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Latest press reports on UC

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Peter Turville
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Note quite media coverage (yet) - press release from Oxford City Council - ‘council calls of govt. to halt UC rollout’

https://www.oxford.gov.uk/news/article/833/council_calls_on_government_to_halt_universal_credit_rollout_to_fix_desperate_impact_for_vulnerable_claimants

     
Peter Turville
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Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Peter Turville - 06 August 2018 09:22 AM

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/aug/06/universal-credit-flaws-leaving-families-debt-child-poverty-action-group#img-1

This even made Radio 4 Today programme this morning, which was good to hear.

     
MartinB
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Ok I am in a minority on this….

But I am not convinced that calling for a halt or pause to UC, to enable them to get it right, when it is already 5 years behind schedule, and after 5 (? I don’t know, I give up, might have lost count….) secretary of states, is actually the best way to go.  This whole delay is leading to massive wastage, duplication and postcode lotteries. 

I really doubt that a pause or temporary halt will help improve future delivery.

Just my View.

     
Peter Turville
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MartinB - 06 August 2018 01:24 PM

I really doubt that a pause or temporary halt will help improve future delivery.

You may well be right on that Martin. However a temporary halt may at least reduce the current ‘collateral damage’ in the meantime let alone the potential damange once manged migration begins for some of the most vulnerable claimants?

Given all the threads on Rightsnet, other reports etc. one cannot be optomistic that DWP are getting to grips with all the current problems with the day to day operation of UC.

It could be argued that government will not accept the scale of the problems with the UC project until ‘managed migration’ demonstrates that it is unworkable in practice and is the biggest mistake since the CSA (because it is simply to complex to administer) so the sonner we get to that point the better in the long run?

     
Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Third of UK’s universal credit claimants hit by deductions from payments

One in three people on the government’s new welfare system are having their payments cut to cover debts, the Observer can reveal.

Figures released by the Department for Work and Pensions under the Freedom of Information Act show that in May this year, 316,100 universal credit claims had deductions imposed on them by the government for reasons other than fraud penalties or jobcentre sanctions.

The proportion of universal credit claims hit by deductions has rocketed from one in 10 in May 2017, to one in five in December 2017, to a third in May 2018. It has risen at a time when the total number of universal credit claims has risen sharply. Nearly 40% of universal credit claimants are in paid work.

     
Daphne
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Rosie W
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“Launched in June”

     
Benny Fitzpatrick
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“Universal Credit roll-out in Darlington proves ‘a real success’”

Has it been rolled out long enough for the local landlords to see their rental income decimated by late or incorrectly calculated APAs and MPAs? Local service centres seem incapable of getting these right.

     
Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Shadow for social security, Margaret Greenwood, says Labout would consider scrapping UC completely, according to the Mirror at least.

Labour’s official policy is to “pause and fix” UC. But disabled activists want to go further and “stop and scrap” it.

Now Ms Greenwood has said she is “looking into” whether the multi-billion pound system should be scrapped entirely – adding: “We’re not ruling anything out.”

Labour could SCRAP Universal Credit entirely reveals welfare chief as she launches sweeping review of the benefits system

     
Mike Hughes
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Paul_Treloar_AgeUK - 24 September 2018 10:09 AM

Shadow for social security, Margaret Greenwood, says Labout would consider scrapping UC completely, according to the Mirror at least.

Labour’s official policy is to “pause and fix” UC. But disabled activists want to go further and “stop and scrap” it.

Now Ms Greenwood has said she is “looking into” whether the multi-billion pound system should be scrapped entirely – adding: “We’re not ruling anything out.”

Labour could SCRAP Universal Credit entirely reveals welfare chief as she launches sweeping review of the benefits system

Scarcely credible. Historically the Tories make the big sweeping simplifications and along come Labour and tinker round the edges adding complexity in the name of fairness. Can’t complain. I was doing Supplementary Benefit take-up work as late as 1999 and I suspect UC work will last for a similar period given the mess currently being created.

Reality is that not ruling anything out translates as “what can we vaguely promise to get us closer to power”. They don’t actually have any plan at all to “pause and fix” beyond the word “pause”. Profoundly depressing.

     
Dan Manville
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The Times reported ministers are becoming worried about the reputation of the new system, with an increasing number of Tory MPs dealing with cases during surgeries.

Maybe they’re starting to sweat…

https://m.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/universal-credit-mcvey-warning_uk_5bb7db30e4b01470d051784a?bft

     
shawn
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Shadow Chancellor says Universal Credit should be scrapped:

“It’s not sustainable anymore, it’s not a system that can work, it’s not a system that’s providing [a] safety net … it will have to go”

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/oct/07/john-mcdonnell-says-universal-credit-needs-to-get-scrapped-benefits

     
Mike Hughes
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Had a brief conversation with a Labour MP a couple of weeks ago. One who called for scrapping of UC. When pushed it becomes apparent that

1) Literally no thinking done at all on what scrapping it might look like and the likely consequences and costs.
2) A similar level of thinking done on alternatives.

This is someone with a bit of a background in WR. Pretty much understands exactly what’s going on.

I came away bewildered. The feeling was that it was more important to be seen to be opposing than it was to actually stop it or put in place alternatives. There was almost a sense of not being convinced they were going to win an election any more so it didn’t really matter. They could say what they want to boost votes and worry about the consequences of it later. I’m afraid at present I don’t buy into the mild euphoria/relief that seems to be building towards a suggestion things are about to change. At best I think we’re looking at a pause in managed migration going into an election with the knowledge that Labour are unprepared for the consequences either way. If they were to win they’ve no idea what they’d do with UC. If they lost then the mandate to reform has gone.

     
Peter Turville
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Mike Hughes - 08 October 2018 09:00 AM

At best I think we’re looking at a pause in managed migration going into an election with the knowledge that Labour are unprepared for the consequences either way. If they were to win they’ve no idea what they’d do with UC. If they lost then the mandate to reform has gone.

It will be interesting to see Labour’s approach to the managed migration regs when they come before Parliament.

     
Peter Turville
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Joint letter from CPAG and others:

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/oct/08/universal-credit-plan-needs-more-thought

and a rather bland piece on Newsnight last night

     
MartinB
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I cant see any further review or discussion prior to an election, as the answer will be that this is now going to cost a lot to sort out ........

Nobody is going to want to commit the sums needed.

     
Mike Hughes
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Didn’t the NAO conclude it costs as much to proceed as it does to stop? Someone will therefore be committing the sums either way.

     
andyrichards
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shawn
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And now John Major:

John Major has called on the government to rethink universal credit, saying many voters would regard it as unfair after it was suggested that tens of thousands of families could end up worse off.

The former Conservative prime minister launched a fierce attack on the flagship benefits scheme, saying it could do as much damage to the Conservative party as the poll tax did in the late 1980s with a potential backlash among voters.

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/oct/11/john-major-universal-credit-could-result-in-backlash-like-poll-tax

 

     
Mike Hughes
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andyrichards - 10 October 2018 09:43 AM

Gordon Brown has now weighed in

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/oct/10/gordon-brown-halt-universal-credit-rollout

Ah yes. No irony there. The man who neglected to notice that the main consequence of the introduction of Tax Credits was overpayments -> instant recovery -> instant debt.

     
Mike Hughes
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shawn - 11 October 2018 09:45 AM

And now John Major:

John Major has called on the government to rethink universal credit, saying many voters would regard it as unfair after it was suggested that tens of thousands of families could end up worse off.

The former Conservative prime minister launched a fierce attack on the flagship benefits scheme, saying it could do as much damage to the Conservative party as the poll tax did in the late 1980s with a potential backlash among voters.

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/oct/11/john-major-universal-credit-could-result-in-backlash-like-poll-tax

 

Seen it said elsewhere that this now means Citizens Advice are to the right of John Major!

     
Mr Finch
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McVey admits some people will be worse off on universal credit.

She also claims 1m disabled people will be significantly better off. Does anyone know how that will happen?

     
Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Mr Finch - 11 October 2018 02:35 PM

McVey admits some people will be worse off on universal credit.

She also claims 1m disabled people will be significantly better off. Does anyone know how that will happen?

And in other news, apparently Ms McVey says something else entirely (apologies to readers of a sensitive disposition for linking to this rag)....

BENEFITS BOOST Universal Credit will see 700,000 Brits get access to extra £4k of unclaimed benefits – are you one of them?

     
Daphne
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‘Illegible for handouts’?? - there’s an interesting concept…

Theresa May confirmed that hundreds of thousands of people who didn’t know they were illegible for handouts will have them paid when they move over to the new benefits system - which could be worth £78 per week

     
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Mr Finch - 11 October 2018 02:35 PM

McVey admits some people will be worse off on universal credit.

She also claims 1m disabled people will be significantly better off. Does anyone know how that will happen?

Tell that to my client who lost £100 per month because (he states) someone at the Jobcentre told him he would be better off on UC as he wouldn’t need to keep attending the Jobcentre as it was all digital - he was on JSA at the time with an associated disability premium, which he has now lost - and is also struggling with the digital aspect of running a UC claim. Don’t get me started on the response I got when I tried to get him Universal Support!

     
Dan Manville
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Heidi Allen MP has just said that people on DLA will move into UC on Channel 4.news.

Can someone please put her right.

Edit: I can’t find her on Twitter

      [ Edited: 12 Oct 2018 at 08:17 pm by Dan Manville ]
Paul_Treloar_AgeUK
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Dan Manville - 12 October 2018 08:15 PM

Heidi Allen MP has just said that people on DLA will move into UC on Channel 4.news.

Can someone please put her right.

Edit: I can’t find her on Twitter

https://twitter.com/heidiallen75

     
HB Anorak
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Mr Finch - 11 October 2018 02:35 PM

McVey admits some people will be worse off on universal credit.

She also claims 1m disabled people will be significantly better off. Does anyone know how that will happen?

This one is true, although I haven’t researched the number of cases to check whether a million is plausible. It’s people with the ESA support component who do not have an SDP: they get more money on UC.