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TOPIC: Jobcentre

Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 14:34 #9149

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Dizzy, if you have good grounds for refusing anything your coach insists you should do, always question them because at the end of the day, work coaches won`t fully understand the needs of their customers and will have generated protocols to follow and at the end of the day, we (as customers as they like to call us) should have a say in anything we are obliges to look at. Especially if we know it will impact on us in a negative way.
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 14:47 #9151

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Dizzy wrote:
………. What bugs me is the way these things are sprung on you without any time to think. Anyway I did explain my limited capability to do physical work and she seemed to back off a bit. Hopefully I won't hear any more about it...…..

Thanks for your response Dizzy.

Established members and others who follow our deliberations on this Forum will be well aware of the JCP work coach practice of springing an activity on claimants without notice.

It would be impossible to expect claimants to be prepared for all eventualities every time they go to the Jobcentre. Bearing in mind, however, that things like this could happen at any time it should not therefore come as a complete surprise to them. It is therefore reasonable for claimants to have some idea of how to avoid reacting like a rabbit in headlights in the event of such an eventuality.

This brief checklist may be good to adopt:
1. Listen to what is being proposed and avoid showing any outward signs of distain or blank refusals to even consider it.
2. Seek clarification on exactly what’s involved if the coach’s description is unclear.
3. Ask for any written details of the proposal.
4. Ask if the proposed activity is mandatory
5. Ask for time to consider the proposal.

Remember that you are entitled to reasonable notice of any proposed activity and that if the coach gets stroppy and insists on immediate acceptance or risk a sanction for refusal to do as told you make it clear that you are not refusing anything yet, merely seeking full details as to the relevance and appropriateness of the proposed activity in your circumstances.

Even if your coach knew as much about your circumstances as you know yourself it would be impossible for her to make a decision as to the appropriateness of the activity if she hasn’t got a clue what the activity involves.
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 15:00 #9154

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BB wrote: It is therefore reasonable for claimants to have some idea of how to avoid reacting like a rabbit in headlights in the event of such an eventuality.

That`s exactly what it feels like being approached by a fast moving vehicle wondering which exit door to run to!

BB wrote: Even if your coach knew as much about your circumstances as you know yourself it would be impossible for her to make a decision as to the appropriateness of the activity if she hasn’t got a clue what the activity involves.

Absolutely. Which is why it`s a good idea to always suggest (as BB said) that we are not refusing anything, just - merely seeking full details as to the relevance and appropriateness of the proposed activity in your circumstances.

Well put BB. Stay calm because revenge is a dish best served cold once time has been taken to study such proposals. I`m beginning to learn much of what BB was trying to get across in other posts because if we don`t use rational thought, we won`t win the battle.
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 16:29 #9159

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Dizzy; London123, TW35;
If you are over 60 surely you should be guided by the joke centre towards Pension Credit, Got mine in 2013 at 62 ?
Bloody hell I Feel OLD :(
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 16:31 #9160

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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 16:34 #9161

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don't think you can get pension credit now, i would defo go for it if i could.
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 16:40 #9162

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london123 wrote:
don't think you can get pension credit now, i would defo go for it if i could.

Like everything else the Bloody Tories have made it complicated, but YOU CAN still get it;

Info Here:
www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/money-legal/benefits-entitlements/pension-credit/
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 17:35 #9163

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State pension age went up to 66 for people born after January 1954 about 6 or 7 years ago.

Pension credits also stopped being paid out at 60 at the same time. It doesn't kick in now until one reaches pension age, 66.

Likewise bus passes.
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 18:54 #9166

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BB wrote: State pension age went up to 66 for people born after January 1954 about 6 or 7 years ago.

That`s may age group sadly. I`ll be 67 before I can hope to draw a pension. If they are still paying one that is. In Scotland, the good news is (if of course they keep paying for it) that concessionary bus travel at 60 is available to everyone who hits that age. But it still feels a long way off to get free bus travel. It`s called the National Entitlement Card.
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Jobcentre 05 Jul 2018 19:02 #9167

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Just noticed the wording on that National Entitlement website which states: 60+ AND Disabled.

www.entitlementcard.org.uk/your-card-explained

Chances are I would still be eligible to apply for this card when I reach 60 as by that time my pain will probably be worse. Shame it isn`t being extended to ALL 60+ year olds though because many people of that age have musculoskeletal problems and other such things going on without having any disability diagnosed. I consider my pain to be a disabling problem, yet if I applied for PIP, I wouldn`t meet any of the descriptors because they are worded around people`s ability to do certain tasks like dress themselves, make meals, manage medications etc....
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Jobcentre 06 Jul 2018 09:04 #9175

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Benefit Bolshie wrote:
State pension age went up to 66 for people born after January 1954 about 6 or 7 years ago.

Pension credits also stopped being paid out at 60 at the same time. It doesn't kick in now until one reaches pension age, 66.

Likewise bus passes.

That most likley is why I lost my Pension Credit,
BUT
Got my Pension Instead, At a Reduced amount, some gibberish about lack of NI Payments;
Oh the Glories of Self employment :evil: :angry:
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Jobcentre 06 Jul 2018 09:59 #9179

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Benefit Bolshie wrote:
Remember that you are entitled to reasonable notice of any proposed activity

Have you got a link to a FOI reply or a DWP rules document for this I can print out?
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Jobcentre 06 Jul 2018 13:36 #9183

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archangel wrote:

Have you got a link to a FOI reply or a DWP rules document for this I can print out?

The quote that you ascribe to me needs to be taken in the context of the rest of the sentence in full:.

“Remember that you are entitled to reasonable notice of any proposed activity and that if the coach gets stroppy and insists on immediate acceptance or risk a sanction for refusal to do as told you make it clear that you are not refusing anything yet, merely seeking full details as to the relevance and appropriateness of the proposed activity in your circumstances”.

Reading DWP’s own guidance on Jobseeker’s Directions I thought my interpretation of it, sufficient for the point I was making, was accurately represented by what I wrote.

After reading it for yourself you might interpret it differently:
www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/114206/response/278898/attach/3/Jobseekers%20Directions.pdf
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Jobcentre 07 Jul 2018 10:30 #9206

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Benefit Bolshie wrote:
archangel wrote:

Have you got a link to a FOI reply or a DWP rules document for this I can print out?

The quote that you ascribe to me needs to be taken in the context of the rest of the sentence in full:.

“Remember that you are entitled to reasonable notice of any proposed activity and that if the coach gets stroppy and insists on immediate acceptance or risk a sanction for refusal to do as told you make it clear that you are not refusing anything yet, merely seeking full details as to the relevance and appropriateness of the proposed activity in your circumstances”.

Reading DWP’s own guidance on Jobseeker’s Directions I thought my interpretation of it, sufficient for the point I was making, was accurately represented by what I wrote.

After reading it for yourself you might interpret it differently:
www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/114206/response/278898/attach/3/Jobseekers%20Directions.pdf


It would be good to have some concrete statement from the DWP saying that “reasonable notice” was required. I think jobseekers directions can be handed out instantly so maybe they don’t count. Can you locate something more specific for us BB?
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Jobcentre 07 Jul 2018 13:47 #9209

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DWP guidance notes and FOI responses do not go into great detail about ways to avoid undertaking any activity that work coaches have decided or determined that a claimant should undertake. Most of those guidance documents etc that they publish are not for the benefit of claimants, they are for the guidance of work coaches, to assist them in how they can persuade, influence and cajole claimants to do what DWP wants them to do, the way they want them to do it. It is unlikely that you can easily find brief and blunt statements like those you expect that would enable a claimant to easily defy the coach. It is necessary therefore to interpret what is being said and let that be your evidence, your guide as well. Let them prove you wrong.

Some activities can be put across by coaches as ‘suggestions’ or ‘voluntary’ in which case this is usually explained and made clear to the claimant.

Other activities that coaches have determined is in the claimants’ best interests, but that the claimant might not be entirely convinced is in his/her interests, may require a degree of effort on the part of the coach to get the claimant to comply.

In such cases the work coach is obliged to explain to the claimant why s/he believes that the activity being proposed is reasonable and necessary.

I am assuming that you haven’t read the guidance in the link that I provided in my previous post. Otherwise why do you still seem to be under the impression that ‘jobseekers directions can be handed out instantly’?

If a jobseekers direction were issued immediately, without following the procedures as laid out in the guidance, then it would not be valid, therefore ‘would not count’. That is a fact that you can bank on.

At its most basic your post refutes the evidence that confirms me in my belief that time should be given before accepting or turning down an activity proposed by a work coach.

The onus is on you, therefore, to produce evidence of your belief that ‘jobseekers directions can be handed out instantly

Let’s try a little exercise to make the point:

Let’s say you are the coach and I’m the claimant. You propose an activity to me out of the blue at my regular signing on appointment. You are unable to convince me by the power of your argument that the activity is in my best interests. I ask for more written details of what the activity entails, why you believe it would benefit me in my circumstances, and by what authority you feel justified in forcing it on me. I am not satisfied with your answers and I ask for time to look into the matter myself.

At what stage of the above exchange would you hand me the jobseekers direction?
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Jobcentre 07 Jul 2018 15:25 #9211

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Point taken.
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