Workfare is a word used to describe a growing number of government schemes that require benefits claimants to do forced unpaid work or face cuts to their benefit payments (referred to as sanctions).

These schemes include the Work Programme, Help to Work and Community Work Placements.

The principle of a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work is one of the core demands of the Trade Union movement - Unite believes that workfare schemes fail to measure up to this principle.

Unite opposes the use of workfare schemes. Why? 

•    Schemes are nothing more than forced unpaid labour.
•    Workfare programmes subsidise private employers by making the taxpayer pay for the wage bill
•    Workfare is undermining YOU at work by replacing paid jobs with forced labour
•    Workfare stigmatises benefits claimants and locks them further into poverty
•    There is no evidence that Workfare programmes get people into paid work
With many claimants now being placed in Unite organised workplaces on these schemes, it is time to take action and fight back in the workplace.

Fill in your postcode below to ask your council to sign the pledge


Type Name Size
Link Type Icon Good practice in volunteering 0.8Mb
Link Type Icon Keep Volunteering Voluntary - #Workfare N/A
Link Type Icon Working for free is an expensive business N/A
Link Type Icon Workfare scheme is failing miserably in helping people into employment N/A
Link Type Icon Unite announces boycott of Workfare and condemns it as ‘state sponsored slavery’ N/A

More campaign news ›