There are numerous stories about the mandatory "community work" for people who have been unemployed for two years or more. There's a straightforward summary in the Yorkshire Post and the Guardian expands on the story. It's left to the Telegraph to give a platform to the ultra-right wing "think tank", the Policy Exchange, to crow about this "experiment with workfare". I seem to remember that when this was originally touted it was as 6 months of actual paid work. That was always going to be difficult. And there's no suggestion of payment now, just benefit. For those who wish to get to grips with the details, the DWP has helpfully published the provider guidance. The scheme is known, cheerfully, as CAP.
Thursday, 10 November 2011
Volunteers and mandatory work
The voluntary sector continues to complain bitterly about being let down by the prime providers of the Work Programme. Organisations were assured that, as sub-contractors, they would get referrals, but haven't. But they now say that the primes are "passing clients to volunteer centres without payment". A briefing paper by volunteering england (they don't believe in capital letters) names A4e among a number of providers which have referred people to a volunteer centre "without any prior contact" and with no suggestion of payment. It's not at all clear what's going on; but the providers have always been used to sending clients off to charities to "volunteer" and have probably continued to do that without realising that things have changed.