Day of action planned against unjust job sanctions

By staff writers
January 18, 2015

Social justice activists and trade unionists are preparing nationwide protests against the cruel use of benefit sanctions. They will take place on 19 March 2015.

A benefits sanction is when the Job Centre removes some of, or completely stops payment of benefits. Sanctions are often handed out cruelly and without justification, critics say.

Examples of claimaints being sanctioned unreasonably and unjustly include: a person arriving minutes late to a Job Centre meeting; someone not applying for job when waiting to start a new job; and missing an appointment on the day of the funeral of a close family member.

In recent years, the number of people sanctioned has been going up and up. Over two million welfare claimants have had money taken from them in just the past two years.

The protest is being promoted by the Unite trade union. Those who wish to take part can pledge to join an event near them by using the form here: http://www.unitetheunion.org/growing-our-union/communitymembership/day-o...

Unite has also organised a petition on its website: http://www.unitetheunion.org/growing-our-union/communitymembership/day-o...

Meanwhile, Anglican Bishop of Carlisle has spoken out strongly against punitive sanctions and misleading claims about benefit cheats (http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/21320).

* New Ekklesia paper: 'Combatting the denial of poverty and inequality': http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/21318

Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.