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Are benefit sanctions too harsh? watch

    • Thread Starter

    Are benefit sanctions too harsh?
    In recent years the conservatives have launched a harsh package of sanctions against Jobseekers. These sanctions are 100% loss of JSA benefit for a fixed period of time. Sanctions can not be lifted on compliance or the claimant rectifying a mistake they made.

    The sanctions are 4 weeks, 13 weeks, 26 weeks and 156 weeks (156 wks is 3 years!)

    A first minor error such as being late for appointment results in 4 weeks then 13 weeks for second error and so on.

    DWP penalties are harsher than those given by courts to criminals!http://www.crimeandjustice.org.uk/re...t-penal-system

    If sanctions were the same as fines given to criminals the they'd be far more harsher than the criminal justice system!

    For example an adult gets £71 per week in JSA. Being a few minutes late to the Jobcentre results in a 4 week loss of benefit. That's £284 that a poor person has taken from them.

    The fine for drink driving and shoplifting is LESS than the penalty for being a few moments late at the Jobcentre! Unlike court fines, JSA sanctions are not means tested, despite these people, being some of the poorest in society.

    Unlike criminal cases which get a fair court trail, DWP sanction decisions are made behind a closed door with the jobseeker having no defence, and having to wait many months without money for an appeal. Punish first ask questions later.

    Jobcentre staff have sanction targets.


    The government needs to save money and remove unemployed people from their statistics. Sanctions save money and regard sanction victims as no longer unemployed.

    The majority of Jobseekers really do want to work and are not workshy layabouts as these right wing TV shows and press imply!
    If they were then it would be extremely easy for Jobcentre staff to issue sanctions and they'd reach monthly quotas in hours. However the reality is that most Jobseekers apply for far more than the minimum number of jobs and do everything asked of them. That's bad news for jobcente staff because they can't find enough people to sanction they face demotion, being put on report and redundancy. Sadly they look for easy targets. The mom who was late signing on because her child was sick, and even people with learning difficulties who are easy to sanction. It's almost like legalised mugging!

    Sanctions do NOT help people move closer to work as the Tories claim.

    The reality is that sanction victims face a fight for survival. Instead of looking for work they're forced to find ways of paying bills and looking for food. Some may turn to crime and get criminal records that make them even less employable.

    To conclude.

    I agree there needs to be some form of constructive sanctions other wise the rules could not be enforced, but the system we have is far to harsh and destructive.Sanctions should never be 100% loss of benefit!

    1) No body should, ever be left destitute. No more than 50% of benefit should be cut.

    2) Sanctions should be removed on compliance or improvement of behaviour. Stopping someone's life line for up to 3 years without giving them the chance to rectify their mistake is totally out of order!

    3) There should never be targets for sanctions forced on staff.

    4) Before any long sanction is issued claimants should be entitled to a hearing where they can show mitigating circumstances like people can in criminal justice system.

    yes they are unfortunately

    What's the point in asking a question when you've clearly made up your mind already?

    Anyway, I've worked jobs where they'd get rid of you immediately for being late. Consequently everyone was there early...

    A friend of mine got sanctioned for 6 moths for failing to attend the WP, she is so lucky that she lives with her parents so she gets to eat and stuff imagine if she lived alone she'll probably starve I feel so sorry for all those who are sanctioned without any family to turn to
    • TSR Support Team

    TSR Support Team
    If you got exceptional circumstances it is harsh but then again how hard it is to pick up a phone.
    • PS Reviewer

    PS Reviewer
    Obviously they are.
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