This is an HTML version of an attachment to the Freedom of Information request 'Work Experience'.

 
 
 
DWP Central Freedom of Information Team
Annex A 
 
e-mail: freedom-of-information-re
 
[email address]
 
Our Ref: VTR952
 
 

23 March 2012
Annex A 
 
 
Dear Mr. Jackson,  
 
Thank you for your Freedom of Information request dated 2nd February 2012.  You asked: 
 
Freedom of Information request - Work Experience 
 
Dear Department for Work and Pensions, 
      
     On the 29th Feb 2012 Chris Grayling revealed that the voluntary 
     Work Experience scheme is being relaxed in terms of sanctions. See 
     http://www.dwp.gov.uk/newsroom/press-releases/2012/feb-2012/dwp020-12.shtml 
      
     There was also news reports stating that the jobseeker may: 
     * refuse or fail to attend first day 
     * leave in the first week 
     * leave in subsequent weeks 
      
     ...without getting a benefit sanction UNLESS they lose their place 
     due to gross misconduct. 
      
     Please answer the following questions:- 
      
     a) Is the above statement (with the list items) correct? And if not 
     so please clarify. 
      
     b) What changes in law or guidance will ensure that jobcentre 
     advisers and decision makers do not sanction those for leaving the 
     placement before its expected to have ended (i.e. 2-8 weeks after 
     it started)? 
      
     c) What constitutes "Gross Misconduct"? 
      
     d) Will the letters to the scheme change or kept "as is" due to 
     possibility for a sanction for gross misconduct? 
      
     e) Please provide a copy of any and every memo, press release, 
     notice, bill, draft legislation and statutory instrument involved 
     in the relaxing of rules for Work Experience. 

      
The information you have requested in point (e) is not all held centrally.  You have a copy of 
the only press release and there are currently no legislative changes.  We estimate that the 
cost of complying with the rest of the request to provide any and every memo would exceed 
the appropriate limit of ÂŁ600. The appropriate limit has been specified in regulations and for 
central Government it is set at ÂŁ600. This represents the estimated cost of one person 
spending 3½ working days in determining whether the Department holds the information, and 
locating, retrieving and extracting the information.  
 
Because part of your request falls to disproportionate cost we are not obliged Under section 12 
of the Freedom of Information Act to consider the rest of your request for information. 
However, in the interests of customer service we are happy to provide answers to the rest of 
your requests: 
 
Question (a) 
 
Yes the Minister’s statement (including the listed items) is correct. 
 
Question (b) 
 
We are currently working with lawyers and guidance is being updated to reflect the new 
changes in policy. 
  
Question (c) 
 
’Gross Misconduct’ might include, for example, theft, racial abuse and violence. 
 
Question (d) 
Letters to participants will be amended in light of the recent announcement. 
If you have any queries about this letter please contact me quoting the reference number 
above.   
Yours sincerely,  
 
 
DWP Central FoI Team 
 
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 
 
Your right to complain under the Freedom of Information Act 
 
If you are not happy with this response you may request an internal review by e-mailing freedom-of-information-
[email address] or by writing to DWP, Central FoI Team, 5th Floor The Adelphi, 1-11, John Adam Street, 
London WC2N 6HT. Any review request should be submitted within two months of the date of this letter.  
 

If you are not content with the outcome of the internal review you may apply directly to the Information 
Commissioner’s Office for a decision. Generally the Commissioner cannot make a decision unless you have 
exhausted our own complaints procedure. The Information Commissioner can be contacted at: The Information 
Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow Cheshire SK9 5AF www.ico.gov.uk