Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Honest Job collection agency

Hire people and pay back their debts
  (+4, -3)
(+4, -3)
  [vote for,

This collection agency would, rather than simply hounding people for money, strive to create partnerships with employment agencies. Anyone owing a debt would be granted some tangible additional chance to get a job through the agency's point system. So the collection agency wouldn't just send nastygrams, but also information about how the person in debt would have a better-than-otherwise chance to get a job. It wouldn't be the best jobs, but a lot of debtors really would be happy to make payments if they could get any job at all. Win-win-win! Taking directly from their paycheck would cross a lot of legal and ethical boundaries, but an additional benefit would be knowing exactly how much the debtor is making and offering them a voluntary percentage to be paid back before they see the money.
Voice, Aug 11 2021

The Workhouse https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Workhouse
The return of the Workhouse. [xenzag, Aug 12 2021]

Parole Fees and Imprisonment. https://robinainsti...robation-and-parole
[MechE, Aug 12 2021]


       This is a brilliant idea. [+]   

       A somewhat moral collection agency? Wow.
doctorremulac3, Aug 11 2021

       //This is a brilliant idea//   

       But it may encourage jobless who have no debts to establish debts & default on them for the extra job points.   

       Oh, hang on, that would mean extra business for the debt collectors   

       No you're right, this is a brilliant idea
Skewed, Aug 11 2021

       It is not the same as, but does remind me of, the ancient practice of debt slavery.
pertinax, Aug 11 2021

       Not so ancient, recent history in the US (& probably UK come to that), persisted into the 1800's at least if not the early 1900's.
Skewed, Aug 11 2021

       True, but as long as it's all voluntary, including paying back the debt.   

       Anybody who lends money should be ready to write it off or not be allowed to do it. Collateral is okay, but that's it.
doctorremulac3, Aug 11 2021

       Aha! there it is .. Google tells me debt slavery (indentured servitude) ended in 1917 in the US, that's pretty recent history in my book [pert].
Skewed, Aug 11 2021

       Could they pay back their debts by becoming debt collectors? It becomes so much more interesting that way, like some kind of zombie virus.
RayfordSteele, Aug 11 2021

       [Ray] - What kind of jobs would a collection agency have available? I think it's a pretty natural fit. [zombie virus] * [pyramid scheme]
lurch, Aug 11 2021

       Also possible is offering to reduce or extend the terms on the debt or eliminate fees provided the debtor accepts the arrangement or evidence is received that he is looking for work other places.
Voice, Aug 12 2021

       //pretty recent//   

       Yes, but also ancient. Some ancient things are extremely persistent.
pertinax, Aug 12 2021

       Debt slavery pretty much still exists. See link.
MechE, Aug 12 2021

       Bezos could pay off everyone's dept on the entire planet and still have enough money to build a solid gold replica of the Taj Mahal on Mars.
xenzag, Aug 12 2021

       In Victorian times, this used to be called the "Workhouse" and was a kind of debtors prison. Lots of 18th and 19th Century literature takes place in and around these places, often charting the fall from grace of a wealthy family through no fault of their own.   

       [edit] Aha yes, just as [xenzag]'s link describes.
zen_tom, Aug 12 2021

       //In Victorian times, this used to be called the "Workhouse" and was a kind of debtors prison//   

       May I suggest you actually read the idea?
Voice, Aug 12 2021

       I think it’s too honest for some folks, but nice +
xandram, Aug 12 2021

       [Voice] I did, I promise - perhaps I'm more cynical than you, but there's a great deal of stretch in the phrase "strive to create partnerships with employment agencies" which could be interpreted any number of ways given the levels of trust and confidence people have with unequal power-relationships.   

       If the idea were implemented by super-kind and helpful people with lots of time and spare resources and who were idealistic enough to really make a proper go of it, and a wider business environment willing to invest and train a pool of willing and eager individuals, it would undoubtedly be great. But if, and I don't think it's too far a stretch of the imagination to suppose, if it was an underfunded system dragging along with a mixture of severely disadvantaged people and those who'd grown callous and broken through years of un-fulfilment, staffed by frustrated and underpaid folks who might benefit here and there from the occasional misuse of their asymmetric power relationships - then it might be a less fruitful exercise.   

       The Workhouse got a bad reputation, but I think, just like this idea, if you can implement it with positivity and a bit of heart, it could be a winner. Sadly, those particular human quantities are often quick to evaporate in all but the most specific and delicate circumstances.
zen_tom, Aug 12 2021

       I think the fundamental category-error with this idea is that by and large, humans don't want paid employment, what they really want is income streams. Now this instantly becomes a political question rather than a jobs-market question. Yes there are tasks that really need doing; yes there are people who do not have enough resources to keep themselves healthy and alive; yes there are people who are in debt. But there are also people who set up their systems so that they have income without having to work, and there is also a lot of useful work that can and does get done without any payment being offered in return. And a lot of jobs are artificial make-work, in that they set up a series of useless tasks that no-one actually wants done, purely to give someone who believes in the artificial income=job=work identity the excuse to deliver a person an income stream. Money after all is merely a way of allocating resources.
pocmloc, Aug 13 2021

       The main problem, at least in some countries, is that agencies are likely to give you ANY job in order to keep you in their files. Government employement agencies are bad enough about offering people jobs which pay less than benefits, but imagine if it's a private agency which makes money with accumulated interest. An employee of a collection agency once told me how much he loved his job, because he could go into work in a good mood or a bad mood and no one cared...
4and20, Aug 13 2021

       That employee was a sociopath then or simply joking [4], I used to work in a collection agency (a Bailiffs firm) & though it's true given the nature of the job that for the most part you don't have 'customers' as such that can complain & be paid any attention by the boss if they do basic human nature is such that (within reason) they actually want to be liked by others & end up feeling guilty if they mistreat others unnecessarily, which isn't an enjoyable emotion, non-sociopaths don't find the ability to mistreat others when in a bad mood something they enjoy once the mood has passed .. take it as received wisdom from one who knows, one with experience of it back b4 he was a sociopath, when he was still human ;p
Skewed, Aug 13 2021

       //agencies are likely to give you ANY job in order to keep you in their files. Government employement agencies are bad enough about offering people jobs which pay less than benefits, but imagine if it's a private agency which makes money with accumulated interest. //   

       That's what minimum wage is for. And why it's too low.
Voice, Aug 13 2021

       Honest Job the collection agent has a little shop on the High Street, next to Honest John, the bookmaker. However, God has chosen to smite Honest Job with a plague of boils, despite his insistence that he is not a sociopath.
pertinax, Aug 14 2021

       /Honest Job// //Honest John///   

       Once knew a bakers called Hot & Crunchy next to a pet shop called Wet & Furry, made you wonder what was in the pies ;)
Skewed, Aug 14 2021

       Not going to help that over worked shift worker with the needed transport's mechancal fault. Budgetting is probably the first stop. Here in NZ, housing is a blown out cost, all other basic needs are getting squeezed.   

       Bottom line, profit isn't about cost morality, it is about the limit of what price can be achieved. Standing on everyone else, the sky's the limit.
wjt, Aug 15 2021

       In the burbs of Detroit, there's a strip mall that had a Weight Watchers clinic right next to a Joann's Alterations and a Cinnabon.
RayfordSteele, Aug 15 2021

       //In Victorian times, this used to be called the "Workhouse"//

Just a quick historical note. Workhouses were still in existence until just after WWII. My grandad was a workhouse boy & was sold* to the Royal Navy. When the war broke out he had the dubious pleasure of serving on the Baltic convoys during the war. The Workhouse seemed quite luxurious by comparison.

* I am a bit hazy on the exact details of this, so stand to be corrected on the exact nature of the transaction that took place.

//Taking directly from their paycheck would cross a lot of legal and ethical boundaries//

See also, 'Slavery'.
DrBob, Aug 15 2021

       //See also, 'Slavery'.//   

       Even if they were abused that way they would be free to quit without being punished. And even such an extreme wouldn't include taking ALL their money. So really no more slavery than any other wage slave is under.
Voice, Aug 18 2021

       [mfd] magic. Or fantasy at least. And a bun to RayfordSteele for inversion recursion.
nuclear hobo, Aug 18 2021

       Hmm, references? Also, the debt collection agencies I've dealt with have been really friendly.
nineteenthly, Aug 19 2021


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