Came across an excellent article that details a real-life situation that ought to be barely believable but sadly isn’t. A cross between “The Thick of It”‘s scenes with the Tory motivational guru and a Nike commercial, the mandatory sessions this woman had to attend add a fascinating extra insight into the whole, chilling ‘positive psychology’ thinking that this government is clearly using to avoid responsibility for the situation it has created: it’s not us, it’s you.
Three things stood out particularly:
1) She asks whether a disabled person attending the course would be told his/her problems are all in the mind. Scarily, that’s exactly what the government and its Atos hatchet-men do think about many disabled people.
2) She’s told that she should indulge in no more than 30 minutes, one day a week, of ‘lamenting’ her situation and spend the other 167.5 hours being only positive. This government really does think it has the right to control how we think, even when it’s utterly detached from reality.
3) If she hadn’t attended this ludicrous course, she would have been ‘sanctioned’ – lost her benefits for at least four weeks. Time wasted that could have been spent actually looking for work, and for which we’re no doubt paying a hefty fee. This government’s austerity rhetoric is just nonsense. There’s money, but it goes where they think best: to their mates who get to provide money for old rope.
But please take a look and draw your own conclusions. It’s an eye-opener and very nicely written.
Adventures at A4e
‘Izzy, nothing is impossible…’ he tells me reassuringly, he starts to read one of the many motivational quotations that are stuck all over the walls and on the desk around which the group is seated. I stare back at him blankly, horrified. Then the man next to me starts reading out loud the Oprah Winfrey that is in front of him.
This was one of many surreal moments of an A4e training course ‘finding and getting a job’ that I was coerced into attending by my job centre advisor. She had told me that it would help me with my CV, however, it seemed that the trainer of the course had much grander ideas – he was determined to change my ‘being’ which was apparently what is preventing me from getting a job – rather than, say, an economy that is heading back into recession and a…
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