Tag Archives: survey

Survey shows there IS a culture of bullying in Priti Patel’s Home Office

The bully: and it seems Priti Patel is presiding over a culture of bullying in the Home Office.

It’s official, then: Priti Patel presides over a culture of bullying and intimidation at the Home Office.

The issue came to public attention when Sir Philip Rutnam resigned as Permanent Secretary for the HO, saying he would be taking Ms Patel to court for constructive dismissal.

He said there had been a “vicious and orchestrated” plot against him, and that he was offered a bribe to stop him from launching court action, in what we must conclude was an attempt to keep it from becoming a matter of public knowledge.

Now we find that the former Permanent Secretary’s situation was not a unique, solitary aberration; a survey of Home Office employees shows that thousands of them have suffered similarly:

The Home Office people survey… results show 16% of respondents claimed they had been discriminated against at work in the past 12 months, roughly equating to 3,375 individuals.

And 14% said they had been bullied or harassed at work in the same period, roughly equal to 2,950 employees.

Of those who claimed they had been bullied, 1,444 said the nature of bullying was “negative micromanagement eg excessive control; made to feel incompetent”, while 1,242 respondents said they had been “humiliated in front of team or others”.

This is the accusation that was levelled against Ms Patel, of course.

The rot comes from the top; Ms Patel presides over a culture of intimidation – and in the meantime she has been falsely assuming credit for measures to restrict the spread of coronavirus.

She has to go.

Source: Survey of thousands of Home Office staff revives bullying row | Home Office | The Guardian

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DWP hires opinion poll firm to survey benefit claimants who challenge decisions. Why?

Our friends at Benefits and Work pose an interesting question: why has the DWP hired an opinion poll company – Ipsos Mori – to quiz PIP mandatory reconsideration claimants?

The rogue government department has been caught out recently, after a Freedom of Information request revealed that assessors from private contractors Atos and Capita have falsified around 7,300 benefit claims in order to deprive vulnerable people of money that is due to them.

Appeals against PIP decisions currently enjoy a success rate of more than 70 per cent, which tends to support the facts revealed by the FoI response.

Now, in a letter to dissenting claimants, the DWP has written that it has asked Ipsos MORI “to help them understand the experience of people who have disagreed with a decision that has been made regarding their benefit claim and to help the Department improve the services they offer”.

Benefits and Work has adopted an attitude of suspicion, with the website requesting information on the questions being asked, from anybody who agrees to answer them.

But why has the DWP hired Ipsos Mori to do this work?

Well, it has been said that opinion pollsters are never really hired to reflect the opinions of the public – but to shape them.

How do they do that?

In the choice of the questions they ask.

For example: asked if a benefit assessor was polite during the interview, even a disgruntled claimant might have to say that they were.

But how can the same claimant point out that their assessment had been doctored to provide false information, if they are not asked a question about it?

They can’t.

And if Ipsos Mori asks only the questions the DWP requires, then the government department will be able to claim that there is nothing wrong with its assessment system, with nobody able to claim that it is not depending on honest answers.

So Benefits and Work is right to advise caution, and to be keen to see the questions being asked.

This Writer would take a simpler view. I would tell anybody who is contacted to respond to the survey: don’t.

Source: Why has DWP hired Ipsos MORI to quiz PIP mandatory reconsideration claimants?

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Raise taxes on the rich, voters tell Johnson. They’ll be disappointed – it was never in his manifesto

Voter confusion: a survey has shown that voters’ policy preferences indicate they should have put Labour in power, not the Tories.

The Independent reckons Boris Johnson is facing a dilemma after a survey found voters who gave him his election landslide want him to raise taxes on the rich.

There’s just one problem:

That was never a Conservative manifesto promise so he’s under no obligation to do anything of the sort.

Did these people not realise that they were voting for the promises the Tories put in their manifesto?

Voters have never had the right to make demands on a government after putting it in power.

And I know it must seem unfair, considering governments very rarely act according to their manifestos. Theresa May’s 2017 manifesto was obsolete almost before it was published.

And in Johnson’s case, the dilemma isn’t even “Does he deliver for Conservative voters or business leaders?” as the news website claims.

Johnson will deliver for himself, as always. If anybody else profits, that’ll be their good fortune.

But the survey does make one thing very clear.

Voters who want government intervention in the economy, tax rises for the wealthy and spending on public services made a mistake voting Tory.

Those were Labour policies.

Source: People who voted for Boris Johnson want government to raise taxes on the rich, survey finds | The Independent

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More working people than ever are struggling to survive

Sinking, not swimming: Under the Conservatives, more and more people are failing to pay their way.

Terrifying new information from the Trade Union Congress has shown that millions of working people are struggling to survive due to poverty.

The TUC poll suggests 20 per cent of working people – one-fifth of the more-than-30-million-strong working population – skip meals because they can’t afford the food.

One in five workers go without heating during cold weather.

One in 10 fall into rent or mortgage arrears because they can’t pay on time.

And one in five have pawned or sold belongings because they needed the money.

Asked how they would deal with an unexpected £500 bill, 30 per cent said they would be unable to pay – up from 24 per cent in 2017. Of those who said they would pay, 24 per cent said they would have to go into debt or sell something.

A quarter said they were out of cash before the end of most months, and 16 per cent said they had to cut back their spending – or stop it altogether – many times a year.

And 41 per cent said one of their biggest concerns at work was the fact that their pay was not keeping up with the cost of living.

This is damning information that knocks the stuffing out of claims that wage rises are increasing faster than the rate of inflation. Is that still true after the top 10 per cent – or even one per cent – of earners are removed from the figures? For some reason, I couldn’t find that information when I looked for it.

I remember having arguments, years ago, with people who claimed heatedly that business bosses in the UK had to keep wages depressed because otherwise they would be forced to stop trading. I wonder how many of them live in luxury mansions while their employees struggle in bed-sits, converted shipping containers or office blocks, or are forced to sleep on the streets?

None of this will change for the better under a Conservative government – especially not under one run by Boris Johnson.

I wonder how many people realise this as they plough through their daily drudgery, their only source of information coming from BBC-approved propaganda that tells them Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour is unelectable?

Do any of them even realise they are being played for fools?

Source: Millions of working people struggle to put food on the table, poll shows

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As ‘re-admit Chris Williamson’ demands swell, Labour’s leaders sit on their thumbs

Jennie Formby: She acts fast when there’s an opportunity to look tough, but when those decisions turn out to be wrong, she’s nowhere to be found.

When less than 200 MPs, peers and staff wrote to demand Chris Williamson’s re-suspension after his Labour membership was restored following an investigation into false allegations of anti-Semitism, general secretary Jennie Formby acted at once. Now more than 6,000 party members have demanded that this decision be reversed, and she has done nothing at all. Why?

To put this in proportionate terms, more than 30 times the number of Labour members who had Mr Williamson re-suspended have said the decision should be reversed. Labour is supposedly a democratic party and the will of the majority should prevail. But Ms Formby has done nothing.

The figures come from a LabourList weekly survey, which also revealed that an even larger majority of respondents believe that Labour’s disciplinary process – which sends serious cases to the “quasi-judicial” National Constitutional Committee – is subject to political interference and should be scrapped in favour of an independent process. The treatment of many cases – in which mere accusation was taken as an assumption of guilt – led to the NCC being dubbed the “National Kangaroo Court” by many, including This Writer.

And this is not the only development. The Labour Party of Northern Ireland has published a statement on Mr Williamson’s suspension, along with a motion that may be taken as a model for other Labour constituency parties.

The statement quotes in full the words said by the MP which have been selectively quoted by his critics, and also quotes analysis of anti-Semitism in the party that shows it is a negligible issue with only 0.05 per cent of members being said to have engaged in any activity that could even be claimed to have been anti-Semitic. This compares with a national average of around five per cent (which in itself is a shocking figure).

It continues: “All anti-semitism should be considered a scourge and a problem that needs addressing. However, it is a fair comment to say that the Labour Party does not have any form of particular problem with anti-semitism . It is also fair to say that Labour Party members are not to blame for the narrative that suggests that there is a particular problem with anti-semitism in the party.

“It logically follows that members of the Labour Party should not feel that they should be apologetic about something that has been shown to be false.

“It does not diminish the scourge of anti-semitism to state these things. Members are entitled to feel proud of the Labour Party’s history of anti-racism and support for minority communities and for all of those facing discrimination and oppression. They are entitled to encourage others to join the party and to support it on the basis of its anti-racist and wholly inclusive credentials.

“Any member is entitled to say that those who are agreeing and apologising for the Labour Party having a particular problem with anti-semitism, is a concession to falsehoods and distortions. In a climate where such falsehoods and distortions proliferate, members are entitled to challenge the narrative. They are entitled to scrutinise complaints. They are entitled to adopt an inquisitorial approach to allegations. Every member who is accused is entitled to the absolutely fundamental principle of justice; that they are considered innocent until it is established otherwise.

“Most of all, every member is entitled to be subject to the democratically determined rules and procedures governing the Party and to demand that those rules and procedures be upheld and not be subject to the arbitrariness of public opinion and pressure.”

In my own case, I was treated as though I were guilty from the moment I was falsely accused. Chris Williamson has had the same treatment. So have many others.

And those who endorse the falsehoods and distortions are still being given the oxygen of publicity by mass-media news organisations. Only last week, Labour Lord Falconer appeared on the BBC’s #PoliticsLive to deplore Mr Williamson’s perfectly reasonable comments as anti-Semitic and to damn him further by association with (among others) Jackie Walker, who had been accused of saying that Jews were chief financiers of the slave trade – except, of course, we know that she didn’t say that. The other person in the video is Tosh McDonald, a friend and supporter of Mr Williamson.

I reckon Charlie Falconer knew that what he was saying wasn’t true. Ms Walker would have made it perfectly clear in her defence and I made it perfectly clear in mine (two of the charges against me related to my support for her). He referred to notes, so he should have had that information. And now, of course, the BBC has confirmed the falsehood of the claim.

Yet Lord Charlie Falconer has faced no censure whatsoever for his words. When will his party membership be suspended? When will his misbehaviour be investigated? When will questions be asked about his motivations?

I reckon we all know the answer to that: Never.

Labour’s general secretary, Jennie Formby, was bombarded with tweets demanding action to reinstate falsely-purged party members including myself, Ms Walker and Mr Williamson after the BBC’s admission. To my knowledge, she has not responded in any way at all. She is running away from her party’s mistakes prejudice.

Perhaps she’ll respond if a party member – or several of them – makes an official complaint.

Who’ll give it a go?

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Tom Watson surveys his Twitter followers on Brexit and HuffPost thinks it means something

Manipulating the media: Tom Watson used to talk about fake news – now, it seems, he produces it.

The sheer muddle-headed stupidity of this is astounding.

The Huffington Post has reported the results of a survey of his Twitter followers by Tom Watson as if it represents the views of Labour Party members.

Tom Watson is a hugely divisive man whose pronouncements against current Labour policy have alienated him from huge numbers of the party membership.

Anyone who has actually criticised him on this behaviour tends to be blocked from viewing/responding to his Twitter account.

So the following headline – and the article to which it links – should be read with extreme caution, it seems to me.

Others have been more forthright in their condemnation:

Exactly. It isn’t valid. It’s fake news.

And Tom Watson has to go, before he tries to do any more damage.

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Survey shows Britain wants to remain in EU – so the Mail concocts a blatant May-supporting LIE

Propaganda: The Daily Mail’s ‘fake news’ front page.

How many people will be fooled by this fake news – and this fake newspaper?

The Daily Mail‘s front page yesterday (November 28) stated that a Survation poll showed the British people believe Theresa May’s comprehensively-rubbished Brexit deal is “the best on offer” – a meaningless claim as it is the only deal on offer, but how many Heil readers are going to recognise that?

The article stated: “Voters want Tory MPs to rally behind Theresa May’s Brexit deal, a poll shows today.

“According to the Survation survey for the Daily Mail, 52 per cent say her plan is the best on the table. Only 19 per cent disagreed.

“And 41 per cent said the Commons should back the withdrawal agreement – compared with 38 per cent who want it voted down.

“Asked to choose between Mrs May’s plan and the prospect of a Labour government, voters favoured the Prime Minister by 46 per cent to 31 per cent. Reversing Brexit would damage our national standing, according to 47 per cent.”

But the poll actually shows that Britons would rather remain in the European Union than put up with Mrs May’s pathetic plan.

Here’s journalist J.N. Paquet on Twitter to explain:

So only 37 per cent of those who answered the poll support Mrs May’s deal. Nearly two-thirds did not.

And 59 per cent did not want MPs to vote for it on December 11 (or whenever the ‘meaningful’ vote takes place).

So nearly half those polled thought Mrs May should resign if she loses the vote.

Oh – and look! “EU said Brexit agreement is the only one on table.” But the Mail stated “52 per cent say her plan is the best on the table”. What do the other 48 per cent support, then?

So it doesn’t matter what the options are – only 35-37 per cent of those polled support Mrs May’s deal. Other options always poll higher, no matter whether the choice is remaining in the EU or leaving without a deal.

Now we see that remaining in the EU earns between 44-50 per cent of the vote, no matter what the other options might be.

This is the only negative aspect of the poll: Mrs May’s Brexit beats the possibility of a Labour government – perhaps because Labour has never made clear exactly what its version of Brexit would be?

Again, Labour loses out – again, most likely, because we don’t know the shape of a Labour Brexit.

Perhaps the TV debate will change this, if Jeremy Corbyn opens up and explains a little of Labour’s alternative plan.

So we see that the Mail‘s report is – deliberately? – misleading.

The majority of those surveyed do not support Theresa May’s Brexit agreement.

More of those who took part supported remaining in the European Union.

There will be a lot more of this nonsense over the next two weeks.

Propaganda sheets like the Daily Mail cannot be trusted to provide accurate information. People should go to original sources where possible.

Spread the word.

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While Theresa May waffles about quitting the EU, the British public now want to stay

[Image: LabourList.]


I’ll just leave this here, on the day after Theresa May’s hopelessly misjudged Brexit speech.

If the EU referendum was held again, Remain would win, according to a new poll.

The British public have turned their backs on the idea of Brexit just as Theresa May heads to Florence to make a key speech on her plans for a post-European future.

The new poll shows that the results would flip, with 52 per cent now backing staying put, and 48 backing leaving, a little over a year since the landmark decision was made, the poll by BMG for The Independent says.

When the same poll was conducted two months ago there was a 50:50 split. The poll surveyed over 1,400 Britons.

Source: Remain would win if the referendum was rerun, shock new poll claims


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This should kill any further claims that left-wingers are behind online abuse

Abuse victim: Diane Abbott.

After this, anyone who still wants to claim the Left is responsible for most online abuse will deserve some!

The Tories often like to claim the Left is abusive, especially online.

But a new survey by Amnesty International of abuse received by women MPs in the run-up to the last election clearly shows that online abuse in Britain comes overwhelmingly from the Right:

And the MP who easily receives the most abuse is Britain’s first female black MP Diane Abbott:

Hats off to Diane for taking such industrial scale horrific abuse so fearlessly.

You can read Amnesty’s full report here.

Source: Proof that most online abuse of women comes from right-wingers | Pride’s Purge


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Economists agree: Austerity is bad for you

150401badforeconomy

You may have seen the infographic above on the social media yesterday. Today, this blog received confirmation of its claims from the Centre For Macroeconomics.

The CFM’s survey asked: Do you agree that the austerity policies of the coalition government have had a positive effect on aggregate economic activity (employment and GDP) in the UK?”

The response was clear: Only 15 per cent agreed, 18 per cent neither agreed nor disagreed, and 66 per cent disagreed. According to the CFM: “Ignoring those who sat on the fence, 19 per cent agree and 81 per cent disagree with the proposition. This ratio is unaffected by confidence weighting.”

This evidence is conclusive disproof of the claims in the ‘business leaders’ letter to the Daily Telegraph that was published earlier this week. But then, it seems that letter was written by Conservative Campaign Headquarters and its 100+ signatories were inflated by the addition of Samantha Cameron’s friends.

In its summary of responses, the CFM notes that Professor Simon Wren-Lewis (Oxford) asked: “This is a joke, right? The only interesting question is how much GDP has been lost as a result of austerity.”

On his own blog, Mainly Macro, Prof Wren-Lewis adds: “I myself participated in Radio 4’s World at One (about 11 minutes in) as a direct result of the survey. Robert Peston went as far as to ask: “Who to trust – business leaders or economists?” I liked the way he introduced his post:

“’Neither business leaders nor economists have a monopoly of wisdom on what’s good for Britain or are free from political bias. But it is perhaps therefore all the more important to remember that those paid to think about how best an economy should be run don’t necessarily agree with those paid to run companies.’

“He might have also added that, probably without exception, we are paid a lot less than business leaders, so the danger that our opinions might be influenced by Labour policies like reintroducing the 50p income tax rate or introducing a mansion tax is perhaps also smaller!”

On the second question – whether the election’s outcome would have non-trivial consequences for aggregate economic activity (employment and GDP) – if those who neither agreed nor disagreed are excluded, the majority rises to 93 per cent.

They’re saying a future Conservative-led government will harm the UK economy.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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