Zero-hours Contracts and Universal Credit Are Still A Car Crash Waiting To Happen

Johnny Void here describes how the new conditionality clauses for Jobseeker’s allowance, which demand that claimants on zero hours contracts perform ‘job related activity’ when not working, and encourages them to take two or more, or change jobs to those with more hours, will force more people into sanctions and destitution. He’s right. Employers do not want people taking on other jobs. A friend of mine, whose partner used to work for Marks and Spencer, told me that while many of their jobs are part-time, the company demands that these employees nevertheless work exclusively for them. He puts these clauses down to incompetence. He’s probably right, but given the sheer malice and vindictiveness in the Tories’ treatment of the unemployed and part-time workers, I wonder if it’s not deliberate.

the void

DWP officials meet to discuss the implementation of Universal Credit DWP officials meet to discuss the implementation of Universal Credit

Comments this week by the barely employable Employment Minister Esther McVey are so out of touch with the realities of work that they could only have been made by someone who’s never had a real job.

Forcing claimants to take on zero-hour contracts will be unworkable under upcoming changes to the benefit’s system and is likely to lead to huge numbers of people having benefits sanctioned and facing homelessness.  This will not be ‘enabling’ as McVey claimed.

For a long time now DWP Ministers have been panicking about how Universal Credit and increased benefit conditionality can possibly work alongside zero-hours contracts.  When the new benefit is fully introduced (stop laughing), claimants working part time will be forced to carry out ‘work related activity’ in the hours they are not working or have their in-work benefits stopped.  The DWP appear to…

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