Freedom, system thinking, politics, science, education, economics, pirates

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Immigrants do the jobs no one else will do

Here's an article from the Grauniad complaining about goby policies to limit immigrants access to benefits and citizenship. The question the writer poses is: Who will do the lobs the immigrants did when they've gone?

Answer: Our own unemployed. There's a lovely Polish lady working in the chipshop round the corner. If she should return to Poland, will there be any British unemployed person available with the skills to serve fish&chips? Of course there are, millions of them. But, if they took the job, they'd lose benefits almost £ for £, so being rational people, they don't take these jobs, leaving them free for immigrants who don't get the benefits.

So the key to the crisis of mass unemployment and jobs that are only done by immigrants is to change the benefit system, since it's design is the root cause of the problem. No Guardian writer could bring
himself to write that, though.

-- Post From My iPhone


  1. Mark, You seem to be perpetuating the inexplicable myth that people losing their jobs are happy to live off the state. Consider this, contribution based job seekers allowance stands at £60.50 a week, this You can receive for six months. I don't know about You but if that is not an incentive to find work what is? If the Polish woman in the chippy vacates her job I would be happy to do it. Millions of jobs have been lost in the past year and there are immigrants filling jobs that the newly unemployed would be only too happy to do, I myself have found myself doing dismal jobs for employment agencies, who are all oversubscribed, many employers are not keen to employ me simply because they are paying much less than I have earned in the past.In fact thousands if not millions of unemployed are not claiming because the system is a joke. The benefits system needs to change, but not perhaps in the way people think, and most immigrants are no longer "needed" because there are already people willing to do their jobs.

  2. I didn't say they are happy to, but it is a rational choice for many, especially if you have dependants and live in private rented accommodation.

    It's not just the £60.50. If that's all you can get, then as you say, you need to get a job.

    Here are some sample figures from DWP.

    Married couple, one child under 11, in private rented accommodation. Both adults unemployed

    Job Seeker's Allowance = £60.50
    Child benefit = £18.80
    Income based benefit (old income support)=£84.99
    Housing benefit = £142.10
    Council tax benefit = £20.30
    Free school meals = £3

    Total = £329.69 (£17,143 p.a)

    Now he gets a job paying minimum wage; he's packing bananas in a factory for 30 hours a week.

    30 hours at minimum wage £165.60 p/w

    Income tax = £9.91
    NICs = £6.67
    Working tax credit = £66.11
    Child tax credit = £50.54
    Housing benefit=£80.91
    Council tax benefit = £1.47

    Total = £348.05

    Working therefore pays: £18.36

    Equivalent to an hourly rate of £0.61

    If he has to take a bus to work, or buy lunch in the canteen, he's paying to work.

    How many bananas would you pack for 61p/hour?

    My argument is not about folks not wanting to work. There is pride and dignity that makes the vast majority of us want to work, and because of some people's personal circumstances, work does pay and life on benefits is impossible without family support.

    The design of the system is the problem.

    My argument is not just based on trolling the DWP website for interesting graphs, though I do do a lot of that. I have friends in these situations. I am lucky enough not to have experienced unemployment myself in a very long time, though my job is now far from secure.

    For example: Someone I know works two jobs, her husband has just lost his job. She went to see Citizen's advice, they took her through the figures and showed that she is working for nothing: every pound she earns is recovered by the govt in stopped benefits. She is trying to decide what to do and it depends on her husband's ability to get another job soon.

    The benefits system needs to change alright, it has to make work pay.

  3. I agree with you entirely! You would have to be a complete clod to work for less than you would receive on benefits. Even chav´s aren´t that stupid!

    I´ve never been on benefits so I don´t know the "ins and outs" but.. aren´t tax credits meant to make up the difference if someone gets a job that is less than the benefits they would have received?

    Surely, if someone is willing to take a low paid position, it is still in the states best interest financially to ensure that it is worth their while (at least for a limited period), especially if they have a family to support?

    Conversely, those that continually refuse to take vacant positions (such as those who would be filled otherwise by migrants), should have their benefits lowered or even withdrawn?

    The system of the government giving "cash" has to change too. The money should be voucher based and certain supermarkets should be nominated to take these vouchers. The state could also then ensure that the long term lazy arses don´t spent it on plasma TV´s, online Bingo, drugs and booze rather than on food and clothes for the kids!