Sunday, 30 March 2014

More hate-mongering

I don't know whether Iain Duncan Smith and Richard Desmond have ever met, but they certainly work to help each other.  Desmond is the owner of Channel 5 and the Daily Express, and he uses both to demonise the poor.  After Channel 4 had screened the infamous Benefits Street, it was Channel 5 which hosted the "debate" on the subject.  Now, Desmond's channel is making a series of its own.  No title has been decided, they say (but the makers of Benefits Street said the same, and they lied) but it's about the benefits "culture", and they are in the process of filming.
We can see how they go about it through the protests of one of the cities unwillingly involved.  Hull has a lot to be encouraged about at the moment, in the midst of one of the worst unemployment rates in the country.  But now the film-makers have been leafletting the poorer estates seeking gullible people to take part, and have already done some filming.  Local councillors are furious, but seem helpless to prevent it.
Of course people should have the freedom to take part, if they are given accurate information and understand what they're doing.  But what about the people who live in the area and have not consented to this?  Benefits Street led to children who live in James Turner St being bullied.  Other residents felt that they had been stigmatised simply for their address.  Many of those who did take part believed that they were misled by the film-makers.  If there's a redress in law, none of them can afford to sue.
I have a suggestion.  Send Katie Hopkins to live on one of these estates for a while.  I'd watch that.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

ATOS out, but secrets and spin remain

We knew that ATOS were pulling out of their WCA contract, but the terms have now been agreed.  Of course, we don't know what those terms are; commercial confidentiality and all that.  But Mike Penning, the minister, is obscuring matters even further by first insisting that "Atos will not receive a single penny of compensation from the taxpayer for the early termination of their contract.  Quite the contrary, Atos has made a substantial financial settlement to the department," and then, "“They haven’t pulled out actually, we’ve removed them from the contract.  This is not them walking away.”  But "sources close to the company" pointed out that, "People don't usually pay a fine if they've been sacked."  In other words, Penning wants to talk tough and insist that it was the DWP which sacked ATOS, whereas we know that the company wanted out and was negotiating terms.  
The Independent says that the DWP is talking to Capita and Maximus with a view to them taking over the contract, but it's felt that the government is going to have to pay a huge amount of money to get anyone to take it, since it only lasts until August next year.  And Channel 4 News' Factcheck blog has pointed out that the assessments, although carried out by the company, were devised by the DWP.  Will they be changed?  
Atos says that anyone who has an appointment with them for an assessment must keep it, but they won't be making any new appointments.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Universal Job Match - carrying on regardless

You recall that UJM seemed set to be consigned to the dustbin where it rightfully belongs, after all the publicity about the mess it has become.  But no.  Monster's website today carries a joint letter from the head of Jobcentre Plus, Neil Couling, and the boss of Monster, Sal Iannuzzi.  It will bemuse those forced to use it.
For instance: "Some of the concerns recently raised regarding the legitimacy of jobs on Universal Jobmatch, and even the future of the site itself, are based on misrepresentations which attempt to undermine its true success as a secure, and effective recruitment website. With millions of active jobseekers over the last year, those best placed to judge the system, our users, tell us they like it and that it makes a real difference to how they look for work."
This is just dishonest denial of copious evidence, and it traduces those clients and journalists who have exposed the truth.
On rogue employers and bogus vacancies, it first says that it's nothing new, and then: "we are not complacent and we take all such incidents very seriously. In fact, the DWP and Monster have agreed upon new measures to remove questionable jobs to improve further the security of the service".  These must be the safeguards which the company could have put in from the start but were told by "ministers" not to.  So how much are we now having to pay Monster to do it?
Then it says that they are "managing" the issue of "duplicate or inappropriate" vacancies.
The final paragraphs are a kick in the teeth for the unfortunate client and taxpayer alike: "Finally, there has been inaccurate speculation about the relationship of the DWP and Monster. Universal Jobmatch was delivered on budget and on time and we are working closely together to ensure its continuing success. Technology changes at pace and we will continue to exploit the opportunities this offers to support jobseekers into work.  The current contract between DWP and Monster runs until 2016, but the DWP - as with any large government procurement - will plan and consider all options for how it delivers the service in the future. But whatever that future is, Universal Jobmatch is here to stay, which will be of relief to the 500,000 employers and millions of people looking for a new job who rely on it every day."
Perhaps we should not have expected anything else from Iain Duncan Smith's DWP.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

The delusions of Iain Duncan Smith

A health warning goes with this post.  Before reading the link you need to be calm, your blood pressure low.  Do your yoga breathing or something.  Because you could very well get angry.
It's an "interview" with Iain Duncan Smith.  It's from The House magazine, the MPs' own journal, and it's not an interview at all, just a chance for IDS to spout, unchallenged, his version of reality.  You need to consider not just the obvious divergence from truth, about sanctions and food banks and so forth.  You need to think about the mental processes which lead a man into believing he knows better than all the voices raised against him.  Here it is.  

Okay?  I'm not going to dissect the article; it would be too long a task.  But I will pick out one sentence: “But it’s also important that you do that by reforming the system so that those who are in the system are essentially rewarded for the right behaviour and no longer does the system perversely reward behaviour that is destructive."  "The system"; you thought social security was about state help when you needed it.  But no.  It's about rewarding "right behaviour" (as defined by who?) and not "behaviour that is destructive".  

This article oozes contempt for everyone who does not agree with him, including the leaders of his own church.  There is only one acceptable version of truth, whether it be on food banks (who apparently have an empire to build) or on sanctions (since he's been into a jobcentre he knows that the whistle-blowers and their clients are making it up) and nothing will sway his opinions.

I'm sorry to inflict this on you on a sunny weekend.  But this is a man whose delusions are harming millions.

Friday, 21 March 2014

Work Programme stats, and the PAC

We used to complain that no data was being released on the effectiveness of the Work Programme.  Now we have all the data we could wish for, it seems, in the figures put out yesterday.  You can see the document here.  Some key figures are on the first page, but you'll need to get your calculator out.  If we look at the "by all referrals" June 2011 to Dec 2013, we see that just under 19% of those on the programme long enough got an outcome.  (The Factcheck blog says 17%.)  But then look at how that tapers off, so that only 48,000 people were in work long enough for the provider to claim the full payments.  In other words, the jobs tend to be temporary.  24,000 got 3-6 months of work, but then were back on the programme, and in all 352,000 have finished the WP and been referred back to the jobcentre.  The other key fact from all of this is that while the figures for JSA claimants are considered satisfactory, they are terrible for those on ESA.  For a good summary, read Channel 4's Factcheck blog.  Looking at the breakdown by provider, we see that A4e isn't the worst-performing, but it's a long way from being the best.
Is it worth it?  That's the really important question.  Millions have been paid out to companies like A4e to achieve only a little above what would be expected with no intervention at all (and below that with ESA).  The likelihood is that the vast majority of the jobs are down to the improving economy.  So what's the point?

Other news takes us back to ATOS.  The Public Accounts Committee had a go at the civil servants in the DWP and one of the bosses of Atos over the failure of the new PIPs assessment contract.  The Guardian reported Margaret Hodge's interrogation of Robert Devereux, the Permanent Secretary.  They have crossed swords before, and her questions revolved around the same issues as she has fumed over with the Work Programme.  How can you give a new contract to a company which is in the process of bodging a similar contract?  (My phrasing, not hers.)  He said, "We are making a decision on the bids in front of us."  As he has said before, the procurement process deliberately doesn't look at past performance.  And they did not check that what Atos had put in its bid document was true.  On the PIPs bid, Atos had claimed to have agreements with a large number of hospital trusts and physiotherapy practices, but far fewer actually signed up in the end.  That meant that another claim, that everyone facing assessment would have a centre within an hour's travel time, has gone by the board.  Huge backlogs are building up.  Hodge had a go at the Atos person for misleading the DWP.  But this sort of thing is common with the procurement process which the DWP has shaped.  The big companies must form "partnerships" with smaller outfits, and can then list on their bid documents a number of sub-contractors who have, in fact, signed nothing and can duck out once they see the small print.
It's obvious to everybody that there has to be a better way.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

A good budget - for ATOS

Only the Independent has reported this: "Atos given responsibility for new childcare scheme despite previous fitness-for work fiasco."  Yes, the French firm which has performed so splendidly on the WCA contracts that it's handing them back, and which is currently making life impossible for people waiting for PIPs assessments, has the contract to provide the IT for the new scheme to allow people £2,000 towards childcare costs.  What could possibly go wrong?  Atos won't be doing any assessments, we're assured.  But if you take this together with its new contract to extract patient data from GP surgeries (see our post on 26 February) you can see just how ridiculous the outsourcing business has become.

There was nothing in yesterday's budget to give hope to the poorest.  The unemployment figures are worthless, concealing the reality of just how many people are in work and how many are not.  But the measure which we tend to overlook is the benefit cap, the overall limit on spending on "welfare" per year (which Labour supports).  It excludes pensions and JSA.  But it includes housing benefit, tax credits, disability benefits and pensioner benefits.  So while people out of work will continue to get JSA, they could find their housing benefit cut; and those in casual, part-time or zero hours jobs (or in fictional self-employment) could find that their top-up benefits are withering away.

Then there was that poster.  Wherever it originated, the Tory party chairman, Grant Shapps, tweeted it yesterday.  At first people thought it was a parody.  But it wasn't.  And with the hashtag #torybingo it was soon trending wildly, with people having lots of fun playing the game.  A massive own goal for the government!

Sunday, 16 March 2014

The end of Universal Job Match?

That's the claim in an article in the Guardian.  "DWP plans to ditch ridiculed jobs website."  Someone has leaked what the paper calls a cache of documents showing that UJM is likely to be scrapped when the contract with Monster comes up for renewal in two years.  So don't get too excited.  There's no indication that it is to be junked immediately.  And no announcement that benefits claimants won't have to use it any more.  But it appears that the site can't be fixed without spending a huge amount of money on it, and other ideas are being discussed.
While Monster had a bad record when it got the contract, it seems that the current debacle is not all the company's fault.  Ministers (for which read Iain Duncan Smith, presumably) wanted the site to be as "open" as possible, which has meant that all the scams, repeat ads etc. are put up unchecked.  It is also obvious that the original site proved to be so bad that numerous changes were requested that would have cost too much to implement.  There is appallingly mendacious comment from our old friend the DWP spokesman, but nothing can change the fact that IDS must have known of this for a long time but didn't mention it to the Work & Pensions select committee (perhaps he regarded it as none of their business) nor in that interview on the Sunday Politics last week.
People have commented that all the figures put out by this government on the number of vacancies in the country are drastically wrong.  It is probably impossible to explain this to the mathematically challenged IDS.
Clear instructions need to go out to jobcentres and WP providers immediately that claimants should not be compelled to use UJM.  No one should be sanctioned for their use of it.  And any claimants who have been sanctioned for this (e.g. not applying for enough jobs on it) should be reimbursed.  But that's as likely as IDS being sacked.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

The PAC agrees with us

The Public Accounts Committee has published its report on Contracting out public services to the private sector.  It's not a long document, particularly the section on recommendations, and you can read it here.  It supports all the things which I and others have been saying for a long time about the perils of outsourcing.
As usual it was not reported in the Tory press.  The Guardian and the Independent covered it well, and the BBC mentioned it.  The Guardian spoke to Margaret Hodge, chairman of the committee, ahead of the publication.  She called the report "damning" and said the DWP was "on the verge of meltdown" with its contracts.  There has to be an end to the secrecy surrounding the contracts on the grounds of commercial confidentiality.  Even the CBI supports that one.  And there must be much better management of contracts.  The DWP is allowed its usual paragraph of self-justification, and government minister Francis Maude was invited onto the BBC's Today programme to waffle unchallenged about how things were improving.  
The Independent's Nigel Morris had a scathing piece much like the Guardian's.  The report, he said, "accused ministers of trying to cover up mistakes by refusing to divulge details of contracts."  He quotes Margaret Hodge as saying that the absence of competition meant that we have "privately-owned public monopolies which have become too big to fail."  The article mentions the A4e fraud case, along with G4S and Serco.  
There's another piece on the Guardian's website which puzzles me a bit.  It's by Jane Dudman, and it focuses on A4e's part in the PAC's verdict.  I'm puzzled because I can't find the opinions she attributes to Margaret Hodge in the report (if you can, let me know).  Mrs Hodge wants to know why "scandal-hit" A4e are still in the running for contracts.  Dudman goes on: "Last month, four former employees of A4e pleaded guilty in Reading Crown Court to 30 acts of fraud and forgery. But even Hodge was forced to acknowledge this was not a case of individuals trying to enrich themselves. None of the former staff benefited personally, she noted."  Now, if Mrs Hodge did say that, we need to tell her that she could well be mistaken.  She may be assuming that the profits from this forgery, the false outcome claims, went only to the company.  But A4e had the practice, until recently, of paying particular individuals in an office a "commission" for each outcome, and rewarding whole teams for achieving for good outcome figures.  Under that system, individuals had every incentive to push up their earnings by pushing up the figures.
One would love to think that the Public Accounts Committee's excellent work would change things, but I suspect it won't.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Secrets and lies

G4S is in the news again.  The outsourcing company has agreed to pay back almost £109m to the government as a settlement for its overcharging hugely on its contract to tag offenders.  It had offered £24m.  Serco, which shared the contract, has given back £70.5m.  Both companies, we're told, still face investigation by the Serious Fraud Office, and neither can bid for the flogged-off probation contracts currently out for tender.  G4S is in deep financial trouble.  But, you may say, is that it?  Is no one going to be charged with criminal offences?  After all, benefits cheats are in court very quickly.  I doubt it.  
There are several reasons why the government would not want a court case.  The relationship between people in government and those running these outsourcing companies is not the standard one of purchaser and provider; there is a much greater degree of mutual self-interest.  You don't want to put your mates in court.  These two companies in particular have been crucial to the government's exercise in creating private wealth out of public services.  And suppose there were charges.  They could plead guilty, and that would save embarrassment.  We've seen what happened, on a very, very much smaller scale with A4e.  The employees who pleaded guilty have not yet been sentenced.  That may not happen until the second batch have been tried in October.  If they plead guilty as well, we will never know the details of what they did, and what pressures or incentives they were under.  The G4S and Serco cases could follow that route, sparing the public the details of their contracts.  It wouldn't do for us to know how those contracts, and the monitoring of them, allowed the firms to overcharge on this massive scale.  If they pleaded not guilty, all that would have to come out.  The government wants this out of the way as soon as possible, and the companies back in the ring bidding for more juicy contracts.  Grayling had to cancel altogether the privatisation of a batch of prisons because the only bidders were G4S and Serco.
More secrets.  We are used to this government suppressing information if it goes against its narrative of great success in "welfare reform".  So it's no surprise to learn from Channel 4 News that it sat on a report which showed, according to independent experts appointed by the DWP, that the Work Programme isn't working.  That's hardly news, you might say.  But this report came out last September and a decision was taken to suppress it "at a ministerial level", and we know what that means.  All the things which critics said would happen, particularly "creaming and parking", are still going on.  Sanctions are not helping anything, says the report.  And the providers themselves, or 58% of them, think the WP is not helping or worse.  The DWP apparently said, "The reality is that the Work Programme is working."  That's the point at which the secrets turn into lies.
For a straightforward untruth we turn to the narrative on food banks.  The DWP has always insisted that it doesn't refer people to food banks.  There's a good reason for that.  It needs to deny that food banks have become part of the welfare state, or, indeed, that they are needed at all.  But now we have the evidence, thanks to the Guardian, that there is official guidance to jobcentres on how to give out vouchers, and one of the documents is entitled "Foodbank Referral Service".  That has now been modified; "referral" has become "signposting".  And they mustn't refer to the vouchers as vouchers.  (Orwellian newspeak is thriving at the DWP.)  There's a significant paragraph in the article: "The documents show each jobcentre is told to write down how many people have been sent to food banks on a 'slip record sheet', even though the DWP has said: 'Food banks are not part of government policy and, as such, the Department for Work and Pensions does not hold or collect information on their usage.'"
What was it David Cameron once said about being the "most transparent government ever"?

Monday, 10 March 2014

That interview

Like many people I've been mulling over that interview with Iain Duncan Smith yesterday.  If you didn't see it, it will still be available on iplayer.  I'm not going to go over the whole of it; there are good accounts on the Vox Political blog and the void bog.  While the interview was going out I was following (and contributing to) the Twitter storm, and the producers could have been in no doubt that people were very angry at his lies.
There was a stand-out moment for me, and it wasn't one of his factual inaccuracies.  It was when he was asked about the criticisms of Archbishop Vincent Nichols, the leader of his own church.  With the same supercilious expression that he'd worn throughout, IDS simply said, "He's wrong."
It's important to remember what the Archbishop actually said.  He didn't criticise the "reforms" in principle.  He deplored the fact that people were being left in destitution, left for weeks on end without any support, which he called a "disgrace".  His information, he said, came from the network of priests and charities in the poorest areas of the country.  "There must be something wrong with the administration of a system which has that effect on so many people's lives."  But IDS said, "He's wrong."  And he added that he wished the Archbishop had called him before saying all this.
The arrogance is breath-taking.  No doubt he would have told the man who is supposed to be in spiritual authority over him that all the reports from his priests and charities were ill-informed, that food banks were scaremongering, that the evidence of his own eyes and ears was an illusion.  There is no way through to this man.
I've been around a long time, and involved in politics for much of that time.  I lived through the Thatcher years, and loathed her as much as anyone.  I got disillusioned with Blair.  But this is something different.  This is a government which has entrusted its dirty work to a man who has neither the intelligence nor the insight to understand the consequences of his actions, and who has surrounded himself with people similarly bereft of humanity.  We have media which are either complicit or supine.  And I have no idea what we can do about it.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Don't bother asking IDS

You probably watched it.  That awful interview with Iain Duncan Smith on the Sunday Politics programme.  If so, your blood pressure might have settled down by now.
The producers had specifically asked for questions.  Of course, the majority were probably abusive and couldn't be used.  But plenty would not have been.  However, only one or two were used.  This was, as expected, more to do with Andrew Neil's questions.  It was too wide-ranging and there was no one on hand with the knowledge to challenge the torrent of lies and evasions.  Everybody is wrong except IDS.  The head of his church, Archbishop Nicholls, was wrong and should have called IDS before expressing an opinion.  I could go on, but what's the point?

Thursday, 6 March 2014


Sorry to keep doing this, but there's something else our regular readers need to know.
The Sunday Politics programme (BBC1, 11.00 am) have Iain Duncan Smith as the guest.  They are tweeting that they want questions for him - use the hashtag #askIDS
They will be deluged, so be succinct.

UJM and slumming

I was composing a reflective piece on the last six years; but two news stories yesterday are more important.

First, of course, there's Universal Job Match.  It's not news to us, or to thousands of people, but because Frank Field MP has spoken out the media are taking notice.  There are articles in the Guardian, the Independent, the Mirror and the Huffington Post  which tell the story.  Channel 4 News are running a story on it, and I think the Radio 2 Jeremy Vine programme has already done a feature.  So, mercifully, this scandal is now out there, and there has to be action.  What the DWP should do (but won't, obviously) is to take the site down immediately.  They can't tinker with it because it's owned and run by a private company, so Monster should be sued for breach of contract.  If it's possible, revert to the old site which compiled vacancies from all the jobcentres.  It worked.  If not possible, then chuck out the idea of a single site altogether.  Jobseekers should be immediately freed from the obligation to use UJM.

The second bit of news is horribly depressing.  The BBC have commissioned another entertainment series from the people who brought you Benefits Street, to be called Famous, Rich and Hungry.  Yes, we all have fond memories of a previous effort, Famous, Rich and Jobless, which gave A4e's Emma Harrison the chance to swan about looking as if she knew what she was doing.  For an opinion on the latest offering I can't do better than Tanya Gold in the Guardian.  
Just as the government has reverted to Victorian attitudes towards the poor, so have the rich reverted to a very Victorian practice - slumming.  It got going in the 1880s, particularly in the East End of London.  It was a form of tourism, with the wealthy going amongst the slums seeking excitement and illicit thrills.  Some went out of genuinely altruistic motives, to do good works, but for many it was just a fun night out.  So it is with the media today.  Such a pity that the BBC thinks that this sort of "entertainment" is appropriate.

Before these two stories broke, Frances Ryan wrote an excellent piece in the New Statesman.  The case she makes is strengthened today.

Universal Job Match

A quick post before I write a more considered one.  Channel 4 News want your experiences of the UJM website.  See here.  The email address for replies is  (Replace "at" with @, obviously.)  Get on and do it quickly.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

A troubled week

Mike Penning, the Disabilities Minister, seems to be in the wrong job.  In a debate in Parliament on the mess around work capability assessments, Penning apologised.  Doesn't he know that he's not supposed to do that?  True, he was confronted with the story of Sheila Holt, the woman who was pursued by Seetec and Atos even though she was in a coma.  The sorry tale was originally told by the Mirror on 12 February.  Penning, perhaps, had no option but to apologise; but he's rather letting the side down by doing so.  His boss, Iain Duncan Smith, and his colleague Esther McVey would, I'm sure, simply have brushed the story aside.  He has probably been told that he must not see this as a precedent.  Ministers at the DWP have a motto; never apologise, never explain.
So there hasn't been a peep out of them about another horror story, this time from David Cameron's constituency.  It was covered in the Oxford Mail and headlined: "Man starved after benefits were cut".  Mark Wood, aged 44, had multiple problems which made him very vulnerable; but Atos declared him fit for work.  All his benefits were stopped except his disability allowance.  He couldn't pay his bills and apparently starved to death.  As well as being appalled, we should note a contradiction which emerges from the story.  Wood's GP "said he had not been contacted by either Atos or DWP about Mr Wood’s medical history, and revealed that if they had asked for his professional opinion he would have said Mr Wood was unfit for work."  But the obligatory arrogant comment from the DWP spokesperson says: “A decision on whether someone is well enough to work is taken following a thorough assessment and after consideration of all the supporting medical evidence from the claimant’s GP or medical specialist.”  Someone is making it up, and I don't think it's the GP.  (For the first time this mysterious spokesperson is named; it's Ann Rimell, who is Senior Press Officer at the DWP.)
As if it wasn't enough that one contract was in a shambles, a report came out from the National Audit Office showing that a newer one, the PIP assessments done by Atos and Capita, was heading the same way.  A piece in the Guardian reports that a backlog of 92,000 cases has built up, three times the expected number, and only 16% of cases have received a decision.  Neither company is anywhere near meeting its contractual requirements.  But the DWP spokesman said, in effect, "No problem".
As well as leaving it to others to deal with the Atos affair, IDS has also been ignoring the growing unrest about sanctions.  West Dunbartonshire CAB produced a scathing report which makes all the points many have been making for quite a while.  But the DWP's response was to confirm to Inside Housing that under Universal Credit housing benefit could be subject to sanctions.  This is because people who get working tax credits or HB but not JSA or ESA can only be punished by hitting that benefit.  Then on Friday the Herald newspaper in Scotland published a report of a piece of analysis done by an academic which brings up to date some of the stats on sanctions.  We knew that from October 2012 to September 2013 the success rate for appeals against sanctions was 58%.  But Dr Webster says that this has risen dramatically in the most recent quarter, to 87%.  However, only 2.44% of those who were penalised actually appealed in the last 3 months.  IDS would claim, of course, that this means that the vast majority of sanctions are justified; but Dr Webster maintains that the low appeal rate is down to the difficulty so many claimants have with the appeal process.  And he makes an interesting point: "To date, Work Programme contractors have been responsible for twice as many sanctions on the people referred to them as they have produced 'job outcomes' ."
Duncan Smith had a project which he's been forced to drop by his own colleagues.  He wanted to redefine poverty.  At the moment poverty is defined as having an income less than 60% of the country's average income.  So it's relative, but it's based firmly on the idea that poverty is about not having enough money.  IDS wanted to include other factors, like "worklessness" and addiction.  This was a terrible idea, for several reasons, admirably expressed by Bernadette Meaden on the Ekklesia website and by Andreas Whittam Smith of the Independent.  
Duncan Smith's recent appearance before the Work & Pensions Select Committee astonished many people, because his attitude was so disgraceful.  One of the Labour members of that committee, Teresa Pearce, has described her feelings about it on the International Business Times website.  She calls him "downright rude and quite abusive".
And finally - I've lost the link to this, but it's memorable.  In the debate on the bedroom tax Labour brought up the evidence to show that IDS's estimate of the numbers wrongly penalised was a wild stab in the dark and completely inaccurate.  Now Smith doesn't like to be contradicted.  But I detect something else in what happened next; panic at the very idea of maths.  Having accused Chris Bryant of mathematical incompetence he said that one in twenty of something-or-other .... "One in twenty - that's a fifth ..."  Er, no.  (If your maths is as bad as his, one in twenty is 5%.  A fifth is 20%.)