Members of the Anarchist Federation, Nottingham group, supported the Notts Against Workfare ‘Burton blockade’ yesterday in and around Nottingham market square where four shops using forced unpaid workers were demonstrated at, outside and in. Inside the shops we asked for anyone on workfare to let us know if they wanted to, which was successful in British Heart Foundation, one of the many charities known for exploiting unemployed people under threat of losing their benefits if they refuse to work for free.
The week of action called by Boycott Workfare highlights the continuing scandal of forced unpaid work for people who receive welfare. Workfare profits the rich by providing free labour, whilst threatening the poor by taking away welfare rights if people refuse to work without a living wage. The four shops visited in Nottinhgam that are known to be involved with workfare were Burton, British Heart Foundation, Debenhams and Poundland. Leaflets were handed out and shops were entered to speak to workers and customers.
Workfare has been opposed by anarchists for many years. This is not the first time that workfare has been tried out, as it was by both Conservative and Labour governments in the 1990s.
A fuller article and photo can be found on the Notts SOS website: http://nottssos.org.uk/2013/03/24/photos-of-the-anti-workfare-demo-in-nottingham-city-centre-on-2332013/.