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to wonder why anyone is unemployed in London?

(99 Posts)
wonderinggWoman Thu 01-May-14 21:39:30

There have been a few programmes on tv recently that have featured unemployed people in London. I can't understand how there are healthy, able bodied people who aren't working. There's a lot of work in London, public transport is good.

I am not wealthy, but have lived in London all my life and have always worked, now I worked my way up as a professional but previously in any job available, waitressing, cleaning, telesales, bar work. I'm also a single parent but don't see that as a reason to rely on the state.

It upsets me that those who genuinely can't work through sickness and health issues have to compete for council accommodation etc with those who are entitled and can't be bothered to work.

Aibu, am I missing something here?

expatinscotland Thu 01-May-14 21:40:41

No childcare?

WestEast Thu 01-May-14 21:42:18

Lucky you for being so fabulous.

wonderinggWoman Thu 01-May-14 21:43:04

I'm certainly not fabulous.

Wantsunshine Thu 01-May-14 21:44:02

There are so many jobs in London I can kind of see your point. In some areas shops are always trying to recruit staff and can't get enough people

BackOnlyBriefly Thu 01-May-14 21:44:24

If there were jobs then surely the job centre would make people apply for them and stop their benefits if they didn't. They have sanctions targets to meet so would be glad not to have to invent a reason to stop someone's benefits.

Chippednailvarnish Thu 01-May-14 21:44:49

I'm also a Londoner and I'm inclined to agree with you. We don't have the same employment issues that other places have such as transport. The only issue I can see is the cost of childcare.

expatinscotland Thu 01-May-14 21:44:59

Who looked after your children if you had to work nights, weekends, split shifts?

lessonsintightropes Thu 01-May-14 21:45:00

It's tricky. I work for a homelessness charity and when people come to live in our services for a while, it's usually because things have gone fairly dramatically tits up in their lives, which also interferes with the ability to hold down a job. About half of the people we work with are in paid work by the time they leave, and the remainder are either in training or further education and well on their way. However, the minimum wage doesn't go very far, and finding a private rented property and hold onto a basic job can be very difficult for people working their way out of addiction or complete chaos (particularly young people leaving care - lots of ours do go onto uni which is a better option for many). Self-employment is a really good option for a lot of people we work with, especially street food - quite a few people we've worked with in the last six months have made a really successful transition to that way of making a living.

For people not in that situation - so many jobs are still filled through family/friendship networks (such as jobs in cafes or in construction) and sometimes it can be hard to get an in. But for those who are determined, they almost always make it.

Childcare is of course a major issue.

wonderinggWoman Thu 01-May-14 21:45:46

I feel sorry for people who have health problems etc and genuinely need help, when there are people who just can't be bothered to work.

dashoflime Thu 01-May-14 21:45:52

Your missing that council housing isn't related to benefits.

Actually: if there was more council housing there might be more people in work. The very high rents tend to set up a poverty trap- where coming off Housing Benefit is a massive risk.

Its much easier to move into work in a council tenancy

Louise1956 Thu 01-May-14 21:46:36

My friend who lives in chelsea told me that when the local Costa coffee advertised a job, they got 300 applicants. That does not give me great confidence in the availability of jobs in London.

WorraLiberty Thu 01-May-14 21:46:38

What does council accommodation have to do with being unemployed? confused

crazynanna Thu 01-May-14 21:47:13

I think there are actually more people unemployed vs jobs available. In my local (London) newspaper, there are regularly stories of queues snaking down streets outside supermarkets, etc, for a handful of vacancies.

crazynanna Thu 01-May-14 21:48:26

Oh and I live in council accomodation, and receive no HB at all.

candycoatedwaterdrops Thu 01-May-14 21:50:15

London is a big arse place; from Brent (greater London) to Westminster.

wonderinggWoman Thu 01-May-14 21:50:17

I know that many council tenants are in work. There are some I've known in rl/ seen on tv that don't work and could work though.

I know one person who took a council flat because she didn't fancy living with her parents anymore, she couldn't be bothered to get a job though and pay towards her accommodation confused

BackOnlyBriefly Thu 01-May-14 21:50:48

It was probably a mistake to think the TV programs had any connection with reality.

lessonsintightropes Thu 01-May-14 21:51:50

We also got 176 applications for a £20k entry level job in fundraising and communcations, and were able to give two candidates a job. It is vicious in terms of competition for jobs where there is clear career progression.

lessonsintightropes Thu 01-May-14 21:52:28

Wondering your friend is, I think, in a tiny minority of people who are currently being housed.

WorraLiberty Thu 01-May-14 21:55:19

I know that many council tenants are in work. There are some I've known in rl/ seen on tv that don't work and could work though.

And there are plenty in private lets who don't work, so I still don't see why you're bringing up council tenants?

And I'd like to know what area the person who got a council flat 'because she didn't fancy living with her parents', is in.

They're like hen's teeth here in London, especially if you are single with no children.

expatinscotland Thu 01-May-14 21:55:25

Still wondering who looked after your children when you were working odd shifts, split shifts, weekends, nights, etc?

QueenStromba Thu 01-May-14 21:57:03

I'm probably going to find it easy to get a bar job because I've got experience. Bar jobs don't stay unfilled though because it's a job that you don't need experience for. Same with waitressing. I have a couple of pubs who are going to call me when they have hours for me - they just don't have the hours now.

Blu Thu 01-May-14 21:57:08

The huge rents and childcare costs do create a poverty trap for young people who have not built up the professional experience to get better paid jobs.

However, my general belief when anyone is faced with a 'work for the same amount of benefits' opportunity is that a job is the stepping stone to promotion, training courses, life long pay rises, pension contributions etc, whereas benefits is not. (unless you can study).

BackOnlyBriefly Thu 01-May-14 21:57:53

I know one person who took a council flat because she didn't fancy living with her parents anymore, she couldn't be bothered to get a job though and pay towards her accommodation

The problem with that is that you can't get a council flat just because you don't want to live with your parents.

So we know what kind of thread this is don't we.

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