Sunday, 7 November 2010

Mistreating the Unemployed

'... a discretionary tool for JobCentre advisers to use only on the most intransigent long-term unemployed who have resisted other incentives to find a job. It will not be based on the length of time a person is out of the jobs market.', will not do at all.

Job Centre advisers are not   competent to hand out sanctions (severe sanctions at that) to other citizens.  Removing someone's livelihood cannot be a bureaucratic act.  There would have to be a specific offence  and evidence that showed the offence had been committed and there would have to be determined penalties inflicted by a court.

 Apart  from arbitrary use of diversely imposed penalties of varying severity, there is another  obvious point that if work is  available to be done then it should be done on proper terms and conditions; there is no work that is so unskilled and undesirable that  workers doing it can be treated as if they are worth less than those 'employed'.

If there are people wilfully refusing to work when offered work (and the  constantly cited examples, gardening and street cleaning are respectable and sometimes even highly-skilled jobs) then  what jobs are so awful people will risk  abject poverty rather than do them?


Sackerson said...

There are - reasonably well-paid - street cleaners already; one remaining business that's worthwhile is gardening services - we've just used one nice lad and been happy to pay him £60; a job working "on the bins" is practically hereditary, otherwise I'd do it in preference to teaching.

It's all an attempt - apparently rather succesful - to distract us from seeing that the government has no strategy for full employment and making us competitive in a "China price" world.

Until we have purged debt from the system, incomes have to remain high to service debt, which means our goods and services won't be wanted by foreigners whose exports benefit from an astounding exchange rate and a domestic economy not yet saddled with crippling Western-style consumer and housing loans; so instead of incomes dropping, we get growing unemployment; until the debacle.

hatfield girl said...

It was easier to hand round cheap credit and entice into debt those who would have otherwise been making claims upon us all (ie the more privileged beneficiaries of our socioeconomic system) than meet obligations in the form of social housing, improving education, responsive safe health care, a serene and orderly public environment etc.

It's bad enough having worklessness at such a high level for so long; we really must not countenance government or out-sourced clerks being judge and jury over those who have been so badly let down , even if it is true that some of us have also let ourselves down.