Monday, 30 September 2013



Today Ann and I filled her car with Harvest Gifts from St. Augustine's, Rush Green and delivered them to one of Havering's several Food Banks. Whilst there we heard a little about the work they are doing and how every person who receives three day's  food is referred by an agency such as School Welfare, Citizen's Advice, Clergy etc. At this one outlet they are giving 1.3 tonnes of food to hungry people a month. We were told how many local children are going hungry; we heard how one teacher takes packets of biscuits to school for kids in her class who haven’t anything to eat. We learnt how one teenager has just been given a job and a contract by a national shopping chain of 3 hours a week at the minimum wage. This, it appears, is considered a job by the Employment Agency. This youngster can only pay his rent and buy food if, and when , he is employed doing “overtime” which he sometimes gets taking his hours to 20 a week. Is he expected to starve in the meantime?


Today George Osborne our much-loved Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that nobody should expect something for nothing. Mr Osborne used his keynote speech to confirm plans for a new Help to Work scheme under which the long-term unemployed will be required to do community work, such as picking up litter or cleaning graffiti, in return for their benefits. He said that those who have been unemployed for more than three years would either have to work for their dole, attend job centres daily to search for a job or accept help for underlying problems such as illiteracy or drug dependency. Press Association.

Far be it from me to call anyone a hypocrite but I wonder how a person who inherits a large fortune dares to speak about people getting something for nothing.


  1. Like you, I too have problems with the (very) rich oligarchy of all parties, who run the country and have lost touch with those whose means are very limited but I don't think we should allow our feelings about this vote seeking to blind us to the proportion of people who do exploit the benefit system. It s they who allow our politicians to demonize all those who need state support.
    I do hope, perhaps in vain, that this is a sincere attempt to ensure that the system works fairly.

  2. I just wish that there were some "proper" jobs available rather than the non jobs like the one I've quoted above (and there are many other examples). Then perhaps the Chancellor would be more justified in what he wants to do.

  3. All governments in the last 50 years have failed to get to grips with the very crucial question of immigration; and the free movement of labour within the EU is the final straw. The is why the population of the UK is at least 20-million more than it might otherwise have been.

    1. And there will be a whole lot more from January. I understand we can expect a great number when the rules change then

    2. That's right - from Bulgaria and Romania, with Croatia to follow at a later date and any other aspiring EU countries.

  4. Well said, Father! This is an outrage. If people have work, even cleaning graffiti or picking up letter, that's a job, and they should no longer get the dole but a wage. Furthermore, the number of unemployed people exceeds the number of jobs by a about two million. However mean the Tories treat 'em, and however keen they might be, two million will remain unemployed. As for that patronising idiocy about illiteracy and drugs, last time I was on the dole I had three degrees including a doctorate.