Closure of Glasgow Jobcentres
OPFS believes that closure of half of Glasgow’s job centres will have a devastating impact on parents who rely on the service, particularly single parents, and will negatively impact the aim of supporting people into employment. This will cause huge problems and it’s inexplicable that the Westminster government seem to have no concern about the barriers and potential hardship being raised by this.
OPFS wishes to highlight the following concerns:
- The number of parents that will require job centre contact is likely to increase due to parents having to return to paid employment when they’re youngest child is 3 years or above
- Under Universal Credit more people that are already in paid employment will have to attend work coach interviews if they are working less than 35 hours per week (less than 16 hours if youngest child 12 or under)
- The cost and time implication of parents having to travel even further to their nearest job centre is likely to result in an increase of sanctions
- The Increased stress of having to pay bus fares out of limited income and arrive in time when a child may only be in nursery for 3.25 hours session
OPFS Director Satwat Rehman said:
“We are appalled at the proposed plans to close half of all jobcentres in Glasgow and wish to make clear our strong opposition to this proposal as the impact will have an extremely detrimental effect on single parents in Glasgow. There are so many reasons why this decision goes against the needs of the local community that we feel it is completely unacceptable and I strongly believe the current proposals should be reconsidered.”
Based on both our experiences of working with single parents and other available expert evidence, we conclude that the ongoing experience of living day to day with conditionality is having a profoundly negative effect on single parent families’ health and well-being, and is undermining efforts to tackle health inequality.
Already inadequate social security benefits exacerbate the fear of being sanctioned because many single parent families have no financial resources or safety net to fall back on. OPFS is seeing increasing numbers of single parents who are suffering from anxiety and depression associated with the fear of being sanctioned. Closures of local JCP offices will add to this severe pressure.
Further Information available from:
Head of Policy and Strategy
One Parent Families Scotland
100 Wellington Street, Glasgow, G2 6DH
Tel: 0141 847 0444