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    I'm sure part of the terms of looking for work is that you are willing to travel for an hour or an hour and a half. I understand it must be frustrating for your cousin but it doesn't seem he has much of a choice, I would look at it as good for his CV and future prospects.
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    (Original post by MovingOn)
    I'm sure part of the terms of looking for work is that you are willing to travel for an hour or an hour and a half. I understand it must be frustrating for your cousin but it doesn't seem he has much of a choice, I would look at it as good for his CV and future prospects.
    I think its worded as a reasonable distance, but typical jobcentre can twist that to anyway they want.

    A jobcentre I had when I told them it was almost a hours journey on a bus(as that was when I lived with parents again) was irrelevant as its classed as part of the town

    And they thought going to the next town over which took a hour on bus was reasonable as its about 15 miles.

    Yet a city 30 miles away which took the same amount of time I didnt have to apply for jobs to.

    So the jobcentre seem to think its only distance is relevant and if it takes 2 hours to go 10 miles then tough.
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    (Original post by MovingOn)
    I'm sure part of the terms of looking for work is that you are willing to travel for an hour or an hour and a half. I understand it must be frustrating for your cousin but it doesn't seem he has much of a choice, I would look at it as good for his CV and future prospects.
    Distance isn't the problem, but you have to see that he can't take a job that it'll cost him more to get to than he's going to be earning. :confused:
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    Distance isn't the problem, but you have to see that he can't take a job that it'll cost him more to get to than he's going to be earning. :confused:
    It doesn't seem he has a choice though does it? I have actually worked as a delivery driver when the fuel expenses didn't cover me so I was effectively paying to work there, but as you said the job isn't forever and it will look better on his CV than being unemployed for the next few months.
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    My cousin is currently on Jobseekers' Allowance, and has been actively looking for a job. The job centre have found him one. The catch? It'll actually cost him more to get to and from it than they're going to pay him - he will be paying (so borrowing from a family member, me probably) for the privilege of doing this job. And they're going to stop the JSA if he doesn't take it.

    The really ridiculous part is this isn't the first time he's had this problem, it was just fortunate that the job itself fell through last time. Doesn't look like there's going to be any such luck this time. He doesn't know what to do - the job centre failed to see the problem last time and are being equally stubborn this time.

    Any advice?
    If he doesn't apply for it, it counts as refusal of employment (RE), and you have to have a good reason for that.

    If the jobcentre staff do end up wanting to sanction his claim, they'll have to get him to fill out some paper work to give his reason. This will then be sent off to a decision maker (DM) who will then decide whether the sanction should go ahead or not.

    So it's simple, if your cousin thinks it's unreasonable, he just has to give his reasons on that form. The DM will make the decision, not the jobcentre staff member he's sitting in front of.

    If the DM decides his reasons aren't good enough, he can appeal the decision and have another DM take a look at the case.

    Basically your cousin has a few options if he's unfortunate enough to have a member of staff who follows the rules a bit too rigidly. Most staff are flexible, however some aren't. Just make sure he lays out his case as clearly as possible on the RE form so the DM has the full story.
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    (Original post by gateshipone)
    If he doesn't apply for it, it counts as refusal of employment (RE), and you have to have a good reason for that.

    If the jobcentre staff do end up wanting to sanction his claim, they'll have to get him to fill out some paper work to give his reason. This will then be sent off to a decision maker (DM) who will then decide whether the sanction should go ahead or not.

    So it's simple, if your cousin thinks it's unreasonable, he just has to give his reasons on that form. The DM will make the decision, not the jobcentre staff member he's sitting in front of.

    If the DM decides his reasons aren't god enough, he can appeal the decision and have another DM take a look at the case.

    Basically your cousin has a few options if he's unfortunate enough to have a member of staff who follows the rules a bit too rigidly. Most staff are flexible, however some aren't. Just make sure he lays out his case as clearly as possible on the RE form so the DM has the full story.
    Thats true, I got stung when I was 20 as I was handed 10-15 application forms by my new deal advisor 30 minutes before they closed for the day, I filled in a few and handed them back.

    Unfortunatly I didnt know one was due to be closed that day and I handed it in the next monring and my advisor told me to fill in a form to say why I hadnt filled it in on time, I was honest and wrote just what I said, and my claim was stopped totally for 6 months and I had to claim hardship which was like £22 a week for 6 months!
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    (Original post by drbluebox)
    Thats true, I got stung when I was 20 as I was handed 10-15 application forms by my new deal advisor 30 minutes before they closed for the day, I filled in a few and handed them back.

    Unfortunatly I didnt know one was due to be closed that day and I handed it in the next monring and my advisor told me to fill in a form to say why I hadnt filled it in on time, I was honest and wrote just what I said, and my claim was stopped totally for 6 months and I had to claim hardship which was like £22 a week for 6 months!
    I'd have asked for a reconsideration to be honest, that's really an unfair decision.

    Things like that annoy me. I was never that rigid with the rules, it's just unfair on people genuinely looking for work. I had people who had applied for all but one of the jobs we told them about and I just let it go. They had done enough to look for work so I wasn't prepared to punish someone for forgetting one application out of half a dozen. Most of the people I worked with had a very flexible interpretation of the rule, sadly not all staff are like that.
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    (Original post by gateshipone)
    I'd have asked for a reconsideration to be honest, that's really an unfair decision.

    Things like that annoy me. I was never that rigid with the rules, it's just unfair on people genuinely looking for work. I had people who had applied for all but one of the jobs we told them about and I just let it go. They had done enough to look for work so I wasn't prepared to punish someone for forgetting one application out of half a dozen. Most of the people I worked with had a very flexible interpretation of the rule, sadly not all staff are like that.
    Its one of many, the ones I have mentioned so far are just a few that has either happened to me or someone I know.

    One was 3 years ago I signed on at old jobcentre and a few days later moved to about 300 miles away, The new Jobcentre took my details but forgot to log my transfer correctly so I rang up a few times and was told my claim was closed as I hadnt attended my sign on interview! I appealed and won but they forgot to make me a appointment to sign on at new jobcentre and fill in jobseekers agreement so a few days after that got a letter saying my claim was closed as I missed 2 sign on appointments, so I appealed that(I did get the first appeals money) and lost the appeal as was told "my reasons arent good enough"

    How can them not informing me of a fortnightly sign on date not be a good enough reason to backdate/appeal a claim!

    Another time 2 years ago I was on New Deal and I had to cancel an appointment but the advisor was part time and was off till the following Wednesday(this was on a Thursday I had my appointment) but I had already filled in a holiday form as was off with parents for a week, advisor made me an appointment for when I came back.

    Anyway the day after I come back I go to sign on and am told my claim is closed for non attendance, lost about 5 weeks money! and lost that appeal!
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    (Original post by gateshipone)
    Basically your cousin has a few options if he's unfortunate enough to have a member of staff who follows the rules a bit too rigidly. Most staff are flexible, however some aren't. Just make sure he lays out his case as clearly as possible on the RE form so the DM has the full story.
    Surely the "rules" are pretty clear assuming the Jobseeker's Allowance Regulations 1996 reference posted earlier is valid:

    (f) the expenses which were, or would be, necessarily and exclusively incurred by the person for the purposes of the employment or of carrying out the jobseeker’s direction, together with any expenses of travelling to and from the place of the employment or a place mentioned in the jobseeker’s direction by a route and means appropriate to his circumstances, if those expenses did, or would, represent an unreasonably high proportion of—

    (i) in the case of employment, the remuneration which it is reasonable to expect that he would derive from that employment; or

    (ii) in any other case, the income which he received, or would receive, while carrying out the jobseeker’s direction.
    Based on the OP's description, the taxi is obviously the only way of getting there so I think it is a "route and means appropriate to his circumstances". Also, am guessing that 100% would represent an "unreasonably high proportion" of his renumeration.

    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    No - he lives about ten miles from the nearest bus stop and his leg means he can't walk or cycle there, so he needs a taxi to the bus stop, then needs to take the bus to some town to get a train to the place where the job is.
    Surely this means that for any job he is going to have to put up with this taxi journey? This problem must crop up at other times (i.e. whenever he wants to leave the house). Some might argue that he simply can't afford to live where he does, and needs to move to somewhere more accessible. For example I could choose to live on a remote Scottish island, but I'm not sure if the job centre would accept my insistence that I need to hire a helicopter to get to work.

    Actually, for a solution that hasn't been suggested so far... is there no friend or family member who lives on a direct bus or train route from the job, who could let him stay? If his three days are consecutive he would only need to stay two nights each week!
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    (Original post by thefish_uk)
    Surely the "rules" are pretty clear assuming the Jobseeker's Allowance Regulations 1996 reference posted earlier is valid:
    Oh the rules are perfectly clear, they just don't always account for every variable you may come across in the Jobcentre. There are plenty of people who's situations are just outside what the rules cover, so you have to bend them slightly to help the customer.

    As for that specific quote from the rule book, I didn't know about that exact wording. Most staff don't. That's why the OP's cousin needs to lay out his case in as much detail as possible so the DM, the person who knows the rule book cover to cover, will be able to make a fair judgement.
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    Seen this thread beforee...
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    This is a bit of an old thread but I read an article in the Guardian today which might explain what's going on:
    Jobcentres 'tricking' people out of benefits to cut costs, says whistleblower

    Soaring number of sanctions against unemployed amid claims that DWP staff are being told to trip people up with paperwork

    Rising numbers of vulnerable jobseekers are being tricked into losing benefits amid growing pressure to meet welfare targets, a Jobcentre Plus adviser has told the Guardian.

    A whistleblower said staff at his jobcentre were given targets of three people a week to refer for sanctions, where benefits are removed for up to six months. He said it was part of a "culture change" since last summer that had led to competition between advisers, teams and regional offices.
    Continued at http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2...efit-sanctions

    Absolutely disgusting.
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    (Original post by thefish_uk)
    This is a bit of an old thread but I read an article in the Guardian today which might explain what's going on:
    Jobcentres 'tricking' people out of benefits to cut costs, says whistleblower[/B]

    Soaring number of sanctions against unemployed amid claims that DWP staff are being told to trip people up with paperwork

    Rising numbers of vulnerable jobseekers are being tricked into losing benefits amid growing pressure to meet welfare targets, a Jobcentre Plus adviser has told the Guardian.

    A whistleblower said staff at his jobcentre were given targets of three people a week to refer for sanctions, where benefits are removed for up to six months. He said it was part of a "culture change" since last summer that had led to competition between advisers, teams and regional offices.

    Continued at http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2...efit-sanctions

    Absolutely disgusting.
    Interesting article, though it does seem to be a bit one sided!

    I should point out before I continue, I no longer work for the DWP, so I'm not saying this because I have to.

    I think this is a case of an office manager taking the new "sanction rules" a bit too far. My manager told us we had to get one sanction a month. That was the aim. I've heard in other offices nearby that they had a target of one a week. It was never forced on us though, if we couldn't find reason to sanction someone, we didn't have to make up a reason or trick them, we simply didn't meet our target due to everyone we signed following the rules.

    In the case of that article, 3 a week is an impossible target to be honest. It sounds like a manager being told they have to increase sanctions (which all managers were) but then deciding that 3 a week was the number they needed to do that.

    As for sanctioning for being late, that's not entirely accurate either. Yes Jobcentres can sanction you a weeks money for not turning up on the right day without a valid reason (doctors appointment, job interview etc).

    The story about the dyslexic customer is ridiculous, there's no requirement for a written job search record. It's acceptable to take a verbal one. The idea of sanctioning someone for not writing down their job search activities is insane and anyone who has been sanctioned for that should ask for a reconsideration.

    I also question why the employee in that article is doing it if he doesn't agree with it. I didn't always agree with sanctioning people and often let people who had followed the rules but had missed one job off. I wasn't prepared to stop someone's money because of a technicality, and if the guy in the article really cared so much, he'd ignore the target like I did and only sanction when it was ACTUALLY necessary.

    Basically this article is based on one p*ssed off employee and someone who's been sanctioned - of course they're going to be angry. What neither of them seem to realise is the rules for sanctioning haven't changed, staff are just being asked to enforce them more often. What was happening originally is staff couldn't be bothered to fill out all the paper work involved in it. It was only when sanctions were made a priority that we had to start doing it. Even then it was only one a month, and it's easy to find a real person who's not following the rules in that time.
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    OP you say he has a bad leg? in what ways does it affect his day to day life? Does he claim DLA? If he does then he should try and get ESA, if he doesn't maybe have a look into DLA and see if it applies to him?
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    (Original post by gateshipone)
    Interesting article, though it does seem to be a bit one sided!

    I should point out before I continue, I no longer work for the DWP, so I'm not saying this because I have to

    The story about the dyslexic customer is ridiculous, there's no requirement for a written job search record. It's acceptable to take a verbal one. The idea of sanctioning someone for not writing down their job search activities is insane and anyone who has been sanctioned for that should ask for a reconsideration.
    Around mid summer last year I was told by my jobcentre that if you forgot your sign on booklet or jobsearch diary it would be an automatic one week loss of money.

    They seem to have relaxed that part of it now though(no idea if its down to complaints or not and when I told them I am autistic and have dyslexia and dyspraxia they said that they had to treat everyone the same.
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    (Original post by drbluebox)
    Around mid summer last year I was told by my jobcentre that if you forgot your sign on booklet or jobsearch diary it would be an automatic one week loss of money.
    I'd put that down to a manager being dumb or trying to get more people to return them. They are usually more useful to the staff as they have names of employers in them etc if filled out properly. Not having one can't be a reason on its own to stop money though. But if there's a suspicion that a person isn't looking, based on things they say for example, then it can be insisted on that they bring in a written job log.
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    I know this is a bit of a bleh idea, but could you perhaps take your story to the local paper? With all the outrage it could generate the jobcentre might have to back down.
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    (Original post by Bella Occhi)
    I know this is a bit of a bleh idea, but could you perhaps take your story to the local paper? With all the outrage it could generate the jobcentre might have to back down.
    Most people aren't outraged, though. Most people realise that expecting to be able to afford to spend £15 on taxis is the ridiculous bit,. That's not the jobcentre's fault.
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    (Original post by Bella Occhi)
    I know this is a bit of a bleh idea, but could you perhaps take your story to the local paper? With all the outrage it could generate the jobcentre might have to back down.
    They wouldn't back down because the press got involved, local offices only have a little amount of control over things, they can't make major changes to the rules put in place on a national scale.

    Causing an outrage with the public will only mean more people coming in to abuse staff. Trust me it's never fun to have someone in front of you shouting abuse at you.
 
 
 
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