Tag Archives: workfare

Jobseekers’ complaints – how they should be handled by A4e, G4S and Ingeus {UPDATED}

Following the previous post on one A4e experience, Chris White points to a number of links on how complaints should be handled by various ‘workfare’ contractors. These are good starting points if you’re looking at what contractors actually do.

And here’s his advice: Continue reading Jobseekers’ complaints – how they should be handled by A4e, G4S and Ingeus {UPDATED}

Now DWP FOI response on “mandatory” placements disappearing too? – link

screengrab of Google search for document

Following Friday’s post about work experience guidance being altered, The Void blog reports on more curiosities from the Google cache: this time, an FOI response from December which listed private companies taking part in the work experience scheme:

“The document could previously be found at: http://www.dwp.gov.uk/docs/foi-3238-2011.pdf. Unfortunately it’s no longer there.  But that’s okay because good old google cache has a copy of this as well.

The FOI response – which can also be found here – describes the programme as “providing mandatory work placements”.

An older FOI response which lists the names of voluntary organisations taking jobseekers on work experience is still up.

Again, if anyone wants to get a response from the DWP, let me know in the comments.

‘Mandatory’ instruction removed from DWP Workfare document?

UPDATE (29 Feb 2012): Channel 4’s FactCheck have followed this up with a response from the DWP:

“A spokesman told FactCheck: “The changes to the website were just part of a regular update. We regularly revise documents for clarity purposes.”

“When pushed on whether that meant that the instruction to mandate participants is no longer government policy, she wasn’t able to provide any more “clarity” other than to say: “I’m not saying the advice is wrong.”

“That’s a bit of a problem, because if the advice ISN’T wrong, but HAS been taken down, doesn’t that mean that Work Programme providers are now in danger of breaking the rules on the National Minimum Wage Regulations, as the government took great pains to flag up originally in the missing paragraph?

“Confusion reigns, and despite repeated phone calls and several days to think about it, DWP has declined to clarify the situation.

“The spokesman did tell us that the apparently damning FoI answer had been taken down because it contained an error (“one of the names of the companies was wrong”).

“And the timing of all this was pure coincidence, the spokesman insisted.

“So a document emphasising the “mandatory” nature of Work Programme work experience happened to disappear from the department’s website just as the controversy over whether other schemes were mandatory was raging in the headlines.

“Or in any event, that’s DWP’s story and they’re sticking to it.”

Original post below

cached copy of DWP document: you must mandate participants

Anton, a commenter on The Void blog, has pointed out that government documents on the work experience programme have been altered recently to remove the instruction “you must mandate participants to this activity”.

A Google cache of the documents still contains the phrase (on page 4), whereas the version currently on the DWP site (PDF) does not. (Just in case that cache disappears, here’s a copy)

It’s a bit late in the evening to get a response from the DWP on this, but if anyone wants to ring on Monday morning, let us know.

Also on Brighter Future.

UPDATE: Mary Hamilton looks into the documents’ metadata and tells us the original version was “created/modified 17/08/2011. Changed version created/modified 24/02/2012.”

Audio: Chris Grayling defends workfare

Here’s Chris Grayling talking on Radio 4 about the government’s work experience programs. Notably, it includes a claim at around 3’30” that his email was “hacked” and that the internet campaign against the scheme is being “organised” by the Socialist Workers Party. (A claim worth investigating).

The clarification under the recording notes that “He has since told us that it was not actually hacked but that his email address was used on a complaint lodged with Tesco.”

Grayling defends government work experience programmes (mp3)

Workfare – how the different government work experience schemes compare

James Ball has gathered some information on the government’s work experience schemes over on The Guardian’s Reality Check, along with some useful context. The schemes are split into the following: Continue reading Workfare – how the different government work experience schemes compare