Today's ruling that every part of workfare other than the Mandatory Work Activity scheme breaks the law has given campaigners against workfare a huge boost - we were right all along. But the DWP have already said they will be doing a simple rephrase of the regulations and trying again and we need to make sure that doesn't happen by piling on the pressure now.
For people already on workfare, or who have been sanctioned because of it, this is fantastic stuff. It means people have the ability to literally just walk out of the unskilled jobs they were doing for no money and to potentially claim back much-needed money from the government.
That definite plus will make it easy to just sit back and bask about this setback for workfare. I'm still buzzing even as I write this, it's a slap in the face of the government from an unlikely source and it'll have them chasing their tails over the next few days. But in practical terms, this is not a total win. Even now they're trying to redraft something that'll wheedle around the technical language of the judges' ruling.
We can't let that happen.
As noted in Johnny Void's excellent blog workfare hasn't just stumbled today, it's been on the ropes for a while due to a campaign of direct action from groups such as SolFed, Boycott Workfare, AF, Edinburgh Coalition Against Poverty, Haringey Solidarity Group and many others which have pushed dozens of companies and charities away from using the scheme.
So we know that direct action can get the goods, and today has given us the advantage of momentum and an unassailable moral high ground.
Now is the time for us to ramp up mass direct action and bury this sucker. While they redraft their document we need to get into places and tell participants about their right to leave, bombard management and the public with the reality exposed by the case that this is bonded labour, and go after participants in the MWA until no firm in their right wants to touch that poisonous PR nightmare with a bargepole.