Sanctions and the charity shop.

In the town where I live I know of a charity shop that refuses to use workfare volunteers. Yes it would be easier for them to use workfare because they would have more help but they refuse. Volunteering should be voluntary they say and quite rightly so. I often go in and sometimes help out. It’s a lovely friendly shop everyone is made to feel welcome. A person who works there wanted to tell me about the effects of sanctioning and their volunteers are concerned. This shop and the person speaking want to remain anonymous, and I respect their wishes. Also please note that this is not a big chain charity shop it’s an independent charity shop. I will write the following in their words. It is a true account but they will remain anonymous.
” In my entire life they had never known people in this country to go hungry like this. We went through all the miners strikes and managed to avoid that. During the miners strike that they helped organise the miners had strike pay and we collected and distributed food to help out. No one went hungry or complained of being hungry. If someone was without food was given.Not like now. The volunteers were showing up for work even when they weren’t needed because they wanted to stay warm in the shop. They arrived hungry without having any breakfast and had no money for any lunch. They were drinking endless cups of tea and coffee to fill themselves up. But they never complained. They’d say things like “I’ll be ok” and “I’ll manage” when I knew full well that they wouldn’t. I’d buy them a sandwich and they would be ravenous, you could tell that they were starving. They had obviously missed more than two meals.All of the volunteers described as being like this except for one have mild learning difficulties. They have trouble grasping the true severity of the situation and are too proud to ask for help. We couldn’t allow this to carry on and we are spending a lot of our time taking volunteers to places like welfare rights and other places so they can get freebies so that they can manage. The situation became that bad we started up our own foodbank for our own volunteers. It’s heartbreaking and it really hits home when you realise that these volunteers were workers and have paid into the system, it’s not their fault that they have lost their job. So far we haven’t had any parents of children who are in this position and I dread to think how they will cope when they are sanctioned. Ive never seen the poor suffer like this before and we do whatever we can do to help”.

This is shocking. Now as I’ve mentioned before this charity shop doesn’t use workfare, but I can’t imagine how many people who have been sanctioned are hungry and are still having to attend their workfare placement? They must be so hungry, after not eating for days in a lot of cases. Can you imagine the torment that they feel? The feeling of constantly being hungry and cold? The workfare placement is torture to them. They won’t have much strength to do the work required. If they aren’t doing their work to a so called standard then the workfare provider can report them to the Jobcentre who can sanction them again on top of their sanction.
This sounds totally unreal and inhumane and it is. Even in the days of old when you entered the workhouse to work you were fed gruel and porridge. It wasn’t nice but you didn’t starve. We are seeing literally starving people having to work. The last time I heard of this was in the concentration camps. But we allow this to happen. No one really cares except for those of us with a conscience. Sanctioning is wrong, it’s evil, it goes against every human rights law that exists. To deprive a person knowingly of food, water and their means of warmth is illegal. To make a person feel so bad that they are forced to commit suicide Is illegal. To make a person starve to death is illegal. But it’s happening everyday. Make no mistake the people who sanction and this government don’t discriminate when sanctioning. They will sanction anyone and it’s getting worse. From April 2016 senior citizens claiming pension credit will be subject to the same terrible system of monitoring and case reviews as the disabled and jobseekers when the ‘assessed income period’ system is abolished. This government will harass people in their twilight years for the sake of a few pennies that they have worked hard for all their life’s. They have paid their taxes and their national insurance in the reassurance that they will be able to get their old age pension and to enjoy their retirement. This is also so wrong. We need to stop this before it starts. One good way of doing this is to vote them out this year, but then the Labour Party have promised 4 more years of harsh austerity measures. Now we know austerity doesn’t work. How much longer are the poor and vulnerable going to be made to pay for the rich?

And ask yourself… How many more deaths does there have to be? One death is a death too many.
Boycott workfare.


8 thoughts on “Sanctions and the charity shop.”

  1. … From April 2016 senior citizens claiming pension credit will be subject to the same terrible system of monitoring and case reviews as the disabled and jobseekers when the ‘assessed income period’ system is abolished. …

    Pension Credit (savings) is abolished by the flat rate pension on and from 6 April 2016 for new claimants.

    So not content in practically abolishing the state pension for new claimants,
    the Lib Dem Pensions Minister Mr Steve Webb presides over impoverishing current pensioners only on the state pension, and so far, far below the breadline (about 2.6 million current pensioners).
    See who loses most or all state pension from 2016, under my petition,
    in my
    WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT section, at:

    Mr Webb won in his constituency 25,032 votes so gaining 51.9 per cent of votes.

    Wikipaedia has missied out that The Greens have a candidate in 2015 general election:
    2015 Green Candidate – Iain Hamilton

    The Greens offer the end of starvation and all the cruel benefits regime for all ages, with:

    – automatic and universal Citizen Income, in or out of work just the same, without any conditionality of National Insurance.

    – full citizen state pension, irregardless of National Insurance record, so are the sole party to offer huge numbers of poor men and women any state pension at all.

    You want to end starvation – vote The Greens. I am not a member of any political party. Just another victim of welfare and pension reform who cares about others.

    I cannot find any other socialist party so far running in that election.

    We know now we can win because SYRIZA in Greece had the whole force of the EU government campaigning against it and won. And they gave out food vouchers to go and shop for food in a matter of days to the cashless.


  2. Reblogged this on Lindas Blog and commented:
    This is the reality of life for thousands of our neighbours, family and friends in Britain today. Are you Proud to be British?
    Its time for us all to stand up and be counted.
    Stand up with Pride against this form of Repression and hold on to your Dignity.
    Together we Stand Tall
    Divided we will All Fall.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Visit the Keep Volunteering Voluntary website:

    Foodbanks in Tameside (not exhaustive)

    Too many so-called charities and charity shops are taking slave-labour under the Work Programme from various parasitic Work Programme Providers across the UK and that includes Tameside.

    These include i2i (allegedly Inspire To Independence), Work Solutions, & Avanta, all in Ashton based at the top of Stamford Street in Ashton leading all the way to the other end near Tameside Magistrates Court on Old Street in what I call the ‘Dead Zone’.

    Maybe the regeneration of the old Ashton Baths will breathe some new life back into this deserted so-called ‘cafe-society’ end of Ashton. No cafe’s yet! That was the original intent of this allegedly visionary Tameside Council when it was built several years ago. Looks like a failure to me!

    There’s also, and not to be forgotten, Standguide, the Work Programme provider based at Portland Basin. Still they really should be forgotten for they really need to be condemned. These organisations are just the latest in the long line of parasitic organisations that I’ve watched come and go over the last 30 years leeching off the backs of unemployed claimants. Its the unemployment industry! If it wasn’t for the unemployed they’d all be out of work!

    The vast majority of the neuvo-poor are in debt simply because of Tory Welfare Reforms, Universal Credit, Benefit Sanctions, the Bedroom Tax, 20% or higher Council Tax charges in Tameside, and the Austerity Agenda. They would not be in debt otherwise. I wouldn’t but I am now. I’ve steered clear of debt, of the debt society, otherwise known as the credit society with credit cards etc. I don’t touch it.

    My debt is building simply because I cannot afford to pay the Bedroom Tax and the Council Tax alongside the costs of Fuel and food. My debt is not caused through borrowing money to buy consumer goods I don’t really need. I am free from the insecurity of Benefit Sanctions because self-employed and not unemployed, but yet not free from the insecurity of poverty.

    Personal debt is a booming industry, and at gross interest rates. This takes from the poor and gives to the rich. Robin Hood in reverse! It is the same with those who borrow from the bank who must pay back with interest to those who make their money work for them and who receive interest. A Usocracy!

    These poor and vulnerable innocents have been unfairly targeted by the Tories Ideological Social Engineering Eugenicist Agenda and made to pay for the gambling excesses & extravagances of the greedy and materialistic rich and powerful. It is after all far easier to chase those who cannot hide their money, even if they have very little of it in the first place. The rich can easily hide their wealth. They pay people to do this.

    There is no economic trickle down, only a trickle up from the poor and the exploited, from the precariat underclass up to the salariat class and the parasitic rich whom they cravenly serve.

    Watch the excellent: ‘The Super-Rich and Us’:

    And if it wasn’t for political protesters like Tameside Against the Cuts protesting outside Ashton Jobcentre week on week the G4S Security guards would also be unemployed. If it wasn’t for people like us they wouldn’t have the jobs they have today. Twenty years ago open-plan Jobcentre’s did not have security guards to protect them. That’s a later innovation.

    Twenty years ago the national Groundswell Movement of unemployed organisations and individuals, ie a loose-knit confederation of Anarchists and Activists, including Tameside Unemployed Workers Alliance, used to carry-out Jobcentre Occupations throughout the UK. We, of course, concentrated on the Greater Manchester area.

    Those were the halcyon days when we protested against the introduction of the Draconian JobSeeker’s Act itself which the Blair Government abysmally failed to repeal when they came to power! Since that time the civil liberties of the common person have been eroded and the presence of G4S security guards in Jobcentre’s alongside the changes to the Public Order Act and the Anti-Terrorism Act serve but to protect vested and corrupt interests.

    The Work Programme itself provides free labour and thousands of pounds per head for businesses and charities. I don’t expect anything better from businesses in general who’s modus operandi is to make a profit, but I do from Charities who appear to have lost their way much like the Trades Unions. They now act to serve themselves forgetting that charity begins at home and sits in the heart.

    This ‘work for your dole’ free labour acts to undermine the National Minimum Wage (NMW). The unemployed are being forced to work for less than the NMW which is outrageous. You can add in a person’s rent too and still they are expected to work a 35 hour week for below the NMW. And even worse many of them on low pay still need to claim Universal Credit and are then expected to spend another 35 hours per week looking for work. In effect a 70 hour working week for pay well below the NMW. That is simply not right.

    Love, Light & Laughter
    Steve Starlord

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Reblogged this on Will the real reality please stand up! and commented:
    Sadly hunger drives us to find resources that make us even more outcast.I supplement our food by skipdiving but the supermarkets started destroying the food by pouring bleach over it or just locking the skips altogether.What harm can it possible do to let us have the stuff they throw out?As it is I make sure my boy eats but there is little I can do regarding cold.Here is a generation of kids growing up that love school because it is warm there.


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