Benefit sanctions make hardships worse, Advice York review claims

York Press: Benefit sanctions make hardships worse, review claims Benefit sanctions make hardships worse, review claims

AN INDEPENDENT review of the benefits system in York has claimed Government sanctions have caused suffering to vulnerable claimants in the city.

The review was carried out by Advice York – made up of Citizens Advice Bureau, York Food Bank, Castlegate and York Housing Association and City of York Financial Assistance Scheme – in response to changes to Job Centre Plus.

The changes allowed authorities to stop benefits for between one and 26 weeks to claimants who had not met certain conditions, including failing to attend Job Centre interviews, failing to take part in back-to-work schemes, or not actively seeking work.

The report said: “Rather than incentivising employment, sanctions are debilitating it.

“Rather than encouraging clients into employment, the way sanctions are currently applied, discourages and gets in the way of people applying for jobs and can result in hardship once employment is found.”

The report highlighted a number of case studies from claimants around the city including one woman Job Seeker’s Allowance claimant who suffers from depression and asthma, and was sanctioned for four months for missing her work programme.

The case study said: “The client explained that the reason she has missed her work programmes is because of how down she is and is finding it difficult to go out of the house.

“The client is now receiving hardship payments, but she has debts that she is now unable to pay. She is generally struggling to live on her income of £86 per fortnight. Both these issues are exacerbating her depression, making her less able to look for work and fully engage.”

The report suggested Job Centre advisors could undergo better training to take individuals’ needs into account, rather than automatically apply sanctions.

It also said the problem with the sanctions was “a lack of flexibility and understanding”, recommended a further review into sanctions and whether they were effective in encouraging and enabling people to look for and get back into employment, and said claimants’ ability to use the internet to apply for jobs should also be considered.

In another case study, the report looked at a man who has been unemployed for two years and was sanctioned for missing an appointment at the Job Centre.

It was later revealed he was not receiving post at his home as his visiting girlfriend’s dog was attacking the postman and the Post Office declined to make deliveries to his house. They sent him a letter to say so, but it was kept at the post office.

He challenged the sanction imposed on him, but it was upheld. He has no income, electricity, gas or food, and has had to visit a local community church centre for breakfast. Advice York issued him a food bank voucher, but his sanction is still set to last for several weeks.

The report claimed this showed decisions made by Job Centre staff had not been reasonable, and showed “the long term consequences of a sanction can be severe”, with claimants borrowing money to live, then falling into further hardship repaying the loans when benefits are reinstated.

Comments (29)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:17am Mon 24 Feb 14

chelk says...

Blame the Job Centre staff easy option obviously everyone who attends the job centre always tell the whole truth to the staff. The second case highlighted what is the problem, if the dog attacks people why should the post office deliver he should have done something about his situation. It is always a case of it's not my fault.
Blame the Job Centre staff easy option obviously everyone who attends the job centre always tell the whole truth to the staff. The second case highlighted what is the problem, if the dog attacks people why should the post office deliver he should have done something about his situation. It is always a case of it's not my fault. chelk

9:53am Mon 24 Feb 14

smudge2 says...

chelk wrote:
Blame the Job Centre staff easy option obviously everyone who attends the job centre always tell the whole truth to the staff. The second case highlighted what is the problem, if the dog attacks people why should the post office deliver he should have done something about his situation. It is always a case of it's not my fault.
Depression seems to be the new in word for Benefit payments and missing appointments...Like a bad back it is very difficult to prove..I think White Dee has proved that.
[quote][p][bold]chelk[/bold] wrote: Blame the Job Centre staff easy option obviously everyone who attends the job centre always tell the whole truth to the staff. The second case highlighted what is the problem, if the dog attacks people why should the post office deliver he should have done something about his situation. It is always a case of it's not my fault.[/p][/quote]Depression seems to be the new in word for Benefit payments and missing appointments...Like a bad back it is very difficult to prove..I think White Dee has proved that. smudge2

10:06am Mon 24 Feb 14

eeoodares says...

He allowed an animal on his premises to attack people visiting his home as part of their job....'The report claimed this showed decisions made by Job Centre staff had not been reasonable'

It is about time people took responsibility for their own actions.
He allowed an animal on his premises to attack people visiting his home as part of their job....'The report claimed this showed decisions made by Job Centre staff had not been reasonable' It is about time people took responsibility for their own actions. eeoodares

10:57am Mon 24 Feb 14

Stocktonlane_Terrier says...

It's worth pointing out as well that Job Centre staff don't actually make the decisions regarding sanctions. The decision is taken at a higher level by staff in regional offices, not local ones. If someone goes to sign on and gives the job centre cause for doubt then the staff are required to report it and then it's up to the individual claiming benefit the claimant to respond to requests for information as to why they failed to comply with the requirements. whatever it may be.

I'd like to point out as well that I don't agree with sanctions as a form of encouragement at all, but blaming staff at local offices for carrying out central government policy (which this article seems to be doing IMO) is misleading and wrong, look to IDS and all his pals, that's where the direction comes from.
It's worth pointing out as well that Job Centre staff don't actually make the decisions regarding sanctions. The decision is taken at a higher level by staff in regional offices, not local ones. If someone goes to sign on and gives the job centre cause for doubt then the staff are required to report it and then it's up to the individual claiming benefit the claimant to respond to requests for information as to why they failed to comply with the requirements. whatever it may be. I'd like to point out as well that I don't agree with sanctions as a form of encouragement at all, but blaming staff at local offices for carrying out central government policy (which this article seems to be doing IMO) is misleading and wrong, look to IDS and all his pals, that's where the direction comes from. Stocktonlane_Terrier

11:04am Mon 24 Feb 14

Rankled says...

“Rather than incentivising employment, sanctions are debilitating it. "

It's a sanction, it's not supposed to incentivise something. Sanctions are the stick not the carrot.

In the case of employment, the wage/salary is incentive alongside moral obligations, peace of mind, enjoying your job, and generally not being a bit of a drain on everybody else.
“Rather than incentivising employment, sanctions are debilitating it. " It's a sanction, it's not supposed to incentivise something. Sanctions are the stick not the carrot. In the case of employment, the wage/salary is incentive alongside moral obligations, peace of mind, enjoying your job, and generally not being a bit of a drain on everybody else. Rankled

11:30am Mon 24 Feb 14

Platform9 says...

"It was later revealed he was not receiving post at his home as his visiting girlfriend’s dog was attacking the postman and the Post Office declined to make deliveries to his house. They sent him a letter to say so, but it was kept at the post office."

He will have been informed by the PO that his letters were avaialable for collection from the Collection Office so why didnt he get off his lazy A##E and go get them?.

Seems to me that life (and money) is expected to be handed on a on a plate these days?
"It was later revealed he was not receiving post at his home as his visiting girlfriend’s dog was attacking the postman and the Post Office declined to make deliveries to his house. They sent him a letter to say so, but it was kept at the post office." He will have been informed by the PO that his letters were avaialable for collection from the Collection Office so why didnt he get off his lazy A##E and go get them?. Seems to me that life (and money) is expected to be handed on a on a plate these days? Platform9

12:01pm Mon 24 Feb 14

Proudlock says...

I know of many people who've unfortunately had depression and have had to carry on working while taking medications. No choice, no work no pay.
I know of many people who've unfortunately had depression and have had to carry on working while taking medications. No choice, no work no pay. Proudlock

12:16pm Mon 24 Feb 14

voiceofnormalpeople says...

It's nothing how to do with job centre staff the people who make the decisions are hidden from anyone they are on contactable and have no faces they are employed so late to sanction people how to save the government money and to make the country look like there are less people on the dole i was unfortunate to lose my job last year i am in employment again but during my brief time i missed an appointment due to a job interview i rang up and explained i could not make it because of the interview how to get myself out of the benefit system but i got sanctioned anywhere and lost a full month of money i desperately needed i will say it again it is not the job centre staff rather the people hidden behind on climbing walls
It's nothing how to do with job centre staff the people who make the decisions are hidden from anyone they are on contactable and have no faces they are employed so late to sanction people how to save the government money and to make the country look like there are less people on the dole i was unfortunate to lose my job last year i am in employment again but during my brief time i missed an appointment due to a job interview i rang up and explained i could not make it because of the interview how to get myself out of the benefit system but i got sanctioned anywhere and lost a full month of money i desperately needed i will say it again it is not the job centre staff rather the people hidden behind on climbing walls voiceofnormalpeople

12:18pm Mon 24 Feb 14

voiceofnormalpeople says...

sorry some of the comment above and not written properly my phone autocorrect mainly correcting wrong
sorry some of the comment above and not written properly my phone autocorrect mainly correcting wrong voiceofnormalpeople

1:08pm Mon 24 Feb 14

Archiebold the 1st says...

i agree its hard..... must be so hard going on facebook all day and seeing what houses you can swap with... "5 bed house... swap for a large 2 bed centre apartment" "oh the garden isnt big enough".... booo hoooo

Dont get me wrong like the above some people are genuine and looking for work but how many i see who give the rest a bad name is untrue..

i have asthma and dont look forward to monday mornings (or most other weekday mornings) but i still make it...
i agree its hard..... must be so hard going on facebook all day and seeing what houses you can swap with... "5 bed house... swap for a large 2 bed centre apartment" "oh the garden isnt big enough".... booo hoooo Dont get me wrong like the above some people are genuine and looking for work but how many i see who give the rest a bad name is untrue.. i have asthma and dont look forward to monday mornings (or most other weekday mornings) but i still make it... Archiebold the 1st

1:11pm Mon 24 Feb 14

Ichabod76 says...

How can Advice York be considered independent

– made up of Citizens Advice Bureau, York Food Bank, Castlegate and York Housing Association and City of York Financial Assistance Scheme

they have all made public statements against any review of the benefits system ?
How can Advice York be considered independent – made up of Citizens Advice Bureau, York Food Bank, Castlegate and York Housing Association and City of York Financial Assistance Scheme they have all made public statements against any review of the benefits system ? Ichabod76

1:47pm Mon 24 Feb 14

YorkPatrol says...

The two case studies are prime examples as to the problems with the benefits system and those who take advantages of it – no doubt those two will be first in the queue to vote labour in the next general election
The two case studies are prime examples as to the problems with the benefits system and those who take advantages of it – no doubt those two will be first in the queue to vote labour in the next general election YorkPatrol

2:25pm Mon 24 Feb 14

Sambo1987 says...

I agree the job centre is useless anyways there's never any jobs and if there is there out of York !! Also sanctioning people isn't a good idea either because it just makes people commit crimes etc.. Also makes them feel that the job centre isn't any help too them, Also depression isn't a nice thing a lot of people what suffer depression feel they don't want too face people or feel as if people are against them, Yeah fair enough some people what suffer depression might not feel that way, Everyone is different in this world also everyone will always have different opinions too, But I genuinely think the job centre needs too think of other options than sanctioning people !!!
I agree the job centre is useless anyways there's never any jobs and if there is there out of York !! Also sanctioning people isn't a good idea either because it just makes people commit crimes etc.. Also makes them feel that the job centre isn't any help too them, Also depression isn't a nice thing a lot of people what suffer depression feel they don't want too face people or feel as if people are against them, Yeah fair enough some people what suffer depression might not feel that way, Everyone is different in this world also everyone will always have different opinions too, But I genuinely think the job centre needs too think of other options than sanctioning people !!! Sambo1987

3:36pm Mon 24 Feb 14

sjm43 says...

“Rather than encouraging clients into employment, the way sanctions are currently applied, discourages and gets in the way of people applying for jobs and can result in hardship once employment is found.”

If you are on ESA you daren't find a part-time job which you could maybe manage in case you have to work full time, which you probably won't be able to - and even if you did you wouldn't be able to keep your security like you can do to an extent on ESA. It does say on the ESA information that sometimes exceptions are made for therapeutic work - but you are made to feel as though you will be cheating - and may be penalised if you do do therapeutic part-time work. If you go ahead anyway and take on a part-time job - the whole emphasis of jobs is reliability - and there may be days when you simply can't show up - then you'll lose the job anyway - and have to be made to feel as though you are scrounging more when you try to reclaim the benefit you have lost to earn the extra £20 a week you might be able to keep for working part-time.

The impact on self-esteem of such a situation is appalling.
“Rather than encouraging clients into employment, the way sanctions are currently applied, discourages and gets in the way of people applying for jobs and can result in hardship once employment is found.” If you are on ESA you daren't find a part-time job which you could maybe manage in case you have to work full time, which you probably won't be able to - and even if you did you wouldn't be able to keep your security like you can do to an extent on ESA. It does say on the ESA information that sometimes exceptions are made for therapeutic work - but you are made to feel as though you will be cheating - and may be penalised if you do do therapeutic part-time work. If you go ahead anyway and take on a part-time job - the whole emphasis of jobs is reliability - and there may be days when you simply can't show up - then you'll lose the job anyway - and have to be made to feel as though you are scrounging more when you try to reclaim the benefit you have lost to earn the extra £20 a week you might be able to keep for working part-time. The impact on self-esteem of such a situation is appalling. sjm43

4:32pm Mon 24 Feb 14

gwen4me says...

If thousands of East Europeans can travel hundreds of miles to get work here, I`m sure a lot of our own people could find work. Its a matter of organising yourselves, just as they do.
If thousands of East Europeans can travel hundreds of miles to get work here, I`m sure a lot of our own people could find work. Its a matter of organising yourselves, just as they do. gwen4me

4:45pm Mon 24 Feb 14

Stocktonlane_Terrier says...

sjm43 wrote:
“Rather than encouraging clients into employment, the way sanctions are currently applied, discourages and gets in the way of people applying for jobs and can result in hardship once employment is found.”

If you are on ESA you daren't find a part-time job which you could maybe manage in case you have to work full time, which you probably won't be able to - and even if you did you wouldn't be able to keep your security like you can do to an extent on ESA. It does say on the ESA information that sometimes exceptions are made for therapeutic work - but you are made to feel as though you will be cheating - and may be penalised if you do do therapeutic part-time work. If you go ahead anyway and take on a part-time job - the whole emphasis of jobs is reliability - and there may be days when you simply can't show up - then you'll lose the job anyway - and have to be made to feel as though you are scrounging more when you try to reclaim the benefit you have lost to earn the extra £20 a week you might be able to keep for working part-time.

The impact on self-esteem of such a situation is appalling.
I think this perfectly encapsulates the situation that a lot of people who are genuinely ill and are claiming ESA are going through.

The premise of ESA is not to put people into work but support them on their route back to good health. In an ideal world the eventual outcome for a lot of people is ideally employment (from a DWP point of view) but the way in which people are determined as being fit for work is (and I'm being very polite here) rubbish, there is no balance and no consideration for wide ranging health issues and how changes to benefit types will impact, there is too much pressure from central government on the likes of Atos the job centre staff and Work Programme.

You can work while on ESA but there are limitations and there is no real appreciation for the fact that employers want someone who will turn up and do exactly what they ask every time. For a lot of people struggling with health issues this is simply not possible but the truth is, employers that are wiling to take someone with health issues are like the proverbial rocking horse poo and so it makes things even harder for people who are genuinely ill.

What you need is good clear advice and a fair understanding of the situation and challenges facing an individual,unfortuna
tely the current system doesn't allow for this and Atos is not fit for purpose.
[quote][p][bold]sjm43[/bold] wrote: “Rather than encouraging clients into employment, the way sanctions are currently applied, discourages and gets in the way of people applying for jobs and can result in hardship once employment is found.” If you are on ESA you daren't find a part-time job which you could maybe manage in case you have to work full time, which you probably won't be able to - and even if you did you wouldn't be able to keep your security like you can do to an extent on ESA. It does say on the ESA information that sometimes exceptions are made for therapeutic work - but you are made to feel as though you will be cheating - and may be penalised if you do do therapeutic part-time work. If you go ahead anyway and take on a part-time job - the whole emphasis of jobs is reliability - and there may be days when you simply can't show up - then you'll lose the job anyway - and have to be made to feel as though you are scrounging more when you try to reclaim the benefit you have lost to earn the extra £20 a week you might be able to keep for working part-time. The impact on self-esteem of such a situation is appalling.[/p][/quote]I think this perfectly encapsulates the situation that a lot of people who are genuinely ill and are claiming ESA are going through. The premise of ESA is not to put people into work but support them on their route back to good health. In an ideal world the eventual outcome for a lot of people is ideally employment (from a DWP point of view) but the way in which people are determined as being fit for work is (and I'm being very polite here) rubbish, there is no balance and no consideration for wide ranging health issues and how changes to benefit types will impact, there is too much pressure from central government on the likes of Atos the job centre staff and Work Programme. You can work while on ESA but there are limitations and there is no real appreciation for the fact that employers want someone who will turn up and do exactly what they ask every time. For a lot of people struggling with health issues this is simply not possible but the truth is, employers that are wiling to take someone with health issues are like the proverbial rocking horse poo and so it makes things even harder for people who are genuinely ill. What you need is good clear advice and a fair understanding of the situation and challenges facing an individual,unfortuna tely the current system doesn't allow for this and Atos is not fit for purpose. Stocktonlane_Terrier

6:42pm Mon 24 Feb 14

sjm43 says...

Stocktonlane_Terrier wrote:
sjm43 wrote:
“Rather than encouraging clients into employment, the way sanctions are currently applied, discourages and gets in the way of people applying for jobs and can result in hardship once employment is found.”

If you are on ESA you daren't find a part-time job which you could maybe manage in case you have to work full time, which you probably won't be able to - and even if you did you wouldn't be able to keep your security like you can do to an extent on ESA. It does say on the ESA information that sometimes exceptions are made for therapeutic work - but you are made to feel as though you will be cheating - and may be penalised if you do do therapeutic part-time work. If you go ahead anyway and take on a part-time job - the whole emphasis of jobs is reliability - and there may be days when you simply can't show up - then you'll lose the job anyway - and have to be made to feel as though you are scrounging more when you try to reclaim the benefit you have lost to earn the extra £20 a week you might be able to keep for working part-time.

The impact on self-esteem of such a situation is appalling.
I think this perfectly encapsulates the situation that a lot of people who are genuinely ill and are claiming ESA are going through.

The premise of ESA is not to put people into work but support them on their route back to good health. In an ideal world the eventual outcome for a lot of people is ideally employment (from a DWP point of view) but the way in which people are determined as being fit for work is (and I'm being very polite here) rubbish, there is no balance and no consideration for wide ranging health issues and how changes to benefit types will impact, there is too much pressure from central government on the likes of Atos the job centre staff and Work Programme.

You can work while on ESA but there are limitations and there is no real appreciation for the fact that employers want someone who will turn up and do exactly what they ask every time. For a lot of people struggling with health issues this is simply not possible but the truth is, employers that are wiling to take someone with health issues are like the proverbial rocking horse poo and so it makes things even harder for people who are genuinely ill.

What you need is good clear advice and a fair understanding of the situation and challenges facing an individual,unfortuna

tely the current system doesn't allow for this and Atos is not fit for purpose.
Stocton Lane Terrier wrote "The premise of ESA is not to put people into work but support them on their route back to good health. In an ideal world the eventual outcome for a lot of people is ideally employment (from a DWP point of view) but the way in which people are determined as being fit for work is (and I'm being very polite here) rubbish, there is no balance and no consideration for wide ranging health issues and how changes to benefit types will impact, there is too much pressure from central government on the likes of Atos the job centre staff and Work Programme."

I am wondering on from this comment what it would be like if good health were pursued globally as a policy - if work was for 'good health for all', physically and mentally, rather than about an incessant competition for profit.
[quote][p][bold]Stocktonlane_Terrier[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]sjm43[/bold] wrote: “Rather than encouraging clients into employment, the way sanctions are currently applied, discourages and gets in the way of people applying for jobs and can result in hardship once employment is found.” If you are on ESA you daren't find a part-time job which you could maybe manage in case you have to work full time, which you probably won't be able to - and even if you did you wouldn't be able to keep your security like you can do to an extent on ESA. It does say on the ESA information that sometimes exceptions are made for therapeutic work - but you are made to feel as though you will be cheating - and may be penalised if you do do therapeutic part-time work. If you go ahead anyway and take on a part-time job - the whole emphasis of jobs is reliability - and there may be days when you simply can't show up - then you'll lose the job anyway - and have to be made to feel as though you are scrounging more when you try to reclaim the benefit you have lost to earn the extra £20 a week you might be able to keep for working part-time. The impact on self-esteem of such a situation is appalling.[/p][/quote]I think this perfectly encapsulates the situation that a lot of people who are genuinely ill and are claiming ESA are going through. The premise of ESA is not to put people into work but support them on their route back to good health. In an ideal world the eventual outcome for a lot of people is ideally employment (from a DWP point of view) but the way in which people are determined as being fit for work is (and I'm being very polite here) rubbish, there is no balance and no consideration for wide ranging health issues and how changes to benefit types will impact, there is too much pressure from central government on the likes of Atos the job centre staff and Work Programme. You can work while on ESA but there are limitations and there is no real appreciation for the fact that employers want someone who will turn up and do exactly what they ask every time. For a lot of people struggling with health issues this is simply not possible but the truth is, employers that are wiling to take someone with health issues are like the proverbial rocking horse poo and so it makes things even harder for people who are genuinely ill. What you need is good clear advice and a fair understanding of the situation and challenges facing an individual,unfortuna tely the current system doesn't allow for this and Atos is not fit for purpose.[/p][/quote]Stocton Lane Terrier wrote "The premise of ESA is not to put people into work but support them on their route back to good health. In an ideal world the eventual outcome for a lot of people is ideally employment (from a DWP point of view) but the way in which people are determined as being fit for work is (and I'm being very polite here) rubbish, there is no balance and no consideration for wide ranging health issues and how changes to benefit types will impact, there is too much pressure from central government on the likes of Atos the job centre staff and Work Programme." I am wondering on from this comment what it would be like if good health were pursued globally as a policy - if work was for 'good health for all', physically and mentally, rather than about an incessant competition for profit. sjm43

1:14am Tue 25 Feb 14

Magicman! says...

Rankled wrote:
“Rather than incentivising employment, sanctions are debilitating it. "

It's a sanction, it's not supposed to incentivise something. Sanctions are the stick not the carrot.

In the case of employment, the wage/salary is incentive alongside moral obligations, peace of mind, enjoying your job, and generally not being a bit of a drain on everybody else.
The problem is there is TOO MUCH stick and not enough carrot.

Example, a jobseeker that is on a later stage of being on Jobseekers is now expected to apply for 10 jobs a week... casting aside the obvious presumption that there are still 10 jobs a week out there for somebody that has not been able to get a permanent job for years and has applied to every single job posted they could possibly do and that vancancies can be up for several weeks at a time... if a person goes into the jobcentre to sign on for the 2 week period, and in week 1 they applied for 12 jobs but in week 2 they applied for 8, any rational person with half a brain would average that out and say the person is OK - but not at the Jobcentre; because of that week 2 being only 8 applications made, you get a 4 week sanction, which covers week 1 where you made 12 applications and exceeded the criteria. Oh, and don't think that because you have no benefits coming in for 4 weeks that you can just skip the next sign-on session because it is pointless due to you having no money coming in - no, you still have to do your 'actively seeking employment' and keep to your side f the legally-binding contract even though they've failed to uphold their side.

The "front of house" staff, the actual face-to-face advisors are not the ones to blame in this, as they are told what to do by the centre managers and back office staff... and the back office staff are the sneaky ones you have to really watch out for. Jobcentre offices do have specific targets that they MUST sanction a certain number of people each week - that is not a rumour, it is fact as I have known somebody who has worked there. You can do everything to find work, meet all the criteria, be early to the sign on appointment - but if the back office staff pull your name out of the hat on friday then your benefit is cut for at least 2 weeks... what is more, you won't get the letter for at least 2 weeks, meaning you'll have gone for 2 weeks without any more money in an no explanation why - and if you go to appeal then is even more time without that money coming in.

In the past I got a job whilst on jobseekers allowance, and then my JSA was sanctioned for the 2 week period where I had been successful in getting employed... because apparently I "hadn't done enough to find work" in that I hadn't continued to fill out more application forms in the 3 days following when I'd had the phone call that my interview was good and the employer would like to offer me a position! Why would I continue to fill out application forms if I've already been given a position of employment?!!

You want to find out about being "a bit of a drain on everybody else", why not go down to London and ask Ian Duncan Smith why he has WASTED 40 MILLION POUNDS of taxpayers money on a computer system that has never materialised??

--

An idea for how the system would work better: York has a good number of warehousing jobs, but most of the warehouses are on random trading estates in the middle of nowhere and with no buses at the time of work starting/ending. If you are a young person who hasn't had mummy and daddy giving you money for driving lessons/car/house and so on then your only means of getting around is walk/cycle/bus, which puts the lions share of such jobs out of the question, and also blocks the person from trying to start up their own buisness, as they need a vehicle to get to their jobs... so rather than having a person sitting on JSA for 4,5,6,7 years or more, sanctioning them randomly for no reason or because some desk jockey feels really anally retentive that day, why not instead have a policy where if a person has been on JSA without a job lasting 4 months or more within an 18 month period then provide funding for the person to get driving lessons and a driving test (once per year)? At least 70% of the job vacancies on the jobseeking website require or would need a driving license / access to own transport for the person to even think about applying... and if the person passes their driving test and has a license but then still doesn't get employment for 4 months or more another 18 months later, whilst meeting the criteria for actively seeking work, then fund them into a training programme that would get the person qualified as a professional tradesperson... There is currently a national skills shortage of 30,000 skilled tradespeople like Electricians, Plumbers, Joiners, Bricklayers, etc; and a young person who has not bene able to get any form of employment is not able to afford £5,000 to go onto a City and Guilds course to get 17th edition + Part P qualifications that make them into a professional electrician.
... And would that be a drain on the economy? not a chance, because the most a jobseeker would ever be on JSA for is 4 and a half years, after which they'd then be a professional tradesperson with their own driving license and would have started up their own buisness or would be sub-contracted. Never mind all this crap about "CV building workshops", when you've done 1 you've done them all, so no need to be put on another one after 4 months, or some "confidence skills" course, get people onto proper courses that would actually help people to beter their chances of making their own money.
[quote][p][bold]Rankled[/bold] wrote: “Rather than incentivising employment, sanctions are debilitating it. " It's a sanction, it's not supposed to incentivise something. Sanctions are the stick not the carrot. In the case of employment, the wage/salary is incentive alongside moral obligations, peace of mind, enjoying your job, and generally not being a bit of a drain on everybody else.[/p][/quote]The problem is there is TOO MUCH stick and not enough carrot. Example, a jobseeker that is on a later stage of being on Jobseekers is now expected to apply for 10 jobs a week... casting aside the obvious presumption that there are still 10 jobs a week out there for somebody that has not been able to get a permanent job for years and has applied to every single job posted they could possibly do and that vancancies can be up for several weeks at a time... if a person goes into the jobcentre to sign on for the 2 week period, and in week 1 they applied for 12 jobs but in week 2 they applied for 8, any rational person with half a brain would average that out and say the person is OK - but not at the Jobcentre; because of that week 2 being only 8 applications made, you get a 4 week sanction, which covers week 1 where you made 12 applications and exceeded the criteria. Oh, and don't think that because you have no benefits coming in for 4 weeks that you can just skip the next sign-on session because it is pointless due to you having no money coming in - no, you still have to do your 'actively seeking employment' and keep to your side f the legally-binding contract even though they've failed to uphold their side. The "front of house" staff, the actual face-to-face advisors are not the ones to blame in this, as they are told what to do by the centre managers and back office staff... and the back office staff are the sneaky ones you have to really watch out for. Jobcentre offices do have specific targets that they MUST sanction a certain number of people each week - that is not a rumour, it is fact as I have known somebody who has worked there. You can do everything to find work, meet all the criteria, be early to the sign on appointment - but if the back office staff pull your name out of the hat on friday then your benefit is cut for at least 2 weeks... what is more, you won't get the letter for at least 2 weeks, meaning you'll have gone for 2 weeks without any more money in an no explanation why - and if you go to appeal then is even more time without that money coming in. In the past I got a job whilst on jobseekers allowance, and then my JSA was sanctioned for the 2 week period where I had been successful in getting employed... because apparently I "hadn't done enough to find work" in that I hadn't continued to fill out more application forms in the 3 days following when I'd had the phone call that my interview was good and the employer would like to offer me a position! Why would I continue to fill out application forms if I've already been given a position of employment?!! You want to find out about being "a bit of a drain on everybody else", why not go down to London and ask Ian Duncan Smith why he has WASTED 40 MILLION POUNDS of taxpayers money on a computer system that has never materialised?? -- An idea for how the system would work better: York has a good number of warehousing jobs, but most of the warehouses are on random trading estates in the middle of nowhere and with no buses at the time of work starting/ending. If you are a young person who hasn't had mummy and daddy giving you money for driving lessons/car/house and so on then your only means of getting around is walk/cycle/bus, which puts the lions share of such jobs out of the question, and also blocks the person from trying to start up their own buisness, as they need a vehicle to get to their jobs... so rather than having a person sitting on JSA for 4,5,6,7 years or more, sanctioning them randomly for no reason or because some desk jockey feels really anally retentive that day, why not instead have a policy where if a person has been on JSA without a job lasting 4 months or more within an 18 month period then provide funding for the person to get driving lessons and a driving test (once per year)? At least 70% of the job vacancies on the jobseeking website require or would need a driving license / access to own transport for the person to even think about applying... and if the person passes their driving test and has a license but then still doesn't get employment for 4 months or more another 18 months later, whilst meeting the criteria for actively seeking work, then fund them into a training programme that would get the person qualified as a professional tradesperson... There is currently a national skills shortage of 30,000 skilled tradespeople like Electricians, Plumbers, Joiners, Bricklayers, etc; and a young person who has not bene able to get any form of employment is not able to afford £5,000 to go onto a City and Guilds course to get 17th edition + Part P qualifications that make them into a professional electrician. ... And would that be a drain on the economy? not a chance, because the most a jobseeker would ever be on JSA for is 4 and a half years, after which they'd then be a professional tradesperson with their own driving license and would have started up their own buisness or would be sub-contracted. Never mind all this crap about "CV building workshops", when you've done 1 you've done them all, so no need to be put on another one after 4 months, or some "confidence skills" course, get people onto proper courses that would actually help people to beter their chances of making their own money. Magicman!

1:16am Tue 25 Feb 14

Magicman! says...

Platform9 wrote:
"It was later revealed he was not receiving post at his home as his visiting girlfriend’s dog was attacking the postman and the Post Office declined to make deliveries to his house. They sent him a letter to say so, but it was kept at the post office."

He will have been informed by the PO that his letters were avaialable for collection from the Collection Office so why didnt he get off his lazy A##E and go get them?.

Seems to me that life (and money) is expected to be handed on a on a plate these days?
How would he have been informed, if the Post Office HQ sent him a letter, but the regional office held the letter back and wouldn't deliver it? Hmmmmmm, perhaps engage brain and disengage prejudgice....
[quote][p][bold]Platform9[/bold] wrote: "It was later revealed he was not receiving post at his home as his visiting girlfriend’s dog was attacking the postman and the Post Office declined to make deliveries to his house. They sent him a letter to say so, but it was kept at the post office." He will have been informed by the PO that his letters were avaialable for collection from the Collection Office so why didnt he get off his lazy A##E and go get them?. Seems to me that life (and money) is expected to be handed on a on a plate these days?[/p][/quote]How would he have been informed, if the Post Office HQ sent him a letter, but the regional office held the letter back and wouldn't deliver it? Hmmmmmm, perhaps engage brain and disengage prejudgice.... Magicman!

1:19am Tue 25 Feb 14

Magicman! says...

Archiebold the 1st wrote:
i agree its hard..... must be so hard going on facebook all day and seeing what houses you can swap with... "5 bed house... swap for a large 2 bed centre apartment" "oh the garden isnt big enough".... booo hoooo

Dont get me wrong like the above some people are genuine and looking for work but how many i see who give the rest a bad name is untrue..

i have asthma and dont look forward to monday mornings (or most other weekday mornings) but i still make it...
How many you see who give the rest a bad name?

shouldn't you have written that as "from how many the Daily Mail and The Sun print about in their newspapers so as to condition everybody into thinking they're all a bunch of scroungers"??
[quote][p][bold]Archiebold the 1st[/bold] wrote: i agree its hard..... must be so hard going on facebook all day and seeing what houses you can swap with... "5 bed house... swap for a large 2 bed centre apartment" "oh the garden isnt big enough".... booo hoooo Dont get me wrong like the above some people are genuine and looking for work but how many i see who give the rest a bad name is untrue.. i have asthma and dont look forward to monday mornings (or most other weekday mornings) but i still make it...[/p][/quote]How many you see who give the rest a bad name? shouldn't you have written that as "from how many the Daily Mail and The Sun print about in their newspapers so as to condition everybody into thinking they're all a bunch of scroungers"?? Magicman!

1:40am Tue 25 Feb 14

sjm43 says...

Do you think that it would help the situation at all if all bigger employers - if they make more than a certain amount of profit in any one year - would have to pay £10 minimum wage?
Do you think that it would help the situation at all if all bigger employers - if they make more than a certain amount of profit in any one year - would have to pay £10 minimum wage? sjm43

1:43am Tue 25 Feb 14

sjm43 says...

I'm just thinking by the above comment that if more money was going into the tax system because the minimum wage in such cases would be higher that there would be less need by the Government to reduce benefits and penalize people so harshly?
I'm just thinking by the above comment that if more money was going into the tax system because the minimum wage in such cases would be higher that there would be less need by the Government to reduce benefits and penalize people so harshly? sjm43

1:53am Tue 25 Feb 14

sjm43 says...

"Thank you for your interest in joining the team at Asda. On this occasion, however, we’re sorry to tell you we won’t be taking your application any further.

Your assessment is valid for 6 months and so we cannot accept any further applications from you for any other roles within this time.

We appreciate you took the time to send us your details, and we’re sure your determination will pay off very soon. In the meantime, we wish you the very best for the future.


Yours sincerely,
Asda Recruitment Team"

Are a lot of companies like this - that bar you from applying for a job again for 6 months if you have unsuccessfully applied once to them?
"Thank you for your interest in joining the team at Asda. On this occasion, however, we’re sorry to tell you we won’t be taking your application any further. Your assessment is valid for 6 months and so we cannot accept any further applications from you for any other roles within this time. We appreciate you took the time to send us your details, and we’re sure your determination will pay off very soon. In the meantime, we wish you the very best for the future. Yours sincerely, Asda Recruitment Team" Are a lot of companies like this - that bar you from applying for a job again for 6 months if you have unsuccessfully applied once to them? sjm43

8:11am Tue 25 Feb 14

WishfulxThinker says...

sjm43 wrote:
Do you think that it would help the situation at all if all bigger employers - if they make more than a certain amount of profit in any one year - would have to pay £10 minimum wage?
Wouldn't work

What do you think, say McDonalds would do if it had to pay £10 an hour? Do you think it'll be happy to lose a chunk of its profits? Job cuts, redundancies, it will stop hiring. More people unemployed. Think of how many McDonalds there are in this country, or even in this city alone and how many people it has hired.
Now do this for the other big fast food venues, add on the big chain Supermarkets....

And are their staff really worth £10 an hour? The same price as door staff on night clubs risking a punch in the face each Saturday? Or care workers? Hospital cleaners? And everyone else who's job is harder but their company isn't raking in the profits?
[quote][p][bold]sjm43[/bold] wrote: Do you think that it would help the situation at all if all bigger employers - if they make more than a certain amount of profit in any one year - would have to pay £10 minimum wage?[/p][/quote]Wouldn't work What do you think, say McDonalds would do if it had to pay £10 an hour? Do you think it'll be happy to lose a chunk of its profits? Job cuts, redundancies, it will stop hiring. More people unemployed. Think of how many McDonalds there are in this country, or even in this city alone and how many people it has hired. Now do this for the other big fast food venues, add on the big chain Supermarkets.... And are their staff really worth £10 an hour? The same price as door staff on night clubs risking a punch in the face each Saturday? Or care workers? Hospital cleaners? And everyone else who's job is harder but their company isn't raking in the profits? WishfulxThinker

8:51am Tue 25 Feb 14

Platform9 says...

Magicman! wrote:
Platform9 wrote: "It was later revealed he was not receiving post at his home as his visiting girlfriend’s dog was attacking the postman and the Post Office declined to make deliveries to his house. They sent him a letter to say so, but it was kept at the post office." He will have been informed by the PO that his letters were avaialable for collection from the Collection Office so why didnt he get off his lazy A##E and go get them?. Seems to me that life (and money) is expected to be handed on a on a plate these days?
How would he have been informed, if the Post Office HQ sent him a letter, but the regional office held the letter back and wouldn't deliver it? Hmmmmmm, perhaps engage brain and disengage prejudgice....
Maybe I am prejudiced?, might be something to do living in a street where the ones on benefit are waking me up at 3am smashed out of their heads on something and banging on their doors to be let in the house so that they can sleep until 4pm whilst I have to get up and go to work!
[quote][p][bold]Magicman![/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Platform9[/bold] wrote: "It was later revealed he was not receiving post at his home as his visiting girlfriend’s dog was attacking the postman and the Post Office declined to make deliveries to his house. They sent him a letter to say so, but it was kept at the post office." He will have been informed by the PO that his letters were avaialable for collection from the Collection Office so why didnt he get off his lazy A##E and go get them?. Seems to me that life (and money) is expected to be handed on a on a plate these days?[/p][/quote]How would he have been informed, if the Post Office HQ sent him a letter, but the regional office held the letter back and wouldn't deliver it? Hmmmmmm, perhaps engage brain and disengage prejudgice....[/p][/quote]Maybe I am prejudiced?, might be something to do living in a street where the ones on benefit are waking me up at 3am smashed out of their heads on something and banging on their doors to be let in the house so that they can sleep until 4pm whilst I have to get up and go to work! Platform9

11:59am Tue 25 Feb 14

seatothewest says...

The Tories have used the excuse of difficult economic times to push forward their agenda attacking the most vulnerable in society - implemented by a Cabinet mostly composed of millionaires. Billions are wasted on futile wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which only make the UK a target for terrorism; it's not a lack of money that's the problem - amazingly most of our wealth is still owned by a small percentage of the population! 70 billion is being spent just to clean up one nuclear site at Sellafield!!!
The Tories have used the excuse of difficult economic times to push forward their agenda attacking the most vulnerable in society - implemented by a Cabinet mostly composed of millionaires. Billions are wasted on futile wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, which only make the UK a target for terrorism; it's not a lack of money that's the problem - amazingly most of our wealth is still owned by a small percentage of the population! 70 billion is being spent just to clean up one nuclear site at Sellafield!!! seatothewest

4:07pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Dark Rogue says...

Do people not have to take ownership of their lives? When a person is sanctioned, then surely they have not done something that they have agreed to do.

Our society has to many individuals that think/expect that other people will sort it for them. If the person then loses tax payer supported benefits by not supporting themselves, then its a tough learning curve.
Do people not have to take ownership of their lives? When a person is sanctioned, then surely they have not done something that they have agreed to do. Our society has to many individuals that think/expect that other people will sort it for them. If the person then loses tax payer supported benefits by not supporting themselves, then its a tough learning curve. Dark Rogue

5:41pm Tue 25 Feb 14

sjm43 says...

Wishful X thinker said: "What do you think, say McDonalds would do if it had to pay £10 an hour? Do you think it'll be happy to lose a chunk of its profits? Job cuts, redundancies, it will stop hiring. More people unemployed. Think of how many McDonalds there are in this country, or even in this city alone and how many people it has hired.
Now do this for the other big fast food venues, add on the big chain Supermarkets....

And are their staff really worth £10 an hour? The same price as door staff on night clubs risking a punch in the face each Saturday? Or care workers? Hospital cleaners? And everyone else who's job is harder but their company isn't raking in the profits?"

I must say I thought you had some really good points to make and was convinced by your argument for a time - then I started thinking - Do cleaners at the Ritz get paid more than cleaners in a B & B in York? Do cleaners at the Ritz get paid more than dentists in Nigeria?? I'm not sure of the answers to these questions...
Wishful X thinker said: "What do you think, say McDonalds would do if it had to pay £10 an hour? Do you think it'll be happy to lose a chunk of its profits? Job cuts, redundancies, it will stop hiring. More people unemployed. Think of how many McDonalds there are in this country, or even in this city alone and how many people it has hired. Now do this for the other big fast food venues, add on the big chain Supermarkets.... And are their staff really worth £10 an hour? The same price as door staff on night clubs risking a punch in the face each Saturday? Or care workers? Hospital cleaners? And everyone else who's job is harder but their company isn't raking in the profits?" I must say I thought you had some really good points to make and was convinced by your argument for a time - then I started thinking - Do cleaners at the Ritz get paid more than cleaners in a B & B in York? Do cleaners at the Ritz get paid more than dentists in Nigeria?? I'm not sure of the answers to these questions... sjm43

6:40pm Fri 28 Feb 14

jmumof3 says...

I fully support York Press's campaign and urge them to continue in spite of uninformed comments here.

The main victims of assessments and sanctions are the mentally ill. They cannot defend themselves and are being assessed as fit to work. Nationally there have been 10,000 deaths after wrongful ATOS decisions.

People are being sanctioned for missing appointments when their letter arrives after the appointment date, or when they are hospitalised.
I fully support York Press's campaign and urge them to continue in spite of uninformed comments here. The main victims of assessments and sanctions are the mentally ill. They cannot defend themselves and are being assessed as fit to work. Nationally there have been 10,000 deaths after wrongful ATOS decisions. People are being sanctioned for missing appointments when their letter arrives after the appointment date, or when they are hospitalised. jmumof3

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree