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From The Socialist newspaper, 25 March 2009

Pay for your own vetting

FROM 12 October, if you work with children or vulnerable adults, if you help at a local youth club, Scouts/Guides, work on a doctor's reception desk or deal with information about these groups you may have to fork out up to 100 to get registered with the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA), in the Vetting and Barring Scheme.

Hannah Walter

The ISA was set up after the Bichard report's recommendations on the murders of Jessica Chapman and Holly Wise in Soham in 2002. It will cover not only criminal convictions but also cautions and allegations at work (even if they are found to be false).

The government has not yet announced detailed plans of how this will work or what offences will bar people from working in these sectors. But they clearly want public sector workers to bear the cost. As yet there are also no safeguards to ensure that employers will not be able to use this to victimise workers' representatives.

As for cost, it is proposed that the ISA will cost 64 in England and Wales and 58 in Northern Ireland. A separate but linked scheme proposed for Scotland costs up to 100 so those working in the border regions between Scotland and England may have to register and pay twice.

Obviously no-one wants to see a repeat of the Soham murders, but it should be recognised that all employees working with vulnerable people are already checked by the Criminal Records Bureau and many have to be on professional registers.

Many public-sector workers are on extremely low wages anyway - imagine the impact this scheme and its cost would have on a school crossing patrol worker earning under 70 a week or on a part-time receptionist in a GP's surgery.

If public-sector workers are to bear this cost, many people will leave these jobs as they simply cannot afford to pay. If local councils pay then it will be at the expense of our local services. If the government wants public-sector workers to jump through yet another hoop, it should be it not us who are footing the bill. Your local trade union branch/rep should be able to provide you with additional information.

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 25 March 2009:

Capitalist crisis: Make the bosses pay!

March for jobs!

Map of Youth March for Jobs route


Socialist Party editorial

Tide of job losses must be fought


Socialist Party election campaign

Rail union launches euro election challenge

An appeal from Bob Crow

No2EU Financial Appeal pdf

NO2EU Supporter appeal pdf


Socialist Party campaigns

Students need a mass fighting organisation

Credit crunch hits home

Campaign for a new workers' party

MPs - an honourable profession!

Fast News


Socialist Party feature

The uncaring care sector

Pay for your own vetting


Socialist Party marxist analysis

State repression in Britain

Keeping (illegal) tabs on us


International socialist news and analysis

France: Three million take to the streets in national strike

Canada: "Fighting back makes a difference"

Mass demo in New York against budget cuts

Scotland: International Socialists conference a big step forward

Dundee Prisme occupation: Workers remain defiant

Stop the slaughter of Tamils: London campaign meeting


Socialist Party workplace news

Nom-dom jobs slasher

New allegations hit Unison's right wing

Unison Four to face further hearings

Wales: United battle needed to stop college cuts

Fighting for justice for cleaners!

PCS Land Registry jobs and pay campaign

Workplace news in brief


 

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