Lone Parents With Children Over 3 to be Forced into the Workfare Scheme

Lone Parents of kids aged 3 and 4 will be forced into the Tory’s mandatory workforce scheme under new rules released today.

The Government has quietly released new rules in relation to lone parent benefits. These ‘big changes’ released by the Government include:

  • Forcing Lone Parent with kids up to 3yrs old into ‘work focussed interviews’
  • Forcing Lone Parent with kids of the age of 3yrs and 4yrs into the Government’s workfare program
  • A new Sanction program to deal with lone parents that can range from 20% to 100% of the loan parent’s benefits.

The Government claims that Loan Parents of young children should be on the mandatory work placements ‘to better prepare’ loan parent of the requirements they will face when their child reaches five years old.  These placements will be approximately 15 hours a week and the local authority is expected to cover childcare costs.

This is a horrendous and vindictive policy by the Tories. Health experts considering these early years as the most important in a child’s life.  Forcibly removing the parent from the child can not be good for the child’s well being, especially if the parent is not ready to re-enter the workplace.

At a time when experts are complaining of “motherism” – bigotry against stay-at-home mothers – we should be encouraging more parents to stay at home rather than force them to work for no wage. Stay-at-home parents provide “unrivalled benefits” to their child.

The Tories have always had ‘issues’ with single mothers. We saw that in the 80s and 90s and now we are seeing it in the 2010s.

28 thoughts on “Lone Parents With Children Over 3 to be Forced into the Workfare Scheme”

  1. They will be given 15 hours of free child care,yet are required to work 30 hrs plus 10 on top looking for work…….Who is going to pay for the 25 hours child care that will still be needed when the lone parent is at the DWP looking for work and doing workfare. OMG so well thought out again

  2. Single parents with kids under 3 already have work focused interviews. Which is a waste of everyones time, I know, I have to attend them. Welcome to america people. Next there will be a time limit on all benefits. I’m guessing the extra workfare time will be in school hours. Will that be term time only then? Will you be excused if your child is ill or sent home for any reason? Its ridiculous. I’ll be closing my income support claim, I can still get carers allowance, housing benefit, council tax benefit and my sons DLA etc without it.

  3. This is crazy! I work for £1.50 an hour in school hols because I can’t find a registered childminder free for the hours I work and pay a regular childminder £5 of every £6.50 I earn so I can keep my job. Suffice to say I’m now in so much debt after years of living like this. I’m that poor I can’t afford to die!! There has to be a better way!

  4. Strange it says 15yrs per week when i know a young lady that has been told she must do all day every day mon to fri and she has 2 children under 3yrs old. This is another excuse to gain more slave labour to line the pockets of big corporations, hang your heads in shame you parasite’s

  5. it would be nice to think that everything would change if we had a different government but it wont, they will back each others policies if only so they can point out who brought the thing in. then they will still keep on about Family Values and how in the past we had such strong parents and carers, those who still wish to look after their children or those with Disabled children now have to quantify looking after them, as a mother with 1 confirmed autistic child and another waiting for assessment, which by the way is a 14 month waiting list, who both have benefited from me staying at home and available to them when they need me will soon lose that unless i can work out how to fill in a carers allowance form to explain why they need me, all this from a parent who also has autism but is expected to perform just as well as any other person, the system has changed for the worst, those who needed and deserved the help are afraid of the system because perhaps they don’t want to “work it” in the way the fraudsters are will be the ones losing out and there will only be those good enough at acting to fool the assessors on benefits, the real people with disabilities will be working because they are to afraid to confront the system which could end up with some very bad results, imagine if there are people with severe mental illness who have no support and they get pushed into a situation which makes them snap, i can bet you it wont be the politicians who get the blame for the chaos that occurs it will be the social workers and the doctors and of course the sick and disabled who will be blamed for not accessing the help they needed. we already hear of all the people who have committed suicide to get out of claiming benefits they were told by assessors they didn’t need and yet the papers are still full of tags like “workshy, Scroungers and lazy” everyone pays in to National insurance on the grounds that should they be taken ill or become disabled they have a safety net but apparently this isn’t accurate anymore if any other Insurance policy had this many clauses in it we would be encouraged to see it as the fraud it is, this isn’t National Insurance its working tax,. a tax on people who are working or who are self employed because the government haven’t come up with a better name for it.

  6. Single parents count for about 3% of the welfare benefit. I was a single dad in the thatcher years, and it’s obvious that the Tory witch hunters are still getting their thrills from persecuting minority groups!!


  8. And why shouldn’t lone parents have to work? I have a 6 month old son (yes, 6 months, not 3 years) and will be going back to work soon. My partner also works. We have to source childcare for him and won’t be getting a free 15 hours a week local childcare. Why do lone parents think they should get a free ride in life. They have no excuse not to get off their backsides and work for their money, just like we have to. And yes, I do know of single parents who work and they manage it. I would rather stay at home and be with my son but can’t afford to because we have worked for everything we have and have never sponged off the state. We own our own home and have to both work to pay our mortgage and bills and to provide for our son! So, as I have to leave my son, at 6 months of age, to go back to work, why should my taxes pay for other lazy gits to stay at home with their children?!

    1. Do you get paid a legal wage for your work? You speak of other lone parents that work, I also assume that they get paid a legal wage and had legal working conditions?

      That is the difference between your work and ‘workfare’. These parents will be NOT paid a legal wage. The wont have the legal rights that you take for granted.

      “why should my taxes pay….”
      What a ridiculous argument. I assume your son went to school. ‘Why should my taxes pay’ for your son’s eduction? See – it is a ridiculous argument.

      You go on as if there are lots of jobs out there. Only last months 1,700 people applied for just EIGHT jobs at a Costa coffee outlet in Nottingham. So get off your pedestal and stop spouting patronising & condescending: “get off their backsides”

      BTW, everyone in the UK is entitled to 15 hours free childcare. If you wish topay for it then you have no-one to blame but yourself.

      1. My son is 6 months old so no, your taxes haven’t paid for him to go to school! Also, the free 15 hours a week childcare is only available to all children over 3 years old, not my son’s age. Some people can get it for 2 year olds but we are not eligible for that for when our son is 2. And my understanding of workfare (and I have knowledge of this through my job as a social worker) is that it helps prepare people for work and assists them to get a job. I do understand that it’s hard for people to find work so why wouldn’t they welcome a scheme, like workfare, that will help them stand a better chance of finding work?

        1. Im sorry I am not understanding your point regarding childcare. You accept that everyone gets free childcare and you are ok with that…except single parent on the Govt workprogram. Why do you have a problem with single parents getting free childcare?

          You also haven’t answered my point about a legal wage. Why should you get paid a legal wage with rights that are enshrined in law but single parents shouldn’t? If you work a day you should be paid for a day’s work?

          The ‘experts’ claim that the Govt workfare program was “worse than doing nothing”. In fact, people would have been more likely to get a job if they HADN’T taken part in the programme.
          The program fails in into most basic objective – it doesn’t get people into work. All it does is give business a free worker while forcing people into doing work for a wage that is below the legal limit. I am unsure how this scheme got be any worse.

          I agree with investment in training and investment in people. REAL training courses should be made available. But this issue is bigger than just the works programs….they aren’t enough jobs. Lets create sufficient amount of jobs BEFORE even thinking of forcing people into work programs that don’t work?

    2. Just to set the record straight. The average single parent is over 30 years old, around 2% are teenagers. 52% work already! And those that don’t have waged work are working. If raising children didn’t involve ‘work’ no child would be in care, no child would ever be neglected etc. A single parent works doubly hard because they do it ALONE!! A good portion of single parents are carers for their disabled children. The majority weren’t single when they had their children. Some are bereaved, some divorced, a lot have been abandoned by their ex partner/spouse. Many are disabled themselves. The stereotypes regurgitated really do irritate me. Live a week in my shoes, you’d be screaming for respite after a day! Raising 3 children, one with special needs and also caring for a dying parent! Its an open invite to anyone who really believes being single = lazy. I get a pittance in comparison to the wage I’d get if I was paid NMW! I’m saving the government money!! A lot of people have benefit jealousy, even if they’ve never had to survive on benefits themselves. I’ll tell you now, there are no free cars, free clothes, free tvs, free phones, free whatever. We get free precriptions, free school dinners and until our youngest is 5 we get a free interrogation every 6 months. Then we get a free interrogation every week, 2 weeks, how ever often the DWP see fit. When I had my first child and became single through domestic violence we were left alone till our child was 16! I went back to work when she was 6!! Before you open your mouth and call a section of society lazy, step into their shoes. You’ll discover its not a rosy as you think. A child minder I know was abused verbally in the street (‘you should get a job and stop having kids’) she was doing her job, childminding, but walking down the road with small kids automatically means she’s a ‘scrounger’? If being a single parent was easy you’d all be doing it. No one would stay together. If you and your fella earn enough to not get help with child care wtf are you complaining about?? Get off your high horse because if he leaves you/dies etc then you’ll be single and on the receiving end of your own type of hatred. Google ‘Gingerbread’ and look up some FACTS instead of stereotypes. Do us all a favour.

    3. Nicky, it makes me very sad to see someone in social work posting such hateful remarks. I have to be honest and say that I would have expected someone in social work to show more compassion to the needs of single parents. But then perhaps that is me showing my ignorance, because in truth I have no experience of social work and know nothing about it. Likewise you have no experience of being a single parent, and I hope you never do. I am a single parent to 3 kids, one with autism. I am a single parent because of abandonment by my husband, and we get nothing at all from him. I have my own home. I have my own car. I run my own business. I am a registered childminder and at time of writing I care for an additional 4 kids on top of my own, 2 of which have additional needs like my own son. That’s 7 kids I care for and nurture, 3 with extra needs. At time of writing I ‘work’ 16 hrs a week, as that’s how many hours I am contracted for. But then there’s the paperwork…..lots and lots of paperwork….. and planning development objectives for each child, planning activities, shopping for supplies, cleaning and organising my home, assessing how the kiddies are doing, liasing with parents, keeping my inspector happy, etc, etc, etc….. and actually my ’16 hrs’ is actually full time hours. It’s just that I only get paid for 16 of them. I’ll not tell you how much money I walk away with each week after I deduct expenses. Needless to say it’s not much, and is a mere fraction of minimum wage. Does that make me a lazy git too???? Oh and my own 3 children….they are not in any free childcare at all, nor are they at school. They are all home educated, which means that this lazy git, as well as working full time hours for a fraction of minimum wage, is also ensuring that 3 children get an individualised education suitable to their age, needs and ability. So wait… I’m doing the job of 3 teachers, plus childminding, plus being a mum, plus dealing with autism, plus running a home, plus fixing up an old house in need of much TLC, plus dealing with my own health problems, plus never getting enough sleep because I do all of the above….. what a lazy git I am!

  9. This government has done a fine job (their intention) to turn human beings against other human beings. Where is the compassion, the empathy! The media haven’t helped, I’m very surprised that the government has got away with doing what they are doing. They must be laughing up their sleeves.
    Bear this in mind and please vote at the next election. If ever there was reminder that politics effects everyone then they are it.

  10. I am a single parent of 4 children, If I had a partner I could choose to raise my own children but because I am in the unfortunate position of doing it alone I am forced to dump my children on strangers and have them seperated from each other. The only thing this will cause is a generation of people with no family values and no responsibility for others as they will be brought up by people doing there job not loving them.

  11. Nicky, you are being very ignorant, it is going to apply to those that are sick and claiming ESA, like myself, I’m on a massive amount of morphine, sleep 18 hours a day yet they think I’m going to be able to go on the WP not a chance..I can’t think of a single job I could do let alone anything else..more Tory bullying..

  12. I also have to question that a ‘Social Worker’ has this kind of response. It makes me concerned about the judgement they make of their clients.

  13. Nicky why did you become a social worker? What drove you all of those years ago to take up social work? Its hardly a glamorous job, its a bit like being a nurse, where you encounter people usually at their lowest point, but the people who take up those types of professions are supposed to feel compassion for others less fortunate.

    Your mentality is why I despise social workers , because you have no clue. Cannot begin to fathom and have little empathy

    Here is a generalisation, Most social workers are middle class coming from backgrounds unhindered by the kinds of living circumstances that they look down on. The closest they get to experiencing some of this before they graduate is while they are studying, they then get their degrees and are released out into the world. Where they continue to judge and look down their noses, and use some of the cases they encounter as over dinner fodder.

    Social workers would be much more effective, if they had experience of some of the issues their families/clients experience. Abuse, emotional, verbal and physical, homelessness, temporary accommodation. lack of family support. death or illness or injury, job losses, debt. leaving school without an education. These are the types of things that people are struggling with, that YOU SEE

    Do you know how many judges are living on the streets right this minute. So Nicky your never to high to fall or too low to climb.

    Pray to the mortgage fairies that yourself and hubby, have no major disaster befall you. That you both keep your jobs, That your home is never put at risk because you cannot pay your mortgage (but then again that wouldn’t matter there are tons of jobs out there, if your willing, sweeping floors,cleaning graffiti, I’m sure you wouldn’t mind doing that in order to receive your benefits, ).

    Pray to the health gods, that no-one falls ill or develops a disability, and you become to much trouble for your bosses to continue to employ you ( but then again that doesn’t matter either, as there are again tons of work options out there regardless of how those meds effect you, or how much pain your in, and there are tons of keen employers just looking to employ a sick or disabled person over a healthy able bodied person) .

    I could go on and on, its funny people always assume education equates to superior understanding and reasoning . Thank you Nicky for dispelling that myth

  14. It’s bad mothering to leave someone else raise a 6 month old baby while you sit on your backside squabbling for overtime to pay for a 46″ flatscreen to keep up with the neighbours. Actually it’s not bad, it’s shameful. My mum had nothing except her love for us, money can’t replace that.

  15. Being a mum of a 5 year old myself it’s a full time job, I never get the time to sit in my butt and watch tv, between shopping, school runs and cleaning, homework, etc etc. making mothers go to work whilst a child is dependent is cruelty. There are issues with employers when you have to stay home looking after them. My daughter is sick on adverage every 3 weeks with some school bug. Having to trawl universal jobmatch day in and out is totally demoralising. There is nothing there. It’s all agencies and jobs that are out of date. I never get a reply for all the darn cv juggling in the world. Why don’t they concentrate on fathers to stay and live upto their responsibilities, rather than being encouraged to walk away. Poor single parents are being crushed by this government, and many of us didn’t choose to be single mothers

  16. they can not force you to surrender your child into another persons care this is like saying that your child now belongs to the state and by doing this reinforces the registering your child at birth your child belongs to them and not a person who is free from slavery. you can not be made to let someone else care for your child against your wishes just to conform to their ideolgy which you do not agree the money you receive for your child is yours not the states they are looking after it with your permission and you are entitled to it to care for your family without being forced to hand your child/ren over to them this has nothing to do with saving money but to force slavery from you while they control your children and to control us all with democracy a distant memory

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