Jobseekers made to carry out bogus psychometric tests. Unemployed people are told they risk losing benefits if they fail to carry out meaningless questionnaire

(70 Posts)
vivizone Tue 30-Apr-13 13:04:12

www.guardian.co.uk/society/2013/apr/30/jobseekers-bogus-psychometric-tests-unemployed

AIBU to think this is just not on?

From the article, I am surprised to find that a single mother is only entitled £71 PW. Where is the hundreds and hundreds of pounds per week we are told unemployed people get?

No matter what your stance is on benefits, do you ever worry that you/your family could one day face the benefit system? redundancy, illness, even death of a loved one can change your life in that one split moment. Why do people not want to protect the unemployed?! there are rogues in every part of society - why are the poor being regulated so much whilst others get away scot-free? big companies not paying tax, rich people hiding their assets. Why this heavy handed systematic attack on the poor?

What if your children couldn't get jobs - would you want them tarred with the same brush as benefit claimants - workshy/make them suffer attitude? It’s very easy to turn up your nose when you have things going well for you but you could lose all that you have tomorrow.

I work in quite a secure organisation but feel so desperately sad with is happening. Every single person I know who is on benefits are decent people. Being prosecuted by every angle of society. Makes me feel sick and ashamed.
And if the benefit system does need to be reviewed, it can be done without treating people on benefits like scum. It’s just not on.

doubleshotespresso Wed 01-May-13 15:36:16

I do mind.

ParsingFancy Wed 01-May-13 15:24:29

WTF?

Oh, never mind.

doubleshotespresso Wed 01-May-13 15:02:47

Oh wow- it's the falsehood police! And then you quite agree!

Priceless.

Two or three generations Parsingfancy. It is the truth. I see it daily. Deal with it.

But I am sure all Mners are grateful to you just in case they cannot absorb and analyse their own information or form opinions of their own.

Thank goodness you are here to show them all how a discussion works. This is a forum- did you get that memo?

You know nothing about me but presume to know everything. Then you "quite agree"- this really is painfully tedious now. Finally, I take great issue at your inference I am lying, we are here for debate not personal attacks. I fail to see what you feel you are bringing to this thread, but it comes across as deeply unpleasant, supercillious and inaccurate. Regurgitating the findings of a single website when faced with bare facts has made you look beyond ridiculous and the fact that you then act like you are doing us all a favour is insulting.

cumfy Wed 01-May-13 14:52:50

Apparently the 48 questions are supposed to reveal strength of following traits.hmmhmm

Signature strengths

Strength 1. Curiosity
Strength 2. Bravery
Strength 3. Love of learning
Strength 4. Self Control
Strength 5. Teamwork

I believe however that it is far more likely that many of the questions are intended to document mental health "indicators", so that in the future should JSA applicants apply for ESA/DLA on MH grounds, DWP can dispute applications on the grounds that questionnaire answers contradict the claim.

Many of the questions relate to underlying indicators of depression, social anxiety, social functioning.

The problem is that people with genuine MH problems will feel embarrassed to reveal their psychological vulnerabilities in such a test, and will give conformal responses.

ParsingFancy Wed 01-May-13 14:46:09

And I quite agree about the insecurity if people leave the system, and then need it again. Zero hours contracts being the worst of the worst.

ParsingFancy Wed 01-May-13 14:43:38

No, I'm not here for the fun of a lively discussion.

In this instance, I'm trying to stop people perpetrating falsehoods which then get picked up and tossed around like facts, on which policy is then made.

But as you've now recused from your claim that "there absolutely are lots of families who have not known work for two or three generations innLondon and it is utterly depressing to witness daily", that's cool.

doubleshotespresso Wed 01-May-13 14:33:19

Parsingfancy , sorry was not aware I had claimed to be an expert. I merely stated the facts as I find them everyday. I thought we were all in this for lively discussion, not cheapshots!?!

And yes your link throws up some interesting facts, particuarly the other problems brought on by worklessness. What they do not do, is disprove the fact that the families I refer to have no parents with a work history, and the grandparents (if around sadly) have not either. But some of these grandparents are in their 30s/40s. I did not state about a third generation, as I have not seen this firsthand.

Another fact you may like to ponder is that 30% of the adults/carers/parents etc are unable to read.

So I will stick with my previous statement (assuming of course that is fine with you?) that many families who have existed for years, making the lifestyle choice of benefits are reluctant to take temporary, part time or full time work as they know that once they leave the system, it is far harder for them to get back in. They fear their payments will be in jeopardy if they enter work or the work does not continue.

Very much as I stated before as opposed to your judged rather different.

ParsingFancy Wed 01-May-13 14:11:54

temporary work will find it hard

ParsingFancy Wed 01-May-13 13:55:58

Of course seasonal and temporary work will find it hard need topping up, doubleshot.

But you claimed: "the children of these families have never witnessed a family member hold down a job" and "have been trapped in the mindset that they are financially better off to remain out of work because it would jeopardise their benefit entitlements."

Which is rather different.

Oh, and if you'd like to pop the addresses of those families you know where three generations have never worked to the Jospeh Rowntree Foundation, I'm sure they'd be very glad of your expert advice.

But I think it's more likely you can point at families where at least one member in each of three generations is currently unemployed, rather than a family in which no member in three generations has ever worked. Not quite the same thing.

Quodlibet Wed 01-May-13 13:51:23

It's not just about people in a crisis though. There are a great number of people in the UK who just arent going to be able to achieve a paid job.
There are more than 6m under-employed people in the UK
There are nearly 3m unemployed people.
There are currently under half a million vacancies.

This ghastly rhetoric of removing support from people because 'work has been made to pay' is not incentivising work if there is no work to be had. It is punishing the already hard-up for their situation.

The bare facts of the matter are that some people are not going to be able to earn a income in this economic climate. Getting them to fill out meaningless quizzes for the sake of a vague research aim is treating them like specimens rather than human beings.

As others have said we are witnessing a complete lack of empathy - or worse, a pathologisation of poverty - from the current government. Yes, the country is in a fairly dire economic situation - but does that mean it's fine to abandon our human decency, empathy and compassion to balance the books? There's all sorts wrong with the current system, but none of them are going to be fixed or improved by this top-down demonisation of people already teetering over the gutter.

doubleshotespresso Wed 01-May-13 13:47:20

What family successfully and independantly runs on seasonal and temporary work?

The younger generation? Well they turn 16, leave education possibly and before you know it enter their early twenties with zero work history. Wich then of course makes them less attractive to employers.....

Parsingfancy I differ with you, there absolutely are lots of families who have not known work for two or three generations innLondon and it is utterly depressing to witness daily.

yonithebrave Wed 01-May-13 13:45:41

Way back when I used to work in an FE college, I was sent (at the princely sum of £1700) on a course that would mean I could administrate, score and interpret psychometric tests.

This is not a psychometric test. It is the online equivalent of a Just Seventeen 'Does he fancy you?' questionnaire.

There are failsafe questions to see if you've answered truthfully, but that's about it.

cumfy Wed 01-May-13 13:35:50

What boils my piss is that 100s of people will have "jobs" hmm, administrating and "analysing" this cack.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 01-May-13 13:29:55

Well they can find enough placements for MWA positions that used to be jobs before the gov started paying places like tesco bonuses to not employ people.

ParsingFancy Wed 01-May-13 13:29:31

"we now have at least two generations who have lived within this system"

This gets repeated a lot, but isn't very true.

The original claim was that there were families of three generations who had never worked. When researchers went looking, they couldn't find a single one.

So now the claim is about families where "two generations have never worked." According to govt statistics these do exist - but the people may in fact have worked! The statistics only count people with permanent positions: seasonal and temporary work is ignored.

What's more, in such "two generation workless" families, the younger generation tends to not long have turned 16. So although they have not yet found work, there's no reason to imagine they're going to go through their whole life without work.

So although the myth gets repeated, it doesn't tell us anything meaningful.

issey6cats Wed 01-May-13 13:20:12

to clarify single peoples allowances, i work 12 hours a week take home pay £78 a week, allowance by housing benefits £71 a week plus £5 for working so i get £76 a week of my wages, my rent is £400 a month private rental housing benefit £330 a month and i have to find £5 a month council tax under the new rules so each month i have to find £75 a month just for rent and council tax. so this leaves me with £224 a month to pay gas, electric, tv license, water rates, food, clothes so believe me even working im not living the life of bloody riley more like robbing peter to pay paul each month

doubleshotespresso Wed 01-May-13 13:08:24

Fasterstronger great question..... But surely worth exploring.

If companies, small businesses, freelancers etc were given better incentives to actually recruit staff rather than the whole process being so expensive that would be a start.

It would also greatly assist the creation of jobs if manufacturing in this country was further encouraged. It is presently a no brainer for a production firm to get their products made overseas, not always that far from the UK either.....

Surely it would better to explore a few options before we just shrug our shoulders and watch further decline?

FasterStronger Wed 01-May-13 12:38:58

how do you 'create jobs' in sufficient numbers to make a difference?

doubleshotespresso Wed 01-May-13 12:22:27

Ok I will put my neck on the block here.

Meneedshoes , I think you may have had a valid point until you deemed the rest of us incapable of reasonable intelligent discussion and then went running, andubelievedthat called you correctly!

Yes the the system is very shoddy for those for whom it is intended.

The problem is now though that we now have at least two generations who have lived within this system, are often barely into adulthood themselves before they have children, ill educated, the children of these families have never witnessed a family member hold down a job. They are unemployable even for many NMW jobs and have been trapped in the mindset that they are financially better off to remain out of work because it would jeopardise their benefit entitlements.

What we should be doing instead of bashing these people is creating jobs via industry, production and service, all of which require inexpensive and not very intensive training,in short create opportunity for those who have for a very long time had none.

Alongside this affordable housing and education alongside it remains an urgent requirement.

We now have thousands of our population who are at breaking point with nowhere to go for help, no forms in the universe correct their situation, it simply adds to their desperation.

andubelievedthat Wed 01-May-13 10:46:31

Nice try MNS, thing is ,if homeless you do not get to refuse a property ,you take what is offered,once .and its hardly their fault you cannot get a job paying more than the minimum wage ,is it?i"m not telling you you are a liar ,you certainly sound ,from your post ,bitter .as for a "proper discussion" do tell ,how would that go? or do you feel that having taken a position re benefit claiments ,no one should have another opinion?oh, and where did you work exactly?ypu have not bowed out gracefully< you have bottled it.

ParsingFancy Wed 01-May-13 10:46:02

What wannabedomesticgoddess said.

LessMissAbs Wed 01-May-13 10:39:17

*From the article: The DWP letter said the test was "scientifically shown to find people's strengths" and instructed her that along with searching for work she must complete the online test within three days. "Failure to comply with this direction may result in loss of benefit," it added.

But when questioned, the DWP didn't deny the "test" was fake*

Perhaps the "test" is whether the person fills in the questionnaire or not!

Ofcourse the lifestyle choice brigade exists.

The issue is that they exist in such a small number that to change the system because of them is making life unbearable for the majority of claimants, who actually need the money to survive.

MeNeedShoes Wed 01-May-13 10:26:35

I shall contribute to this thread against my better judgement then hide it because I know the inevitable descent into madness that will surely follow.

The problem is not people on short term benefits e.g. working person made redundant. They are treated shoddily by the benefits system and get next to nothing. E.g. sister and husband both made unemployed, had young baby to look after and a mortgage. They received the princely sum of £120 a week and relied on family to keep them in the house until they were able to get new jobs.

The problem is the 'benefits as a lifestyle choice' brigade. Don't tell me they don't exist. They do. I used to work with some of them (they were service users) and they were better off than me and my working colleagues. They had better housing and a higher disposable income than the people working there to help them on minimum wage. That's just a fact. Funnily enough the less in need they were, the more entitled they felt. It rankled at the time as I was living back at home with my parents because I couldn't afford housing on my FT wage.

However someone will be along to tell me I'm a liar in a matter of moments because the truth (on both sides of this debate) seems to send MNers screaming mad. So I'll bow out gracefully and wish that just once there could be an actual discussion about the benefits system and what needs changed without hurting the people who need them the most.

doubleshotespresso Wed 01-May-13 10:06:26

And he is now expected to fill in a form detailing whether or not he has made something beautiful in the last year?

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