Friday, 28 May 2010

Another TV programme for Emma

The Sheffield Telegraph today carries a long piece entitled "A4e boss Emma Harrison's road to success" by its Women's Editor, Jo Davison. Most of it is the standard hagiography, but the purpose of it becomes clear. "When I interviewed her four years ago she told me that getting into TV was written on a list in the top drawer of her desk," says Davison. She goes on:
The TV shows give her the clout to lobby "the powers that be," she explains. "Politicians, even Prime Ministers do watch these programmes," she says knowingly. She hopes PM David Cameron and Secretary of State for Work and pensions Iain Duncan Smith will be watching the one she has just finished filming for Channel 4. The Wager sees her transform the life of John, a 21-year-old East Londoner who was "the hardest study the researchers could find."

I can't find any indication of when this programme is due to be screened. When the BBC produced its "Famous, Rich and Jobless" programmes they tried to avoid accusations of advertising a particular company by never mentioning A4e, but both the Beeb and Channel 4 seem content to provide a vehicle for Harrison and her company to lobby government. The Sheffield Telegraph piece describes Harrison as "one of the country's leading welfare-to-work proponents." Perhaps that's because none of the rival providers seek the limelight.

1 comment:

  1. Someone has left a comment asking, "How much does A4e get for removing one person from benefits?" He also gave his email address, so I won't publish it.
    The answer is, it depends what you mean by removing from benefits. If a client simply decides to sign off benefits, then A4e and the other providers cease to get any payment. About 80% of the contracted maximum is dependent on a job outcome. If the client goes into a job, then the provider only get paid if s/he stays in the job for at least 13 weeks. I don't have the actual figures to hand, but I'll look them up.


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