Chris Grayling claims in the press re. Work Experience/ Mandatory Work Activity

Mr Atrill made this Freedom of Information request to Department for Work and Pensions

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was refused by Department for Work and Pensions.

Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

Chris Grayling claims in the press re. Work Experience/ Mandatory Work Activity

In an interview with the Telegraph, on 24 Feb, Chris Grayling was quoted as saying:

'We won’t and don’t force anyone to take a work experience placement. Where we use mandation in our welfare policies, it will be to do useful work on community projects. We will never mandate anyone to work for a big company. They wouldn’t take them if we did'
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/90911...

At the time Mr Grayling made this statement the document: Work Programme Provider Guidance, /Chapter 3 – Mandation, Action Planning and Participant Contact/Work Experience for JSA Claimants 14 , stated:

'Where you are providing support for JSA participants, which is work experience you must mandate participants to this activity. This is to avoid the National Minimum Wage Regulations, which will apply if JSA participants are not mandated.'

Following Mr Grayling's statement to the Telegraph the wording of this section of the guidance was removed from the document.

Under the terms of the FOI Act lease supply an explanation of the reasons for this change along with all records you hold indicating why this change was made to the guidance. Please include all records of communications, electronic or otherwise, connected with this change including records of telephone conversations.

In addition the version numbers on the documents are identical – v2.00 in both cases, could you please inform me whether it is normal practice when making amendments to a document to maintain the version in this way.

Yours faithfully,

Mr Atrill

DWP Adelphi Freedom-of-Information-Request, Department for Work and Pensions

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Dear DWP Adelphi Freedom-of-Information-Request,

Error: the date of the Telegraph article quoted was 19 February not 24 February as I stated, my apologies for the confusion.

Additionally could you please also supply definitions to a couple of ambiguities please. What does 'useful work on community projects' from Mr Grayling's statement entail exactly? He also stated that we [the DWP] 'will never mandate anyone to work for a big company' What is the definition of 'big' in relation to a company please? ie a company could be a store, assumably a 'small' store, could a store, even if small, ever be considered to qualify as a community project?

Thank you

Yours sincerely,

Mr Atrill

DWP Adelphi Freedom-of-Information-Request, Department for Work and Pensions

This is an automated confirmation that your request for information has
been received at the DWP Central FoI Team.

We will forward your request to the relevant information owner within the
Department who will respond to you direct. 

Should you also have any further queries in connection with this request
do please contact us.

For further information on the Freedom of Information Act within DWP
please click on the link below.

[1]http://www.dwp.gov.uk/freedom-of-informa...

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References

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1. http://www.dwp.gov.uk/freedom-of-informa...

Mr Taylor left an annotation ()

For every job, so many men
So many men no-one needs

Mr Atrill left an annotation ()

text version of the documents in question. For the convenience of site users

Firstly the ORIGINAL
Secondly the AMENDED

The section in question is at number #14: Work Experience for JSA Claimants

ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL -

ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL - ORIGINAL -

Chapter 3 Work Programme Provider Guidance

Chapter 3 – Mandation, Action Planning and
Participant Contact.

This chapter covers:
• Mandating participants to undertake activity.
• Action Planning.
• Participant Contact.
• Detailed Background and Further information.

High Level Must Dos

Record the
Decide Notify the
activity along with
reasonable participant of
all other 'live'
mandatory mandatory
mandatory
activity activity in writing
activities

Mandating participants to undertake activity

1. Participants who are mandated to undertake activity may incur a loss or
reduction of benefit should they fail to comply without good reason.
(Further information regarding the participation requirements of differing
claimant groups can be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 2 –
Work Programme Claimant Groups.)

2. Where you require there to be sanctionable consequences should a
participant fail to comply you must ensure that you mandate them
correctly.

Actions
3. To ensure you comply with regulations when mandating participants you
are required to:

• Ensure that the activity is reasonable in the participant’s
circumstances.
• Notify the participant in writing of:
o The specific action that they are required to undertake.
o When or by when they must undertake it.
o That the action is mandatory.
o What evidence, if any, they must supply to demonstrate completion.
o The potential consequences should the participant fail to comply.
Required wording: If you do not undertake the activities required in
this notification your benefit could be affected.
o For ESA participants only, state on the notification that ‘this activity
forms part of your work-related activity action plan.’

1 V2.00

Chapter 3 Work Programme Provider Guidance

• Record the above information (the Mandatory Activity Notification)
along with all other ongoing mandatory requirements in a single
document.

Consequence
If you fail to mandate a participant correctly (as outlined above), or the
Mandatory Activity Notification is not recorded in a way that meets the criteria
outlined above Jobcentre Plus Decision Makers may be unable to impose
sanctions. This will waste both your time and that of Jobcentre Plus.

4. You have discretion as to whether you mandate participants. However
should you elect to mandate, you are responsible for:

• Undertaking the compliance doubt process should a participant fail to
comply (Further information regarding the compliance doubt process
can be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 6 – Raising a
Compliance Doubt).
• Following the re-engagement process, where a compliance sanction is
subsequently imposed – required to follow the re-engagement process
(Further information regarding re-engagement can be found in Work
Programme Guidance Chapter 7 – Re-engagement and Reviewing a
Sanction).

Action Planning
5. You have the freedom to develop your own processes to support
participants, plan activity and manage their experience whilst on the Work
Programme which will be driven by your delivery model.

6. You must notify the participant in writing if you mandate them to undertake
activity.

7. You must also ensure that as a minimum, participants have access to all
ongoing mandatory requirements in a single document that is available to
them at their request.

8. You will need to consider what information you keep about action planning
to help you:

• Effectively formulate exit reports (Further information regarding exit
reports can be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 10 –
Completing the Work Programme).
• Meet European Social Fund (ESF) evidence requirements (Further
information regarding ESF can be found in Generic Provider Guidance
Chapter 11 – ESF requirements).
• Respond effectively to participant complaints.

2 V2.00

Chapter 3 Work Programme Provider Guidance

Participant Contact
9. The frequency and means (text, e-mail etc) by which you contact
participants will be driven by your delivery model.

Identity Checks
10. You must ensure that in all communications with participants or their
advocates you are satisfied you are engaging with the correct person
11. To do this, you may decide to ask them to state a combination of their
personal information such as:

• Full name.
• Address.
• National Insurance Number.
• Other information such as details that were included within the original
referral from Jobcentre Plus.
• Details you hold on your records.

Detailed Background and Further information

Mandating participants to undertake activity
12. You have the freedom to decide how you ‘notify the participant in writing’.

13. When deciding whether activity is reasonable in a participant’s
circumstances you need to consider:

• The participant’s claimant group and how this affects the nature of their
participation. For example, although mandatory ESA participants can
be supported towards employment they cannot be mandated to: apply
for jobs, undertake medical treatment or take up work.
Also ESA WRAG (IR) participants cannot participate in training of more
than 16 hours per week. (Further information regarding the
participation requirements of differing claimant groups can be found in
Work Programme Guidance Chapter 2 – Work Programme Claimant
Groups).
• Any known restrictions participants may have on their availability for
work, which they have agreed with Jobcentre Plus. For example, in
some circumstances, participants with health conditions, participants
with childcare responsibilities or carers may have restrictions to the
days and hours for which they are available to work/ participate or ESA
lone parents with a child under 13 who cannot be mandated to
undertake activity outside school hours. These restrictions will be
detailed in the participant’s referral.
• The jobseeking requirements of Jobseekers Allowance (JSA)
participants e.g. JSA participants are required to satisfy jobseeking
conditions which will include actively seeking employment, showing the
steps they have taken to fulfil this condition at jobsearch reviews as set

3 V2.00

Chapter 3 Work Programme Provider Guidance

out and delivered by Jobcentre Plus. This requirement is in addition to
any activity you mandate them to undertake.

Please Note: If you decide to raise compliance doubts for ESA participants
who are classified as vulnerable because of their health condition, you must
make every effort to ensure they have understood the requirement before
raising the compliance doubt (Further information regarding safeguarding
ESA participants can be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 6 –
Raising a compliance doubt).

Work Experience for JSA Claimants
14. Where you are providing support for JSA participants, which is work
experience you must mandate participants to this activity. This is to avoid
the National Minimum Wage Regulations, which will apply if JSA
participants are not mandated.

Reconsideration of mandated activity for ESA Claimants
15. ESA participants may request a reconsideration of any activity they have
been mandated to undertake. Where they do so you must take into
account why the participant does not feel the activity is appropriate then
reconsider if the activity remains reasonable and appropriate in the
participant’s circumstances.

16. Reconsiderations should be actioned as soon as reasonably possible and
once you have undertaken these steps you must then notify the participant
in writing of your decision.

Postponement of mandated activity for ESA Claimants
17. You may decide to postpone activity for ESA participants, if undertaking
the activity at a particular time would be unreasonable in the view of the
participant’s circumstances.

18. Should you choose to postpone you must ensure that you correctly
mandate the participant to any rearranged activity you wish to be
mandatory.

4 V2.00

AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED -

AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED - AMENDED -

Chapter 3 – Mandation, Action Planning and
Participant Contact.

This chapter covers:

• Mandating participants to undertake activity.
• Action Planning.
• Participant Contact.
• Detailed Background and Further information.

High Level Must Dos

Decide Notify the Record the
reasonable participant of activity along
mandatory mandatory with all other
activity activity in writing ‘live’ mandatory
activities

Mandating participants to undertake activity
1. Participants who are mandated to undertake activity may incur a loss or
reduction of benefit should they fail to comply without good reason.
(Further information regarding the participation requirements of differing
claimant groups can be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 2 –
Work Programme Claimant Groups).

2. Where you require there to be sanctionable consequences should a
participant fail to comply you must ensure that you mandate them
correctly.

Actions
3. To ensure you comply with regulations when mandating participants you
are required to:

• Ensure that the activity is reasonable in the participant’s circumstances.
• Notify the participant in writing of:

o The specific action that they are required to undertake.
o When or by when they must undertake it.
o That the action is mandatory.
o What evidence, if any, they must supply to demonstrate completion.
o The potential consequences should the participant fail to comply.
Required wording: If you do not undertake the activities required in this
notification your benefit could be affected.
o For ESA participants only, state on the notification that ‘this activity
forms part of your work-related activity action plan.’

1 V2.00

• Record the above information (the Mandatory Activity Notification) along
with all other ongoing mandatory requirements in a single document.

Consequence
If you fail to mandate a participant correctly (as outlined above), or the
Mandatory Activity Notification is not recorded in a way that meets the criteria
outlined above Jobcentre Plus Decision Makers may be unable to impose
sanctions. This will waste both your time and that of Jobcentre Plus.

4. You have discretion as to whether you mandate participants. However
should you elect to mandate, you are responsible for:

• Undertaking the compliance doubt process should a participant fail to
comply (Further information regarding the compliance doubt process can
be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 6 – Raising a
Compliance Doubt).
• Following the re-engagement process, where a compliance sanction is
subsequently imposed – required to follow the re-engagement process
(Further information regarding re-engagement can be found in Work
Programme Guidance Chapter 7 – Re-engagement and Reviewing a
Sanction).

Action Planning
5. You have the freedom to develop your own processes to support
participants, plan activity and manage their experience whilst on the Work
Programme which will be driven by your delivery model.

6. You must notify the participant in writing if you mandate them to undertake
activity.

7. You must also ensure that as a minimum, participants have access to all
ongoing mandatory requirements in a single document that is available to
them at their request.

8. You will need to consider what information you keep about action planning
to help you:

• Effectively formulate exit reports (Further information regarding exit reports
can be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 10 – Completing the
Work Programme).
• Meet European Social Fund (ESF) evidence requirements (Further
information regarding ESF can be found in Generic Provider Guidance
Chapter 11 – ESF requirements).

Participant Contact
9. The frequency and means (text, e-mail etc) by which you contact
participants will be driven by your delivery model.

2 V2.00

Identity Checks
10. You must ensure that in all communications with participants or their
advocates you are satisfied you are engaging with the correct person

11. To do this, you may decide to ask them to state a combination of their
personal information such as:

• Full name
• Address
• National Insurance Number
• Other information such as details that were included within the original
referral from Jobcentre Plus
• Details you hold on your records.

Detailed Background and Further information

Mandating participants to undertake activity
12. You have the freedom to decide how you ‘notify the participant in writing’.

13.When deciding whether activity is reasonable in a participant’s
circumstances you need to consider:

• The participant’s claimant group and how this affects the nature of their
participation. For example, although mandatory ESA participants can be
supported towards employment they cannot be mandated to: apply for
jobs, undertake medical treatment or take up work.

Also ESA WRAG (IR) participants cannot participate in training of more than
16 hours per week. (Further information regarding the participation
requirements of differing claimant groups can be found in Work Programme
Guidance Chapter 2 – Work Programme Claimant Groups).
• Any known restrictions participants may have on their availability for work,
which they have agreed with Jobcentre Plus. For example, in some
circumstances, participants with health conditions, participants with
childcare responsibilities or carers may have restrictions to the days and
hours for which they are available to work/ participate or ESA lone parents
with a child under 13 who cannot be mandated to undertake activity
outside school hours. These restrictions will be detailed in the participant’s
referral.
• The jobseeking requirements of Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) participants
e.g. JSA participants are required to satisfy jobseeking conditions which
will include actively seeking employment, showing the steps they have
taken to fulfil this condition at jobsearch reviews as set out and delivered by
Jobcentre Plus. This requirement is in addition to any activity you mandate
them to undertake.

Please Note: If you decide to raise compliance doubts for ESA participants
who are classified as vulnerable because of their health condition, you must
make every effort to ensure they have understood the requirement before
raising the compliance doubt (Further information regarding safeguarding

3 V2.00

ESA participants can be found in Work Programme Guidance Chapter 6 –
Raising a compliance doubt).

Reconsideration of mandated activity for ESA Claimants
14. ESA participants may request a reconsideration of any activity they have
been mandated to undertake. Where they do so you must take into
account why the participant does not feel the activity is appropriate then
reconsider if the activity remains reasonable and appropriate in the
participant’s circumstances.

15. Reconsiderations should be actioned as soon as reasonably possible and
once you have undertaken these steps you must then notify the participant
in writing of your decision.

Postponement of mandated activity for ESA Claimants
16. You may decide to postpone activity for ESA participants, if undertaking
the activity at a particular time would be unreasonable in the view of the
participant’s circumstances.

17. Should you choose to postpone you must ensure that you correctly
mandate the participant to any rearranged activity you wish to be
mandatory.

4 V2.00

Mr Atrill left an annotation ()

FAO Mr Salter
I do not answer Personal Messages sent from this website. The original document referred to above has been removed from the Internet, however, a link to the document in the google cache is given in this article http://johnnyvoid.wordpress.com/2012/02/... at the time of posting this annotation it was still available in the cache although I would advise you download it ASAP. The current amended version of the document will be easily found on the DWP website.

Mark Salter left an annotation ()

FAO Mr Atrill.

I appreciate you replying here in an annotation. I will provide the link to the comparison as in my direct suggestion to you as soon as I can.

Thanks and best regards,

Mark Salter

Mark Salter left an annotation ()

Unfortunately, it looks like the google cache and the DWP website do now hold the same version.

I'm sure any adjustments will be shown and proven over time.

--
Mark

Mr Atrill left an annotation ()

FAO Mr Salter, the document is still available, their is a comment left on the linked article which explains how to obtain it:

"If you try to download the pdf from google cache you will get the new amended version. However if you save it from the cache to google documents you can download the original unaltered pdf."

This worked for me.

DWP Adelphi Freedom-of-Information-Request, Department for Work and Pensions

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Atrill

Please find attached the response to your FoI request.

Kind regards
Central FoI Team

show quoted sections