From 23rd March 2015 the DWP sent out a memo declaring that: “it would be beneficial for Work Programme Providers to potentially have sight of the Claimant Commitment at the first point of contact.”
The companies running the Work Programme will be expected to encourage participants to share this document, whilst Jobcentre staff will “ensure they highlight to claimants the importance of sharing their Claimant Commitment with their provider at first contact.”
The Claimant Commitment is the agreement that everyone is now forced to sign as a condition of claiming the main out of work benefits. It details the endless pointless activity that unemployed people are expected to carry out as punishment for being out of work. Any breach of this commitment can result in benefits being sanctioned. According to the DWP, allowing companies who run welfare-to-work schemes access to this agreement will provide them with “Information on messaging around a claimant’s non-compliance with work related requirements”. In other words it will be easier for Work Programme providers to grass you up to the Jobcentre for not carrying out work-related activity.
There is no legal requirement to show your Claimant Commitment to your Work Programme provider however due to data protection laws. You should not be sanctioned for refusing to let them see it. The memo warns the providers that “If the claimant refuses to share their Claimant Commitment you should not take any further action to pursue.”
It is up to you. Make sure everyone knows this.
For more information on what you can and can’t be forced to sign and what information you have to disclose to Work Programme companies visit: http://refuted.org.uk/donotsign/
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