Journal Article

Workfare Revisited

Amir Paz-Fuchs and Anja Eleveld

in Industrial Law Journal

Volume 45, issue 1, pages 29-59
Published in print March 2016 | ISSN: 0305-9332
Published online January 2016 | e-ISSN: 1464-3669 | DOI:
Workfare Revisited

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  • Employment and Labour Law
  • Industrial and Employment Relations


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This paper explores and problematizes the exclusion of workfare participants from the scope of employment legislation, offering an opportunity to revisit the scope of the labour protection. As the UK and the Netherlands have been at the forefront of the European activation turn that catalysed the introduction of workfare programmes in European welfare states, the first part of the paper maps the employment protection of workfare participants in these two countries. In the second part of the paper we critically assess the reasons why employment status or, at least, employment protection regardless of status, is not granted to workfare participants and to other persons who are fulfilling financial non-rewarding (at least for the worker herself) ‘work’, such as volunteer workers or persons who have been found guilty of an offence and are sentenced to community service. On the basis of our analysis we suggest to expand labour protection to workfare participants, with or without granting them worker status.

Journal Article.  12531 words. 

Subjects: Employment and Labour Law ; Industrial and Employment Relations

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