Wednesday, 6 August 2014
Arbeit macht frei
Regardless of where we live and how we live, modes of production are imperative to the existence and maintenance of society. Full-time work takes up the largest amount of time in an individual’s life, working eight hours a day means two thousand and eighty hours are spent in employment every year, give or take the standard thirty days of annual leave.
With full-time work carrying such a heavy time commitment, a dedication of one’s life to the employment structure is a massive obligation to take. As a result of joining the workforce, household roles may shift, benefit entitlements change and the individual may be left struggling to conform to a job role different to their life, pre-employment.
According to the Gov.uk website, the Welfare Reforms aim to encourage people on benefits to take up legitimate employment, or increase their working hours, in an attempt to “making sure work pays”. The double meaning of this statement suggests that work does exist however one party does not receive the correct payment. Be it the taxman who misses out on the transactions of the informal economy, or the unregistered employee who may receive below the national average wages due to the cash in hand nature of their employment.
Time has yet to tell how the recent welfare reforms, the Growth Boroughs Initiative and investments have re-shaped the notion of employment for benefit recipients nationwide. Time also seeks to uncover whether there is any substance behind Gov.uk’s cliché “making sure work pays”.