Wednesday, March 2, 2005

Encouragement is the key to social-services-to-work programs

Corporate Welfare! I think we should start with Ingeus Company. Telling us what we already know for $$$$!

The Federal Government begins an intensive round of strategies on how to force more Australians off welfare [social-services] and into work the focus is on whether the changes should apply to some of the people receiving the disability support pension.

But before they start manipulating and disrupting the disabled you only have to look at work for the dole for $10.00, one way the HoWARd government has managed to get unemployed people off the Newstart benefit? And I suppose the question is did it work?

Work for the dole? $10.00?

Let's have real jobs paid with real wages. Let's stop this legal slavery now!

ABC: "In Britain, the Blair Government is already getting disability pensioners back into work and an Australian contractor has found that the key to success is not forcing anyone into any work or any training."

The fact is though most disabled people who can do any work actually already work or are volunteers for unfunded and non-government organisations existing on pensions as a basic wage and working when they can within the parameters of their disability.

The Howard Government is aware there is no political danger associated with forcing existing disability support pensioners into work after July 1 when he has control of the Senate. Disability pensioners fear they may lose their pension and associated entitlements if they're forced to work and the job does not work out.

ABC: "In Britain, a program to help people with disabilities find work is well underway."

But that's fine for the disabled who are looking for something to do and haven't found a job or haven't volunteered yet.

After all 'Life is Community Service' and most people find something constructive to do rather than lounge about, because if they didn't they would indulge themselves to death in a very short time. But the governments have a different angle no doubt, 'a good cop perhaps to exterminate the 'cockroaches' with a subtle plan to manipulate, convince and convert people who can easily be led into doing things they may not be able to do and lose those things they depend on for their survival?

These governments say they're trying to help out but they want to shunt the disabled onto Newstart just to save $20.00 the difference between Newstart and the Disability Support Pension and associated entitlements. Forcing them to work when they would otherwise be getting on with their lives and working it out for themselves, when they can, is a lot different than forcing them to do what they cannot.

ABC: "Greg Ashmead is the deputy managing director of Ingeus which is a private company specialising in welfare-to-work[social-services-to-work] programs that has several contracts with the Blair Government, including one to help 2,700 people with disabilities to return to work."

Perhaps though Ingeus is cleaning up in more ways than one and perhaps they are also a scapegoat for the government? To help manipulate clients sent to them with rhetoric and all the while the community is being misled while governments spend their social dollar on warfare expenditure?

Who's cleaning up corporate welfare? What about government advertising to pro-government corporate media? For instance Channel 10 made 94 Million last year?

Welfare Reform for Warfare Expenditure?

Top of the agenda for what the Government describes as its "strategic" Cabinet meetings are the restructuring of industrial relations and welfare reform, but not CORPORATE WELFARE REFORM and it seems increasing GOVERNMENT expenditure on WARFARE in Iraq?

ABC: "Ingeus operates in Australia's Job Network and in the UK and France, specialising in welfare-to-work programs."[social-services-to work programs.

Re: their use of the word 'welfare' is just propaganda for the 'bludger' mentality so the community looks down at the disabled instead of using 'social services' which it really is in terms of assistance to disabled people.

Greg Ashmead says the British program is entirely voluntary.

"I think it's important that we engage people, excite people about the options that are available to them," he said.

As it should be considering the disabled already volunteer their services for free anyway, and all the while paying tax on everything they buy which intern goes back to the government's coffers.

If some of these disabled are already working for non funded government agencies for nothing and paying the government tax all the while, then why can't they be left alone to get on with the job? Think of the inflation of not having mentors in the community and the cost of the government having to deal with every complaint. These people may be disabled but they have lots of skills to pass on in a way that they can pass them on.

How inconsiderate of the government to kick the working poor without taking into account their production and good will considering they're disabled,

ABC: Greg Ashmead says, the key to success there is encouraging, not forcing them, to look for work.

"It's very important that people feel motivated.I honestly don't think people are going to go into sustained quality employment if they feel as though they're forced to do so."

ABC: Less than one year on, Greg Ashmead says 30 per cent of those British pensioners now have sustained part-time or full-time work.

"People can return to benefits if there's an issue or a problem that they endure," he said.

ABC: Mr Ashmead says it is clear an essential ingredient is a team of health professionals on tap, to assess disability pensioners' capacity to work. Doctors, nurses, dieticians, occupational therapists, psychologists and exercise physiologists.

"I think the last thing anybody wants to do is set people up to fail. It's not good enough to put people into a role or a job that is not suitable for them, and then they find themselves maybe even further back than they were before they were referred to an opportunity," he said.

It's not cheap to help disability pensioners into work. One source has told the recent Howard Government pilot program, cost $2,000 to get one jobseeker in the door of an employment agency and another $1,500 to assess their capability to work.

"It's expensive, but I think in terms of returns, it's well worth the investment," Mr Ashmead says.

ABC: To combat any reluctance of employers to hire a person with a disability, the UK program also funds workplace modifications to make sure people can fit productively back into the work force."

By Alexandra Kirk and Just Us posted 2 March 05



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