It's official that the Work Programme performance data will be published on 27 November. There can be little doubt that the delay has been because the first year results have been so bad that the government wanted to get another 6 months' worth, in the hope that they show improvement. The media are gearing up to analyse the figures and present stories about the people behind the numbers.
There's an excellent article in the New Statesman by Alan White, centring on "Why Eco-Actif went bust" but telling the whole story of what he calls UK plc. If you want to understand how we got to this position of handing over all our services to the private sector, this is the place to start.
A story in the Guardian about Atos reminded me of something which happened with A4e more than a decade ago. Apparently Atos, in bidding for (and winning) the £400m contract to carry out disability assessments, claimed that they would work with a number of disability organisations. But those organisations say that they knew nothing about this (and most say that they wouldn't ever work with Atos). The DWP isn't bothered, however. Back in 2001 A4e put in bids for all the Business Link organisations (which were working perfectly well but which the government wanted to flog off). In their bid for the Somerset contract A4e claimed that they had the support of local business leaders, including the leader of the Council. This was news to the gentleman in question, and the bid had to be withdrawn. But A4e still got the bulk of the contracts.
The dust has settled after that disastrous interview on Channel 4 News. Emma Harrison did herself no good at all, and her company's cause has been put back. But what really matters is whether A4e is doing what it is paid to do. We have to wait a while to find that out.