There has been a lot of things written and said about benefit sanctions by those who fight back against the tide of attacks on the unemployed by this government of Tory scum.
All have been brilliant but there has not as far as I am aware been a response to the claims by those who defend benefit sanctions. So to that end here is my benefit sanctions myth buster.
MYTH: Benefit sanctions motivate the unemployed to look for work.
REALITY: In fact the opposite is true. Sanctioning benefit claimants and stripping them of their only income results in them having to focus on finding ways to survive, to feed and cloth themselves rather than look for work. When someone who has been sanctioned is worrying about where their next meal is coming from or how they are going to be able to put money on their gas meter they won’t be spending time looking for a job.
MYTH: Benefit sanctions are applied for good reason.
REALITY: It is well reported in the media that benefit claimants are being sanctioned for trivial reasons such as being a few minutes late for an appointment and they are being sanctioned for ridiculous reasons such as not being able to attend an appointment with the Jobcentre because they have an interview even when they have informed the JCP that they cannot attend. There is evidence that claimants are being sanctioned for not attending appointments which have been rearranged.
MYTH: Benefit sanctions are only applied as a last resort.
REALITY: Benefit sanctions are being applied at will by Employment Advisors and Decision Makers and not just to those claimants who continually flout the rules but willy nilly to people who appear to have broken the rules just once. Discretion is no longer used as advisors seek to meet targets on the number of people they sanction.
MYTH: There are no targets for benefit sanctions.
REALITY: Several JCP advisors have come forward to tell the media that they are under pressure to put claimants forward for sanctions in order to meet targets of the number of people their Jobcenter needs to sanction in a week. There is evidence of memos sent to advisors by managers telling them they need to “up their game” when it comes to the amount of claimants who’s money they stop.
MYTH: Opponents of benefit sanctions just want the unemployed to be able to laze around on benefits and get away with not looking for work.
REALITY: This one is not even dignifying with a response as it’s a blatant lie.