Labour's Liam Byrne asked about all this in the Commons. Now, Labour is in a difficult position. They are refusing to oppose the retroactive legislation to legitimise the £130m wrongly taken from people in sanctions. Apparently the DWP is setting up an independent enquiry into the use of sanctions in return for this co-operation. But Byrne asked the question, and Iain Duncan Smith repeated that there are no targets; and the head of JCP has issued reminders. The original leaked email came from Walthamstow, and the MP for that area, Stella Creasey, after reading it out, asked who was responsible? IDS repeated that there are no targets. Another Tory, David Gauke, congratulated IDS on cutting the benefits bill.
So far this has all been about Jobcentres. No one has mentioned Work Programme providers. There will be no official targets, of course. But if staff at the DWP have been ignoring their ministerial bosses and issuing league tables and incentives to make people destitute, it seems unlikely that they've confined this practice to Jobcentres.