Graduate's workfare victory: the response


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The Independent Online

Less than happy about workfare? You're not the only one.

As it's been decided in court today that the back-to-work scheme breached laws, many have since expressed their dismay.

Graduate Cait Reilly has won a legal challenge after claiming that the government scheme forces people to work without pay. She said was forced to leave her voluntary role at a museum to work unpaid at Poundland under the scheme. She was told if she didn't carry out the work placement, she would lose her Jobseeker's Allowance.

Jamie Wilson's lawyers also said his work placement would have involved him working unpaid for 30 hours per week for six months - and he succeeded in his claims that the unpaid schemes were legally flawed.

Employment minister Mark Hoban said he was disappointed and surprised at the court's decision on the regulations.

Public Interest Lawyers said: “The result is that over the past two years the Government has unlawfully required tens of thousands of unemployed people to work without pay and unlawfully stripped thousands more of their subsistence benefits.”

As #workfare trends on Twitter, here are some responses on the subject:

@sturdyAlex Of course, workfare is COMPLETELY voluntary. Right? WRONG! Read. (via HHLimboslavery

@‏MissEllieMae I don't really understand how the workfare verdict is a victory against unpaid labour when mandatory work activity will continue?

@Ryan_Konky The no work = no pay with Workfare is a fallacy. Surely if it really is work, they should be paid minimum wage at least?

@sazza_jay The dwppressoffice is dizzy from all the spin it's trying to put on this, & continuing to lie that workfare is supportive.

@EyeEdinburgh When Chris Grayling makes it legal to get workfare employees for free, what will this do for low wages?  Newsnight

@NaraHodge Amazes me how some think that it's wrong to work w/out being paid but perfectly fine to get money w/out having to lift a finger. #WorkFare

@MarkForster87 Looking forward to spending my lunch reading the comments section on Daily Mail WorkFare articles.