On the dole and looking for work? Good news! The Government has widened the roles private companies can make available to jobseekers through the Department for Work and Pensions’ Work Programme. The catch? Many are in sleazy places like lap dancing clubs.
The Work Programme was introduced by the Government to balance out Britain's high unemployment figures, allowing private companies and charities to offer roles through the Jobcentre. The guidelines dictating which roles are acceptable for the programme have now been updated, but won't necessarily lift the woes of those struggling to find work.
The guidelines state that though many adult industry roles (such as escort work, stripping, sex chat lines and "cat fighters", whatever they are) are still unacceptable, other jobs within adult-oriented establishments such as receptionist, bar staff, cleaning staff and even adult movie production staff can now all be offered.
Now, while these roles won't worry plenty of eager jobseekers, there are certain to be some who find such environments uncomfortable, and herein lies the problem; with immense pressure on Jobcentre advisors to reduce unemployment figures, an equal amount of pressure is heaped onto jobseekers to find work or face their benefits being cut. You could be stuck between a rock and a hard place, with a choice between refusing to apply to be the "mop up" worker in a happy-ending massage parlour and losing your jobseeker's allowance.
As a sidenote, Buzzfeed UK has pointed out an interesting contradiction in the guidelines:
A job as a masseur/masseuse in a sauna/massage parlour is considered part of the “adult entertainment industry” and also “unacceptable” - the logical inference is surely that it’s shorthand for being a sex worker in a brothel. It’s illegal to keep a brothel in England and Wales (though the definition of what constitutes one is very hazy).
But if that’s the case, should job seekers really be mandated to work in other roles in these places?