Via Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group
Monday November 6th 3-4pm
Department of Work and Pensions, Caxton House, 12 Tothill St, Westminster, SW1H
The government has already closed 24 jobcentres since August this year. They plan to close a further 78 Jobcentres by April of 2018.
16 of these Jobcentres are in London.
The poor and vulnerable need local jobcentres, not some superhub that they have to walk miles to reach.
Benefit money is too little to cover regular trips on public transport. People will have to walk. And don't be late or too ill to walk over a mile each way as often as the jobcentre demands– you'll be up for a sanction!
The Tories say that much of the jobcentres' work is now done online, but 5.3 million people in Britain have never used the internet, and 10 million lack the basic digital skills. And millions of these people will be in receipt of benefits.
You can't use the internet if you are learning disabled.
You can't use the internet if you can't afford a computer or a mobile phone contract or or the fee for using library or internet cafe
You can't use the internet if you are illiterate (and six to eight million Britons are borderline or fully illiterate)
Our local Jobcentres, Kilburn and Neasden, serve one of the most deprived areas in the country. If they are closed then over half of the borough of Camden and around two thirds of Brent will be more than half a mile from the nearest jobcentre, i.e. more than a mile round trip. These areas contain heavily populated areas: a lot of people are going to be affected.
In amongst the people who can't use the internet are hundreds of thousands of people who have lost their disability benefit because they aren't disabled enough for the Tories. They may be able to walk just 200 metres, or sometimes panic when out and get lost, or nor be able to plan a journey to places they don’t know, or have epilepsy. They may be seriously depressed or suffering from brain fog brought on by medication or illnesses like Fibromyalgia. They may be recovering from cancer or waiting for a heart operation. They may have variable conditions that mean that they can't guarantee being able to go out at all on any particular day.
But if you miss an appointment, or are simply late, you'll be considered for a sanction!
Let's meet outside the DWP's headquarters at Caxton House and let them know what we think about this.
Save our Jobcentres!
The 16 London jobcentres that are closing are:
Highgate, 24 November 2017
Edgware, 8 December 2017
Finchley, 12 January 2018
Dagenham, 19 January 2018
Southall, January 2018
Kingston, February 2018
Brixton,- 9 February 2018
Neasden 16 February 2018
Clapham 23 February 2018
Kilburn, March 2018
Hammersmith 9 March 2018
Croydon, 16 March 2018
Wandsworth, 23 March 2018
Leytonstone,- 30 March 2018
Hounslow, 10 Montague Road,
An account of a recent meeting on the issue can be found on the Brent Green Party blog HERE