Monday, 30 September 2013
Workfare the blight of Britain
The Tories plans are for mass workfare in affect lowering the minimum wage to a new level that is below poverty wages. Working for your benefits is the new workhouse I’d say. So many people who are out of work will experience workfare at some point if they cannot find a job. George Osborne's latest idea to be presented at Tory party conference this week which his latest attacks on the poorest in society and the unemployed. His latest idea is to force everyone who is looking for a job to attend the job centre every day in a working week to sign on. This is similar to a punishment for not having a job. Anyone can lose their job through all sorts of reasons and could turn from a hard worker to being on the doll at the turn of the day. Workfare is horrible and very degrading for anyone having to work for your benefits becomes working for low pay not seen for a long long while. Workfare could be the new low pay society in this country where labour costs are driven down to a new level. This is all in order to make the UK competitive again on the world market apparently the global race for capital to become profitable once again. Take the Tories latest idea that the unemployed which are all stereotyped to be lazy work shy scroungers of course are to pick litter for their benefits. Those out working will maybe think oh good they shouldn’t be getting something for nothing as George Osborne would most probably agree. Yet cleaning litter is already someone’s job. Not a very well paid one granted but by paying someone’s benefits to pick litter is taking someone’s job further division even more. Can you start to see yet where this is all going? It is clear to me that workfare on a mass scale will likely become the norm if capital in Britain gets its way. Fighting back is a must but so many are on the verge and finding getting by incredibly hard as it is. The threat of losing their benefits which are at a low level is something many do not wish to go through with so does end up going along with it. I think this is where solidarity must come in. Those of us who are in jobs should in my view be looking to set up hardship funds for those who are possibly looking to boycott workfare to help out those who will lose their benefits as a result. I am not sure how this could work but this is certainly something I think could help if we are going to look to take on workfare with mass action. Making people aware of what workfare is and who is still involved in the scheme is key. The actions taken by boycott workfare for example calling out companies and charities involved in the scheme is a good way of targeting them but clearly bigger action is needed to really take it on. Another question is will we see workfare workers in the public sector such as the fire service, police etc? Could we see this? It’s possible I guess with the help of the private sector no doubt. This is the route we are heading unless we do something about it. This post is simply highlighting my fears and thoughts of workfare and where we are heading. I would be interested and happy to cover anyone who has been on workfare and their stories keeping your identity hidden if you so wish.