Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

I want the names of organisations that have provided the Mandatory work placements, organised by your Mandatory Work Activity successful bidders/contractors/providers, covering 25 January 2012 to 25 May 2012 for:

CPA 1
CPA 2
CPA 3

and if within your fees for

CPA 4
CPA 5
CPA 6

and if within your fees for

CPA 7
CPA 8
CPA 9

and if within your fees for

CPA 10
CPA 11

Your successful bidders
http://www.dwp.gov.uk/supplying-dwp/what...

The work placement providers names disclosed below are an example of the specific kind of information this request is for. You disclosed the names below on 25 July 2012
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/77...

4 acres
4 acres limited palmers green
Abney park cemetery
A-class football foundation
Barakah mini market
Bookers cash and carry
British heart foundation (camden)
British heart foundation (crickle wood)
Btvc
Centre westminster
Charity shops in various london places
Daylight
Doreen hair fashion saloon
Environment and regeneration
Finsbury park business forum
Friends of the earth
Handel house museum
Harriots
Highgate newtown comm center
Home start
Homes for islington
Hornsey school for girls
Kiltro(uk) ltd
Lincoln hartford solicitors
Livability
Marie curie
Norfolk trucks
Oxfam bookshop
Oxfam bookshop highgate
P.D.S.A
P.H.A recruitment solutions
Restore community project
Saint mugus
Salibury mews haringes
Springboard uk
St. Mary pre-school
Strategic pro. Office, islinghton
Studio 28 light and design
Sunnyside ecology center
Trade limited
Westminster volunteer center
Whittington hospital
Y.M.C.A.
Ymca goodge st.
Ymca kensington
1'oclock club barnsbury
Arabic career development
Asda stares edmonton green
Aspire foundation
Bardens café
Bbc/subell leisure centre
British heart foundation
Carefree kids
Essential rubber
Finsbury + clertrnwell volunteers
Finsbury park business forum
Finsbury park business forum (marshalls
Team)
Gardening
Hackney community college
High gate newtown community centre
High gate newtown community centre (poor
School)
Marie curie
Matrix complex
Our lady help of christians
Oxfam bookshop
Pramp
Restore community projects
Richard cl school
Robert blaire primary school
The r.S.P.C.A.
Whittington hospital
William frost gardening
Working men's college
Anglo-chinese arts council
4 acres
A4e
Btcv
Campaign against armstrade
Care uk
Ealing hammersmith & west london college
Finsbury park business forum
Gardening
High gate newtown community centre
High gate newtown community centre
Home start
House street charity bookshop/gillespie
Park nature reserve
Light project international
Marie curie
Medouet
Oxfam
Oxfam bookshop
Peter bedford housing association
Restore community projects
St. John's street library/age concern
Whittington hospital
Whittington hospital
Ymca camden
Oxfam bookshop
A4e camden
A4e woolwich
Barakah mini market
Cancer research uk
City of london corporation
Finsbury and clerkenwell volunteers
Finsbury park business forum
Haringay voluntary services
Highbury new park day centre
Highgate newtown community centre
London feld primary school
Migrants resource centre
Montem primary school
Our lady kentish town
Oxfam bookshop
Restore community projects
Royal courts of justice
Sainsbury's golders green
Simply accountable
Sue ryder care - city of isl.
Tiny tots nursery/hg comm centre
Volunteer centre hammersmith
Whittington hospital
Ymca
Ymca charity shop

Yours faithfully,

Frank Zola

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...

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

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Zola

Please see attached response to your FoI request.

Kind regards,

DWP Central FoI Team

show quoted sections

Dear Department for Work and Pensions,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Department for Work and Pensions's handling of my FOI request 'Mandatory Work Activity'.

Concerning:

"In line with the Department’s transparency commitments, we have previously provided
information about companies who participate in a number of our programmes that offer work experience, where we can collect this information without disproportionate cost. However, we are invoking the exemption because it has become clear recently that there are a minority of people who appear to be seeking to undermine the goodwill of employers who are prepared to offer opportunities to unemployed people by attempting to harm those companies’ commercial interests."
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/11...

and the memo 24 April 2012 by Derek French Head of Mandatory Work Programmes incuding Workfare:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/yo...

and the references made to Boycott Workfare (BW) therein:

"We are a grassroots campaign, formed in 2010 by people with experience of workfare and those concerned about its impact. We expose and take action against companies and organisations profiting from workfare; encourage organisations to pledge to boycott it; and actively inform people of their rights."
http://www.boycottworkfare.org/
Accessed 16 June 2012

It is worth noting that BW says it has been campaigning against Mandatory Work for Benefits (Workfare) since 2010.

You can view a June 2011 archive of it's website:

"Workfare - compulsory work for benefits - is being rolled-out across the country. We call on public sector bodies, voluntary organisations and businesses being offered these placements as well as union branches to join others in signing a pledge to boycott the scheme."
http://web.archive.org/web/2011062123531...
Accessed 16 June 2012

that highlights it's workfare boycotting activities actually pre-date the DWP disclosure of Workfare placement provider names for:

[A] 25 July 2011
https://viewer.zoho.com/docs/gaa0c5

[B] 18 October 2011
https://viewer.zoho.com/docs/ga6d2e

[C] 02 December 2011
https://viewer.zoho.com/docs/iadHlj

Therefore it seems reasonable that BW is just one instance of an organisation, amongst many, that was undertaking well publicised Boycotting Workfare activities at times when the DWP chose to disclose the names of Mandatory Work for your benefits placement providers/companies in 2011.

Therefore the same Public Interest conditions apply now as they did on 25 July 2011, 18 October 2011 and 02 December 2011, whether that relates to the Section 43 exemption being claimed or the possibility of any other new exemption that may be claimed as a consequence of this Internal Review or subsequent appeal to the Information Commissioners Office.

Examples of past workfare campaigns that did not stop the above disclosures being made [A], [B] or [C].

December 2010
http://righttowork.org.uk/2010/12/15th-d...

March 2011
http://righttowork.org.uk/2011/03/nation...

Recent negative publicity given to workfare was because the DWP used a workfare scheme called:

"Work Experience" (WE)

and originally referred to it as "entirely voluntary", yet it did if fact include a loss of benefits (sanctions) for not starting WE or leaving it early. This is the origin of the more recent general public outrage against WE, as the Policy was inherently misleading to those placed on WE and the Companies that offered WE placements.

Some background media reporting on WE:

Government "workfare" scheme unravelling as Tesco offers to pay those on placements
http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/gov...

Every little helps! Fury as Tesco offer unpaid nightshift jobs for 'expenses plus the Jobseekers' Allowance'
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-...

Employers had decided the punitive aspects of the work experience scheme were a reputational hazard. Few were averse to the principle or spirit of work experience; but none, especially the charities, could in the end live with the idea that a young person is compelled to carry through with an unpaid "voluntary" placement of up to eight weeks or face a sanction – the removal of two weeks' unemployment benefit.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/...

Waterstones, Sainsbury’s, TK Maxx, Superdrug – the workfare roll of shame
A serious question, though: is it wrong for a company like Waterstones to give work to a jobless 16 to 24 year-old without paying them? Perhaps in those stark terms, the answer would be yes.
http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/willhe...

In summary it is in the Public Interest to disclose the information requested, as the above evidence shows the Government was not acting in a transparent
way and in 2011 DWP disclosed information about Mandatory Work providers/companies, at a time when the organisations/activities cited by Mr French now claims would damage
Commercial interests, when in fact such organisations and activities Boycotting Workfare have been taking place since at least 2010.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ma...

Yours faithfully,

Frank Zola

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

This is an automated confirmation that your request for information has
been accepted by the DWP FoI mailbox.

By the next working day your request will be forwarded to the relevant
information owner within the Department who will respond to you direct. 

If your email is a Freedom of Information request you can normally
expect a response within 20 working days.

Should you 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...

show quoted sections

References

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

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

Our Ref: VTR 0400/2180

Dear Mr Zola,

Thank you for your email requesting a review of the Department for Work
and Pensions (DWP) handling of your previous Freedom of Information
request (FOI 2180). In your original request you asked for the names
of organisation that have provided mandatory work placements, organised
through Mandatory Work Activity providers.

Please be assured that your request has been given our full
consideration and that all aspects of your review were taken fully into
account. The review was conducted by an independent official of the
Department, of the relevant grade and authority to carry out such
requests. The case has been examined afresh, and guidance has been
sought from domain experts to ensure all factors were taken fully into
account.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) acknowledges that there is a
public interest in organisations involved in providing work placements
for jobseekers; we have in fact released this information following
previous FOI requests. More recently however, we have become aware of
various campaigns aimed at harming the commercial interests of companies
involved in delivering work placements as well as a potentially
undermining Government policy. For that reason the Department will not
comply with further FOI requests to release information about companies
who provide, or have provided, work placements.

I maintain that the exemption applied to withhold this information
(section 43 (2)) is correct and that it is in the public's interest to
ensure that DWP obtains goods or services on the best commercial terms
and that we protect the legitimate commercial interests of our
suppliers, to undermine the process could also harm unemployed people
who find this to be a useful stepping stone back to employment. Work
experience gives unemployed people the opportunity to be placed with
local businesses where they are able to gain valuable work experience,
improve their CVs and marketability to potential employers.

You have now exhausted the Departmental internal review process; if you
are not content with the outcome, the next step is for you to apply
directly to the Information Commissioner's Office for a decision. The
contact details can be found in the footer below.

Yours sincerely,

DWP Central FoI Team
------------------------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------
Your right to complain under the Freedom of Information Act
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

show quoted sections

Wesley Hayden left an annotation ()

QUOTE: "Work
experience gives unemployed people the opportunity to be placed with
local businesses where they are able to gain valuable work experience,
improve their CVs and marketability to potential employers."

If the job exists why not give that person a 3 month probationary period with a realistic chance of securing the position, instead of driving wages down and exploiting and endorsing slavery packaged as "training"

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