Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Jobcentre Whistleblower Tells Of Culture Of Cruelty To Jobless

A former Job Centre worker has revealed the worrying culture under the Coalition, claiming they were encouraged to be cruel.

Angela Neville was an advisor at the Job Centre, but quit after being frustrated by the way things were being run.

She has since written a play about her experiences there and pinpointed the moment when she realised there was a problem with the way benefits were being distributed - when she was forced to sanction a man that was on his death bed.

Speaking to Shelagh Fogarty, Ms Neville told when she realised it was now a target-driven culture, rather than person driven, saying: "Towards the end of 2012, we were given a list of customers to call in or to send immediately to the Work Programme.

"That was the government's programme for customers on job-seekers, ESA, all the different types of benefits.

"As advisors, you do form bonds with customers, you have relationships and that helps you support them.
"I had a particular customer, I said he was in hospital, not expected to live.

"I was told to call him and if he didn't attend or respond, he would probably face a sanction.

"As he would probably be dead, this would be tricky, I thought, and I refused to actually do it."