Don’t think it will not happen to you, as with Universal credit millions of working people will have to jump through the same hoops that the unemployed and disabled have to now.
Think about it, if you commit a crime, no criminal court in the UK is allowed to make you go hungry as a punishment. But if you’re late for an appointment at the Jobcentre, they can remove all your income and leave you unable to feed yourself or your family for weeks at a time.
Benefit “sanctions”, are where jobcentres under government instructions cut people’s benefits off, for often trivial and unfair reasons, including being a couple of minutes late, & are a major cause of food banks.
According to homeless charity, CRISIS
– Sanctions force people to cut back on food, resort to food banks and even shoplift for food.
– Sanctions leave people unable to afford heating and struggling to pay utility bills.
– Sanctions have a severe impact on stress, anxiety and depression, making it even harder for people to find work.
– Sanctions make it for harder people to find work, travel to interviews and buy suitable clothes and de-motivate people.
– People are often forced to borrow money from family and friends, leading to family problems, tensions and arguments.
– People with poor mental health, learning difficulties or substance misuse problems are being targeted.
Almost a third of homeless claimants have been sanctioned. Despite no evidence that pushing vulnerable people into debt and food poverty helps employment chances. We say enough is enough, and 100 demonstrations are happening across the UK – including Newcastle, Sunderland, Darlington, Middlesbrough, Stockton and Redcar, organised mostly by Unite Community. Durham Unite Community will be at the Sunderland protest, 12-2pm, at the Jobcentre in John Street. Come and join us.