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  1. Lapsed, thank you for your help, it was your post & wonderfully constructed piece that i used & it works. The DWP have no intention of helping anyone , i realised that very quickly . I am very lucky to have found a new job & one beyond my wildest dreams, i went out for a pint with my old work mates last night, out of 12 only 2 of us have managed to find employment , the rest are signing on . I felt guilty telling them my news , i truly thought i might never work again . Being in my mid 50`s & out of work you think that a meaningful job with decent pay & perks will never happen again, i know just how lucky i am. I can`t thank you enough for your help & advice , it gave me the strength to strap in & take them on & i was prepared for the battle ahead. I will be making a donation to the site with my first pay check . I wish all of you the very best & once again thank you. Harry.
  2. Hi all, yesterday i was told that i did`t have to use the UJM system for job search , nor attend the JC & use the computers.It was removed from my agreement. Today i attended my interview & an hour after leaving they offered me a position, i start on Monday . I went in for one job & after looking at my CV he decided that they would make a new role for my skills & experience, more money, company vehicle, phone & Laptop & i can see a future again. To say it has been a good week would be an understatement & i can`t thank you enough for all the advice & well wishes. I feel elated at being a working man again. Harry.
  3. Thank you Lapsed & Mrs Fillion, I would be happy to accept dropping the UJM nonsense & keep the rest, i don`t have a Face book account & i did say at my initial interview that any form of job search on SM was a no no, twitter, Linkedin & such like are not for me. Got an interview on Wednesday so i am doing my research on the company & doing mock interviews with myself, i do hope i can get this job & put an end to this farce. But if i don`t then i need to have my agreement to reflect my wishes & the law. Thanks so much for the advice & help , you people are amazing. Harry.
  4. Thanks Mr P, i am not as confident as yourself but we shall see. What is the next stage now, if you don`t mind me asking. I am due to sign on next Tuesday & would like to be prepared . Harry.
  5. Hi all handed the letter above into my "coach " today & asked for a review of my agreement , then left it with her . I saw the UJM " coach " , she marked me down as attended but made notes that i refused to use the computers at the job center but did put in my reasons for not using. She did say she would not be sanctioning me but it was the way that she said " well, i wont sanction you " , i take that to mean that when the passes the notes on to whomever then they will be applying a sanction, i will find out in due course i suppose. Not sure of how the procedure moves on from here so if any of you could help in that direction i would be grateful. Harry.
  6. Mrs / Mr coach / Manager . I am unable to register/allow access to my Universal Jobmatch (UJ) account for the following reasons: 1. In response to a Freedom of Information request the DWP stated the following: “…The disclaimer on the Universal Jobmatch (UJ) service forms part of the Standards of Behaviour which are for jobseekers’ information. A jobseeker is not required to accept the Standards of Behaviour when they receive a Jobseeker’s Direction to create a UJ profile…” The DWP response can be seen in full here: www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/155118/re...se%20v1%200.pdf.html And again: “The disclaimer forms part of the Jobseeker Standards of Behaviour which jobseekers are not required to‘accept’.” www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/152647/re...%20Response.pdf.html As stated in the response, the Standards of Behaviour are for information only and thus cannot be made mandatory. However, there is a tick box for the Standards of Behaviour on the UJ registration page that must be ticked to enable registration. I do not (as allowed) accept the Standards of Behaviour, cannot therefore tick the box, and consequently am unable to register with UJ. 2. There is a tick box for a “mandatory” equality questionnaire. This is the DWP’s own message (from the UJ FAQ) regarding this: “DWP requests equality information to help it monitor and continually improve the services it provides to the public. To help us to do this, we would like you to complete this questionnaire. Providing equality information is strictly voluntary. If provided, this information may be used only in accordance with applicable law and will not be shared with employers. If you do not want to answer any of the questions, please select Prefer not to say." It is not possible to register with UJ without ticking the “mandatory” equality questionnaire box but, as clearly evinced in the DWP’s own statement, the equality questionnaire is “strictly voluntary”. To be clear, being given the option to select “Prefer not to say” once in the questionnaire is not acceptable as, from a legal perspective, this constitutes a response to the questionnaire, i.e. taking part in it, and is in direct contravention to the “strictly voluntary” nature of the questionnaire. Clearly registering for UJ cannot be made conditional on taking part in a “strictly voluntary” activity. I do not wish to take part in the equality questionnaire and until I can register without having to tick this box I am unable to register with UJ. 3. The Welfare Reform Act 2012, chapter 2, section 17(3)© states: (3) Action which may be specified under subsection (1)(b) includes in particular— creating and maintaining an online profile This is the only legislation relating to online job-searching and it is clearly very generic. There is no mention of UJ, nor can there be as it would be anti-competitive and therefore illegal. Therefore, to demand that a jobseeker registers with UJ, particularly under threat of a possible sanction if not complied with, is not reasonable and would fail the Wednesbury principles’ test of reasonableness. I maintain several online profiles through the many other job-search websites that I use and I have an email address. This is sufficient to satisfy the requirement of the Act and obviates the need to register with UJ which, as a job-finding service, adds nothing which would enhance the job-finding process compared to that which I already undertake). It is also recognised by the DWP that other job search engines are a sufficient substitute for UJM: www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/167039/re.../FOI%203016.pdf.html "Whilst those claimants for whom it is reasonable will be required to register with Universal Jobmatch, the Department also recognises that there are other job sites on which profiles can be created and maintained for the purposes of work search activity. Work search expectations will differ for each claimant depending on their individual circumstances and job goals and advisers will tailor requirements for each claimant." As a consequence, any FLA issuing a JSD mandating a jobseeker to register with UJ would have to demonstrate why it is reasonable (Wednesbury principles) to single out UJ amongst the many other equally good, and usually better, job search websites. 4. The enforced acceptance of cookies is illegal. The DWP has attempted to subvert the Data Protection Act by accepting cookies on Internet access devices (IADs) in Jobcentres. This is illegal. The requirements Under EU Data Protection Regulations (Directive 95/46/EC) are unequivocal. Consent must be informed, explicit, specific and freely given (for both the subscriber and the user). By accepting cookies on a jobseeker’s behalf on Jobcentre IADs the ability for the jobseeker (the user) to consent freely to their use is removed. I would point out that this is a matter of common sense if nothing else. It is the individual user of the UJM website (the jobseeker) who is affected by the use of cookies and not the DWP. Which particular machine or device they are accepted on is immaterial. It is the act of accepting the cookies that is salient and to which the user’s consent, freely given, must be explicitly obtained. Pre-accepted cookies clearly subvert that right. Specifically, DIRECTIVE 2002/58/EC OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 12 July 2002 in point (17) states: “For the purposes of this Directive, consent of a user or subscriber, regardless of whether the latter is a natural or a legal person, should have the same meaning as the data subject’s consent as defined and further specified in Directive 95/46/EC. Consent may be given by any appropriate method enabling a freely given specific and informed indication of the user’s wishes, including by ticking a box when visiting an Internet website." You will see that whereas the “subscriber or user” phrase can be misinterpreted, as the DWP have chosen to do because it benefits them, the above makes it clear it is the “user’s wishes” that are paramount. The DWP are of the mistaken belief that the subscriber (the DWP) can accept cookies on a user’s behalf on the IADs. It is in your interest to know that because the IADs are reset after each user a new set of “clean” cookies is used for each new user. These cookies monitor a uniquely identifiable jobseeker using UJ (as evidenced, for example, by an adviser’s ability to monitor the log in times of a user even if that user has not given full access to his account). The cookies are therefore user based and not subscriber or, more generically, terminal based. For this reason the DWP must explicitly obtain the freely given consent of each user to accept cookies as per Directive 95/46/EC. I do not consent to the use of any cookies and consequently will not be able to use UJ. 5. The protocol for obtaining consent from the jobseeker has not been followed because it enforces consent through threats of penalties, i.e. sanctions. DWP definition of consent: www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/copy_of_d...docu#incoming-225710 ICO on cookie consent: www.ico.org.uk/for_organisations/privacy...mmunications/consent 6. It is not mandatory for a jobseeker to reveal his email address to the DWP. This is confirmed in this DWP FOI response: www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/169236/re...%20response.pdf.html “Providing a CV, email address or telephone number is not mandatory, therefore is not sanctionable.” Creating a Government Gateway account and registering with UJM both require an email address to be provided and that email address is made available to the Jobcentre even if the jobseeker does not give permission to access his UJ account (as evidenced by the default method of locating a new UJ registrant’s account by their unique email account per the UJ Toolkit). Therefore a jobseeker who does not wish to reveal his email address cannot be mandated to register with UJM. 7. The U&JM site is insecure and has advertising disguised as jobs etc. anyone can set up as a business because there isn’t even basic checks done. 8 I have not signed a data protection waiver (for which the Jobcentre has a form) and therefore retain my DPA rights to my personal information. 9. Use of IADs not mandatory: “A3. Claimants will not be mandated to use IADs available in Jobcentre Plus offices and will, therefore, not be sanctioned if they refuse to use them. Use of IADs by claimants is voluntary.” www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/wireless_technology_safet y On the basis of the DWP’s enforcing of consent through threats of penalties contrary to the principles of the Data Protection Act and disregard for privacy of home life and correspondence in accordance with the Human Rights Act, not to mention their own Code of Conduct, please be advised that this is an official notification requesting that the changes to my Claimant Commitment, to which I have not given consent, be referred to a Decision Maker and comprehensive details of the adviser's opinions as to their appropriateness be attached. I also insist on being given the opportunity of forwarding to the Decision Maker my objections and why I regard them as inappropriate. Due to the matters in dispute and the reconsideration sought, officers, agents, servants or others of the Secretary of State may not issue a direction, amend my Jobseekers Agreement or make demands or impose penalties in regard to changes or allowing access to my Universal Jobmatch Account. Further, I wish to notify you that I do not consent to my personal data being shared or disclosed without my prior explicit and written consent. Consent may not be deemed by digital submission. Personal data is any data that can be used to identify an individual. Consent may be obtained on application. Any attempt to sanction me during this review will be met with official complaints & a full & comprehensive use of the complaints procedures, i have forwarded copies of this letter my local MP . Harry.
  7. Hi everyone, i have ended up copying & pasting the entire information suggested as i think it applies to my circumstances of not wanting to be forced to use UJM for job search . Could you please take a look at the letter below & if you think it could be tweaked & improved i would welcome your help . I have had to make 2 post because of my low post count & not allowing any links. Harry
  8. Thank you Lapsed , I have a recording device & have recorded my one & only meeting so far with my " coach " . she is very amiable & polite but i trust no one who works at the JC no matter how pleasant & cordial they appear . I will have a different "coach " for the UJM search & will draft a rough copy for comments & advice on her before i present it to her , i will include my signing on " coach " too. Thanks for your help it is very much appreciated. I just want to be able to find employment under my own steam without these futile lip service exercises that accomplish nothing but frustration & IMHO have a negative effect on moral in searching for employment. Many thanks harry.
  9. Hi , this is fantastic , i can`t thank you all enough for the information provided & the time you have taken to reply . If it is ok i would like to make a draft letter & post it up so i can get your opinions . One last question if i may, do i present my letter on the day of my UJM search [ next Tuesday ] or hand in / post it in advance , i am worried about repercussions as i have been told in conversation while at the JC that the manager is a tyrant & bully , admittedly this is an opinion from a couple of fellow claimants but she certainly has an aggressive & very authoritarian presence about her but my legal rights & my own protection are my main concern & i will make sure i get them adhered too by the JC / DWP . Thank you all so much for your help , it is greatly appreciated. Harry .
  10. Hi , i am on JSA & have only recently started claiming benifits , today i have been informed that i have to attend the JC every week . One week is signing on & job search proof the following is UJM search at the JC. The latter is why i am posting, having shown my " coach " 33 job applications in less than 3 weeks & receiving a phone call while with her in connection for a possible job i still have to go through this UJM search nonsense . I have a UJM account, i have not allowed them access to it & i have no other information other than my name . No CV, phone or address . Am i legally required to.. A: Have a UJM account . B : Go through this futile & soul destroying waste of time. C : Are there any templates or legal documents i can copy to take with me to show them i am within my rights not to use UJM . It has been an eye opening few weeks & dealing with the whole DWP is an exercise in frustration . The one thing i have quickly learned is that they are not there to help you find work , it is a processing center with shark pools everywhere , talk about eyes in the back of your head . Many thanks Harry
  11. I had my meeting this morning & it has all changed. When i was asked to produce my ID documents , i presented my driving license & passport plus utility bills . At this point the lady said " but you`re Irish " , i replied yes. Turns out that if you are not a British subject then you go on JSA, i made my claim over the phone & clearly stated i was Irish so not sure why they did`t move me then . So i have had to go through the whole process again. What is the difference between the two ?, i was not aware there was two different forms of claiming unemployment . The lady at the job center did say i was lucky to be going on to JSA as it is not as strict as UC . She also said that it would be rolled out as UC by 2017 for everyone but at this moment it is JSA & UC . Harry.
  12. Hello Dazza , thanks for replying, if i don`t allow access to the UJM account how do they know i have used it. Is there a log or something, please forgive me if that is a stupid question but i am very new to all this. I do & will continue to search Reed, Indeed + all the rest of the web sites, i have applied for 3 jobs this morning & have the confirmation email replies. Just to clarify , we do have the legal right to choose if we want to give them access ? . I expect they will try to put pressure on if we refuse but if it is a legal right then ultimately it is our choice. Can we claim money for printing off our job search as i will use my local library & get a receipt rather than use my own & at my cost. What about bus fares & travel costs ?, as i no longer have a car [ ahem ] i will be out of pocket in this respect too. Thanks once again for your help. Harry.
  13. Off & running, i tried to fill out the claim form for UC online but it kept crashing, so i rang them & did it over the phone. The lady i spoke to was nice enough but it is a big shock from the last time i had to claim any benifits . I am now waiting for them to ring me to arrange an appointment at the job center, i only gave them my home number, i refused to give a mobile number or email address . I don't have a car as of now [ thank you Mr P ] . Can i ask about this agreement & what i have to do in regards to show my job search please. I am actively seeking work , i want to be back in work but i have certain skills & wage requirements, obviously that may change according to the jobs available but for now i would like something in my field or close to it , its not the best time of year to be looking for a decent job but i will get through Xmas & hopefully i will get off this thing altogether. What can i expect in regards to showing my job search. I am happy to show applications , confirmation of applications but what else will they require?. I will not allow access to UJM , so i think it will mark me down as a problem " customer " but i want to protect myself from sanctions & find out what they won`t tell you as in a legal sense. Once again , thank you all so much for all the advice. Harry.
  14. Thank you all for taking the time to reply , it really is appreciated. i am very worried about this & there is not point in pretending otherwise. I will heed the advise above , it would seem that it is now an exercise in catching the claimant out & making it so unbearable that they just give up but i have no alternative at the moment . I will not be giving them access to my UJM account , is there any rules regarding the " claimant agreement " , i assume wee don`t really enter into a discussion on what i would think is reasonable or helpful but thought i would ask. Hours of job search for instance, types of employment & wage requirements. I won`t be joining twitter / Linkedin or any other such nonsense . I am a man is his mid 50`s with engineering & manufacturing experience & qualification but in my area it is a dying industry, if not completely gone. I did have an interview last week but they haven`t got back to me so i assume i was unsuccessful , i was hoping to spare myself from all this by getting the position but it looks like i will have to enter the gladiators den . It seems that the job center is a battle ground now instead of one that is actually there to support & help find work , a far cry form the last time i needed one. Thanks again everyone Harry. PS . I have just ordered a small USB recording device from Amazon & intend to record every meeting & interaction with the JC, i never in my wildest dreams would have thought i would come to this.
  15. Thank you for your reply antone. I have been through a telephone questionnaire , the questions were as above & have been informed i will be on UC while i am looking for work & signing on . Not sure how to approach this & if anyone could give me some do`s & don`ts regarding what i am legally obliged to do & what i can do to protect myself from any possible sanctioning i would be very grateful. It has been a very long time since i needed government assistance & the rules have changed but it seems very draconian , that may just be my initial impression & my trepidation though. Harry.
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