Iain Duncan Smith really is an arse isn't he?

(204 Posts)
MaryMotherOfCheeses Sun 17-Feb-13 17:16:37


"The next time somebody goes in - those smart people who say there's something wrong with this - they go into their supermarket, ask themselves this simple question, when they can't find the food they want on the shelves, who is more important - them, the geologist, or the person who stacked the shelves?"

There is so much wrong with this that I can't even begin. [cross]

Commenting further on the case, Mr Duncan Smith said: "I understand she said she wasn't paid. She was paid jobseeker's allowance, by the taxpayer, to do this.

Someone needs to remind him that we have a National Minimum Wage in this country. He seems to have forgotten.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sun 17-Feb-13 17:27:42

The next time I want to take my son to a museum so that he can learn about the planet we live on, but they've closed the gallery due to cost cutting, at least I'll know that the supermarkets are making a bigger profit due to all this free labour.

He's just so stupid shock That's what I can't get over, that all these clever Oxbridge-educated Tories can't see the sheer idiocy of these schemes.

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 17:32:19

Can't see link....

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 17:35:37

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Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 17:35:41

What is this thread about?

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sun 17-Feb-13 17:37:31
ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 17:39:29


MaryMotherOfCheeses Sun 17-Feb-13 17:40:09

"An employed shelf-stacker is doing more for the country than an unemployed geologist."

She was volunteering in a museum.

Museum volunteers are very important. They help on the collections and provide additional resource to organisations which are usually charities and under constant threat of cuts themselves.

Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 17:41:41

Pah. She needs to understand market economics.

Cornycabernet Sun 17-Feb-13 17:42:12

'companies have to make arrangements around it, then if you don't do this you may suffer a benefit withdrawal because you have messed them around and they are therefore going to suffer as a result of that.'

he really means that the huge company will miss out on their slave labour hmm

he wants the poor to suffer alright

TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 17:43:44

Supermarkets are making humongous profits, I don't see why I, as a tax payer, should subsidise their profits. The least they can do is pay their staff the minimum wage.

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 17:44:39

So he doesn't like the judges ruling on this, the law of the land went against him....

Out of touch and law breaker

Meglet Sun 17-Feb-13 17:44:58

yes, he is.

akaemmafrost Sun 17-Feb-13 17:46:19

Oh Rhiannon I am exhausted by the ignorant nonsense you post on each and every benefits thread. I desperately need a hide poster button just for you.

Trazzletoes Sun 17-Feb-13 17:46:56

He was on the Andrew Marr show this morning. I would have thrown stuff at the tv if it hasn't meant I could actually possibly break it.

badguider Sun 17-Feb-13 17:46:57

An employed shelf stacker may be a good thing indeed. But a free shelf stacker costing the supermarket nothing devalues not only the shelf stacker in question but every other shelf stacker who rightly expects to be paid the national minimum wage for doing their job!!!
This unemployed graduate dud not turn down a job stacking shelves. She turned down the obligation to work at no cost to the supermarket when she needed that time to apply for paying jobs and do voluntary work that would give her new and valuable skills and experience.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sun 17-Feb-13 17:51:32

Perhaps IDS doesn't understand the contribution to the economy from all those mining, oil, gas companies who frankly, would be a bit buggered without geologists.

Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 17:52:40

I have an engineering degree, but the first job I took after graduating was in a department store. It took me until the April after graduation to find an engineering job.

It never occurred to me that I shouldn't be a shop girl for those months. I think my future employers appreciated that I had a work ethic.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 17:53:30

<total aside>
Gosh Mary, have not seen you posting for ages.
How are you? smile
(Current apoplexy aside)

TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 17:54:27

Knowsabitabouteducation - did you earn more from shelf stacking than being on the dole?

Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 17:55:32

Obviously BP, Shell etc don't see the value of this particular geology graduate either. I imagine they collectively took on some graduates though - but this particular one didn't shine to the same extent.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sun 17-Feb-13 17:56:57

But if you want to work in geology, volunteering in a museum does demonstrate a work ethic. Just as much as having a job in a shop.

It's not an either / or issue. It's not about one being better than the other. They are both perfectly valid things to do and IDS is being an arse for thinking that the general public do not appreciate this.

I'm doing good thanks Moondog but am currently a little bit rattled grin

Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 17:58:18

I've never shelf-stacked nor been on the dole, but given the choice, I would always chosen to have worked so that I could build up skills and experience.

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 17:58:42

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Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 17:59:22

What's the museum got to do with it?

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sun 17-Feb-13 17:59:29

Perhaps this geology graduate knew how important museums are to our children and wants to share that. There are jobs in that field you know. I

I know. Let's take away all the museums and then we can just look at things in supermarkets.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

gallicgirl Sun 17-Feb-13 18:02:58

IDS should be rattled.


Message withdrawn at poster's request.

crazynanna Sun 17-Feb-13 18:03:53

I think he's got a point, there are too many young people with over-inflated ideas of what kind of job they are entitled to,

Your point is insulting. Why shouldn't a young person aspire to a good, fulfilling career/job? Are they not "entitled" to have ambition?

I am not sure what the cause of it is,

It's called 'Ambition'

chibi Sun 17-Feb-13 18:06:51

why are we subsidising supermarkets et al in this way?

if there is work for someone available, let them hire them and pay them a wage

ithaka Sun 17-Feb-13 18:07:31

If shelf stackers are so vital (and I can see that they are), doesn't it follow that they should be paid for their labour? And if the government doesn't provide free labour to the supermarkets, the supermarkets would have to employ people to stack their shelves, thus creating jobs and getting people off benefit. Surely that is simple market economics.

Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 18:08:38

The thing is, she doesn't get to pick her job. She has to find an employer willing to pay her for her skills and knowledge.

Let's pick on her instead of IDS and ask her why she didn't get a job at milk round/graduation.

chibi Sun 17-Feb-13 18:08:57

silly ithaka, market economics is for poor people

subsidies and socialism is for large corporations

chibi Sun 17-Feb-13 18:11:14

why she did not have a job at graduation and whether the government ought to be subsidising corporations are two totally different issues

i am more interested in the second one tbh

TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 18:11:38

"The thing is, she doesn't get to pick her job. She has to find an employer willing to pay her for her skills and knowledge.

Let's pick on her instead of IDS and ask her why she didn't get a job at milk round/graduation."

I guess you missed the whole global recession in the papers?

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:18:16

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chibi Sun 17-Feb-13 18:20:16

oh. what happens to those people who would have gotten the jobs, had there been no subsidies?

which jobs do they get?

MoreBeta Sun 17-Feb-13 18:21:16

I have voted Tory at every election, I believe in the market economy, I believe everyone should work if there is a job and they are qualified and able to do it.

I want IDS and David Cameron and everyone in the Tory Party to know that that I am enraged by this policy. I am enraged for two reasons.

1. I am a tax payer and no firm should get an employee for free subsidised by my money.

2. No employee should be forced to work for less than minimum wage.

If a job is worth doing it is worth paying minimum wage for. No ifs, no buts, no way. I totally agree with what Miss Reilly said.

""I don't think I am above working in shops like Poundland. I now work part-time in a supermarket. It is just that I expect to get paid for working."

Please note IDS. This woman is now working for money. That is a paid job.

She was also prepared to volunteer and work for no money to further her skills in a job at a museum that was also a benefit to the public.

You and the Tory party are so wrong on this issue. I dont know where to start.

Before I went to University I did a horrible job cleaning turkey sheds and sand blasting buildings. I also worked in a laboratory as well. Good experience and I got paid_ for it.

Why do the Tory Party not understand this!

chibi Sun 17-Feb-13 18:22:23

actually, i think you have won the thread with 'it's all very well, saying these people should be paid'

as though expecting a wage is some kind of ludicrous extravagance

hooooooly moly.

plonko Sun 17-Feb-13 18:23:52

Does anyone else feel that IDS is going to have to resign in the next few weeks? The dwp are currently looking at paying millions in rebates to those who've been sanctioned due to his ridiculous workfare scheme - this will probably sting taxpayers more but I'm sure that the demonised poor being able to pay some of their winter fuel bills and eating proper food can only be a good thing.

Immediately after graduating I was unemployed for 6 months, despite an MA from a good uni. Same for DP. I set myself a daily target of applying for 5+ jobs a day, which meant pretty much everything going. I took jobs as a temp, in shops and volunteered. I certainly did not have a problem or feel that shop work was beneath me!!

I defy any graduate, or indeed anyone with an ounce of self respect, to be proud and happy to sit on the dole doing sweet fuck all with their life. Out of touch doesn't even begin to excuse his disgusting attitude!

Darkesteyes Sun 17-Feb-13 18:25:57

Knowsabit are you pulling up the ladder behind you the whole way or just halfway!

Darkesteyes Sun 17-Feb-13 18:28:00

KnowsabitabouteducationSun 17-Feb-13 17:52:40

I have an engineering degree, but the first job I took after graduating was in a department store. It took me until the April after graduation to find an engineering job.

It never occurred to me that I shouldn't be a shop girl for those months. I think my future employers appreciated that I had a work ethic.

And you have already admitted in a subsequent post that you have NEVER been on the dole. So therefore you got paid a WAGE you HYPOCRITE.

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:28:53

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hackmum Sun 17-Feb-13 18:30:29

IDS clearly is an idiot. And really, if he thinks stacking shelves is such an important job, then it should be recompensed accordingly.

He might as well have said:

"The next time somebody goes in - those smart people who say there's something wrong with this - they go into their supermarket, ask themselves this simple question, when they can't find the food they want on the shelves, who is more important - them, the politician, or the person who stacked the shelves?"

Darkesteyes Sun 17-Feb-13 18:31:17

And i assume Rhinnon that you get paid for reproducing in the form of Child Benefit.
Having children is a choice Being unemployed isnt.

Btw i dont begrudge all parents their Child Benefit. Just the ones who are hypocritical about it like you.

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:33:06

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Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:34:23

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ouryve Sun 17-Feb-13 18:36:17

I'll not repeat the language I used when I heard that report on the radio. "Patronising twat" was just the beginning of it.

TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 18:36:26

"Do you really think supermarkets could function staffed mainly by workfare people who would only be there for a few weeks?"

Wouldn't actually put it passed them TBH.

Why should my taxes subsidise their business?

plonko Sun 17-Feb-13 18:37:28

Erm Rhiannon, she was 'paid' £53 a week to work full time. If I had not been able to claim my £53 a week for 6 months I wouldn't have been able to get a full time job. After one year earning a salary I paid back nearly £3000 in tax, after claiming roughly £1200 in jsa. This is our benefits system working as it should. What the fuck is wrong with that?

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 18:38:59

Out of a party of vile shits, Ian Dunscan Smith shirley it the nastiest vile shit of them all.

I do hope he is forced to resign in the next few weeks, but I very much doubt that will happen.

We have a chancellor who may be taking us in to an unprecedented triple-dip recession, and has put the UK economy in among the worst performing of all G20 countries:


And Osborne's job is as secure as ever.

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:41:00

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Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:42:32

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badguider Sun 17-Feb-13 18:44:14

"work experience" should ALWAYS be voluntary and it should always for those who will get something from the experience that they do not have.

There are people who have spent time not in education, employment or training in their youth and lost the habit of being somewhere on time and committing to a regular routine and working hard. There are also people who have had addiction problems or been in the criminal justice system and not experienced work. And people with health and mental health problems who do not have a history of proving they can hold down a job. These people should be encouraged to take work experience opportunities with incentives.

A recent graduate with a decent degree and who is doing voluntary work in the field they need experience in is NONE of these things and can be paid JSA for a short period to allow them to get on their feet. I worked as an office temp before getting my first graduate job, but in this economic climate with so many highly qualified aministrators out of work I'm not sure those opportunities exist for a graduate who can touch type.

plonko Sun 17-Feb-13 18:44:43

And the problem is that workfare was sold as a plan to train people and improve their job prospects. It does neither, instead only serving to devalue the jobs people are paid to do, and feed into the workers vs. shirkers rhetoric the Tories are so fond of.

Branding jobseekers as shirkers is just a vile way for the government to shit stir whilst they dismantle the welfare state at massive cost to the taxpayer.

MoreBeta Sun 17-Feb-13 18:45:15

Rhiannon - it has nothing to do with not liking the Tories. I voted Tory, I work for money. That is what a job is. Working for money.

This scheme is wrong. Full stop.

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 18:45:38

A few facts about Workfare:

* Some people are being forced on Workfare when they have been unemployed for a time period which is the national average. In other words, it's not just the long-term unemployed who are being put on Workfare.

* Workfare does not increase the chances of someone finding a job. It has been empirically shown that those on Workfare fared no better (in fact, did slightly worse) than those who did not participate in Workfare schemes.

* Workfare not only provides free labor for private companies, but, as a result, reducing the chances of the public finding paid work, since companies are reluctant to hire when they can get labour for free.

* Workfare not only reduces the number of paid jobs, but has a depressive effect on wages for the remaining paid jobs.

* Companies are furthermore being paid to take on Workfare placements, so they have a further incentive to take on free labour.

* Dozens of charities and companies have already pulled out of these Workfare schemes after being publicly named and shamed.

You can find out more info here:


domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 18:45:41

Nonsense, Rhiannon.

The point of workfare is to a. massage the unemployment figures (did you know that every workfare claimant forced into a useless placement is actually taken off the unemployment rolls?) and b. to provide government 'partners' with free labour.

Graduates and school leavers do not require 'training' in shelf stacking and till work. I am not sure that many people do. During my university holidays I worked nights chucking parcels around at the Royal Mail. I was paid for this work and no one trained me.

Skilled graduate work will now usually require months or years of unpaid 'internship'. IDS's odious policy of forcing young jobseekers straight onto workfare will ensure that only nice rich kids get to do rich-person jobs because the pleb kids will be blocked from going anywhere in the careers everyone wants: they'll be sweeping floors in Poundland.

It is utterly disgusting, and apologists for it need to get a grip and wash their brains out with soap. Or something more caustic :D

MoreBeta Sun 17-Feb-13 18:48:02

The other thing this scheme does is undermine low paid workers. If a firm can get 'free' workfare staff then it has no incentive to employ or pay existing employees in part time and minimum wage jobs.

The ultimate logical end point of all this is that firms sack everyone on minimum wage or part time grades and just use workfare staff.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 18:48:06

New Labour started workfare and welfare reform in general (although the seeds were sown by Peter Lilley in the Thatcher years) but the Tories have embraced it with a level of repulsive (and incompetent) zeal which is repulsive to see.

The utter incompetence of the policy is demonstrated by the vast millions of taxpayers' money being thrown at workfare 'partners' such as A4E versus the complete failure to convert workfare placements into actual long-term work.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 18:48:31

Argh double repulsive in one sentence :D not good. But double repulsive is right for this lot

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:50:47

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ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 18:50:48

> "Why should my taxes subsidise their business? "

> How much value do you think they are getting out of the workfare workers? The point of the scheme is to give people experience of work.

They can get quite a lot of value - especially in sectors where there are lots of low-paid workers like in supermarkets. Instead of hiring 12 labourers at £7 hour (if you're lucky), for £12,000 per month in total, you can 12 labourers for free.

The point is not to give people experience of work. The point is to provide free labour for companies, to disincentivise people from claiming JSA, and to fiddle the employment figures: people on Workfare are not classified as 'unemployed' according to the government.

That's why the unemployment figures are 'surprisingly high' amidst the worst economic performance since the Great Depression:

a) Thousands of Workfare people are not classified as unemployed

b) Thousands of people have shifted from full-time secure jobs to part-time insecure jobs.

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 18:52:07

> I just get sick of people whinging and whining about life not being fair, instead of just getting on with things and being prepared to work hard to get on in life.

Work hard, yes. Work for free, no.

Sorry, but that isn't any sort of meritocracy. It's not a 'fair days pay for a fair days work'.

It's not 'lazy' to expect to be paid for work. It's basic and integral to human dignity.

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 18:54:07

DWP assessment of workfare: It doesn't work.

A DWP commissioned study has found that the Mandatory Work Programme has 'Zero' effect on getting people into work and may in fact increase people's chances of being on long term benefit.

In the study, which compared the outcomes between more than 3,000 MWA referrals with 125,00 non-referred jobseekers, they also concluded that the scheme had zero effect in helping people get a job.

"The results show that … a MWA referral had no impact on the likelihood of being employed compared to non-referrals," the 62-page report said.

Analysing the different groups of unemployed people over a five-month period, the study found: "Overall, the benefit impact over the first 21 weeks equates to referrals being off benefits for an average of about four days more than if they had not been referred." This rose to eight days after sanctions.

But it added that, those being sent on mandatory unpaid work "returned to benefit on average more than the comparison group".

Researchers also found that between May and November 2011 more than 1,600 had their benefits cut for up to six months for either refusing to start a placement or leaving it before it finished. One in five of those who didn't start MWA were sanctioned.

Grayling immediately rubbished the study as being 'out-of-date' and representative only of 'teething problems' in the first three months of the scheme.

Still, when even the DWP thinks Workfare is shit...


MoreBeta Sun 17-Feb-13 18:56:09

It only takes a minimal ampunt of brain power to work out the consequences of this scheme.

Lets say a firm is given two choices:

a) employ an unskilled and unqualified worker on minimum wage to stack shelves; or

b) employ a graduate level worker for free, pay no employers national insurance and and get paid an extra sum by Govt to take them on as well.

What does the firm do?

It employs the graduate for free of course and the unskilled worker goes jobless and still claims benefits. The net result is the firm makes more profit and two people remain claiming Govt funded benefits.

How stupid is that!!!?

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 18:58:17

At Christmas supermarkets take on untrained staff for a few weeks to work during the busy Xmas period for a few weeks

So it would seem employing people for a few weeks even if they are untrained is viable

Imagine getting those workers for free

It adds to all the workers that are subed by government tax credits

Share holders will be kept happy with subed wages bills

Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 18:58:22

I really really don't get the outrage.

If someone is getting out-of-work benefits, and a company is willing to give work experience, what is the problem of marrying the two?

It takes people out of the "no experience" and "no reference" trap.

Even without government benefits, gaining work experience can only be a good thing. It gives the employee a reference (vital for many jobs) and something to write on their CV. It means that they know how to get to work on time, dress appropriately, are sufficiently subordinate, understand a corporate structure, etc.

As a mum of teens, it seems to come around every year about work experience and "take your daughter child to work day". Middle class people seem to value this, even though it is one big hassle. I do believe that DS1's 2-week Y11 work experience really strengthened his UCAS personal statement. He wasn't paid for this and actually out laid rather a lot (see-yut and peak-time rail fares) But he is pulling in the dividends now.

He'll breeze into permanent employment without taxpayer help. How good is that?

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 18:58:43

> ttosca you don't like the Tories very much, do you?

No. I think they're vile and sociopathic. I really do. They are a bunch of reactionary ideologues who would return Britain to the social conditions of the Victorian era if given a chance. They really have no understanding of the hardship or suffering of how the majority live.

> Do you think the countries current plight is all their fault, or do you think that Labour, and a fair proportion of the British people have a part to play as well?

If you mean the economic situation, then I also blame labour, yes, but not because they spent too much on public services (they didn't, and that wasn't the cause). They contributed to the disaster by deregulating the financial institutions of the UK.

We're going through a global economic depression, which Labour only played a part through its implementation of neo-liberal economic policies.

Contrary to the Tory narrative, it's not because of Labour spending that we're in the situation we're in now. If that were the case, only the UK would be in trouble. The fact is, our global economic system is completely out of control and needs radical reform.

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 19:00:18


> I really really don't get the outrage.

Then you're really not paying any attention to what is being written.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 19:01:31

I love IDS and believe that many young peopel have an inflates sense of self too.
But I do feel queasy about the thoguht of people undertaking 'work experience' for peanuts in firms which are raking it in and who are already efffectively subsidised by the tax payer in the way of tax credits.

OneHandFlapping Sun 17-Feb-13 19:02:33

Well if my graduate son (I haven't quite got one yet) was on the dole, with no clear idea of how to get a job, I would be biting the hand off of a scheme like this, that at least gave him the experience of turning up on time, clean and properly dressed, and doing a good day's work. It's something to put on a CV where some people have nothing, and something that mght give him an edge over the next candidate when a paying job does come up.

I'd do it myself too. If someone offers you a leg up, take it.

And I doubt if big business makes any profit out of this. The amount of management time unskilled, inexperienced and in some cases unmotivated staff must take is phenomenal.

AScorpionPitForMimes Sun 17-Feb-13 19:04:48

There were a lot of reports in the media about people not being able to find part-time work over Christmas to supplement their incomes because those jobs were being filled by workfare placements. Wrong in so many ways.

And like MoreBeta I don't want my taxes subsidising the likes of Tesco, PoundLand etc. - they should be paying minimum wage. Cait Reilly was working in a voluntary placement which was relevant to her career field - that's what graduates do to get work experience, and in doing so she was providing the museum with a valuable staff member they could not have afforded to pay. People who volunteer in museums, charities and so on should not be hounded to work for big corporations for nothing - after all, isn't volunteering what the Big Society is all about? Seems to be that IDS believes volunteering is only for those who are minted.

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:04:58

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ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 19:05:12

> Well if my graduate son (I haven't quite got one yet) was on the dole, with no clear idea of how to get a job, I would be biting the hand off of a scheme like this, that at least gave him the experience of turning up on time, clean and properly dressed, and doing a good day's work. It's something to put on a CV where some people have nothing, and something that mght give him an edge over the next candidate when a paying job does come up.

Your graduate son is perfectly able to seek voluntary work on his own.

People did and still do plenty of voluntary work outside of the Mandatory Work Programme, you know?

All those things you mention - something to put on his CV, experience, a reference, etc. he can do by volunteering himself. It is really not difficult finding a volunteer placement.

limitedperiodonly Sun 17-Feb-13 19:07:21

Iain Duncan Smith is a nasty, thin-skinned hypocrite. It's a crowded field in the Conservative Party but he edges it.

People who champion his Work Programme are either economically illiterate or spoiling for a fight. Or perhaps both.

Zavi Sun 17-Feb-13 19:08:00

I'm in 2 minds about this.

On one hand, I don't think that people who already have a a long-standing history of paid employment should be forced to take any job, paid or unpaid, if they hit a lull in their employment.

but I do think that those without a paid employment history, such as school leavers or new graduates, should be forced to make some kind of useful contribution in exchange for receiving some kind of welfare benefit.

And that's because I can not think of a single reason why anyone should be given something without giving something back in return.

I reckon one should only be able to take out of a pot if they have put in to it.

Generally speaking, I suppose I'm supportive of IDS's approach, as I understand it

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:08:32

Agree actually moondog (and it's the only thing we will ever agree on I am sure) that the way education is now 'sold' to young people does produce a bit of a sense of entitlement etc. (This comes from teaching experience btw....)

However, Cait Reilly, who brought the case against workfare was not one of these people. It is NOT a sign of a sense of entitlement to want to work for free in a museum rather than Poundland.

She now works in Morrison's part time for PAY (imagine that!!) and to suggest that she needed to sweep floors in Poundland to get that job is ludicrous. In fact if you read about her case she already had retail work experience. Her whole point in getting the museum work experience was to try to advance her career. She is the type of graduate 'striver' the government should be supporting. Instead they kick her out of her well chosen voluntary placement and make her sweep floors for free thus putting another jobseeker out of work.


domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:10:14

If graduates should be doing work experience, zavi, then they should be doing it in a field they want to establish a career in. There are so many sectors which need volunteers.

Hell, they'd be better off doing community work than stacking shelves in bloody Poundland. But they also need time to train and seek work in their field so no work placement should be full time either.

Knowsabitabouteducation Sun 17-Feb-13 19:10:58

Exactly, one hand.

Also, if I were central government looking for companies to give young people jobs, I would approach large companies with fairly unskilled roles.

To all the naysayers, what is the alternative? Free money with nothing in return? They didn't like job creation from nothing, eg YOP, YTS. What is the answer from all you people of superior intellect? You like to whinge about the current system but don't seem to have any pallative alternatives.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 17-Feb-13 19:12:00

I think IDS's statement probably resonates with a lot of working class voters who, unlike some, think 'idleness' is still one of the Great Evils.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:13:35

Rhiannon, axing tax credits and top up HB would make many of the strivers of this country homeless. You know, the ones who work full time at minimum wage. But let's forget that eh? It's a subject for another thread altogether anyway....

As to family support- pah. What bloody nonsense. A lot of people don't have families at all, even you must realise that. And with youth unemployment so high, what you are actually arguing for is extended dependence on a huge scale. The results of that in Italy and Spain are clear. A generation which cannot leave home. (No doubt you would put that down to innate 'laziness' though :D)

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 19:14:45

I suspect a lot of working class voters believe in a fair days pay for a fair days work.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:16:05

Duh, knowsabitabouteducation (and you clearly don't).

The point of work experience is not to provide government cronies and poverty pimps (look up A4E, you'll be enlightened.. I doubt you know who they are or what they do) with state cash. It is to train people for careers.

It may be that we cannot provide our graduates long term with anything better than a job in Poundland. However, shunting them straight into that unpaid while kicking someone who needs a paid job out of it is not the way to encourage young people to aspire to something better, is it?

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:17:39

I think you're right about that Ttosca. The whole premise of unpaid work is getting the goat even of former right wingers and Tory voters. It is such clear and wasteful nonsense. Only those utterly obsessed with the idea that all graduates and poor people must be forced off their lazy arses into slave labour even if it puts someone else out of a job and wastes public money in the process are backing this.

chibi Sun 17-Feb-13 19:17:46

i am working class

when i had min wage jobs i would have been simultaneously fucked off and afraid that my employer was not only able but encouraged to hire people to work without having to pay them

i would have been quite able to make the connection with my own precarious employment

i would have wondered when i would be doing my own job for £53 a week or whatever

i would not have been thinking well at least they aren't idle

VerlaineChasedRimbauds Sun 17-Feb-13 19:17:58

I'm really glad to see this thread. I ranted at my computer screen when I saw this on the BBC news site.

It's nothing to do with (or not much to do with) people not wanting to stack shelves. It's the utter, utter idiocy of tax payers money being used to provide FREE labour for big business. This is a nonsense. If someone is going to have work experience (and receive no money FROM THE COMPANY for doing it) then that work experience should be for the work experience person's benefit. It should be something that helps them move forward in their chosen career/job ambition. If the person is stacking shelves that need stacking for a supermarket and that job would normally paid - then the company should PAY for that work. If they don't then it other smaller companies are being undercut by using tax payers' money to subsidise this labour. If the government want to force people to turn up on time and do something in return for benefits then this should not be to do jobs that people should be PAID to do. It should be for a charity, or (as genuine work experience) for the sort of business the person looking for work wants EXPERIENCE in - like, ooh, I don't know, say a museum for a geology graduate. If that geology graduate wants to earn some money and can't get a job in a geology-related post then they will probably need to get a job doing something else. A job. That pays money. That might be in a supermarket for example - as in this example of this geology graduate.


Otherwise, what is the tax payer's money doing? Subsidising big business and depriving another shelf stacker of a job. It's horrible nonsense and yes IDS is an arse.

noddyholder Sun 17-Feb-13 19:19:06

He was on the AM show today and said he is 'jolly well' fed up with people attacking workfare as from his experience young people really LOVE it

plonko Sun 17-Feb-13 19:19:06

Knowsabit, do you not think that the current crises of unemployment is tied up in far too many other things for there just be a single solution? If not surely someone would have already come up with it.

I think some people need to wake up to the fact that many graduates do indeed have work experience before they graduate! I know more people who worked than didn't during their studies - it's lack if jobs, not experience, that is the problem for graduates. Inflated expectations? I'd be incredibly worried about my prospects if I was still at uni.

OneHandFlapping Sun 17-Feb-13 19:19:11

It's pity that the girl in the news was actually doing voluntary work, and that the pen-pushers adminstering this scheme were unable to take that into account.

But one bad anecdote doesn't make a scheme like this a bad idea.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:20:21

Thanks for clarifying that chibi... I should think that the only people who like this scheme are bitter, prejudiced, probably mostly middle and upper class people who like the idea of punishing people for not having jobs and being poor, young, disabled, etc.

noddyholder Sun 17-Feb-13 19:21:15

I am seriously worried about ds generation just about to go to university (some) and they already have the idea they won't find a job easily and know many graduates working in supermarkets/costas etc with every intention of staying there as it is better than nothing

Narked Sun 17-Feb-13 19:21:25

IDS. Choice of the Tory party members.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:21:48

Onehand, they 'weren't able' to take her voluntary work into account because they make money from shoving people into unpaid 'work' for places like Poundland.

There's no money for poverty pimps in people doing actual useful work in museums which might help their careers, is there?

Gah.. when will people start to a. actually read about what's going on b. join the flipping dots...

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:24:16

My students at the moment seem a bit cut off from reality (probably due to the crap fed to them by mainstream media) and not entirely aware of the horrors facing them in the employment market- but they are extremely anxious to get 'firsts' etc which of course most of them are not capable of, in order to be 'ahead of the game' as they are aware there is 'a recession' on. But not much else, tbh.

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:24:34

So why take a person away from a volunteer job that is giving her experience to then work for free stacking shelves, how does it help and who does it help?

The company or the ex volunteer?

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:24:45

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:26:06

So better for her to just settle for a lifetime in poundland after a few months on the dole eh Rhiannon?

What fine forward planning. I think you are a loss to student careers advice :D

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 19:26:45

Yes, equally do not beleive that peopel out of work can have license to pick and choose their work placements (beyond choosing not to work for huge companies who make £££££)

It means everyone will want to do reiki healing or be professional story tellers or do modern dance.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:28:19

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:29:54

Hmm moondog I agree with you again :S blimey!! However most people (even graduates!) actually have quite realistic career aspirations which should be nurtured rather than blown to bits. It is a total blow to social mobility if only rich kids can work in a certain field because it requires years of unpaid work. We are already seeing the results of this in our blinkered media.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:32:00

Duh, Rhiannon. She had worked in retail already. Understandably, being a bright girl it seems, she aspired to better and was working on this.

Your race-to-the-bottom mentality is typical of these times sadly. No one can aspire to better than minimum wage employment unless they are already rich enough to do so, eh?

But it's fine to lavish taxpayer's money on poverty pimps like A4E (did you look them up btw? Really, do, if you don't have a heart attack at the amount of taxpayer's money they are sucking up to 'place' people in work they can already do, I'll eat a copy of the Daily Mail)

VerlaineChasedRimbauds Sun 17-Feb-13 19:32:57

Rhiannon. Did you miss the bit that explained that she DOES have a job in a supermarket? She wasn't expecting to have a lifetime on the dole and volunteering in the museum, she was expecting to get PAID for working in a supermarket. Wouldn't you expect to get paid if you worked in a supermarket?

How do you know she isn't doing exactly that? Looking for a career in a museum work whilst working in a supermarket? The whole point is, she shouldn't have to work in a supermarket for nothing. That's why we have NMW legislation.

Rhiannon86 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:35:30

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

limitedperiodonly Sun 17-Feb-13 19:37:02

Museums can be very effective retail environments what with their caffs and gift shops, as I'm sure anyone whose child has been on a school trip can testify.

And then there's that educational nonsense...

BreconBeBuggered Sun 17-Feb-13 19:37:17

How do you square supporting yourself with being forced to work for well below minimum wage?

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:40:45

Duh again Rhiannon.

Cait Reilly was sent to Poundland at the expense of several other people. Taxpayers... oh, and the person who should have been paid to do the job.

Heheh so now aspiration is 'daydreaming'. What a laugh.

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:40:56

So the work fare is not for work experience then it is just free work for the sake of it, nothing at all to do with getting people into jobs that they have qualifications for but no experience

So take a low paid job and we will as the government never see the 40k back you racked up at uni

Seems silly

Why not let her continue her volunteer job and possibly then get a job in the field she has trained and earn more money and pay back her fees

Rather than force her into retail work which she already had experience and will not earn much
So not earn over the level to start paying back her loan

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:42:14

Indeed Verlaine. Rhiannon is just obsessed with her fairytale image of entitled daydreamers sitting in their pretty little museums forever while living it up on £53 a week for the privilege.

Cait Reilly works part time in Morrisons. What a skiver eh.

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:42:19

Why bother going to uni then, why not leave school and do work fare then get job in retail and save all the fees malarkey

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:43:03

Dont' give them ideas ivykaty :D

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:44:01

Tbh the whole point of the university fees thing is to make education eventually unaffordable for the plebs. Later governments will withdraw the loan thing entirely as in the US. So what you are saying will come true. No one but the children of the rich need aspire to anything above retail and fast food work.

VerlaineChasedRimbauds Sun 17-Feb-13 19:44:16

You are still not understanding it, I don't think, Rhiannon. Being forced to work in Poundland whilst on the dole is not supporting yourself, is it? It's not supporting yourself being on the dole and volunteering at a museum either. But one of these scenarios is not using tax payers money to subsidise big business (who already make huge profits) whilst providing far less benefit to the JSA claimant in terms of experience. Can you work out which of these scenarios I am talking about?

I have no problem at all with asking those in receipt of JSA to do work that benefits the community I have a very big problem with forcing them to leave perfectly good community work in order to do a job which should be paid NMW.

plonko Sun 17-Feb-13 19:47:40

Domestic I could not agree more.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:48:26

Verlaine I would have a problem with the unemployed being forced to do full time charity or community work thus not actually allowing them to look for work they want to do. (I know you're not advocating this btw but no doubt other posters might)

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 19:49:29

Tbh the whole point of the university fees thing is to make education eventually unaffordable for the plebs

Come now DG. That's utter tripe.
Unfortunately every idiot now wants to go to university and moreover thinks they are perfectly entitled to take a tax payer funded seven year course in friendship bracelet making.

That's the real issue.

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:51:31

There are not enough jobs for school leavers that is why the last government was so keen for everyone to go to uni and spend three more years in education

It delayed the unemployment figures

Now you though there is a problem a delayed problem

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:51:37

I am not aware of any 'friendship bracelet making' courses at my university moondog. But I would agree with you that far too many young people now feel they must have a degree. Arguably however that is not due to sense of entitlement only on their part; employers now demand degrees in god knows what for every job. The last estate agent I met had a 2:2 degree in something or other which he clearly didn't need and by the sound of it didn't enjoy much.

But raising fees was not the way to deal with this. Stupid rich kids will now all have degrees. Clever poor ones won't.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:52:15

Yes ivykaty v true about the unemployment massaging thing. Unfortunately it just delays the impact of the figures and was ultimately pointless.

noddyholder Sun 17-Feb-13 19:53:10

Oh I think the opposite .The poorer kids are positively encouraged with loans and 'extra' money on top They want them indebted because eventually when they move the student loan goalposts they will 'own' them. The rich will go because they can Its the MC who are dropping out and not even dropping in. I think it will be the very rich and the very poor who go. there is NO WAY the repayment schedule for these loans will stay as is.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 19:53:35

I'd actively steer young people away from degrees for the most part these days (and I work in academia too).

A useless degree and a great big debt of ££££££££?
No thanks.

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 19:56:46

All they have done is create more educated unemployed and that has backfired

As they are more intelligent than the mps making the rules and take them to court...and win

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:57:03

Maybe noddy, but I can't see how making poor people into graduates ultimately benefits a government like this. Surely they would rather just turn them into minimum wage fodder without the initial outlay ? I think the 21k earning 'floor' will soon go tbh.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 19:58:41

Yes ivy that scares me. They will want to dumb us all down very soon.

Did you hear that Texas is banning the teaching of 'higher level critical skills' even at school level? A compliant workforce does not think critically.

I think that sort of thing may be coming our way. Gove's plans for the history syllabus sound like a move in that direction!

noddyholder Sun 17-Feb-13 19:59:52

My ds and his mates know there are few jobs and are going literally for the lifestyle and experience I hear them talk and even the ones whose parents think they are going for the right reasons blah blah AREN'T! One of ds mates said to me that he was going to do politics 4 years approx 54k debt and what he really wants is to be a chef!!!!!!!!!!But school/parents pushing him into academic as he is capable??? and they just expect it of him

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 20:00:42

You know, moondog, you're right.... sigh..

I would say only 40%-50% of my students should really be doing a degree. And that is in a subject where the 'best' students supposedly apply.

The problem is that with the value of a degree downgraded and every office in the country requiring a graduate for their £16k a year job, people feel they have to go to university.

Tbh I would not want to employ someone who got a 2:2 or 3rd from my university. They will probably not be able to spell, or write English.

Consils Sun 17-Feb-13 20:01:01

What is the 21k earning 'floor'?

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 20:01:43

argh noddy he may regret the 54k at leisure later!!! Being a chef is hard work and doesn't pay well. Why the hell not start now, avoid the debt, get somewhere and start saving etc... sigh

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 20:02:13

Consils, I mean that repayments of student loans don't start until you earn over 21k at the moment.

noddyholder Sun 17-Feb-13 20:02:15

I think they will be able to control them better if they owe them £. I agree the 21k thing will go. They are cutting everywhere and eventually students will be the same as they are not seen as 'needy' or disadvantaged in any way. If they don't spend those years at university though what can they do? There really is no work

freetoanyhome Sun 17-Feb-13 20:03:11

'The point of the scheme is to give people experience of work.'

Really Rhiannon? So why is my dad, made redundant after 40 years of work being forced onto it. You reckon he doesnt have 'the experience of work'? I reckon the PhD and Engineering work might mean he does. And the taxes he paid. But who wants a 63 yo redundant man?
So onto workfare slavery and thus depriving someone of a paid job. Or himself. If there's a job going stacking shelves he should be PAID for it.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:04:30

The evil ight wing conspiracy posse haven't yet worked out there is no logic in sending scores of young people to university in order that they then become dissatisfied with their lot and get ideas above their station.

We all have an inflated sense of entitlement and have become used to luxuries that were unheard of even a few decades ago.
That's the trouble and that's why the masses never will rise up against the ruling classes. They're do busy surfing the web and planning their next purchase.
More fool them.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:06:38

And the not having to pay back until you earn 21K.
What a hardship! Not.
I paid back student loans over years and years at a very leisurely pace.
Hardly hardship.

VerlaineChasedRimbauds Sun 17-Feb-13 20:07:01

Ah no, I agree with you. But to be honest, the way that JSA claimants are currently "encouraged" to look for work is a complete nonsense any way. It's all about ticking boxes and applying for anything, regardless of suitability. I do think it is helpful for people to have to do something rather than nothing, but I would much, much rather see people encouraged to do charity or community work. Those like this geology graduate who had made sensible decisions about increasing their experience and improving their CVs should be applauded.

The thing is though, I believe it could be helpful for the claimant. I don't think it should be a punishment. I don't think they should work in Poundland because I, as a tax payer, shouldn't be paying for them to be sitting around. I don't think they should be forced to do it because they should get off their lazy backsides and work in return for the benefit. If they are working for a commercial enterprise then they should be paid. The community or charity work should be to help the claimant to become more employable. I honestly do not believe that most JSA claimants are lazy. I think most of them want a job - but can't find one. This, I suspect, is where I differ from some on this thread.

edam Sun 17-Feb-13 20:07:36

IDS hardly has a shining employment record himself, does he? If I were in his shoes I'd be careful before slinging mud at other people. Wonder what his expenses claims were like...

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:10:15
edam Sun 17-Feb-13 20:12:08

Yeah, I just found that myself, fair play to him.

Still, the point about his employment record stands - he was chucked out as leader in a vote of no confidence because he was crap. A little humility is in order.

VerlaineChasedRimbauds Sun 17-Feb-13 20:12:24

Oh my. My response above was to domesticgodless's post on page 5. Keep up, Verlaine, keep up.

TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 20:12:58

IDS's wife used to be very handsomely paid to work in his office. Shame no one remembers her actually doing any work there.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:13:41

I disagree.
I think he has reinvented himself and has had a really noble stab at getting this stuff sorted. It won't be easy and there will be no solution to please all. I like the way he and Frank Field work together on these things.

edam Sun 17-Feb-13 20:16:06

Oh really crackfox? Blimey, and I thought Moondog had found us a reasonably honest politician, at least in terms of not lining his own pockets. Such a shame cynicism about politicians is so often proved right.

ttosca Sun 17-Feb-13 20:19:51

Here's an article in Redpepper about Workfare:

an extract:

> The impact on jobs and wages

> The Work Programme is a real threat to jobs and wages. In an example uncovered by Corporate Watch, Newham Council filled an administrative role with a six-month workfare placement. A colleague explained: ‘The basic starting wage for that level is around £17,000. Yet all she was getting was JSA and the fares for her lengthy bus journeys, while people doing identical work were getting a salary, paid leave and pension contributions. We were horrified.’

> Last year, 800 station staff on London Underground were cut, prompting concerns for passenger safety. Just months later, a new workfare initiative was rolled out by A4E (one of the Work Programme providers) to provide 200 workfare wardens to make ‘people feel much safer’ at north London tube stations. The need for a uniformed presence remains; the paid employment does not


domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 20:28:39

moondog my issue atm is that only certain people are being expected to drop their 'sense of entitlement'. That is the poor-to-lower-middle. The middle middles will be next of course.

Yet those at the very top are accelerating away from everyone. It is a new oligarchy, and don't try to tell me it's on merit. What you need now is to be born into a rich family or you are increasingly fucked. Nothing good about that.

Comparing your own student loan repayments to those which will have to be made by the next generation of graduates is a bit ludicrous isn't it? Your loans were nothing like 60k if you did your degree in the UK. Plus, presuming you are not in your 20s now, your costs, especially housing, will have been much lower in your early years of employment.

domesticgodless Sun 17-Feb-13 20:29:48

Politicians sadly display an astonishing sense of entitlement. They could sure teach graduates a thing or two about gravy trains.

ssd Sun 17-Feb-13 20:32:49

well moondog.. if you think a "noble stab" at things is getting people to do work for no pay then I disagree totally

MiniTheMinx Sun 17-Feb-13 20:32:51

Looking at Ttosca's link here libcom.org/forums/news/dwp-assesment-workfare-it-doesnt-work-13062012

something occurs to me. We know that companies are being given financial incentives to make use of this free labour. (does anyone know how much? or how it works?) So not only are they saving on their wage bill but they are actually better off. The claimants can be sanctioned for any number of reasons, at that point they are also not included in the unemployment figures.

"Researchers also found that between May and November 2011 more than 1,600 had their benefits cut for up to six months for either refusing to start a placement or leaving it before it finished. One in five of those who didn't start MWA were sanctioned."

What is obv is that there is a huge displacement of money going on here, from the poor to the very richest. The company get cash incentives.......how is this paid for.........well by stripping people of their benefits!

In what way is this helping the real economy and in what way will this create demand and help to keep the rest of us in work? It won't.

TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 20:33:54


Sorry, I know my link is Wikipedia but it seems fairly in line with how I remember it.

MiniTheMinx Sun 17-Feb-13 20:37:47

>>>We all have an inflated sense of entitlement and have become used to luxuries that were unheard of even a few decades ago.
That's the trouble and that's why the masses never will rise up against the ruling classes. They're do busy surfing the web and planning their next purchase.<<<<

There are two times when the working class may rise up, either when labour is empowered or when people have their back to wall. Either way you have disequilibrium.

If people are busy surfing the net and lusting after commodities that would be because capitalists invest so much time and money in creating said commodities and stimulating the need and desire for people to indebt themselves to purchase all this shit, because their wealth and your job relies upon those people taking on debt.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:37:51

I'm surprised you don't remember Betsygate Edam.
You being right on journo and all.

It's true that politicians have a sense of entitlement.
I'm quite friendly with an MP who was a neighbour both before and after he became one and his stories about what goes on are pretty outrageous.

Mind you. so do trade union officilas
They're all as bad as each other.

I'd agree with the concept of a growing super elite who do not feel bound by the rules of the rest of us but again, unless the proletariat put down their remote controls and wake up, they will continue to do so.

I went to the protst outside St Pauls, listened to a few talks and hung out in some of the tents.
Am still amazed that such a raggle taggle tiny group of folk raised so much fear. Think what people could do if they really got organised and put down the Special Brew..

limitedperiodonly Sun 17-Feb-13 20:37:56

I think he has reinvented himself and has had a really noble stab at getting this stuff sorted.

He certainly has. Though some might say that making mistakes on your CV might be interpreted less as noble and more likelying

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:40:43

Limited, I really thoguht you had come up with something slacious there.
He told a few porkies on his CV.
Heinous crime then.

Betsygate was better than that.

limitedperiodonly Sun 17-Feb-13 20:45:19

I enjoyed the Betsy fraud too. But it had been mentioned before and I always go for variety.

I'd really like to see Duncan Smith being asked whether he would advise jobseekers to tell a few porkies on their CVs every time this mediocrity is prating about the unemployed.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:45:44
TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 20:50:43

It is such a shame that most politicians and trade unionists seem to be such a bunch of greedy, entitled, incompetents.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:53:14

According to my MP friend, surprisingly easy to enter politics if you put up with all the dull weekday meetings, coffee mornings and fund raisers for a few years.
He says the problem is attracting peopel of calibre.

That is evident.
David Cameron and Milliband.
Both utterly pathetic.

limitedperiodonly Sun 17-Feb-13 20:54:13

I don't find Bob Crow to be incompetent, thecrackfox. Greedy, possibly. But if I was a member of the RMT I'd be quite happy with his performance.

MoreBeta Sun 17-Feb-13 20:57:49

Just to enrage you all even further - here is a story in The Sun saying MPs of all parties just voted to block a price rise in the cost of booze and food in House of Commons bars and cafes.

Apparently they think it is not fair to raise prices as they have not had a pay rise for 2 years. They need to work and eat in the real world.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 20:59:25

Yes Beta, that is atrocious.

TheCrackFox Sun 17-Feb-13 21:01:23

That is really bad, Beta but not at all surprisinging.

undercoverhousewife Sun 17-Feb-13 21:10:20

I agree with the poster who said an employed shelf stacker is of more use to the country than an unemployed geologist.

Sadly, we cannot afford to keep people on the dole for months and months because they are too grand to take the jobs that are available: nobody has the right to keep taking taxpayer money if they have the choice to be self sufficient. If we assume this graduate was not simply being too grand to take a shelf stacker job (and people on JSA have a moral obligation to take jobs if they are available) then we have to conclude that she lacked the skills but is now able to learn them (still at our expense - we pay the JSA). When she is good enough to actually get a paid job as a shelf stacker (and not just work experience) then she will get the minimum wage or more.

Having said all that, I do feel sorry for her - we are setting up the young to fail when we are sending so many to university when they are not going to gain anything of career value from it. This graduate might well have had a job by now had she, say, begun looking for museum work as a school leaver (if this is the area that interests her).

plonko Sun 17-Feb-13 21:28:29

Housewife, she does currently work, for wages, in a supermarket whilst continuing to volunteer. Museum work is impossible to come by for the unqualified. If her benefits were cut because she refused the offer of paid work I might agree with you, but that's not the case.

moondog Sun 17-Feb-13 21:58:50

'Museum work is impossible to come by for the unqualified.'
Oh please.
Noble as it is, it's hardly neurosurgery.

I know this thread has moved on a bit but this really makes my blood boil.

I saw IDS on the AM show this morning, making his pathetic excuses for Workfare, and he trotted out the tired old line about Terry Leahy starting his career stacking shelves in an attempt to justify free labour for companies. Terry Leahy got paid!

ivykaty44 Sun 17-Feb-13 22:22:46

surely though all this sending our a level students to uzi keeps them off the streets and unemployed lists, it gives more people jobs at uni's to cope with all the extra students, it gives buy to let landlords an income - it is all good for the economy getting these people into large debt which will be written of after 30 years.

plonko Sun 17-Feb-13 22:40:20

Moondog - from personal experience I can tell you that even with a history degree you need extra qualifications in archiving and all sorts if you want to work in a museum. Get off that high horse of yours.

noddyholder Sun 17-Feb-13 23:30:35

Moondog my dp works in museums/historic buildings and you are talking bolleaux.

MoreBeta Mon 18-Feb-13 08:58:34

It seems perfectly OK to me to ask Miss Reilly to take a paid job in a shop while she is looking for her preferred job. That is what she is now doing.

What the Tory Pary dont seem to realise is that it is not OK to force someone to work for nothing if there are no paying jobs and pretend it is 'training' or 'work experience'.

In reality there has been a lot of lobbying from business to get rid of minimum wage and this is one way of doing it. Not only do young people have a lower minimum wage than adults anyway but now this policy effectively sets the minimum wage at zero but without having to actually announce it as a policy.

ivykaty44 Mon 18-Feb-13 09:48:21

Plonks, you do not need a degree to work in archiving

noddyholder Mon 18-Feb-13 09:51:22

All archivists where dp works have degrees and masters You may be able to do the job without (like many jobs!) but you will likely be up against a graduate at interview and indeed selection for interview stage.

limitedperiodonly Mon 18-Feb-13 10:21:10

That's true, noddyholder. There are loads of jobs that you can do without a degree, mine for example, but if you want to get a sniff at them these days you must have a degree to get an interview.

And yet we're discouraging young people from studying valid courses by sneering at their unrealistic dreams and saddling them and their parents with debt.

Neat trick to corrall some jobs within the small pool of society that's always done them and doesn't like competition.

ivykaty44 Mon 18-Feb-13 10:22:52

Noddy, that is not the case in all archives

noddyholder Mon 18-Feb-13 10:31:41

I did say that katy You can do it without but you won't get a look in as they have plenty of those with applying.

noddyholder Mon 18-Feb-13 10:32:52

I am so worried about my ds generation tbh they are going to really feel all this in the next 5 years I fear.

plonko Mon 18-Feb-13 10:40:29

Ivy, I did not make myself clear, sorry. What noddy said - to get a sniff of an interview you need extra qualifications. Good a levels mean nothing now.

This has veered off on a tangent, but the general point I was trying to make still stands. Our employment situation is so screwed up that despite having a nmw our govt expects qualified people to work for nothing when they are trying to make use if their education. Cait Reilly was trying to gain experience in a profession. If she succeeds in gaining employment in that profession she will pay back more in tax than if she were to work in an unskilled job. If she does not succeed then at least she has served her community.

ivykaty44 Mon 18-Feb-13 10:53:21

What ids misses is that people with a degree will volunteer to work in an area that they need to gain experience to further there career, whether that be archives or something more obscure. Making them stack supermarket shelves instead of volunteer work in their own field is inane as they would be able to get a part time job and volunteer if there weren't people doing workfare for free and taking all the part time jobs

plonko Mon 18-Feb-13 11:14:54

Glad to see we basically agree.

moondog Mon 18-Feb-13 11:23:19

But Ivy, who will volunteer to clean toilets or sweep up in cafes or block drains?
It is indisputable that many people will want to volunteer in PR companies and fashion houses or trendy nightclubs.

I couldn't pick and choose when I cleaned toilets/chambermaided/collected census papers on the roughest estate in town.

Life is not all about doing what you want to do.
People shoudl be offered a choice of areas, yes and I have issues with working for large companies like Tesco but you can't just sit there drumming your fingers whilst you umm and aah and eventually plump for working in the wallpaper archives at the V&A.

noddyholder Mon 18-Feb-13 12:38:20

If you have paid 50k plus for an education you should at least be able to do all you can to get a career going in your chosen field and if that involves volunteering in that profession to get a foot in then so be it but to make people do irrelevant jobs such as tesco etc is just wrong. If tesco needs shelves stacked or loos cleaned then let them bloody pay someone who is looking for unskilled work to do it and get them off the dole!

VerlaineChasedRimbauds Mon 18-Feb-13 14:00:07

But moondog nobody should HAVE to volunteer to clean toilets or sweep up in cafes. Not unless that was part or a wider volunteering duty in an environment where they were learning other skills or making useful contacts. If you are cleaning toilets, sweeping up or stacking shelves (all jobs that need doing) then this should be PAID for.

A few people keep missing the point (of this thread) that it's not (not even a little bit) about someone thinking that some sort of work is "beneath" them or that if you haves a degree then you should never have to take on a job you don't want (if you are expecting state benefits). Of course, if the shelf stacking job is the only one available to you then that's the one you'll have to take until you find one you prefer. The point is that if you are stacking shelves you should be PAID to do it. You shouldn't have to leave your volunteer work to "volunteer" to stack shelves. The shelves need stacking. The company needs the shelves stacked. Therefore they should pay someone who wants the job to do it! I do not understand why this is so hard to comprehend.

ttosca Mon 18-Feb-13 14:44:18

The people who are genuinely disgusted and outraged by this can help out by sending emails or tweets to the exploitative companies:

List Of Workfare Companies


You will also find an outline of some of the arguments against workfare as well as a template letter at the bottom.

Thanks guys!

Rhiannon86 Mon 18-Feb-13 16:16:53

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

ivykaty44 Mon 18-Feb-13 16:24:05

Moondog, in answer to your question read my post, no one should be forced, that is not then a volunteer and remember volunteers do take away jobs for pay giving the receiver of the volunteering an advantage

VerlaineChasedRimbauds Mon 18-Feb-13 20:54:06

If that were really the case Rhiannon86, why not allow them to continue with volunteer work relevant to the job they are searching for? If a job (for money) comes up, then of course they need to take that or stop claiming benefit, but it's ridiculous to suggest that someone who has perfectly good work experience but is currently out of work has to go and stack shelves for a commercial business without being paid a WAGE. How valuable would you consider the experience of stacking shelves to be when you were considering who to employ? More valuable than other volunteer work where the applicant was able to point to relevant experience?

How long do you think Poundland spend showing their employees (the ones they pay) how to stack shelves?

What is workfare in Poundland giving the claimant?

Do you honestly honestly think that workfare experience in Poundland would be more valuable to the claimant in terms of future job prospects than volunteer work in the museum? This wasn't about a benefit to the claimant at all. If someone is taking on work that someone else would normally be paid to do then they should be paid for it. And they should be paid the same rate if they are doing the same work.

If workfare is to give people work experience to be of benefit to the claimant (rather than as a punishment for daring to be out of work and claiming JSA) then why can't they get that work experience in a volunteer placement of their choice, if they are able to arrange it?

Why should tax payer's money be paid over to commercial enterprises for a completely pointless exercise? It's bonkers. I don't want my taxes going to Tesco and Poundland - it skews the market in any case.

I don't suppose we shall ever agree though.

Darkesteyes Mon 18-Feb-13 21:21:53
NicholasTeakozy Mon 18-Feb-13 21:32:21

I know a young lad who's just finished a four week placement at Poundland. His verdict: pointless. He got no training whatever, and whenever he asked what they wanted him to do he was left dangling and spent the time walking round the store to spot areas to re-stock. He feels, as do I, that he should've been paid NMW for his time off the unemployment statistics.

BreconBeBuggered Mon 18-Feb-13 22:03:48

Rhiannon86, I cannot for the life of me see what training is required to stack shelves that takes more than an hour or so to familiarise staff with the layout of the store and stockroom. My very first job as a student many years ago entailed doing just that, with a crew of equally inexperienced students who needed part-time work to finance themselves. Oddly enough, we got the hang of it well before our first shift was over. Now as it happens, once my course had finished I did decide to go on a full-time government employment scheme that only paid £10 plus travelling expenses (PhD student boyfriend was deemed to be supporting me so no unemployment benefit) because it could and did lead to an offer of paid work in my field. Unpaid shelf-stacking would have taken me precisely nowhere.

limitedperiodonly Mon 18-Feb-13 22:15:11

As I said before. People who champion the Work Programme are either economically illiterate or spoiling for a fight.

limitedperiodonly Mon 18-Feb-13 22:18:37

Or part time derailers. Which isn't economically productive and so unworthy of attention at this dire time.

domesticgodless Tue 19-Feb-13 13:58:18

limitedperiodonly- absolutely!! Or both

domesticgodless Tue 19-Feb-13 14:00:55

Like everything else this useless and corrupt government does, it benefits only the short term interests of profit and ultimately wastes both individual talent and the economy itself. Putting two people out of productive work instead of allowing the unemployed person to train for something skilled of which they are quite probably capable.

The attitude of Rhiannon etc is pure, bitter snobbery and assumes that all the unemployed (especially the young) are up themselves and want to spend their time dreaming about careers in 'friendship bracelet making' as moondog so memorably (and ludicrously) said above...when they could be being proper slaves and 'no better than they ought to be' as my gran used to say :D

domesticgodless Tue 19-Feb-13 14:02:15

And btw the economy needs skills not more unskilled workers. China and India can supply those at 1/10th of the price. We need a well trained workforce and what do we get? Useless Gove destroying the education system and limited opportunities for everyone except people with rich parents to actually train for a job. On a global level we are very fucked.

ttosca Wed 20-Feb-13 15:11:15

Listen to serial liar and sociopath Ian Duncan Smith become increasingly agitated as he is called out on his lies and spin:

Iain Duncan-Smith was involved in an explosive bust-up with James O'Brien live on LBC 97.3.


cornycourvoisier Wed 20-Feb-13 15:51:17

he keeps banging on about how people on workfare are 'paid by the taxpayer.'

Well so are you IDS you vile, vile man.
Hopefully not after the next election though.

Darkesteyes Wed 20-Feb-13 16:22:43

Thankyou very much for the link tosca. Duncan Smith squirming.Bastard.

MerryCouthyMows Wed 20-Feb-13 16:44:26

But moondog - when YOU cleaned toilets, swept café floors etc. YOU would have been paid MORE than the equivalent rate of JSA at that time.

So if you cleaned toilets in 1998, you would have received more than the £47 a week that JSA was then.

Therefore if you clean toilets in 2013, you expect to receive more than the £71 a week that JSA is now...

And that is the crux of it. If a job is there to be done, instead if providing FREE labour (for the company) to go the job, whilst STILL paying JSA to the claimant, the company should be made to HIRE that person as a member of staff paid AT LEAST NMW, thus TAKING THAT CLAIMANT OFF BENEFITS?!

Why are people so blind to see that the people this policy hurts the most are those that WOULD be doing these jobs as PAID work, being paid AT LEAST NMW?!

Where do THOSE people now find work?

Oh yes.

They can't. So after 6 months of being unable to find a PAID job...they are sent to do that job for their JSA.

Why, as an employer, would you hire someone for 40hrs a week @ £6.19/hr (paying out £247.60 a week) when you were being OFFERED MONEY to take somebody to do that job for free?!

It wouldn't be great business sense, would it?

So it is a no-brainer WHY these companies are clamouring to be a part of the 'work programme'.

It is, in a fell swoop, DESTROYING all the employment rights that have been fought for from the 70's onwards.

No entitlement to maternity leave, no entitlement to paternity leave, no entitlement to sick leave (if you get sick on the work programme and don't go to your work placement, your JSA IS STOPPED), no entitlement to holiday (At ALL, paid OR unpaid), no entitlement to parental leave if your DC are sick, no entitlement to pension provision...

The list goes on and on.

And the thing is, once they have destroyed worker's rights for the lower end of society, those currently unemployed, how long do you think it will be before these rights are abolished for EVERY WORKER?

Darkesteyes Wed 20-Feb-13 17:20:03
ssd Wed 20-Feb-13 20:18:13

great post couthy

hopefully those of you claiming otherwise will see how damaging this is to ordinary workers as well as the unemployed

ttosca Fri 22-Feb-13 01:42:18

MPs blast government's flagship Work Programme

After more than a year the multibillion-pound scheme has helped just 3.6% of long-term unemployed find jobs


The government's flagship multibillion-pound programme for helping the long-term unemployed into work has been branded "extremely poor" in a damning assessment by MPs.

The public accounts committee (PAC) said that during the first 14 months of the Work Programme, to last July, only 3.6% of claimants on the scheme moved off benefits into sustained employment.

This was less than a third of the 11.9% the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) expected to achieve, and well below the official estimate of what would have happened if the programme had not been launched, said the MPs.

Margaret Hodge, who chairs the committee, said the programme was particularly failing young people and the hardest to help.

She said: "It is shocking that of the 9,500 former incapacity benefit claimants referred to providers, only 20 people have been placed in a job that has lasted three months, while the poorest-performing provider did not manage to place a single person in the under-25 category into a job lasting six months."

She also criticised the DWP for publishing unvalidated data from a trade body representing Work Programme providers, saying: "This is just not on."

The programme was introduced in June 2011, at an estimated cost of between £3bn and £5bn over five years, but PAC said the performance in the first year or so fell well short of expectations.

Not one of the 18 providers met its contractual targets and their performance varied "wildly", the report found.

The MPs warned that, given the poor performance, there was a high risk that one or more providers would fail and go out of business or have their contracts cancelled.

"Given the poor performance across providers, there is a high risk that one or more will fail – either they will go out of business or the department will cancel their contracts," the report says. "The Department will need to keep a close eye on which providers are most likely to fail and must manage all consequential risks."

The report also reveals that all 18 organisations involved in the Work Programme, which include companies such as A4e and Ingeus Deloitte, have been placed on "performance improvement plans" and that in seven cases, organisations had been sent formal letters warning of unacceptable standards.

The next set of performance data will be published in March, which PAC said should give the DWP a better idea about companies that may go out of business or have contracts terminated, and urged the department to prepare specific contingency plans should failure occur.

Hodge said, that although the Work Programme was crucial, its performance "was so poor that it was actually worse than the department's own expectations of the number of people who would have found work if the programme didn't exist."

"None of the providers managed to meet their minimum performance targets. The best performing provider only moved 5% of people off benefits and into work, while the worst managed just 2%."

The DWP said PAC was painting "a skewed picture" and that industry data also published in November showed that 200,000 people had been placed in work. The department believes that a large proportion of these will turn out to meet the payment criteria of jobs sustained for at least six months and this will show up in the next round of data.

A DWP spokesperson said: "The Work Programme gives support to claimants for two years and it hasn't even been running that long yet, so it's still early days. We know the performance of our providers is improving … Long-term unemployment fell by 15,000 in the latest quarter."

Previous schemes, the department said, had paid out "too much up front regardless of success. But by paying providers for delivering results, the Work Programme is actually offering the taxpayer real value for money."

Kirsty McHugh, chief executive of the back to work industry body, the Employment Related Services Association, said, "The public accounts committee should rightly focus on the Work Programme achieving value for money for the taxpayer, and data published by ERSA shows that the Work Programme is the most cost effective scheme relative to any comparable scheme so far.

"'These outcome statistics relate to the earliest days of the Work Programme and caution is needed before we can judge its overall effectiveness.

"However, robust data published by ERSA last November shows that the Work Programme is placing more people into work month on month and we can already see the programme having a demonstrable impact in reducing long-term unemployment as evidenced in this week's labour market statistics."


edam Fri 22-Feb-13 14:01:39

So it's a. expensive and b. worse than useless - fewer people on workfare get jobs than if they'd been left to their own devices.

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