Assuming that the figures are more or less accurate, what's going on? I know that when I was unemployed I would not have had a choice; I could not have foregone my unemployment benefit without rapidly becoming homeless and destitute. Clearly some people are not in that position. I have met people who were "signing on" even though they did not need the money. They were being kept by someone else, or they had enough money to tide them over. They signed on because they wanted their NI contributions paid, and because they could. I met others who were almost certainly working in the black economy. Yet even these didn't drop out of the New Deal 13-week programme, and some went on work placements. So what's going on? Your thoughts please - but note that I won't publish anything that simply rants against the system. We can take that as read.
Thursday, 5 January 2012
50% are workshy?
There's an article in the Express today which raises some interesting questions. You have to get past the headline "Workshy are Exposed" and get to the figures (which are suspiciously round numbers). "A report has revealed that 20 per cent of people ordered to take part in a four-week community project scheme stopped claiming state handouts." Translated, I suppose this means that 20% of those directed onto Mandatory Work-related Activity signed off rather than comply. Then, "Another 30 per cent of people in the pilot project were stripped of their £67.50 a week unemployment benefit after failing to turn up." Which adds up to the "half of people claiming unemployment benefit (who) would prefer to lose their benefits than take part in unpaid work". That's a big saving on the benefits bill.