Snouts In The Trough: Tell The Vile Welfare-To-Work Sector What You Think At #ERSA14

snoutsToday is the annual conference of the Employment Related Services Association (ERSA), the trade body established to lie on behalf of the vile welfare-to-work sector.  They will be tweeting on the hastag #ERSA14 so join in and let them know what you think of their shoddy workfare schemes and brutal benefit sanctions.

Delegates are meeting at a luxury London hotel with tickets for the event costing up toa whopping $450 and a slap up meal promised this evening.  Companies like A4e and G4S will be joined by Employment Minister Esther McVey and her Labour counterpart Stephen Timms to discuss how to fleece even more money from the tax payer by pretending that unemployment is caused by unemployed people.

Boycott Workfare have called an online action to hold these parasites to account for their role in the UK’s biggest and nastiest benefit fraud.  Hundreds of millions of pounds  are handed over to this industry every year to harass and bully unemployed and disabled people by forcing them to attend workfare and bogus training schemes.  Claimants are more likely to face benefit sanctions on these programmes than they are likely to find a job.  Sometime those sanctions have tragic results, with a growing number of suicides linked to the current regime.

ERSA will be tweeting themselves from @ersa_news and you can find more contact details on Boycott Workfare’s website.  Please spread the word.  Children will go hungry and people will lose their homes because of these bastards this Christmas.  Let’s crash their back-slapping conference paid for with our money and make sure the public knows exactly what these companies are up to.

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71 responses to “Snouts In The Trough: Tell The Vile Welfare-To-Work Sector What You Think At #ERSA14

  1. No to Slavery Yes to Socialism

    Down with Neo Liberalism and Obliviousness


      …………………….text from the DWP handbook on assisted suicides:

      Half-blind UK widow commits suicide after incapacity benefit cut
      Published time: November 28, 2014

      A partially-blind widow, who suffered crippling back pain for over a decade, committed suicide after her incapacity benefit was cut because state assessors claimed she was fit to work.

      Following a two-minute assessment, private firm Atos Healthcare concluded Jacqueline Harris was fit to work despite the fact she had trouble walking and suffered constant, excruciating back pain.Her incapacity benefit was subsequently axed by the government, which pays the firm to conduct fitness-for-work assessments.

      Harris, a former nurse who had claimed incapacity benefit for a number of years, was awaiting a serious spinal operation when Atos assessed her. According to the deceased’s sister, the Atos employee asked Harris one question during the interview – whether she was capable of catching a bus.

      The firm has been the focus of a firestorm of criticism in recent times, with mounting claims that vulnerable and unwell people are being wrongly proposed for work, and are forced to endure exasperating and upsetting medical interviews.
      ‘Atos should be shot’

      Fifty-three-year-old Harris was discovered dead in her home in south Gloucestershire in November 2013, with a hand written note attached to her chest stressing she did not wish to be resuscitated. She took her own life just a few weeks before an appeal hearing had been scheduled with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

      Harris’ sister told the Daily Mail the family received a letter about the hearing a month after the former nurse died.

      “I didn’t tell them she had died and went along myself. I said to them ‘I’m disgusted’. Atos should be shot,” she said.

      Speaking outside the Bristol court, where Harris’ inquest was held, Christine Norman said her sister’s decline was sparked by the DWP’s decision to replace her incapacity welfare allowance with Jobseeker’s Allowance.

      “It gave her no hope. She was defeated. What hope did she have?” Norman asked.

      Norman added the government has since ruled Atos’ decision to declare her sister fit for work was wrong.

      Throughout the inquest, the court was told Harris had suffered an array of different injuries and disabilities since the 1990s. Her trouble began with a fall during work, causing injured discs in her neck and back. She also endured chronic pain in her hands, resulting from a vicious dog bite and partial blindness following a severe bang to the head.

      As her back pain worsened over time, Harris sought assistance and advice from doctors, attended pain management classes and engaged in physiotherapy.

      Following the DWP’s decision that she was fit to work, Harris pleaded with the body saying she was awaiting an intensive back operation. But her poignant pleas were reportedly ignored.

      Speaking at her sister’s inquest, Norman said she knew her sister wouldn’t be able to cope with the pain she was forced to endure close to her death. She also sharply criticized the government for failing to offer Harris the assistance she so desperately needed.

      Over two million recipients of employment and disability-related welfare are currently having their ability to work assessed by Atos. Current ministers insist it is crucial those who are fit to work have their benefits cut in a bid to force them to seek employment.

      Earlier this month, it emerged that the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has carried out 60 separate reviews into deaths linked to benefit cuts in the past three years. Shocking cases reveal a spike in suicides and health deterioration resulting from welfare cuts.

      In 2013, Amnesty International UK passed a resolution denouncing the government’s assault on sick and disabled Britons’ human rights.

      The resolution sought to “halt the abrogation of the human rights of sick and disabled people by the ruling coalition government and its associated corporate contractors.”

      ……………………………….All the hallmarks of a DWP/ATOS execution of a disabled person………………..


        …………………bringing the cemetery closer to you, aided and abetted by the DWP, a government department that seems oblivious to the murders it commit’s through welfare legislation……………….


          ……………….a wrinkly old bastard that should have wrapped in decades ago.

          Has no idea of the hardship that has befallen her poorest subjects since giving her royal assent to the Welfare Acts.

          Lives in a palace having 775 rooms.

          Has an estimated personal wealth in excess of £550 million.

          Spends most of her time revealing plaques of herself.

          Never visited a food bank (Not many have red carpet facilities)

          Does not shop in second hand shops or charity shops.

          Cup a soup intolerant.

          Once got an antler stuck between her teeth eating venison.

          Married her third cousin.

          Doesn’t have a bus pass.

          Accepts free gifts everwhere she travels

          Pays staff absolutely fuck all.

          Lives the life of pomp and privilege while her skeletons doth their caps.

          Is a million miles from the crap her minions have to endure, day in, day out.

          Produces offspring that the state has to carry.

          Undoubtedly the biggest benefit scrounger in the UK.

          Places her portrait on stamps and coinage to show you how important she really is.

          …………………………..”long live our noble queen”

  2. Reblogged this on L8in.

  3. overburdenddonkey they have no interest in creating jobs for the working class, the working class economy, nor creating a bank specifically for the purposes of jobs creating investment in our local economy..they continue to bail out/bolster the banks and blame unemployment on the unemployed…

  4. I have tweeted to ERSA14 and none are showing up?? also tweeted on Cameron must go and said blocked??
    does this mean i am now a terrorist?

  5. Conference hides £120 million & anything promoted via twitter is a failure.

    Oh dear the IT computer System failed at the DWP. More ££ Millions spent on Work Fare !!


  6. All the DWP workers moaning on about their low wages & have to get Universal Credit top ups. Unions can`t help you now. Strikes, what made you think of that DWP !!! The only thing not working & is still on strike is the Tick Box ATOS UNUM Computer IT System !!!


  7. Yes I will have a glass of that £300 bottle of wine, the disabled are paying for it, in fact their are our biggest asset & gives us so much freedom to have a conference every 2 weeks in comfort.


  8. @loobitz
    I’ve started using the Tor browser to access websites not approved by the ruling elite. Tor’s network runs in the Darknet which of course is used for nefarious activities but also used for legit users who want to avoid surveillance by the Five Eyes Surveillance State.

  9. 40,000 X say £200 a week, that’s including housing benefit rebate = £8,000,000 a week saving or confidence tricksters with ID fraud at the DWP.
    ok £8 Million a week times by 52 = £560 Million saved from 40,000 disabled & poor people`s deaths because of the DWP ATOS UNUM Tick Box system still in use today. Yes that’s over half a Billion ££.

    Let`s invest that saving, good idea IDS.

  10. Reblogged this on nhswatchuk.

  11. #ERSA14 on twitter is an automated computer tweeter.


  12. ATOS is a KEY WORD a Skim word – so all the Bad ATOS on You Tube have been deleted – ATOS & MAXIMUS letting the Jobcentre do the WCA medicals at the job centre behind bullet proof glass. Easy £50 Million.

  13. Try & Hustle a hustler. That is what is happening with confidence tricksters & cold calling on the phone or at the door. Until you can prove who you are DWP I go tell you nothing. But I have a few questions about tactics that not only are illegal in many ways that`s why the DWP are always in litigation & can`t inforce nothing !!! All I hear is gabble babble & bullshit coming out of these educated fools.

  14. Bocyott Workfare stated, “It’s no surprise to find support for this festival of workfare exploiters coming from the Shaw Trust, the Papworth Trust, Tomorrow’s People and Groundwork. But it’s disappointing to find Julia Unwin from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation on the programme – in a session headed ‘better together’. Even more troubling that she’s on the platform with Robin Wales, Mayor of Newham Council and responsible for evicting the Focus E15 Mothers.”

    Tomorrow’s People are running the Ipswich MyGo centre. We gave IDS a welcome when he visited them recently!

    • overburdenddonkey

      BT (spit) we’ve had enough of them in scotland….oh! the irony teaming up in a shrinking jobs market to ensure their pay packet…gotta smile @ their blindness to reality…has anyone seen the working class wages sector it seems to have vanished, not been seen for decades now…

    • Joseph Rowntree must be rolling in his grave…. equally heart-breaking to see those other great philanthropists – Working Links – at the top table 😀

    • Rowntree Macintosh – not-so-very-long-ago – helped to fund the further education of their workers’ children. A family member was able to apply for, & get, a grant for me, and this money proved to be invaluable (well, not quite). It turned out to be the money that could be – & was – relied on to cover essential living costs though, – Guinness/bread/tea; not necessarily in that order – other iron-filled drinks are available – whenever (on cue each year) my grant failed to arrive. Routinely delayed as the LA were rubbish – then, anyway.

      The ‘Mac’s grant’ made a real difference. It was awarded if the person it was requested for was on a full grant – their family had been means-tested and couldn’t give additional financial support. I know, I know – I could have got a job in addition to studying but that was not then considered something that students ought to/should do – as there were grants. Fond memories of the Mac’s grant, although factory life was, by all accounts, not-so-sweet;
      mind-numbing & with antisocial hours. The irony of being able to (mostly) read (books) for three years, rather than working at the factory, as I could easily have ended up doing if born 25 years earlier, is not forgotten … nor is the irony of Rowntrees being at the Welfare to Work Industry get together.

      Company sold out to Nestle @1990 (?)

  15. dirt under their feet

    Argyll and Bute Council are boasting about being workfare providers ––unfair&catid=1:news&Itemid=19

    THE Department of Work and Pensions is ordering unemployed Cowal people to work for six months with no pay or risk losing their benefits – and Argyll and Bute Council has signed up to the government scheme as a ‘delivery partner’.

    One local man has been placed by Dunoon Jobcentre on a ‘Community Work Programme’ operated by the council’s Employability Team. He told the Standard: “It’s for 30 weeks and the Jobcentre say if I don’t accept I will lose my benefit. …

    We asked the DWP how many Scottish councils were involved in ‘workfare’ schemes and a spokeswoman said: “Mandatory Work Activity placements help long-term unemployed people to gain work experience which increases their confidence, helps them to gain vital skills and, crucially, improves their chances of getting a job. These placements do not replace existing roles.

    “We are not naming the organisations, including charities and community groups, involved in the scheme in order to protect them from those who seem intent on stopping us helping people into work.” …

  16. savy JSA claiment

    they might not be naming the but we all know who they are and will be more than happy to out the to the public.

  17. Fucking jc shite!!

    What’s this shit with the jc ‘updating’ jobseekers agreements? I have been given an hour long appointment for this exercise. Can I expect dwp access to universal shitematch to be part of an ‘updated’ jsag? And lots of other nasties? Fucking jc never give up, do they!

    • its probable for you to do the claimant commitment to be filled in dwp can not access ur ujm account unless you give them permission to do so, so dont give them an email address and do not tick the box on ujm for them to gain access to it.

      they can only mandate you to use ujm at a jcp on an iad and no where else like providers.

      also if you think what they are asking from you is unreasonable then dont sign it till it is as its a way to get an easy sanction if they put on it you must do 150 things a week to look for work.

      i have 7 steps on mine.

  18. A suggestion for a picket sign (from a 60’s-era button) – a plate and crossed cutlery to represent the skull and bones, with the caption: “eat the rich”

  19. Another Fine Mess

    No interviews? How to improve your CV success rate

    If only all the 7,000 applications for a vacancy had a good CV, then they’d all get the job, instead of just the one of them.

  20. Reblogged this on Beastrabban’s Weblog.

  21. ERSA is an anagram of ARSE 😀

  22. WARNING TO ALL JOBSEEKERS: You should be careful when leaving the jobcentre. I have seen ‘advisers’ looking out from the window to see what their ‘customers’ get up to after exiting the jobcentre. It’s not just inside the jc that you are under constant surveillance. Make sure you are well clear before you rip-up your job print-out, light up a spilff or whatever.


    “Claimants who fail to comply without good reason may be subject to a high
    level sanction. The Designation Orders does not give authority to provider’s
    to make determinations on good reason or whether a sanction should be
    imposed. Those decisions are made by a DWP Decision Maker.”

    …………………………since their is a clear element of a threat, any such contract signed would be null and void by law……



    “Where a participant declines to sign a provider’s forms, this does not mean
    that they automatically do not have to take part in the Community Work
    Placements programme, the letter given to them by Jobcentre Plus when they
    were referred outlines the potential penalties for failing to take part.”

    …………………………which in turn, once again, makes any contract null and void by law. The use of the word, penalty, must be taken as an immediate threat to the claimant………….

  25. ………..and once again, the use of an implied threat:

    • mandate claimants to apply for and accept jobs if offered. Applying for
    a job may include submitting an application or attending a job interview;
    • raise sanctions doubts for failure to comply.

    …………………………….wherever a threat, implied or otherwise, is included in the wording of a contract, the contract is no longer regarded as a mutual agreement , but becomes an implement of coercion that negates the validity of the document in question….


    “Participants are required to undertake all that can be reasonably
    expected to give themselves the best prospects of employment.”



    From: Ejaz Mahmood

    27 November 2014

    Dear DWP freedom-of-information-requests,

    Thank you very much for providing me the information that I
    requested on 30th October 2014.

    I would like some clarification in your response (Ref: 2014-4802)
    to my question 4 in original FOI request. Your response was “In
    response to the last question telephone calls to Jobcentre Plus
    contact centres are routinely recorded for legal and training
    purposes, and held for specified periods of time.”

    Can you explain whether the term Jobcentre Plus contact centres
    only covers central helpline numbers ( as provided on letter heads)
    or does this term also covers JCP local offices, e.g. where service
    users see their advisers regularly and call directly.

    Yours sincerely,

    Ejaz Mahmood.


  28. If you know your rights the DWP can`t act on anything. By knowing your rights you have put the DWP in litigation. The DWP see it as a REAL threat being put in litigation. The DWP are putting themselves in litigation for fear of litigation.

    Hot air week of bullshit talk of £££ billions being spent.

  29. How many slaves do the DWP have as customers?
    How many slaves do the DWP employ?
    Yes the DWP & slave trading !!

  30. MAXIMUS have gone quiet, or is that the DWP press office. Since the DWP are now doing WCA Assessments at the JobCentre behind bullet proof glass. Sves Maximus £50 Million but costs the DWP an extra £50 million. So really the new Maximus contract is for £100 million not 50. Yet again DWP fraud.


  32. There is no way the DWP can change my circumstances, because my circumstances have not changed. Sign what !!! You sanction If I ain`t signed or joined your slavery policy. Don`t try & move DWP you will be in litigation & will not be able to act. You can threaten all you like DWP but threats from the DWP are Not Fit For Purpose.

  33. Question – Who is the biggest fraudsters me with £800,000 over the past 30years or the DWP with 40,000+ dead lives.

    Easy answer so why the DWP running away from me!! Perhaps I don`t need to put in FOI Request.

  34. The failure of common sense is the failure of the Welfare Reforms. Failure to have common sense means everything is based & put into practice with no common sense = Failure.

    It`s not that easy making a cup of tea with no common sense – you will end up with a cup full of cold water. Tea boy failure in the work fare work place.

  35. Bugger, signed on yesterday and they are now looking at making me “prove” that I am spending at least 35 hours per week doing a jobsearch. Thing is I’m a 48 year old bloke unemployed for 4 1/2 years with a background in relatively unskilled sales and administration. So the upshot is I might as well piss into the wind. Of course I look for a job but I resent being treated as though I’m not morally worthy or making a bleeding effort to find work , The simple fact of the matter is that with an average of 50 applications a week all that I get is rejections. I lay in bed last night reviewing my options:
    – Suicide
    – Telling them to fuck off and becoming a Big Issue seller, travelling the country and seeing some of the sights that I have always wanted to see
    – Selling my arse in the local park (possibly too old and not very marketable at my age.)
    Does anyone have any other options?

    Good luck with the demo by the way, ony wish I could be there to ruin the party.

    • The only way to prove spending at least 35 hours per week doing a jobsearch. is spending 35 hours a week at the Joobcentre.

      • Since the jobcentre in getting more full all day – Has the DWP updated it`s Health & Safety in the work place rules? No of course not. Hint Hint. naughty naughty jobventre.

      • But the local JC is crammed full of jobseekers sat in full public view at those infernal terminals ‘proving’ that that they are job-seeking for 35 hours a week. That’s what the jc operatives mean when they say you are going to have to ‘prove’ you are jobseeking for 35 hours a week.

    • ant – you don’t have to “prove” anything, and please don’t commit suicide, you’d only be giving them what they want. All you are required to give them is EVIDENCE, not PROOF. They are 2 very different things. If someone is in court they give verbal or written evidence, not proof. If you were to show proof, you would not need to give evidence – they are two different things. The evidence is what you write in your paper jobseekers diary – it is what you CLAIM to have done – yes, we’re all still allowed to use pen and paper to give our evidence of jobsearch, no matter what they say, and also we don’t have to give them access to our UJM account or make our cv public in that scam and spam infested website. It wasn’t voted the worst website for nothing, and it could risk your personal safety by having a public cv. If you allow then access to your UJM they may ask you to log into it for 35 hours per week to PROVE that you have jobsearched for that long, which is one reason to not give them access.
      The new claimant commitment booklet just means a bit of extra writing. ie Answer the question What am I going to do in the next week etc? with a list of the agreed steps to look for work, repeated each week.
      Answer the question What evidence will I give of having done this? with “See handwritten jobseekers diary” (We don’t need to use UJM to record our jobsearch).

      • The jc use a traffic light system to indicate how far you are on the road to ujm – RED > AMBER > GREEN – I am stuck at RED, seems the ujm engine is stalled 😀

  36. I have not had a job since 1984. The job interview says What & when was your last job? What have you been doing for 30 years defrauding the DWP?


  38. The DWP record phone calls for training but for me the DWP go very quiet um ah ah ummm ahh Don`t you want to say something to that DWP ahhhhh ummmmmmmm aaahhhhh The recording is very good for training isn`t it DWP aaaahhhhhh uuuuummmmmmmm.


    • Phone talk to DWP –

      Q. So I am a customer then DWP? A. Yes
      Q. So why do you treat your customers so badly? A. We don`t. By the way what`s your name & NI Number?
      You notice from the start I ask the questions not the DWP being a DWP customer. Perhaps I am wondering that I might become one of your customers in the future. Since it`s being record for training purposes I think you will have to talk to me like a human being & not like your customer service replys.

      The DWP have put so much guilty pleas in the recording they now don`t want to use the recording for training purposes. Shame I have a recording as well.

      Cold DWP Phone Calling – Hello it`s the DWP – Can you prove you are the DWP before I give you any details.I don`t need to prove who I am – Another brick wall that made the DWP go in silence.

      Try & Hustle A Hustler !!!


  39. I was told last week by me so called work coach that the 35 hour a week jobsearch will be starting at my jobcentre next year so I guess in January. She told me that it won’t be all jobsearch and some of the time will be spent finding out the details of how to get to an employer just in case you are offered an interview.
    Last week at my appointment with my work coach I had to show my bank statement and other documents. I was told that they were just making sure of my entitlements but I had to produce my transaction details as well as the balance. Photocopies were taken so someone will be snooping at my transaction details. It appears that they will accept printouts if anyone has an online account so they are clearly keen to see how we spend our money.
    No more privacy rights for us it seems.

    • “Last week at my appointment with my work coach I had to show my bank statement and other documents”

      Basically what they are doing is going on a trawl – PayPal accounts, seemingly undisclosed sources of income, patterns of withdrawal to see if there is anything suspect. Any excuse to suspend a claimants account. It helps them with next steps as well. If they have to impose a sanction they can turn down/reduce emergency payments by snooping at your financial details and raising objections.

      • Paypal can be used as an on-line payment system if you don’t feel safe entering you debit card details on a website. Having a Paypal account doesn’t necessarily mean you are trading on Ebay.

      • Patterns of withdrawal in that if you don’t immediately withdraw every penny from your account the second it is paid in. If the dwp see it building up then large sums getting withdrawn in one transaction they will get suspicious because it could be construed that you are not dependent entirely on your benefits.

  40. AHomeAJobAFuture – The holistic social cleansing of the unemployed from social housing.

  41. DWP/JCP and their PCS union lacqueys are out of control.

    How long can HM Courts & Tribunals Service ignore the lawlessness of the DWP, it is bringing the entire administration of law into disrepute.

  42. Instead of pontificating on cause célèbre cases the human rights and civil liberties polit-glitterati should take a closer look at their local JCP office where human rights and civil liberties are being destroyed at there very foundation on a daily basis .

  43. need some one take these bastards to court-illegal-under forced labour-un charter and way below the minumum wage. some jobcenter staff are cunts , think paying you out thier own pocket-but if everythings online- why do we need all these staff in j/c. axe cant come quick enough they have taste other side of the counter

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