose of The Void and long may that continue.

        You’re also pretty funny with your potty mouth.

  4. one quick informative phonecall, undoing years of mass workfare propaganda hahaha. that little scumbag osborne must be feeling rather daft about now😀 well done Byteback and well done Robin. Hear hear!

  5. Rosemarie Harris

    When we get the list we all know what needs doing. Do not give,shop,buy .use anything from these places
    They thought it was alright to use people for free and abuse their power all the while laughing all the way to the bank …while people who were on these schemes if they didn’t do something they were told risked the position of having there social security stopped and having to use food banks.
    What we need is real jobs for paid work, not charity jobs at Third world pay.

  6. It’s funny really. They think that a scheme which people will participate in as long as (and ONLY as long as) no one knows they’re involved in it is probably totally moral, justifiable and popular. And of course it isn’t. Most businesses have heard the phrases “no publicity is bad publicity”, and they have, apparently, decided that this does not apply to laying people off to replace them with tax-payer funded free labour. WHO KNEWS.

  7. overburdenddonkey

    well get them, unacceptable intimidation of toffs wallets and purses, they care not a jot about our prospects…no wonder they are terrified of the growing power of social media…

  8. army of angles had my face book account banned for posting my dwp letters that they use mwa slaves tried to sanction me for 3 months and lost all becose i posted on there page they used mwa slaves at there store on mass and told me i was unsuitable and had to go and not wanted at the store cos i shit on them.

    on there fb page after posting i was called a reject from society that we didnt want in the shop and i looked like i was dragged through a hedge backwards by a so called staff member at the store that i never seen or spoke to.
    to bad i know how to open a new fb account pmsl

    (no names, thanks – jv) why dont you tell every one you had my account banned for posting my letters from the dwp that you use mwa slaves at your store and you dont want the public to know this had me banned and my posts removed and try to get me a 3 month sanction doubt that i won, also the dwp lost its appeal so now has to provide the list of the company’s involved in using mwa and cwp placements so ur screwed now boys 😉

  9. Oh boo hooo hoo to this Government. What about the unacceptable intimidation of JSA claimants from DWP / Work Program / NotHelp2Work and all other con schemes

  10. To be fair to the cunts, it does depend on what is said. For example threats to burn their shop to the ground would be intimidation most certainly. But just complaining about how they are using slave labour is not intimidation.

  11. The more i think about things, the more absurd it becomes, such as them crying “unacceptable intimidation”. let’s just think about that statement, does that suggest there is acceptable intimidation? like these tory entertainers intimidating people by loss of means to live, into slave labour? intimidating courts with endless appeals until they get their way. They are a bunch of babies, indeed.

    The way I see it is, the Tory’s have been on probation so to speak, since the last time they utterly fucked up this country, and amazingly they are FAILING in all aspects AGAIN… and just like our victory regarding these companies saying NO to slaves, and the courts telling them to piss off, slowly we will undo the Tory legacy bit by bit, until all that is left of them is their floundering reputation, yet again. they won’t get anymore chances. It’s goodnight conservatory party. Enjoy what’s left of your destructive spree.

  12. Reblogged this on The Freethinker and commented:
    They don’t like being criticised – oh dear! What are they going to do next – and I don’t want to give them any ideas – make criticism of the government an offence?

    • Good question. I wonder how long it will be before anyone who criticises the government is branded a terrorist.

      • Indeed, that is the direction and implication of their rhetoric.

        • You already are http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/jul/22/uk-definition-terrorism-political-journalists-bloggers-watchdog. Anyone who seeks to influence government policy, not only by violence, coercion or blackmail is now viewed as a terrorist. This includes bloggers. It does NOT include those who seek to influence government policy by bribery like lobbyists.

          • Obi Wan Kenobi

            Does that include MP’s themselves?

            They all try to coerce each other into voting for a policy by debating in the house of commons and the house of lords.

            So before they start spouting about bloggers or people online putting comments on to try and influence other people, they want to take a hard look at themselves, the terrorism definitions must therefore include MP’s by definition.

      • Im under no illusion that i’m one of many on the “Subversives” list after criticising this, and the last lot in power
        And i dont give a flying fuck

        • I think you may find you and the many other disgruntled who actually display their displeasure are the last on the ‘to find’ list.
          Its the quiet types who mess about in garden sheds for a decade they really worry about.

      • Oh, that won’t be long, I think. But let’s not give them any ideas, shall we…

  13. How come nobody mentions all of the propaganda thrown at the unemployed, “sat behind closed curtains watching flat screen tv’s” or all of the other bullshit from both government and media.
    The judge knew that there was plenty the unemployed could complain about if complainers from the other side (who have no right to complain) had their way.
    The intimidation is towards the unemployed not the other way around.

    • It is strange that they (the government) begrudge the unemployed, the sick the disabled for having a flat screen TV when criminals and prisoners have a human right towards them. So are criminals deemed a better class of people now? what sort of message does it send to society that committing crime you will get rewarded but in looking for work and putting your head down and committing yourself to find work in a bleak economy deems some reason to be punished for it, or your ill or disabled, its your fault, you caused your disability therefore you must be punished for it. What utter rubbish is spewed from the mouths of this government, I for one do not begrudge the poor a TV, flat screen or otherwise.

    • Im looking at a flatscreen right now, GF, but the curtains are wide open😉

    • The propaganda is often straight out of a comic book, those who know simply know, but whilst they are allowed to get away with such things with impunity they will continue to do so. We all know what happened when all those years ago Maggie tried to introduce the hated Poll Tax and there was virtual hand to hand combat on the streets before it was scrapped. Sadly this Tory Government has made a misguided but convincing campaign of propaganda and sound bite rhetoric feeding on the fears of the less educated and those who are well educated with a very narrow and selfish outlook on who in society have a right to live under the rules of democracy.

      I would think most people today who have a TV would have a flat screen one, they don’t have to be expensive and it’s nobody’s right to judge a person for having the bare necessities to live and have some kind of functional life beyond the Job Centre and sanctions. There is no room for aspirations, this coalition has seen to that and another 5 years will finally
      kick this country into it’s coffin and burry it six foot under.. why?.. because nobody gives a damn any longer about democracy for those who are unable to defend themselves.. it’s a typical attitude of right-wing politics… pretend you are concerned but do nothing whilst dragging the naïve with you.

      It’s as if we have walked this road for so long… weary and tired as we are we shall not falter from what we know as being right and good. Good people have died whilst bad people have watched and smirked because in their world the Poor, the sick and disabled and unemployed don’t exist… such people to them are expendable… and the sooner the better in order to reduce the excess population…. they will say this in private or if you read between the lines. dynamite wouldn’t separate IDS from his cabinet position it seems and so it has been proven. The current trend of TV programmes about people on the breadline or of very low education with nothing but a heartbeat to their names is another form of propaganda, grant you some of these people deserve no more than they have.. they have no desire or will ever wish to be more than they are. But when drug addled program makers more familiar of a few lines of high grade coke off the arse of a high class escort girl whilst voting tory and looking every bit like one we know the government have contaminated our TV viewing too.

      We know this coalition are a bunch of hypocrites because of the things they say and do and this “Criticising Government Policy Online is unacceptable intimidation” is laughable… the last I checked we all still lived in a democratic country where the governments are voted into power by the members of the public who live in this country… or not as the case may be!. This coalition doesn’t deserve hard working tax paying honest people… for that to be right honesty has to be a two-way street… day by day we are being financially devalued in every aspect of our lives… they tell us the economy is on the up when we know this country is stone-cold flat broke!… and what money one or two thrifty people who do work or have savings or a pension hold will be zilch in no time when they come for people money. Get a cup of tea or coffee, sit and watch this video…
      http://info.moneyweek.com/urgent-bulletins/the-end-of-britain-video-2/

  14. overburdenddonkey

    rammy over eviction in nottingham…http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-28459746 but where were/are all of these people when it comes up to standing up for our lawful rights?

  15. I’ve been put on one of these CWP slave labour things with Derbyshire County Council with (Name and Shame) Clowne & District Community Transport ( http://www.clownnect.org.uk ) but before that my work masters (Acorn Training) wanted to put me to work as salve with Chesterfield FC.

  16. Well done Byteback, must be humbling to finally know the truth, we will keep on fighting this survival war on all fronts, Vive la Resistance.

  17. This is going to be another kick in the bollocks for IDS,Osborne and the rest of the Tory scum!
    How many cases and appeals can this heartless egomaniac lose before someone sacks his sorry arse!
    Well done too the Judge.

  18. I don’t think the tax payer agrees with it anymore either, aside to making slaves of people they are offering free labour to companies that make profits and don’t have to pay tax on hiring staff either at the expense of the tax payer, but also out of the pot of the country, money that could be spent on helping people who used to be entitled to help, but have been either lied to and have their benefits taken away or bullied out of them. They are a disgrace and the worse government in Britain in recorded History, They say they will be remembered and glory themselves in that thought, but who else wants to glorify themselves for being a tyrant, for being selfish?

  19. “Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me” – perhaps proves that words, protest and peaceful action is what this bunch of psychotic, non-elected, elitist charlatans fear the most. It certainly seems to be what harms their poorly conceived, badly though through and totally shambolic aims the most.The Big Society = bogus, deceitful, corrupt, spin, fail. The real society = hope, togetherness, honesty, integrity, win…..eventually.,

  20. What about the “unacceptable intimidation” jobseekers face form DWP/JCP staff with actions and threats of sanctions?

    What about the “unacceptable intimidation” of sanctioning the partner’s JSA from a joint claim, the seizing all the money of that joint claim where the partner was not the subject of the 4 week sanction.

    Most would call that fraud or theft by the DWP/JCP.

  21. Johnny surely there are better ways of emphasising your point other than using the “c” word?
    I have found your reporting to be excellent!! but I no longer read it because of that word and that is a shame!

    • Joanna if that word offends you then that says more about you than anyone else. It’s a form of snobbery to be offended by a word. The only word that should offend are words that cruelly describe someones looks.

      IDS IS A BALDY CUNT

      Something like that.

      • Ha me a snob!! I grew up in care since the age of four and I have suffered with 4 mental illnesses ever since, hardly the life of a snob? I just happen to know what the real meaning of the word is, and if you have any female relatives? you are insulting each and everyone of them!! Good luck with that!!!

  22. Landless Peasant

    “Off with their heads!”

  23. The phrase ‘Unacceptable Intimidation’ is a distortion of the facts and
    pure inflammatory headline grabbing propaganda .
    Byteback have stated clearly that one phone call from an informed citizen about the true nature of workfare was enough to put them off using enforced labor to assemble computers from publicly donated parts.
    Did any member of the public ring them up to say they thought it was
    acceptable practice?
    Is there a popular blog running anywhere in support of these gov. schemes?
    The judge was correct in his assessment of the situation regarding political expression, It would be unacceptable to SILENCE it !
    The majority of the public, when they find out the facts, are against exploitation of the sick or unemployed. If the work is there,the employer should stump the bill ! (any used computer fetches over £100..)
    Well done Robin,wherever you are.
    Well done byteback for doing the right thing.
    This hung gov. wants to cause as much damage as possible before they are cut down from the gallows and buried.

  24. “That’s the kind of shit that gets toffs killed if you let it get out of hand.”

    Thanks JV I had a good old chuckle over this. Or was it wishful thinking hmmm

  25. Johnny your a legend mate keep up with the great blog. I can’t afford to donate as most days I’m lucky to eat but blogs like this inspire in me a belief that people like yourself and the great contributers in here will make the world a better place.

    I see people much worse off than me in this place and that is scary. 2012 the movie should have been about the Tories. They are more dangerous than yellowstone!

    The wrong people care about us as in the people in power don’t give a shit but in time we can make it the right people.

  26. Reblogged this on amnesiaclinic and commented:
    Well done! Things really are changing and fast.
    Is it really so hard for the government to provide real jobs for real pay????
    Come on – this needs sorting!
    x

    • Hold your horses, that’s not what the FOI says, it’s what it’s trying to establish. It’s quite likely a Jobseeker’s Direction has been given incorrectly.

      • they will give you a jsd to open a ujm account and want proof of this print outs or pics on phone i used but will never be able to give a jsd to give them access to it as it up to you to let them have access or not, prob a jcp adviser on a power trip.

        they will also give you a jsd to give them a copy of ur cv as well.

    • I made a complaint recently to A4e, they took my details for UJM a/c plus password. This has now been changed. So can anyone tell me why, when I log into UJM. boxes have ALREADY been ticked: `job doesn`t match my interests’ ???

      I did not do this. WTF is going on. Slowly losing my mind!

      • Arse over E are trying to get you sanctioned. Having said that, I don’t know why you gave them your UJM account details, particularly the password! I would never give anyone the password for any of my accounts and there is no way that anyone can make you do this.

        • My first Adviser at A4e, literally took the card out of my hand with UJM a/c details and password on it “in case you forget them”, (her words). I finally plucked up the courage to make complaint (in March, lol), after logging into UJM and finding boxes had, already been ticked, “job doesn`t match my interests”.
          A4e have sent a letter 24.03.2014, stating they are still investigating the detail of my complaint, apologising for the delay, thanking me for my patience, and then saying, we will write to you, once the investigation is complete. Am still waiting.
          At present, am on telephone appts from A4e, as the office in my town, mysteriously disappeared. They sent me to an appt. at new building, when I got there, it said A4e ARE NOT IN this building! But recently, I received ph call from A4e, asking why I didn’t attend an appt., changed their mind, and that I Had to attend in another village. I didn`t receive appt. letter.
          I could go on and on here, because A4e`s incompetence knows no bounds!
          Mental health in tatters! Got an appt. soon in another town. I haven`t been sanctioned yet, tho seems like it`s on the cards! judging by the stuff on here. So scared.

    • Since when has the UJM toolkit been changed where it mentions JCP’s cannot gain access to individual user accounts?

    • you got more chance of the moon being made of cheese than that being put in to law.

      the server that ujm is on is not even in this country and thus the ico has no control over it or the dpa.

    • you dont need to give a4e anything like that to make a complaint, you fell for that one lol.

      just open another account and use that if you want to use ujm, i dont even see the point of it tbh as there are way better sites with real jobs on them even if they are 3-5 hrs a day as a cleaner😉

  27. just waiting for the day that sanctions are made illegal.. but then what’s stopping someone abusing the system for life?

    but maybe if the sanctions stop then the staff at JCP will actually do their jobs again like they used to so many years ago.. here’s to hoping!

    • Id rather a minuscule percentage “abuse the system for life” than even one genuine case of hardship consider topping themself or starve to death, or freeze to death, or die by insulin going off in an unpowered fridge, or die from insulin shock due to poor diet…
      Or end up in the fucking bughouse after cracking up worrying to the point of actual mental illness, how they are going to feed their kids and get them to school

  28. I have had a job match account for 3 years.
    The only phrase I can remember is; ‘You have no new alerts’.
    The site is not fit for purpose.
    The only people who do not know this are I.Dunking Slaphead, and , erm,
    I dunking slaphead.
    No employer takes respondents from the site seriously, and the only people who view C.V.’s are the bumwipe firm who harvests phone numbers to call and pretend they are from O2 (this time),Vodafone, or whoever to try to sell you a phone plan.
    (Dont call the 0800 number that rings off after 16 seconds back, its £1.50 connection fee and £1.50 / minute ! )
    The Jobmatch servers should be parked in Slapheads front room when he retires so he never forgets his Idiocy.

    • “Dont call the 0800 number that rings off after 16 seconds back, its £1.50 connection fee and £1.50 / minute ! ”
      If you are on giffgaff then 0800 calls are free. I understand that other providers are following suit.

      • This caller presents as an 0800 number, but I believe it is a computer ringing projecting a sender name of ; 0800. . . .
        It is a ‘con’ a charges trap. Do not ring it back.

  29. Actually, thats a fib. Its since the thing went live,but you get the point.

  30. The fight against workfare seems to be working (albeit very slowly), even councils are turning away from it, please view the video as it makes for interesting viewing http://www.yourthurrock.com/2014/07/26/thurrock-council-pass-motion-against-expolitative-workfare/
    I’m just waiting for the sanctions to go the same way, although I fear it will take longer than the battle against workfare.

  31. Never a day passes for me now without incident whereas I am ranting and raving about that fucked-up Universal Jobmismatch. If that slap-headed buffoon Idiotic Dumb Shite thinks his website creation is actually working, my god is he in need of locking up in Broadmoor prison the grim reaper calls for him.

    The other day, for example, I received a dodgy voicemail phone call claiming to be from an employer I apparently sent an job application off to via Universal shitematch. They were not exactly being helpful when they asked me to phone this number ‘00123456789’ for further details of the job I apparently went after on UJM…

    Now, I don’t exactly work for British Telecom, but even I could tell this was an obvious scam fake job phone call after my personal bank details. Ever since being with that crappy website I am now plagued with random telephone scams and voicemail scams of which never happened before to me prior to signing up to that dangerous jobsite. When I tried the 1471 option on that ‘calculator’ phone number I got earlier this week, the phone line went dead with the dial tone, and by only after picking up and putting down the receiver a few time did I only then manage to stop that infernal dial tone.

    JCP’s will ask you to give your UJM account details to them all of the time. But the word on the street is DON’T give in to the bastards. Their own toolkit specifically states they cannot mandate you to give access and they cannot sanction you for refusing. So the next time they force access, show them print-outs of their own toolkit rules and they will simply shut up for a few weeks.

    If I can’t stop the plague of random hoax job phone calls I can easily prevent the flood of suspicious hoax job emails from gov.uk. I put all of their gov.uk domains onto my Outlook.com block list to stop the fuckers selling my life and bank details onto African or Indian scammers out to make a quick easy profit.

    No employer takes UJM seriously after it was outed as worst ever website last year. All I ever see on there now are endless repeated jobs from un-registered, hoax agencies offering non-existant work. Most of the jobs I do manage to go after redirect me to third-party websites where they ask me in order to apply for the job I must first register and sign-up to that website. All I want to do is apply for the fucking job direct and not have to register with every single job recruitment site on the internet and still hear fuck all back from them after mucking about giving them my life history as a requirement of going through that waste of time.

  32. These twats need taking down for being part of the illegal workfare policy. Seetec Wisbech claimed a member of their staff took photographs of the site regarding my H&S concerns. Utter bollocks as I have never yet seen any photographs showing the deathtrap hazards that injured a customer and nearly maimed me.

    ADDRESS: CCORRN
    UNIT 3 COMMERCIAL ROAD
    MARCH, CAMBS
    PE15 8PQ

    E-MAIL: ADMIN@CCORRN.ORG.UK

    TELEPHONE: 0845 602 7144

    COMPANY Nº: 5370849

  33. Nazi-run Britain in the 21st Century – the DWP are using the book ‘1984’ as their core policy to intimidate and threaten us all into an early grave through the bedroom tax and workfare.

  34. We will always have sanctions. Even in the 1980s people were given just 60% of benefit entitlements if they were not applying for jobs and that lasted for twelve months. Labour are all for sanctions so whatever happens sanctions will remain probably forever. It’s just a case of what stage sanctions are imposed. The claimant commitment that I have to sign up to next week clearly is going to put more pressure on me to jump through hoops in the hope that I will do anything to get off benefits. It all comes down to the union representing jobcentre staff, if they came out in support of the unemployed the government would have to listen and the sanction regime could possibly be less harsh than it is now. They might be able to stop workfare and also stop the crazy idea of spending over 30 hours a week looking at fake jobs.

    • Indeed, the claiming of unemployment benefit has always been conditional on being available and willing to work, with an implied requirement to apply for jobs. This was even in the 70s, when you actually received a lot of help from advisors, as well as advice about opportunities for retraining for jobs in skill shortage areas etc.

      However, it was easy to find work in those days, despite the fact that post the 1973 oil crisis the economy was in a mess and inflation reached silly levels, there were still plenty of jobs around – they may have mostly been crap jobs, but at the very least they allowed someone to have an OK, if not good living.

      Even the level of unemployment benefit was adequate for purpose, and that was before taking into account all the extras that could easily be claimed, such as travel costs, the cost of clothing for interviews etc.

      Sanctions and inadequate levels of benefits do nothing to motivate people towards seeking employment, (when there are jobs to be had) and certainly doesn’t encourage the kind of positive mental attitude that a well thought out and genuinely supportive system would engender. In the 1970s the money grubbing elite were also paying a higher tax rate of 98% which was starting to destroy that class, consigning them to their rightful place, the pages of history books. Sadly, largely in in protest and also pretty much in ignorance, Thatcher was voted in and we all now know the result of that,

      I regard the PCS as part of the problem too, they are the Quislings of the labour movement – not that I have a lot to say in favour of the mainstream trade union movement in general, but the PCS are particularly worthy of revulsion.

  35. Reblogged this on Beastrabban’s Weblog and commented:
    Johnny Void here demolishes Osborne’s claim that Byteback pulled out of the workfare programme due to ‘unacceptable intimidation’. Mr Void shows that actually, Byteback weren’t subject to intimidation. Their correspondence shows that they were convinced by the rational arguments of one ‘Robin’, whom they thanked for his information. One does not thank people, who abuse and intimidate you. Osborne’s rant is partly explained by childish petulance at being humiliated by the very public abandonment of his policy by a company, whose support was so loudly proclaimed by him in the press and elsewhere. It is, however, also part of the Tories’ attempts to keep the identities of workfare exploiters secret. They have continually refused to name them, despite successfully legal challenges, because they maintain that those companies would be subjected to a campaign against them, which would stop them taking it up. The spectre raised is of innocent company directors quailing before angry, left-wing trolls all threatening to kill their families or firebomb their offices or something. This shows that the ‘unacceptable intimidation’ would be the complete opposite: calm, rational and respectful argument. To the Tory mind, this obviously cannot exist, because, like Mussolini, Osbo and IDS are always right.

  36. It remains to be seen how the gagging law coming into force in September is used against online criticism of the Coalition.

    Keep on getting banned off blogs and forums and even Google Plus for trying to inform women especially that they are going to be left penniless by the Flat Rate Pension, that is more about depriving people of any money in old age and is not more pension, but less for 70 per cent and more of those retiring after 2016.

    People over 60 and disabled / sick are being forced onto Workfare, that is slavery by being forced labour by threat of loss of any benefit money. Yet those over 60 are not listed in official unemployment statistics.

    With the loss of payout of women’s state pension at 60 from 2013, a couple are losing 7 years state pension money that is vital food and fuel money.

    I keep saying this to Miliband and Balls’ Labour, and keep on being ignored.

    There is no demographic age timebomb.

    We all pay the 75 per cent of personal taxation that comes from stealth taxes, when only 26p in the pound of tax comes from Income Tax.

    We have always been an ageing society for the million years of human life.

    Even in retirement, people still pay all the stealth taxes embedded in our day to day lives, even on food.

    Neither are pensioners all earning on average £29,000 a year or anything like that.

    Pensioners can be reliant only on the state pension, within the working poor, disabled, chronic sick, and with barely a tenner a week for food. I followed an old pensioner with barely a handful of food out the supermarket. We have the lowest state pension in the developed world other than poor Mexico.

    The Pension Bill is made even worse by taking state pension away for life from the poorest people, leaving them penniless and starving after 2016.
    https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/state-pension-at-60-now

    Why are we the great ignored, especially women by Miliband’s and Balls’ Labour?

    We could bring Labour a landslide majority, even with the loss of 41 Labour MPs by Scotland’s independence after 18 September’s referendum, to escape Austerity obsessed London. It should more rightly be called the Save a Scottish Granny and Poor yes campaign.

    • Another Fine Mess

      banned off blogs and forums
      Shorten your name by a lot, 2 lines looks messy and it makes you look like a spammer from the start, you can keep it clickable.
      Shorten your posts by a lot, it’s too much to read/reply to, just post 1 or 2 relevant paragraph(s) to relevant threads, you can expand or invite to click when there’s some interest.
      There’s plenty of subjects you can sneek into, and expand without getting banned, retirement, pensions, austerity, unemployment, unemployment statistics, workfare.
      Lastly, completely ignore this if you like!

    • Well that’s one less scrounger. Good to see my policies are working.

    • JCP advisers have blood on their hands

      This poor bloke probably had a power-tripping arsehole of an adviser that was ordering him to jump through ever decreasing hoops.

      • overburdenddonkey

        jcp
        this young man, POOR SOUL may he rest in peace, was absolutely desperate for work, and driven to despair by these vile people, who knew full well he had practically 0 chance of finding work…

    • Another Fine Mess

      The timings of the relentless job interviews sounds more like they were interrogations at the local sanction centre.

      • ur not far off the staff at the jcp he went to are total cunts.
        UNEMPLOYED residents and students in Stroud are to gather in protest over what they describe as their “unfair treatment” in the town.

        The frustrated crowd say Stroud’s Jobcentre Plus staff have been “rude” and “unsympathetic” in helping them find work.

        http://www.gloucestercitizen.co.uk/Unemployed-residents-protest-Stroud-treatment-Jobcentre-staff/story-11893944-detail/story.html

        • JCP advisers have blood on their hands

          Can anyone find Stroud’s Jobcentre Plus twitter account? I can’t find one and I’d like to find out which of those cunts there was responsible for this mans death.

          • i dont think they got one as it only a very small one with a hand full of staff that work there.

            there the worst i ever delt with compleate ass holes the lot of um

          • Another Fine Mess

            Nope, I don’t know around there, wouldn’t know which sanction centre covers it.
            The picture of the road in the mirror link is named Park-Poad-Nailsworth-Gloucestershire

      • JCP advisers have blood on their hands

        No doubt about it Another Fine Mess. Job centre staff should be held accountable. I have to deal with a right vile power-tripping bastard of an adviser and It’s become very clear to me that advisers like him can easily push those a little fragile mentally over the edge, like this poor bloke. RIP

      • Another Fine Mess

        As if anyone who’s unemployed gets relentless job interviews. that would be exactly what you’d want.
        Here’s a picture of his road, it doesn’t look like a place where you’d get interviews every fortnight.
        http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/unemployed-dad-desperate-work-hanged-3901063

        • AFM, I agree, this is yet another example of piss poor journalism and a member of the judiciary seriously out of touch with the real world. evidenced by her inability to accurate report. I don’t think there is a journo in the country who gives accurate account of the benefits process in articles about people on benefits.

          The result, as usual is escalated up through to the MSM and it keeps the cesspit of hate towards those of us on benefits, fully topped up. In this instance people are saying about this tragic case “proves there are loads of jobs if he kept getting interviews” Which was not the case at all

          This young Dad was sent on his way to death by the relentless bullying of a JC+ clerk or a bullying WP adviser.

          We’d be a lot better off if the media could manage some accurate reporting and step off the propaganda merry go ’round for even just, one day.

  37. Reblogged this on SMILING CARCASS'S TWO-PENNETH and commented:
    All such schemes are the same. You are essentially a ‘gofer’, learn nothing and do not find work as a result of stacking shelves or shovelling shit- unless you’re IDS whose only ability seems to be shit-shovelling.

  38. overburdenddonkey

    OT…unbeknownst to the police and the bbc, who claim 400 people attended anti bbc bias cieldh @ pacific quay glasgow…protesters handed out 1207 a4 sized numbered tickets…so much for their abilities to est numbers, eh!
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-28510069

  39. Well my days of so called “leasure” is up on Tuesday. Been mandated to attend a so called “Employability” 2 week course. Problem is that my ex employer is messing about and as a result I won’t be able to get a job! Then in August its into the welcome arms of Workfare. Problem is I can not do any lifting [H&S], will need time off to see Doc & specialists in [H&S again] and will need to see someone soon about my ongoing job problems. This should be fun sorting out!!! Who do I go to if things go wrong on the sanction front, Workfare? DWP? Eney meeny miny moe… [doesn’t matter I already know what I’m going to do to cover my back….]

  40. I gonna ‘ave you bunch of fucking shirkers. Sooner or later.

  41. Landless Peasant

    Seen this? Sad news of one more poor soul hounded to an early grave by this evil Tory Regime:

    http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/tragedy-liverpool-mum-who-died-7232928

    • overburdenddonkey

      l p
      “This was recognised from the outset. In developing the PIP assessment we were aware that the vast majority of recipients of DLA were individuals with genuine health conditions and disabilities and genuine need, and that removing or reducing that benefit may affect their daily lives. However, we believe that these impacts can be justified as being a logical result of distributing limited resources in a different and more sustainable way…”. DWP
      (Paragraph 80)
      http://diaryofabenefitscrounger.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/dwp-admit.html?showComment=1406315224455#c6794685517695824398

      • So its acceptable for a ‘Lord’ to collect 15 Twenty pound notes every day for visiting the bar in the Upper House, but there is no money for the handicapped to live on. I am so glad Prescott got his ‘Forum’,
        At 28 hundred quid a syllable somebody should be chuffed for the fat lazy sell out lying thick yellow useless gobshite tosspot Bastard..
        Sorry if I offended anybody. Not Prescott, obviously. Never read further than a headline in his scoff all life.

  42. dont any one get waning letters from the jcp i do pmsl.

    dear super ted

    i am wrighting to you about the incident that took place on date town jobcentere when your behavior was unacceptable. i am warning you formally that such
    behaviour will not be tolerated.

    we are commited to treating you in a fair and polite manner. in return i expect you to treat us in the same way.therefore,i trust that you will make sure that this type of incident
    does not happen again.

    if you wish to contact me in relation to this matter, you should do so in wrighting to the postal address above, quoting the referance at the top of this letter.
    we will not accept any enquiries made by phone or email.

  43. It looks as if those “who have the security of a wage” are having problems with this corrupt system too.

    http://welfarenewsservice.com/tribunal-fees-allowing-employers-get-away-unlawful-sackings-says-charity/

  44. Pingback: ‘Workfare’ | *Orbis non sufficit*

  45. Great research as usual , voidy ! Included it herehttp://mpbondblog.wordpress.com/2014/01/11/81e1034bdfa843170687ad6b29d29f3d1-jpg/

  46. colourstyledimensions

    Dear J Void,
    Would it be possible to write 3 or 4 punchy A4 leaflets explaining to the public what’s really happening at the DWP- especially on sanctions. We can all print them out. Buses, trains, govt offices etc. The evil machinations of IDS and co. are a silent socio- economic holocaust! Even my politically astute friends have no idea. We cannot let Tory scum win propaganda war.

    By the way when someone is sanctioned what happens to Housing Benefit. Can someone clarify please.

  47. colourstledimensions – from what I understand ALL benefits are stopped including Housing. What you need to do is see if you can get hardship from DWP. Record it just in case they refuse, and visit a CAB ASAP.

  48. GEOFF REYNOLDS

    Jul 27, 2014 22:36
    By James Lyons

    Diabetic David Clapson, 59, died with just £3.44 left in his account after his Jobseeker’s Allowance was axed because he missed an appointment

    Struggle: David died hungry and penniless with no way to pay his bills

    A diabetic ex-soldier died starving and skint after officials axed his benefits.

    David Clapson, 59, was stripped of the cash after missing an ­appointment under harsh Coalition reforms.

    He died in Stevenage, Herts, with just £3.44 left in his account.

    David once faced death on a daily basis as he served his country loyally in the terror hell of Northern Ireland.

    And when he left the Army he went straight into the ­workplace with BT before becoming a full-time carer for his sick mother.

    After she went into a home, diabetic David turned to the state for help while he looked for work.

    But under the Coalition’s callous new benefits rules he had his £71.70 a week Jobseeker’s Allowance axed – merely because he missed an appointment with an adviser.

    Stripped of his income, the 59-year-old could not afford food or electricity and died starving, ­penniless and alone at his home.

    His death was from diabetic ­ketoacidosis – caused by not taking his insulin.

    Daily Mirror Gill Thompson
    Tears: Gill with picture of her brother as a soldier

    Tonight his distraught sister Gill Thompson told how she believes he may have stopped injecting himself with the life-saving drug after becoming so desperate over his lack of cash and work.

    Choking back tears, she said: “I think he just gave up. I want the lessons to be learned. I don’t want anybody else to die. He shouldn’t have died like that. You wouldn’t let an animal die like that, would you?

    “I just, I look at food now and think, ‘My brother didn’t have any.’

    “My brother was not a scrounger. He was getting £71.70 a week. He was not living on ­champagne and caviar. They should have taken into account his past work and his condition.”

    Stevenage council leader Sharon Taylor slammed Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith over David’s ­treatment.

    She stormed: “He should hang his head in shame. David served his country. Treating him like this is disgusting.

    “This tragic death is a direct result of Iain Duncan Smith’s welfare reforms.”

    When David died he had just £3.44 to his name, six tea bags, a tin of soup and an out-of-date can of sardines. His electricity card was out of credit meaning the fridge where he should have kept his insulin chilled was not working.

    A coroner also found he had no food in his stomach.

    A pile of CVs for job applications were found near David’s body.

    Gill, 57, demanded a change to the welfare system she believes caused her brother’s death. She said officials knew he was diabetic as he nearly died when his benefits were stopped once before.

    Reuters Iain Duncan Smith
    Penalties: Duncan Smith

    David, of ­Stevenage, Herts, had his benefits axed last summer for missing the ­appointment. There have been more than a million stoppages since the ­Coalition came to power in 2012.

    David joined the Royal Signals Corps at 17 and served for two years in Belfast at the height of the Troubles in the 70s. He left as a lance corporal then worked for BT for 16 years.

    He later had different jobs until he became his mum’s carer when she got dementia. That ended when she got too ill to stay at home. David took two unpaid ­placements but was denied a third.

    Officials wrote to him on June 28 saying his Jobseeker’s Allowance would be stopped from July 12 until August 8. A last payment of £122.10 went in to his account on July 2.

    David was found dead on July 20. Gill, from London, wrote to ­officials after his death. She said: “The answers came back, ‘Oh well, we followed procedures.’ Well I’m sorry to say the procedures don’t work if people die.”

    Gill also told how David was also ­sanctioned in 2010 after not putting enough information down on a claim form. He fell ill but was rescued by a neighbour.

    The DWP insisted he would have been told payments would still be available after sanctions.

    A spokesman said: “Claimants can get financial support through the ­hardship fund. People can also appeal against sanctions.”
    Comment: Repeated calls for a sanctions inquiry ignored

    Debbie Abrahams meets Paul Routledge (Pic:DM) By Debbie Abrahams MP, Work and Pensions Committee (pictured with Paul Routledge)

    For this poor man to die in such a disgraceful way is a scandal. But it is sadly not a surprise to hear that the sanctions regime has cost another life.

    I have repeatedly warned ministers about the disproportionate effects of sanctions on the poorest and of the inappropriate use of sanctions in Jobcentre Plus. The system has gone dangerously wrong.

    At a Work and Pensions Select Committee meeting in November, I demanded Esther McVey launch an independent inquiry into their use. She appeared to agree but the Government has since backtracked.

    Instead, on the last day before recess – preventing a discussion – a limited inquiry was published that failed to address many concerns. This was disgraceful arrogance.

    If Iain Duncan Smith and Esther McVey have nothing to hide, they should not fear a focused, independent inquiry.

    • “Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.” Frederick Douglass.

    • overburdenddonkey

      geoff
      all diabetics need a reliable income and a steady lifestyle…ketoacidosis is caused when the body scavenges frantically for energy (fat, liver stores et al), coz cells are starving (hypo), it is a truly horrible way to die…please do your own research because i am not going to explain the process…he had no food in his gut….it would not have done him any good in any case.

    • Hang IDS from a lamp post

      Bastards.

  49. I was under the impression that going to your local council and completing a nil income form will keep the housing benefit going but any delay will leave to arrears. The council might not backdate it as they would if someone had just done a rapid reclaim and some delay had occurred. It’s important that anyone sanctioned goes as soon as possible to the council and inform them so no arrears build up. That’s what I believe to be the case.

  50. http://jobseekersanctionadvice.com/

    Hello and welcome to our website, now we wouldn’t blame you for wondering, who are JobSeeker Sanction Advice? So let us give you some background information.

    One thing we’re most certainly not, as is made clear throughout this site, is to have any connection whatsoever with any government agency, neither are we solicitors, so, with who we are NOT out of the way, let’s focus on who we ARE.

    We’re a small network of disgruntled ex, Department of Work and Pensions civil servants who left the service for a variety of reasons, not least of which was our dissatisfaction with the pressures being placed on staff to achieve what many of us saw as targets, which were designed in our eyes, to punish people financially for the smallest error or indiscretion.

    Not surprisingly this is regularly denied by government ministers and their spin doctors, however we were the people at the front end, tasked to undertake and implement these measures – and we felt differently, however, watch the video below and you’ll see that the Guardian newspaper has uncovered evidence that targets ARE indeed being imposed on D.W.P. civil servants – the truth usually gets out eventually – by hook, or by crook.

    Not many individuals leave the civil service, many are still there because at the end of the day it’s a job, with a number of perks which are not available in the private sector – however members of our small group were in a position to leave because they could – some were close to retirement and decided to choose an early end to their career rather than remaining in an environment where they were no longer happy because they felt that the D.W.P. was becoming more and more draconian in it’s outlook and modus operandi.

    Rather than regard that as the end of the matter, our small group decided to actually do something about the reason for their premature departure from the civil service and with their new found freedom launched JobSeeker Sanction Advice.

  51. Obi Wan Kenobi

    Criticising Government Policy Online Is “Unacceptable Intimidation” According To Treasury.

    THE TREASURY CAN GO TO HELL. IF THEY DON’T WANT CRITISISM THEN GET RID OF IDS AND HIS DISGUSTING WELFARE REFOMS.

  52. What is ” Unacceptable Intimidation ” is the Quasi Totalitarian State
    of Affairs in our ” Free Society ”

    What is Un Acceptable is the Obscene Gulf between Rich
    and Poor the MPS Expense Gravy Train and the Oppression
    of the Poor

    Down with Nazi Britain

  53. What an idiotic statement. Are they really that naive?

  54. How many fucking goes on the mery go round do these tories get with this workfare court case? I thought this had been decided by the upper tribunal and that was the last port to try?

  55. Social Justice Yes Slavery No

  56. Obi Wan Kenobi

    UNIVERSAL JOBMATCH ACCESS COMPLAINT LETTER.

    Is your jobcentre adviser bullying you into allowing them to access and view your Universal Jobmatch account?

    If so, hand in this letter of complaint at your next signing day. The Data Protection Act 1998 guarantees you right to privacy.

    Follow the link below.

    http://pdfcast.org/pdf/universal-jobmatch-access-complaint-letter

  57. Nazi Scum off Our Streets Yes and Nazi Scum Out of Office as Well

    The Nazi Regime got Away with it’s Tyranny and Oppression because
    of too Many Collaborating by Thoughtlessness or Non Resistance or
    Both

  58. People Struggled For the Right to Vote so it makes my Blood Boil
    when Zombies have that ” Don’t Vote ” ” Because I am Not Interested
    in Politics ” Mentality and just want to be in their Little Worlds
    150 Years ago in 1864 the Majority of Men in UK let alone Women
    did Not have the Right to Vote
    It is also an Outrage that there should be a £500 Deposit to stand For
    Parliament
    Perhaps Annual Elections would make Things more Accountable

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