Sep 112014

This is the Guide to the Oakley Report and the government’s response on JSA sanctions written by David Webster, Honorary Senior Research Fellow in Urban Studies at Glasgow University.

This guide explores the remit of the review, the areas covered or left untreated, the concerns raised or ignored, and the recommendations. It also looks at the government’s response and at the recommendations the government accepted for implementation.  In spite of the positive spin the government put on its response, only 7 out of the 17 recommendations have been accepted and two do not have a fixed timescale.

The government defined very narrowly the terms of reference for the sanction review, which was only supposed to look at the communication issues with claimants and it chose to carry out this review an academic working for a right-wing think tank, who supports sanctions and had even been instrumental in promoting the rationale and the need for sanctions.

The government has also put a veil of secrecy over the contributors to this review, with a few exceptions.

In spite of this, the review is more critical than the government expected, but it does not take away the need for a wider independent inquiry into the sanctions system.

This briefing has been published on the DPAC website with the kind agreement of Dr David Webster .

You can download the report from


 Posted by at 22:05

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