Much has been made of the position of the voluntary sector (or Third Sector as some organisations prefer to be known) in the WP. Their involvement was guaranteed. Many were not enthusiastic, but needed the funding that sub-contracts could give them, and didn't want to see their work taken over by someone else. Now, various groups are feeling let down, with the work not materialising. One charity, Crisis, is particularly unhappy. Its Welfare Network Manager writes that "The reality of the Work Programme is proving to be quite different from what the government promised." He (or she) doesn't specify which prime they've been dealing with, but as well as getting much less than they believe is necessary to support a homeless person into employment but, "In addition, one contracter would only pay us for engaging with a client and job entry (the hard and expensive bit) whilst they would then themselves support the client for the year in work (the easy bit with the highest payment from DWP). There were also requests that we work with their clients using our own funding streams - with no financial reward for doing so."
The BBC is running a programme on Radio 4 next Thursday at 8.00 pm on the Work Programme. There's no indication of what line they're going to take. It can only be anecdotal. Let's hope it's fair.