Friday, 9 April 2010

More lazy journalism

A minor story from a London local paper, the Islington Tribune, illustrates the carelessness with which the press treats unemployment issues. "Finsbury Business Forum (FinFuture) are providing five new Community Marshals – part of a group of 20 – whose job will be to help travellers with their luggage and give directions and information about the locality." Fine so far; but then comes the confusion. "The marshals are all unemployed men and women whose wages will be paid jointly by the local Job Centre and employment agency A4e. The public will not be charged for the service." What does that mean? It seems likely that this is being classed as a work placement, so they're not receiving wages at all. They will be getting JSA, and that isn't paid by A4e.
The inaccuracy in the story probably isn't A4e's fault; but nobody will be rushing to put the paper right - and even if they did, there almost certainly wouldn't be a correction. It just adds to the general ignorance of how the system works.


  1. The Teflon Don9 April 2010 at 15:34

    I know it says "tipping will be forbidden", but if your lugging someone's suitcases or helping a mother with a pram up and down stairs etc I'd imagine many grateful travellers will give them a tip anyway. Especially as the story says their 'wages' will be paid by the jobcentre and A4e. I think we know what that means: no pay.

    In any case, tipping is traditional so why shouldn't they be entitled to earn a few extra quid on top of their paltry benefit?

  2. When the article says "the public will not be charged for the service", this is misleading as there will be at least some set up costs. Ans where pray tell do A4e get the bulk of their cash? THE TAXPAYER!!!

    Also when A4e are called an employment agency, what does this mean? Especialy as they are often referred to as a 'training provider' (no giggling at the back). I guess this article highlights the thorny isue of employmnt figures as the people in this aticle (and indeed anyone at A4e) will be classed as being in employment! Fiddle me!


Keep it clean, please. No abusive comments will be approved, so don't indulge in insults. If you wish to contact me, post a comment beginning with "not for publication".