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UK Politics - We Don’t Want to See Your Papers, Please

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To avoid the appearance of a screeching u-turn in cancelling vaccine passports, Sajid Javid shrewdly invokes the Britons natural mistrust of Nazis from old films: “I never liked the idea of saying to people you must show your papers.”

In other news today touching on the government’s COVID management, 300,000 people probably broke quarantine when travelling to the UK just as the Delta variant spread across the globe.

And speaking of u-turns, here’s two more for you - 12 to 15 year olds can get a vaccination. But only one. And Andrew Neil (incidentally the most famous person to graduate from my high school until David Tennant came along) has finally resigned as chairman and main presenter of GB News, the channel he founded and then ignored for four months.

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40 minutes ago, john said:

In other news today touching on the government’s COVID management, 300,000 people probably broke quarantine when travelling to the UK just as the Delta variant spread across the globe.

of course, they should have just said they were fully vaccinated because literally nobody cares if you actually are.

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52 minutes ago, john said:

To avoid the appearance of a screeching u-turn in cancelling vaccine passports, Sajid Javid shrewdly invokes the Britons natural mistrust of Nazis from old films: “I never liked the idea of saying to people you must show your papers.”

Surely a U-turn on having to show your papers to vote is also in the offing?

No?

Huh. Almost as if Javid is as full of shit as his boss.

In other, more mathematical news, it turns out the Work and Pensions Secretary has no idea how Universal Credit works.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-58547881

 

Quote

 

Work and Pensions Secretary Therese Coffey has backed the cut to universal credit (UC), saying removing the £20 uplift would only mean "two hours' extra work every week" for claimants.

Speaking to BBC Breakfast, she said the government would try to help people "perhaps secure those extra hours".

But a charity warned claimants would need to work up to nine extra hours a week to make up the shortfall.

But the Resolution Foundation disputed her figures, as claimants who work additional hours see their benefits reduced - or for each £1 they earn, the UC payment falls by 63p.

The charity said a UC claimant earning the National Living Wage - £8.91 an hour - and with an income of at least £6,100 a year, would take home just £6.60 for two hours work due to the taper in the payment, falling to £4.48 if they pay tax and National Insurance.

And they said the actual take home pay would fall to £2.24 an hour once any pension contributions or additional childcare or travel costs were taken into account.

This would mean they would need to work nine extra hours a week to make up for the removal of the £20 uplift.

 

Quite apart from being totally wrong, the initial claim is also ignorant about the actual lived experience of people on UC. Does the minister think that people on benefits, in low income jobs with families to look after, can just up their working week by two hours? Does she not realise how time poor (as well as every other kind of poor) people in those circumstances actually are? It's exhausting enough being on a budget, working in a low paid job, trying to bring up kids and pay the bills and do the housework and actually cope with it all, and frankly most of those folks don't work a job that routinely has paid overtime available anyway. Is the minister suggesting they should go get a second (or third) job? Or is she alluding to a relaxation of the working time rules, which the government promised faithfully would not be messed with if we left the EU?

The Conservatives are quick to blame poor people for bad parenting and not putting time into their families and communities, but apparently those same poor people can just put in a couple of hours' overtime to pay their bills - and the NHS bill, too, of course. Can't ask the wealthy to pay for that.

Edited by mormont

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1 hour ago, john said:

“I never liked the idea of saying to people you must show your papers.”

Unless its time to exercise your ancient, democratic right to vote in your country's elections.

In that case, let's see those papers, or get tae fuck.

Funny that, isn't it?

 

 

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2 hours ago, mormont said:

Surely a U-turn on having to show your papers to vote is also in the offing?

No?

Huh. Almost as if Javid is as full of shit as his boss.

In other, more mathematical news, it turns out the Work and Pensions Secretary has no idea how Universal Credit works.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-58547881

 

Quite apart from being totally wrong, the initial claim is also ignorant about the actual lived experience of people on UC. Does the minister think that people on benefits, in low income jobs with families to look after, can just up their working week by two hours? Does she not realise how time poor (as well as every other kind of poor) people in those circumstances actually are? It's exhausting enough being on a budget, working in a low paid job, trying to bring up kids and pay the bills and do the housework and actually cope with it all, and frankly most of those folks don't work a job that routinely has paid overtime available anyway. Is the minister suggesting they should go get a second (or third) job? Or is she alluding to a relaxation of the working time rules, which the government promised faithfully would not be messed with if we left the EU?

The Conservatives are quick to blame poor people for bad parenting and not putting time into their families and communities, but apparently those same poor people can just put in a couple of hours' overtime to pay their bills - and the NHS bill, too, of course. Can't ask the wealthy to pay for that.

Surprised someone out of touch with the working poor didn't say it was only 20 minutes work, at the most. 

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While the rest of the criticism is wholly merited. Saying there are additional travel costs is a bit disingenuous.

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Ah, well. That'll be the end of Michael Gove, then. :lol:

Look on the bright side, Govey. Now there's nothing stopping you from pulling on your chaps and getting off your chobblers down Heaven every Tuesday night.

 

Edited by Spockydog

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1 hour ago, BigFatCoward said:

While the rest of the criticism is wholly merited. Saying there are additional travel costs is a bit disingenuous.

Why?

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6 minutes ago, mormont said:

Why?

Because 2 hours of work is a suggestion of overtime surely. Not someone travelling into work for a 2 hour shift. 

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10 minutes ago, BigFatCoward said:

Because 2 hours of work is a suggestion of overtime surely. Not someone travelling into work for a 2 hour shift. 

It's not clear that it is suggesting that - as I said, a lot of people won't have the kind of employment where you can just work an extra two hours on the end of a working day. That tends to be the case for people who manage their own workload, like office workers, not for low paid staff. If the cafe shuts at 6, it shuts at 6. You can't just stay till 8. If there are extra hours available, the chances are you'd have to come in an extra day.

Even where someone could work two hours overtime, there may well be additional travel costs - you might not be able to get the usual bus if you work late. You might need to get your parents to pick the kids up from after school club that day, so you have to go to their house to collect them, meaning more travel. Every alteration to the routine has at least the potential to increase travel costs, so I think that's a fair thing to take into account.

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Finally, a policy!

Keir Starmer Says A Labour Government Would Raise Minimum Wage To £10 Per Hour And Ban Zero Hours Contracts

Quote

 

Keir Starmer has announced a Labour government would push the minimum wage past £10 an hour and ban zero hours contracts.

Delivering a speech at the TUC congress he unveiled a raft of new employment policies including increasing sick pay and guaranteeing it to all workers.

The Labour leader said if he was elected he “would immediately increase the minimum wage to at least £10 an hour," saying for a carer that would increase their annual salary by £2,500.

 

 

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Unfortunately, too many people have no choice. 

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They do work for a few people. My brother in law was an actor and he was very reliant on them between jobs. But they should be only for people who volunteer for them. 

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11 minutes ago, BigFatCoward said:

They do work for a few people. My brother in law was an actor and he was very reliant on them between jobs. But they should be only for people who volunteer for them. 

Yeah exactly. The issue around zero hours is not having the rights and protections associated with being an employee, not so much the concept itself. In a gig economy zero hours is quite useful, provided people can find work fo fill the hours they need. 
 

I know some small business owners who relied heavily on zero hours because they needed that flexibility and it worked for their employees too.

But the problem is that the system becomes open to abuse too easily. 
 

Banning zero hours sounds like a good policy on paper but what is actually needed is the ability for flexible contracts with added protection for workers 

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I do agree with HoI. I work in a student union, as some of you know: most of our bar staff, cleaning staff etc. are students. They don't mind zero hours contracts, as a rule, because (and this is the thing people often forget) they have no mutuality of obligation - that is, we don't have to offer those employees work but if we do, they don't have to accept it. If they're busy with academic work or out of town that week or just don't fancy it or whatever, they just have to say so and we have to go find someone else to cover the shift.

I'd point out that employees on zero hours contracts do have the rights and protections of being an employee, at least if you're actually doing it right and not pretending that your employees are actually self-employed contractors or some such nonsense. (Did you know that Deliveroo riders, for example, technically don't have to use the Deliveroo branded thermal bags? This is part of the pretence that they're not actually employees. They are, of course.)

Anyway. The point is, 'banning' zero hours contracts probably won't amount to any such thing, because they're actually useful in some situations: it's more likely to mean introducing some sort of improved variable hours contract that gives employees rights to ask for a fixed hours contract or improves their access to sick pay.

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2 hours ago, mormont said:

...it's more likely to mean introducing some sort of improved variable hours contract that gives employees rights to ask for a fixed hours contract or improves their access to sick pay.

Also, mortgages.

 

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10 hours ago, Fragile Bird said:

Wow, I had to look up “zero hours contract”. Wikipedia says it’s mostly a UK thing.

Ffs, who would sign such an atrocity?

And a NZ thing under the previous govt.

I guess there is a subtle distinction between "casual employment" and zero hour contracts. I guess people who tend to have their sympathies more aligned with workers favour the casual employment approach, and people who want to allow businesses to treat workers whoever they want favour the zero hours approach. But in principle one could call any laws providing for casual employment with no inherent guarantee of regular hours a zero hours system. So the devil is always in the details, rather than in the name.

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9 hours ago, mormont said:

no mutuality of obligation - that is, we don't have to offer those employees work but if we do, they don't have to accept it.

That's the crux of the power imbalance inherent in a lot of zero hour regulations. Employers will tend to treat zero hour contracts as obligatory on the employee when the employer decides they need the worker to come in, whereas the worker has no capacity to oblige the employer to provide hours that suit their situation. The law might not allow employers to behave in that way, but audit, enforcement and complaints systems are often lacking or absent to ensure the regulations are implemented as advertised. Employers will also begrudge workers who have several zero hour arrangements, because that will mean the worker is potentially unavailable when the employer wants them. These sorts of regulations are typically implemented with rhetoric about how good employers will behave, and how bad employees are abusing current systems. But the rhetoric rarely considers how bad employers will abuse good workers. And there are a lot of bad employers out there, including big multinationals.

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