Thrown out of the job centre for using my phone .

I went to the job centre today to ask how to reclaim ESA as my temp contract has run out. I cannot work properly and my contract was a work from home. No problem I was given a phone number to call and told it was free on certain tarrifs. Good, OK I rang there and then on my mobile in the job centre. I got thrown out and was harassed and ushered outside by one security guard and a ’ woman’, saying that mobile phones are not lowed in the job centre. I told them both to big off whilst trying to continue with the ESA claim. No, they ouldn’t stop harassing me. I ended up,outside in the rain on the phone climbing ESA for about half an hour. I will press release this tomorrow. A disabled woman made to stand outside in the rain to clim ESA by jobsworth job centre staff who should know better! Any better ideas? Pat

hi pat

how mean spirited of them!

write to your mp as well

carole x

Sorry this isn’t an answer you’ll want to hear, but job centres are private buildings and this is one of their well-advertised rules, so the simple answer is that you shouldn’t have used your mobile in there, and should have either ended the call or left the building once told that mobiles were banned.

Obviously I don’t know the precise reasons why they’re banned in job centres, but I’m guessing there’d be loads more complaints about people being on their phones if they were allowed. Most of the visitors to job centres are, like you, totally stressed about their futures and don’t need distractions (nor heavy-handed security guards).

Mobiles are similarly banned in Law Courts and hospitals, each for slightly different reasons but the same principle applies: no mobile phones.

Saying that, I used my mobile without thinking whilst in a hospital the other day and thankfully nobody stopped me, which would have been a real ground-opening-up moment! Mind you, I was looking for an aunt whom the hospital had managed to mislay…

Lolli xx


you are doing what u think is right. i just hope it doesnt all backfire. i agree with what lolli has said. i appreciate that u r are angry. why didnt you go home then make the call rather than be out in rain?

take care

ellie x

It could be argued that using a mobile phone in a private building is bad manners and I would agree. I imagine it would cause chaos if everyone was allowed behave in such a way in a working environment. Unsurprisingly, rules tend to be made for good reason.

Have you considered anger management classes?

using your phone for job center business in the job center? what is wrong with that? As a human being i dont think i could kick anyone who is disabled out into the rain. kick-em where it hurts

good luck

Hi Pat,

I don’t think you have much of a leg to stand on to be honest.

  1. The No Mobile Phone signs are prominently displayed and have been for years

  2. You weren’t discriminated against. The rule applies to ALL people and you chose to break the rule and then refused to comply when asked.

  3. It is not the fault of the job centre if you choose to stand in the rain to make a call rather than go home to make it.

You might want to read this link before sending off your press release and getting egg all over your face…

Dear Mr Jones,

Thank you for your Freedom of Information request of 23rd April 2010.

You requested the following information:

Legal basis for ban on mobile telephone use in the public area of Jobcentres.

There is a legal requirement for Jobcentre Plus, under both the Health and Safety at Work Act
1974 (Sections 2(1) and 3(1)) and the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations
1999 (Regulation 3), to ensure the safety of both its employees and those members of the
public attending the sites. We are required to achieve this through a suitable and sufficient risk
assessment process. The ban on the use of mobile phones was identified during a risk review
of various process changes. For example, one of these process decisions introduced the
option to deliver negative decisions relating to crisis loan applications by telephone, in addition
to delivering them through site based interviews. The risk identified was that customers may
receive such decisions whilst in the public area, thus increasing the potential for conflict
alongside other customers.

The use of mobile phones was further identified as a risk in regard to their capacity to record
conversations and take photographs. All of our customers have an expectation of privacy as
well as safety during their visits, and the department would leave itself open to complaint if
such standards were not met. The law usually regards the general health and safety
responsibilities of both employers and providers of services, as outweighing the rights of any
one individual person. As there are customer telephones provided within all our jobcentres, it
is considered that the facility for our customers to make appropriate telephone calls whilst in
the office, is adequate.

If you have any queries about this letter please contact me quoting the reference number
Yours sincerely,

DWP Central FoI Team


Hi, I also wondered why you didnt wait till you got home to make the call, if there are signs telling you not to use the mobile in the building?

Even so they could`ve been a bit more diplomatic, by the sound of it.

Good luck with the claim.

luv Pollx

my local job center tried to throw me out for talking on the phone. I made my apologys to the person i was talking to and muted them before then very unpolitly giving it to the usless buisy body (security guard) with both barrels befor returning to my phone call. I might add at the time i was complaining about a monumental cock up on the job centers part that left me with no money for 8 weaks hence why i was in the job center to begin with and the phone call was a job offer so at that moment i realy did not give two flying f**k’s what the nob center thought of me using my phone. Unfortunatly for me they had the last laugh as i didnt get any back to work bonus rent paid etc etc. All i can say is kama is a cruel mistres and i got what i desurved for being so nasty. But as for you being sent out side when making a phone call that in all reality you should have been able to make on their phones is terrible and i feel you should go ahead with your press release apology or not.

Battle lines drawn! Good luck with it fight the good fight

not particularly relevant but my son put on app on my phone for me that enables me to record calls.

useful when chasing up manufacturers of faulty goods especially when you tell them at the start that

you are recording the call.

carole x