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Sanctions and misfeasance

Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby Hairyloon » Wed Nov 02, 2016 5:08 pm

The work and pensions secretary criticised the “monstrously unfair” portrayal of job centre staff in I, Daniel Blake, despite admitting he has not watched the film.

But Loach has now fired back, accusing the government of being either “incompetent” or not fit to hold office.

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/k ... 3b59aca504
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby dls » Thu Nov 03, 2016 6:10 am

I haven't seen the film, but Loach has forever been on the rather wild and woolly left. His film no doubt expresses what he sees to be a truth, but tha does not mean that it is sensible to look through his eyes to find the truth.

The administration of the benefits system has forever been brutal and unsympathetic. Staff are employed and told to enforce a very restrictive system, dealing with many very difficult people and making their lives more difficult. They form a rather bruised front line. The clips I have seen of the film are just cheap and easy shots at the unfortunate front line troops.
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby Millbrook2 » Thu Nov 03, 2016 9:40 am

Saw the film last night and it does paint a one sided picture yet a picture that inevitably exists in some cases.

It's about what happens when honest deserving people come up against a mechanistic, restrictive, bureaucratic system which has lost the capacity to help those who need and deserve it. Of course it's biased but don't all films have an 'angle'.

A good and very moving film and the homeless chap outside York cinema saw his taking increase as a result.
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby Hairyloon » Thu Nov 03, 2016 1:28 pm

dls wrote:I haven't seen the film, but Loach has forever been on the rather wild and woolly left. His film no doubt expresses what he sees to be a truth, but tha does not mean that it is sensible to look through his eyes to find the truth.

I believe that he did a considerable amount of research and claims that his portrayal was a long way from the worst he heard of: he said that people would not believe it, and since people are doubtful as it is, it is clear he was right about that.

And of course it is one sided: there are tens of thousands of claimants who are dealt with properly, but they would not make a good film.
But even if there are hundreds of thousands dealt with perfectly well, does that excuse the few (hundreds?) that are dealt with badly?

The administration of the benefits system has forever been brutal and unsympathetic. Staff are employed and told to enforce a very restrictive system, dealing with many very difficult people and making their lives more difficult. They form a rather bruised front line. The clips I have seen of the film are just cheap and easy shots at the unfortunate front line troops.


But it is they that are making these dreadful decisions. If it is only a small minority that are doing this then they ought to be easy to weed out, but the allegation is that it is endemic. Or worse: there are many claims that they have to meet quotas of rejections, or are otherwise encouraged to reject where they properly ought not to.
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby atticus » Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:08 pm

Which brings us back to the point that you would like to see these benighted low paid, target driven, heavily supervised, demoralised, low ranking functionaries imprisoned for misfeasance in public office.
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby dls » Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:12 pm

Or worse: there are many claims that they have to meet quotas of rejections, or are otherwise encouraged to reject where they properly ought not to.


I think it is very likely the worse; in which case, cheap pot shots at front line staff, whose own lives can often be only a short distance in privilege from the benefits claimants they are there to assist, are unfair and at best unhelpful.
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby Hairyloon » Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:17 pm

atticus wrote:Which brings us back to the point that you would like to see these benighted low paid, target driven, heavily supervised, demoralised, low ranking functionaries imprisoned for misfeasance in public office.

I think it is a civil tort: I'd just like to see them paying civil damages... Though in fact that is just a means to encourage them to do their jobs properly, or in the alternative to cross the floor.

But you do raise an important point which I had been meaning to come to: if they are so heavily supervised, then how come they are making these dreadful mistakes, unless that is the intent of the supervisor?

In which case, what would be the proper course of action, assuming a claimant started proceedings? Should the front line staff name the supervisor as a second defendant?
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby atticus » Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:20 pm

They should refer the matter to their employer, requesting tthe emmployer to handle the defence and meet any liability.
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby Hairyloon » Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:22 pm

dls wrote:
Or worse: there are many claims that they have to meet quotas of rejections, or are otherwise encouraged to reject where they properly ought not to.


I think it is very likely the worse; in which case, cheap pot shots at front line staff, whose own lives can often be only a short distance in privilege from the benefits claimants they are there to assist, are unfair and at best unhelpful.


Do you think the Nuremberg defence holds water here?
But I can see no mechanism by which to take shots at those who are properly at fault, except by through their human shields.
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Re: Sanctions and misfeasance

Postby Hairyloon » Thu Nov 03, 2016 2:24 pm

atticus wrote:They should refer the matter to their employer, requesting tthe emmployer to handle the defence and meet any liability.

On what basis?
If they have followed the rules as laid out in the system, then they are not guilty of misfeasance, if they have broken the rules, then why is it the employer's fault?
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