Nottingham Claimants Action (NCA)
"A great set of links to advice and action relating to work, unemployment and benefits"
Welcome to Nottingham Claimants Action. Site recently moved here because Geocities has closed - Last modified 31st December 2011 (started 14th Oct 1997)
Anti-workfare demonstrations in Nottingham on Saturday 3rd March 2012 – part of National Day of Action
Case against Nottingham's 'Atos Two ' dropped - Jan 2012.
NOTTINGHAM DEFENSE CAMPAIGN and the ATOS 2 court case in February 2012 - various support events
NOTTINGHAM CLAIMANTS' UNION is formed - November 2010 - update - this did not last but please see activities of Nottingham Defence Campaign instead.
Anti-workfare event in Nottingham - report and reflections on an event that followed the Day of Action.
Defend Welfare action in Manchester - just one of the actions that took place around the country on 16th June 2010 as part of the Day of Action against Felxible New Deal.
DEFEND WELFARE website launched: http://defendwelfare.org
Employment Support Allowance: a new harsher test - info sheet on ESA and medical assessment, from Brighton (May 2010).
Oxford Unemployed Workers and Claimants Union: An Oral History - Video about the old group.
Corporate Watch : The Unemployment Business (April 2010)
No to Welfare Abolition: second national planning meeting in Manchester, Saturday 17th April 2010
Tyneside Claimants' Union - the recently formed group has set up a blog (March 2010)
Welfare Reform: who will it affect? - an article in Manchester independent free paper 'The Mule' (March 2010).
New web address for Workfare Fight (February 2010)
Updated 'Advice Links' for Nottingham and Notts - Law Centre, Council and Student links
Seriously ill patients 'told to work' - former ATOS Healthcare doctors criticise the corporation that is providing 'medical assessments' for the DWP (Jan 2010).
Sheffield Claimants and Unemployed Workers Launch Meeting - on 28th January 2010.
A Claimants' Union for Tyneside? - advertising meeting on Dec 15th. Note: similar Sheffield meeting planned for January 2010.
Benefits Culture - life from the margins - a blog written by a small group of people who are on incapacity benefits in the UK.
COMING SOON!!! A new 'No to Welfare Abolition' website and blog. Watch this space for a link (December 2009)
End of the Social Wage? Radical responses to the Welfare Reform Bill (November 2009)
Petition to abolish workfare - although direct action will no doubt be needed (November 2009).
Group sites: Claimants Action South Wales, Sunderland Welfare Action, Haringey Claimants Action, Hackney Unemployed Workers, Newham Claimants, Carrotworkers Collective
Overheard at the Job Centre - real life experiences on the dole.
New Deal Scandal & New Deal Complaints - two websites you should visit if you have had dealings with any New Deal 'provider'.
Edinburgh Coalition Against Poverty launch paper 'Hi Jinks' against High Riggs Job Centre (July 2009). Download newsletter [PDF].
Ipswich Unemployed Action - new blog (May 2009).
Can't Pay, Won't Pay - from poll tax struggles to recession resistance -
talk at the Bristol Anarchist Bookfair with Danny Burns and the East Bristol Debtors Alliance (April 2009).
'NEW DEAL FOR THE DEAD' - resurrected here.
Edinburgh A4E advice to claimant: “get a job” (March 2010)
Disability activists & London Coalition Against Poverty block Whitehall over Incapacity Benefit change (Dec 2008).
Boycott A4e - Gateway to Work provider in league with global arms company.
Workfare comes to Britain - a response to Labour's anti-welfare strategy (Sept 2008).
Unions blast welfare reform plan - BBC news report on TUC conference (Sept 2008).
New Green Paper - Noone written off - or should that be Everyone signed off (July 2008).
New Labour and the end of welfare - corporate and academic connections to the Welfare Reform Act (April 2008)
Odd blogs about jobs and no jobs - we try to make RSS work (this time with success)
Instant Muscle gets wasted - notorious British workfare charity goes bust; staff sacked without pay (Feb 2008).
Welfare that won't work - the government announces further plans for "workfare" instead of welfare (Feb 2008)
Nottingham Job Seekers To Face Lie Detectors - Voice Risk Analysis trial on New Claims phoneline (Jan 2008).
Pathways to Work national roll-out - govt announces second set of private contractors who will 'help' incapacity claimants to work (Dec 2007).
Please note this exciting new initiative:
NOTTINGHAM CLAIMANTS' UNION is formed - November 2010.
Beware: whilst we try to keep it up to date, some of the material on this site or from its links may become out of date.
LINKS TO ADVICE, ACTION & IDEAS
Advice (in Nottinghamshire, and elsewhere in England, Wales and Scotland)
- Nottingham Law Centre - Free & confidential legal advice and representation.
- Nottinghamshire Unemployed Workers Centre - Provides a comprehensive welfare rights service advising on benefits. This service is available for anyone whether in or out of work. Millions of pounds in benefits goes unclaimed in Notts every year, and even if you are working you can claim many benefits, so don't be afraid to ask - call in for advice! NUWC have a 90% success rate in Social Security Tribunals.
- Nottingham City Council - Advice and Benefits - welfare rights. Also search via area of city.
- Nottinghamshire County Council Benefits Advice - provide advice on the full range of social security benefits available to people living in Nottinghamshire, checking whether you are getting all the benefits to which you are entitled, and representing you at benefits tribunals. Lots of online leaflets and guides including Attendance Allowance and Disability Living Allowance.
- Notts County Council - different link but same info as above - advice on the full range of social security benefits and Tax Credits available to people living in Nottinghamshire.
- Mansfield Unemployed Workers Centre - former name and website of the Notts Unemployed Workers Centre.
- Advice for students:
- Nottingham and Notts Refugee Forum - collect donations and give out food to failed asylum seekers through their Destitution Fund, plus other good support activities.
Job Seekers Allowance Survival Guide - Useful info about the JSA, the nasty welfare benefits regime introduced in Britain since October 1996.
- TUC unemployed workers' centres - For local benefits advice in England, Scotland and Wales, but links to centres is broken and they seem to be being dumped.
- In Depth - Benefits and Tax Credits - from BBC News. Useful advice and up to date issues, like 150,000 people being refused JSA in the past year (2003-4).
- Gingerbread - support organisation for lone parent families in England and Wales.
- One Parent Families Scotland - enabling lone parents to achieve their full potential as individuals and parents.
- Child Poverty Action Group - CPAG promotes action for the relief, directly or indirectly, of poverty among children and families with children. Good publications, including a poster of all the Benefits and Credit rates and a summary of the extent of poverty in UK.
- Citizen's Advice Bureau: Adviceguide - "The online CAB service that provides independent advice on your rights." Up to date advice on benefits and other topics in English, Welsh, Bengali, Gujarati, Punjabi, Urdu and Chinese.
- Dealing with Bailiffs - an underdogs guide - from Walthamstow anarchist group.
- East Bristol Debtors Alliance is a new support group for people in money trouble, so you donâ€™t have to suffer alone. Advice about debt and bailiffs.
Action and activism (some more advice too)
- NOTTINGHAM CLAIMANTS' UNION - new group since November 2010.
- DEFEND WELFARE website: http://defendwelfare.org - coming out of the No To Welfare Abolition network, linking action groups across Britain.
- Anarchist Federation: Nottingham group - now hosting Nottingham Claimants Action (this site).
- The Sumac Centre - Nottingham's activist nexus.
- No Borders Nottingham - part of the No Borders Network, a group of grass-roots organizations that support free migration and abolishment of borders and deportations of asylum seekers. Asylum seekers cannot work in Britain and many of them are forced into destitution.
- The 1-in-12 Club - Bradford's original - it came out of a Claimants Union in 1981, now its much more. An inspiration to us all and a good place to meet activists.
- The Cowley Club - Brighton's equivalent of Sumac/1-in-12. Holds informal work and benefit advice sessions. See also, Dolescoungers pages.
- Claimants Action South Wales - Fighting for respect, dignity, survival.
- Edinburgh Coalition Against Poverty (ECAP) - formerly Edinburgh Claimants, based at the Autonomous Centre of Edinburgh (ACE) - a self funded campaigning and social centre in Scotland.
- Ipswich Unemployed Action - blog dedicated to fighting for the rights of the Unemployed.
- London Campaign Against Poverty (LCAP) and Against Poverty news bulletin. Download issue 1 [PDF].
- London: Hackney Unemployed Workers - also in London.
- London: Haringey Claimants Action and Haringey Solidarity Group - an autonomous organisation in London engaging with the politics of work and unemployment. HSG provide lists of contacts, on-line leaflets and other useful stuff.
- London: Newham Claimants - long running organisation, also in London.
- London: Merton Claimants Action Group - older London based group
- Sheffield Welfare Action Network (SWAN) - A Sheffield based, non-party political campaign; opposing benefit sanctions and attempts to force people into unsuitable work and treatment when they themselves know that they are not ready.
- Sunderland Welfare Action Group - Fighting against welfare cuts and campaigning to improve the welfare system.
- Tyneside Claimants’ Union - the group has a shiny new blog.
- Unemployed Workers Union - Facebook site. Started in Salford Feb 2010 and aiming to form affiliated groups and alliances with trade unions.
- Industrial Workers of the World - independent syndicalist union IWW whose British Isles ROC endorses the No To Welfare Abolition network and campaigning efforts.
- Overheard at the Job Centre - experiences of signing on and going to the Job Centre.
- Dolescoungers - Brighton website incorporating Abolish Working Links (AWoL) who are fighting Working Links, the company that has been running Employment Zones (where long term unemployed get harassed), who have no grievance procedure despite them being legally obliged to have one. Read AWoL's bulletin, Missing Links. See also an article in SchNews.
- 56a Infoshop - London home of the precari-punx project - for the abolition of work.
- The Simon Jones Memorial Campaign - Simon Jones was killed on 24th April 1998, aged 24, on his first day as a casual worker at
Shoreham dock - another victim of our growing casual labour economy.
- Workfare Fight - occasional mailing list plus a comprehensive set of international Welfare/Workfare links
- SchNews Workers Rights - a list of links from this decade old Brighton-based bulletin.
- Urban75 - Brixton-based ezine with useful bulletin boards, one on education and employment.
- Campaign Against Prison Slavery - CAPS exists to challenge and bring about an end to forced prison labour, and to expose the companies that exploit it. If it's cheap, it could have been made or packaged by a prisoner.
- Child Soldiers - find out how the armed forces prey on the young unemployed. There is no statutory minimum age of recruitment in the UK.
- Anarchist People of Color - "a discussion group by and for people of color who identify with anarchist and anti-authoritarian ideals."
- No one is Illegal! - the NOII manifesto demands "for workers within the welfare system to refuse to comply with the denial of benefits or provisions based on immigration status."
- No Sweat - is an activist, campaigning organisation, fighting sweatshop bosses, in solidarity with workers, worldwide (although note this is a front organisation of the trotskyist AWL). See also United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS).
- No Deal - from those who brought us the Carnival for Full Enjoyment at the G8 summit 2005. Includes the highly amusing 'New Deal for the Dead' spoof of JobCentrePLUS advertising.
- Precarity.info - "One less day of working, one more day for us". London Mayday 2006, inviting all self-organised workers, migrant workers, non-unionised workers, agency workers, cash in hand workers, dole claimants, free-lancers, work rejecters and all of those who fall outside of traditional union organisation to join an autonomous bloc on the TUC march.
- Chainworkers - mainly Italian site but with some English bits. Defending (young) workers of malls and supermarkets from the retail chains that suck your lives dry.
- OCAP - Excellent site of the Canadian direct-action group, Ontario Coalition Against Poverty. Inspiration for London's LCAP.
- Squat!Net - international multi-lingual website with news and info about squatting empty houses, with UK links.
- Defy-ID - ID cards will be used to manage who is entitled to benefits and who not, and a major refusal campaign is needed. See also:
Thoughts and Ideas
Carrotworkers Collective - a London-based group of current or ex interns, mainly from the creative and cultural sectors, who regularly meets to think together around the conditions of free labour in contemporary societies.
WEP workers - New York USA “Working for My Benefits” - Brenda Steward Describes the Work Experience Program (WEP) in New York City. See also "We Want Real Jobs" and the film A Day's Work, A Day's Pay with an extract on Youtube
- Corporate Watch : The Unemployment Business (April 2010)
- End of the Social Wage? Radical responses to the Welfare Reform Bill (November 2009 - see also edited version in Black Flag #230, October 2009)
- Workfare comes to Britain - a response to Labour's anti-welfare strategy from Chartist Magazine, September/October 2008.
- Rights and Wrongs - a blog with good stories on subjects of debt, social security & disability.
- Pamphlet and articles from the Anarchist Federation:
- End of the Social Wage? Radical responses to the Welfare Reform Bill - Black Flag no.230, Winter 2009
- Instant Muscle gets wasted! - in The Nottingham Sparrow no. 3, March 2008. Notorious British workfare charity goes into administration and makes its staff redundant overnight, without pay. Read Discussion on libcom forum.
- Work and the Free Society - Why work is so terrible and why it must be destroyed before it destroys us! An online pamphlet.
- Casualisation and flexibility, in Organise! magazine #64, Summer 2005
- New Deal = Dirty Deal - online article on the New Deal, Labour's takeover of Welfare to Work.
- Labour's Welfare Warfare - New Labour attacks people on benefits, as predicted before they took power, in Organise!#48, Summer 1998.
- Three Strikes and You're Out! - interview with Edinburgh Claimants about the effects of their campaign to challenge job centre workers about over-zealous implementation of JSA rules, in Organise!#48
- Dole Bondage, Up Yours! - review of the open resignation letter by secretary of Wales Against the JSA, in Organise!#46, Summer 1997.
- 3 Strikes initiative - Effective Tactic against the Job Seekers Allowance, in Organise!#45, Spring 1997.
- No Dole Slavery! No Wage Slavery! - Groundswell response to introduction of JSA in October 1996, in Organise!#44.
- Poverty Related Pay - dole workers' dilemma as implementing JSA becomes a PRP objective, in Organise! #43, Summer 1996.
- Update on Job Seekers Allowance & Project Work - development leading up to introdcution of JSA, in Organise! #42, Spring 1996.
- Job Seekers Allowance - replacing unemployment benefit and income support. Advance notice, in Organise! #40, Autumn 1995.
- Lots of articles and debate about JSA, courtesy of the Subversion web-site (dated 1995-1998).
- Do or Die: Running to Stand Still - Globalisation, Blagging and the Dole - from the many-paged annual eco-activist publication that is no longer with us (Do or Die, #9, 2001). Nice photos and cartoons.
- Aufheben - this south of england group shout out their Unemployed Recalcitrance
and Welfare Restructuring in the UK today article in huge type and attempt to explain why most UK claimants groups in the 1990's were full of aging politicos rather than angry young claimants. See also their Dole Autonomy pamphlet.
- CLAWS - Creating Livable Alternatives to Wage Slavery. A pro-leisure and anti-wage-slavery group of people dedicated to exploring the question: why work?
- The Idler - a site devoted to philosophy and humour against a work-obsessed culture.
- Anxiety Culture - further railings against work-obsession and other anxieties.
- Precarity - Any idea what this means? Find out here.
Know your Enemy
Department of Work and Pensions (DWP): Pathways to Work - this is the scheme to get IB claimants of benefits, using a range of private and voluntary sector contractors. The Phase 1 contractors appointed in September 2007 were A4e, Seetec Ltd, Shaw Trust, TNG Ltd, Triage Central Ltd, and WorkDirections Ltd. These contractors have been delivering Pathways in 15 Jobcentre Plus Districts since 3 December. The organisations awarded Pahse 2 contracts in Dec 2007 were Carter & Carter Group plc, Instant Muscle Enterprise Limited, Reed in Partnership, Remploy, Royal British Legion Industries, Shaw Trust, TNG and Working Links. They will deliver Pathways in the remaining 16 Jobcentre Plus districts from April 2008, completing the national rollout across Great Britain.
New Deal - the Labour government's site promoting New Deal to employers, as seen on TV.
Job Centre Plus - the UK government's Employment Service site.
Centre for Economic and Social Inclusion - or should that be coercion?
Targeting benefit fraud - apparently benefit fraud costs 'the country' 1.5 billion pounds each year, which the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) takes so seriously they give away the same amount each year due to their own 'mistakes' - hoorah. But just compare this to the year on year increasing billions of pounds spent waging war in Iraq & Afghanistan.
Poor Law Amendment Act 1834 - doesn't 'workhouse test' sound a bit like JSA and the New Deal?
- The Work Programme (Framework agreement) - no more Flexible New Deal as this is associated with Labour, so the Coalition's workfare programme has a clever new name. The more it changes the more it stays the same.
- Work for your benefits - these pilots in Manchester and Norfolk/Suffolk/Cambs are not dressed up with the words 'Work Experience' or 'Workfare', so the gloves are clearly off off.
- Employment support allowance - the replacement for Incapacity Benefits. Also includes medical assessment by private contractor ATOS healthcare to see if you can be kicked off ESA/IB on to Jobseekers.
- Flexible New Deal - flexible for who? Will leave you to guess. Companies like A4E are involved.
- Greater Nottingham Landlords - worth reading to get the landlord point of view on benefits claimants, especially the housing benefits which feed the beast.
- Working Links - one of the company that runs Employment
Zones, where the long-term unemployed get forced into cheap labour. Next they're going to be administering the government's back-to-work programmes for the disabled. So WATCH OUT! (see Dolescroungers above and Pathways to Work link below for more info).
[Advice Links] [Action & Activist Links] [Thoughts & Ideas] [Know your Enemy]
Please come back soon and visit us again
No Wage Slavery! No Dole Slavery!