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Benefits Overhaul
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mark occomore



Joined: 07 Dec 2006
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Location: UK

PostPosted: Sat Oct 02, 2010 4:47 pm    Post subject: Benefits Overhaul Reply with quote

The government are looking into changing the benefit system and introducing a "universal credit". This could be introduced to make the system fair and to help the unemployed come off the dole and get back to work. The new scheme will have to work to help those who would be on low income and don't make them worse off. This also could save millions for the tax payer. Schemes like this have been purposed by other Governments in the past.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11459055
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SantaFefan



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PostPosted: Sat Oct 02, 2010 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But where are the jobs that these people will be looking for?
Why doesn't the Government just give all these benefits to employers so they have to work to get them? then everybody would be better off.
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ColinB
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 02, 2010 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SantaFefan wrote:
But where are the jobs that these people will be looking for?


There are absolutely loads of unfilled vacancies out there, SFF. They're in a place called Cloud Cuckoo Land! Smile
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SantaFefan



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PostPosted: Sat Oct 02, 2010 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We had a young female start the other day.. she lasted about an hour! she walked out after she was told we don't allow smoking on the property.
She's the second one in a month.. Rolling Eyes
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Soulsister



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PostPosted: Sat Oct 02, 2010 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Couldn't agree more Santafefan! Instead of giving people money not to work, give the money to firms to enable them to employ more people. Even if someone just goes into a job for a few hours a week, it has to be better than sitting at home doing nothing and having no purpose or direction in life whatsoever. When you look at the number of organisations who rely on volunteers, give them some money to help them recruit paid helpers.

I don't think the tax credits idea was a bad one myself - a kind of top up system for those who do actually get off their arses and work, but through circumstances, lack of skills, location or whatever, couldn't command a living wage. The problem is the way it was administered, with incentives to work more hours, or increase self earned income being taken away from people. Keep your income below a certain level and let the tax payer top up the rest is how it ended up. That can't be right, but the basic scheme was a good one I think.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Sun Oct 03, 2010 9:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Government is entirely right in trying to make it so that people have a greater reward from working compared to being on benefits but they need to be careful how the changes are made
It is politically popular to go benefit bashing at present but there are many claimants who are genuinely in need and do not rip off the system as the press would have everyone believe
There is a particular problem with people on short term contracts often through agencies who might do a job for say 6 weeks and then have to return to benefits
It takes so long for claims to be processed that by the time they are people often have either got another agency job or built up big mortgage or rent arrears so quite naturally they eventually think what is the point of having all this hassle and stress it's simpler just to stay on benefits
The system is inefficient slow and in urgent need of updating
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aviddiva



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PostPosted: Sun Oct 03, 2010 12:09 pm    Post subject: Benefits overhaul Reply with quote

Isn't it typical that they start faffing around with the benefits system in the run-up to Christmas?

The annual means testing is as familiar to me as some tragedy on a soap that's shown on Christmas Day.
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Clive55



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PostPosted: Sun Oct 03, 2010 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I suppose it depends what sector you work in. I retired from work to look after my mum but I know I could find a job at any time if I wanted to go back to work.

In terms of helping people into work I recall a scheme by maggie Thatcher in the 1980's called Community Programn. I had been out of work for a while due to illness & that scheme gave me a grounding in the field i went on to work in for the next 25 years or so.

I am all in favour of people who are able to go out to work getting out & earning a crust.
My main concern about the cuts is the impact they could have on services for elderly & disabled & their benefits. These should be ringfenced
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mark occomore



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Child Benefit is now going to be stopped for those who earn over 44k will be affected.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11464300

_____________

Government are right trying to see if they can save money, but also trying to make people worse off. Child Benefit has been around for years for a little bit of money to help parents. I do think this is wrong.
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ColinB
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mark occomore wrote:

Government are right trying to see if they can save money, but also trying to make people worse off. Child Benefit has been around for years for a little bit of money to help parents. I do think this is wrong.


You think that Universal Child Benefit is unfair - especially where the recipient might be earning over 44,000pa?
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undiscovered



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ColinB wrote:
mark occomore wrote:

Government are right trying to see if they can save money, but also trying to make people worse off. Child Benefit has been around for years for a little bit of money to help parents. I do think this is wrong.


You think that Universal Child Benefit is unfair - especially where the recipient might be earning over 44,000pa?


I didn't think I would be able to find anything to agree with them this week, but like you Colin a universal payment for CB is wrong, someone on another baord used Richard Branson as an example why should he be receiving CB when money is at a premium, the same as with winter allowance. Saying that Osborne has admitted on R4 to the first anomaly in his plan to stop child benefit for earners on the higher rate of income tax. A household with one income of 50k would lose its child benefit, whereas a household with two incomes of 40k would not. I suspect more outrageous anomalies to come as the details of welfare reform emerge.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Its quite ridiculous that people like Wayne Rooney and others get full child benefit when they do not need it and there are many poor families and pensioners who are struggling to make ends meet
Benefit cuts should be targeted on those who can afford to lose benefits not people who are already struggling to cope with life
The same applies to child tax credits and the Government is right to do this
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John W



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems to me that we are heading for a total Robin Hood society.

Tax the "well off" and give the money only to the poor.

Sounds OK at first then you think, how come I pay 10 grand a year in tax and the bloke next door pays nothing, infact he GETS 10 grand a year doing nothing

Not all families on 44 grand a year are "well-off".

Think of a single mum earning 44k, she pays 12k a year in tax, she pays 15k a year for child care, she pays 5k a year in transport costs to get to work.

So she's only really got 12k a year to live on, that's 1k a month or 250 a week.

She can't afford a mortgage, so she's got rent to pay, bills for power, council tax, and car bills to pay, oh and food for her and the child.

Child benefit should be paid to that woman.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a perfectly true and valid point John
Obviously the type of person you describe is not in the same category as say Wayne Rooney so I guess its a question of where you draw the cut off line
Perhaps if it could be done without making the whole system too complicated there should be some way of people being able to offset real and necessary overheads against their notional income whatever limit is choosen
That way it would work a bit like the old tax system where one could claim allowances against income for certain types of things having the effect of reducing your taxable income
I'm no economist or accountant though so its just what I think is common sense
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Clive55



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Two things I agree with the Tories so far (shock! horror!) The stopping of child benefits to the high earners (re inforced by the howls of outrage from greeedy ovedr paid radio presenters this morning!
The other was the anouncement by whatshisname of doing away with rediculous legislation that prevents teachers either comforting or restraining children
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SantaFefan



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As I don't have kids, I don't give a monkey... in fact, I'd say maybe it's not a bad thing to cut child benefit..
I believe if you can't afford them, don't have them! and if you do have them, don't expect to scrounge off me.


but then again, I'm biased.. Razz
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ColinB
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We couldn't have survived if my wife hadn't received child benefit for our first-born (our daughter) when she was born in December 1979.

Of course, both our two offspring pay more than their fair share of taxes now (a sore point with my engineer son who is seriously thinking of emigrating) so the we like to think of the child benefit payments as an investment.

I don't see why a well-off person should qualify, though.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Santa the trouble is you always think you can afford them and then get a shock as to how much it costs when they come along
And when your spouse leaves and you have to support them on your own its even more difficult
Still I wouldn't be without them for the world
After all someone has to pay the bill for my future nursing home fees!!
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SantaFefan



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I suppose it's the same thing as the NHS, whats good for one is good for all, no matter what your social standing..
Don't get me started on Council tax either.. I supported the Poll tax theory.. Laughing
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Clive55



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ColinB wrote:
We couldn't have survived if my wife hadn't received child benefit for our first-born (our daughter) when she was born in December 1979.

Of course, both our two offspring pay more than their fair share of taxes now (a sore point with my engineer son who is seriously thinking of emigrating) so the we like to think of the child benefit payments as an investment.

I don't see why a well-off person should qualify, though.

Exactly. The benefit should go to those who need them. Bujt someone earmimg over 45,000 PA should be able to manage
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Santa I also supported the poll tax or rather Community Charge to give it its proper title and I even went on a demonstration to try to keep it
It was embarrassing because only 20 people turned up and there were thousands of people protesting against it
Still think I was right though but at the end of the day you have to accept the majority view
Unless of course your Tony Blair and want to invade Iraq!
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Schizoidman



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ruddles: I too fully supported the poll tax. It was perfectly fair, each person paying his/her fair share. Instead, under the old rates/current council tax a single (not necessarily well off) person pays as much as four people living in a similar sized house next door, despite using the same (or fewer) services.

I guess though that a poll tax is not easy to operate.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 7:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Schiz
I think the main problem with the Poll Tax as you rightly said was how to enforce collection
The problem is that individuals can move around but houses can't which explains why governments always go for the easy option but not necessarily the fairest option
Of course there was the other problem namely the fact that Scotland was used as a kind of Guinea Pig for the new tax which seriously got up the noses of most Scots
I think this goes some way to explaining why even more than 20 years later the Tories have so few seats in Scotland
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SantaFefan



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ruddlescat wrote:
Santa the trouble is you always think you can afford them and then get a shock as to how much it costs when they come along..


Yes, fair comment and I understand that. But, ( and I know I'm on thin ice here! Laughing ) why do I constantly see young people, seemingly not particularly well off, surrounded by kids?? why do they think they can afford to raise 2, 3 or 4 kids? that's what gets my goat.
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mark occomore



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If your a couple earning 88k you could still receive the child benefit. Because one of you are earning less money. It a lot of mismash with teething problems, before 2013 when this should start.
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SantaFefan



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 9:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, so I heard on the radio this afternoon.. wouldn't you think somebody would have thought this through before they announced it?
This is exactly what's been happening with Benefits isn't it.. some people are being clever and claiming everything going using loopholes!
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would think there are an awful lot of anomolies which will have to be thought through and sorted out before the changes take effect
I would imagine that's why there will be no change for over two years in order to buy a bit of time to refine the details
After all with the state the public finances are in its surprising that there is to be such a long delay and there must be some reason
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mark occomore



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PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:00 am    Post subject: No more benefits for lazy people Reply with quote

I think one thing is right considering the backlash about child Benefits - the Tax Payer shouldn't foot the bill for those who are sitting on there arses all -day and claiming Disablity Allowance or Income Support etc. You have to be fair with these benefits, and make sure those people are claiming are doing this because of there illness etc. Those people who claim the dole etc... and sit at home in front of the telly, or on the streets drinking shouldn't be allowed anything. You can't expect someone to live on fresh air, but at the end of the day it's not our and the governments problem.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark I don't think anyone would disagree that people who can work should work but the fact is there are few vacancies at the moment and the position is likely to get worse before it gets better
Also the benefits system is subject to Human Rights legislation which would prevent any Government from withdrawing benefits completely and Brussels would take them to task if they tried to do just like they are at present with France over Romany evictions
Its all very well to bang on about a few people who may exploit the system but simple knee jerk solutions will not work for what is a complex problem and to throw the baby out with the bathwater is not really a very good idea
What is needed is sensible and gradual thought out long term reform
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ColinB
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 12:11 pm    Post subject: Re: No more benefits for lazy people Reply with quote

mark occomore wrote:
I think one thing is right considering the backlash about child Benefits - the Tax Payer shouldn't foot the bill for those who are sitting on there arses all -day and claiming Disablity Allowance or Income Support etc. You have to be fair with these benefits, and make sure those people are claiming are doing this because of there illness etc. Those people who claim the dole etc... and sit at home in front of the telly, or on the streets drinking shouldn't be allowed anything. You can't expect someone to live on fresh air, but at the end of the day it's not our and the governments problem.


That's not the point, mark. The point is that (yet again) that nice ex-Eton schoolboy barely out of short trousers (otherwise known as the Chancellor of The Exchequer) has gone and opened his gob and made an announcement without properly thinking through this new proposal.

If he can't think through something simple like that how is managing to think through all the complexities of the Oct 20th Spending Review?

Lord Evan Elpussal.

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undiscovered



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PostPosted: Wed Oct 06, 2010 12:32 pm    Post subject: Re: No more benefits for lazy people Reply with quote

mark occomore wrote:
the Tax Payer shouldn't foot the bill for those who are sitting on there arses all -day and claiming Disablity Allowance or Income Support etc..


mark occomore wrote:
You have to be fair with these benefits, and make sure those people are claiming are doing this because of there illness etc.


Which one of these do you believe Mark ?

If you mean the stories that the Mail and Sun like to run about a few criminals (yes they are) that abuse the system. There have always been there and yes we should do something about it, and no matter what the press say ALL governments for years have been doing things about it. The majority of these benefits go to the needy exactly where they should go.
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childprufe



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 08, 2010 4:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let's take a step back folks.........
The cause of these cuts is not the Old Etonian so unfairly disparaged above, but the gang of criminals who overspent our money while stealing the pension funds in which the truly prudent had invested for so many years.
It is, however, ludicrous that a household with an income of 80k is entitled to benefits while one with an income of 45k is not.
It is also high time that a couple had the option of transferring the tax allowance of a non-working partner to a working partner.
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Helen May



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 08, 2010 8:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

childprufe wrote:
Let's take a step back folks.........
The cause of these cuts is not the Old Etonian so unfairly disparaged above, but the gang of criminals who overspent our money while stealing the pension funds in which the truly prudent had invested for so many years.
It is, however, ludicrous that a household with an income of 80k is entitled to benefits while one with an income of 45k is not.
It is also high time that a couple had the option of transferring the tax allowance of a non-working partner to a working partner.


Totally agree Childprufe.

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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 08, 2010 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes childprufe I agree
What you say is just ordinary common sense
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mark occomore



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 5:40 am    Post subject: Incapacity benefit claimants reassessed Reply with quote

The fitness test is starting to be rolled out from today for those who claim incapacity Benefit. People who live in the North East Scotland and Burnley in Lancashire are the first to be called. Those who are able to work will be moved to Jobseekers allowance.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-11510726

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This has been in operation for years, but hopefully they will be more tough.
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Rachel
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

An Army assault course. That should do it.
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is currently coverage on the Jeremy Vine show about this subject
An 83 year old pensioner with only one eye and who is deaf completely in one ear has just passed the first part of the new so called disability test
It seems quite clear to me that this new test is seriously defective in that it does not enquire into a claimant's medical or previous work history and does not even touch on pysycological and other mental health difficulties which might seriously impair a claimant's ability to work
There is a common misconception that somehow everyone claiming these type of benefits is ripping off the system but for years I worked dealing with such matters giving Welfare Benefits advice to claimants and I can assure you the amount of fraud is minute compared to the number of people who desperately need financial help and this new system is likely to cause severe problems
Yes Mark I used to think the same as you until I actually started dealing with such cases but years of experience of doing so has made me change my mind
Dishonest claimants should be rooted out but in a way which does not cause severe hardship to genuine people in the process which this new system is almost certain to do
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Helen May



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 11:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why did they have a pensioner on answering the questions in the first place?

H
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littlepieces



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 11:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well it looks like i will now be able to give a first hand account of life on the dole as i have been laid off.Benefit city here i come Sad
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ruddlescat



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 11, 2010 12:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Helen I didn't really follow that either
The only thing I can think is perhaps they wanted to get someone on the show who was actually likely to be reassessed but nobody would stick their neck out through fear of prejudicing their position once the real assessment actually happened
There again it might just have been down to a producer with a strange sense of humour!
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