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Welfare rights

1 October, 2020 Open access

Scottish Parliament consents to UK Parliament legislating on its behalf to determine uprating of industrial death benefit in 2021/2022

Approval of legislative consent memorandum enables competence for uprating the devolved benefit to pass from Scottish Ministers to the UK Parliament

1 October, 2020 Open access

Local Authorities in Scotland to pro-actively contact all those required to self-isolate, to establish whether a Self-Isolation Support Grant is needed

Cabinet Secretary for Social Security also confirms that the grant will be targeted at people who are in receipt of universal credit or legacy benefits, with some discretion to make awards to others in financial hardship

30 September, 2020 Open access

Secretary of State confirms that there will be no recompense for tax credit claimants who were advised to claim universal credit and lost out

Director General of Work and Health Services adds that 'jobcentres do not offer advice' and that a move to universal credit is 'not voluntary'

30 September, 2020

It is not the responsibility of the DWP to have a statutory safeguarding duty towards vulnerable claimants, says Secretary of State

Dr Coffey tells MPs that statutory safeguarding responsibility falls to councils, social services, doctors and other people

30 September, 2020 Open access

Children’s Commissioner for England calls for a ‘pre-emptive’ package of welfare and housing support for families who have built up rent arrears during the COVID-19 outbreak

Recommendation forms part of a comprehensive recovery package to tackle rising tide of childhood vulnerability caused by the crisis

30 September, 2020 Open access

Scottish Government announces new £500 Self-Isolation Support Grant for people on low incomes who are required to self-isolate

Grant will ensure people do not experience financial hardship as a result of doing the right thing, says Social Security Secretary

30 September, 2020 Open access

Women’s Budget Group calls for a new post-COVID social security system based on dignity and autonomy

New report from Commission on a Gender-Equal Economy includes recommendations for welfare reforms that move away from means-testing to focus on the wellbeing of claimants

30 September, 2020 Open access

DWP testing ‘transformed’ approach to training of new Work Coaches that replaces the current 52-day programme with 25 days of learning

New programme will however be followed up 'with a suite of products enabling colleagues to learn in a flexible, digital way', says DWP Minister

30 September, 2020

DWP issues guidance on Upper Tribunal decision that ESA claimant had not failed to attend medical examination where appointment letter did not impose legal obligation to attend

New ADM Memo and DMG Memo confirm that reasoning in judgment applies equally to cases where legal requirement to return ESA50 questionnaire was not imposed

30 September, 2020

Scottish Government confirms new process for helping third-party representatives with enquiries where claimant unable to give explicit consent

Chief Executive of Social Security Scotland advises that representatives who are able to answer questions to verify that they are genuine will be given limited information in compliance with data protection requirements

30 September, 2020

Bill to support delivery of new Scottish Child Payment unanimously passed by Scottish Parliament

Once enacted, the new legislation will also introduce new provisions relating to appointees, health professionals who can diagnose terminal illness, and the suspension of payments

30 September, 2020

Final Work Programme statistics show that less than a third of participants over the programme’s almost eight-year history achieved a ‘job outcome’

However, success rate surpasses DWP's expectation that providers achieve around a 25 per cent job outcome rate

30 September, 2020 Open access

Chancellor urged to make £20 uplift to universal credit and working tax credit permanent and extend increase to legacy benefits

Open letter from JRF and more than 50 charities and faith groups calls on government to 'keep doing the right thing, keep families afloat and keep the lifeline'

29 September, 2020 Open access

Reform of support for mortgage interest loan scheme should include abolition of waiting period and an initial three-month grant, says Centre for Policy Studies

New report from centre-right thinktank says that more generous scheme would not only protect low-income homeowners impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, but would also be highly cost-effective

29 September, 2020

Work and Pensions Secretary accepts recommendation to create a single new digital function within the DWP

Change will see the closure of Arm’s-Length Body that was created following the 2015 Spending Review to achieve a 34 per cent reduction in real terms spending on technology

29 September, 2020

Northern Ireland Assembly agrees to extend provisions of Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill to Northern Ireland

Legislative Consent Motion passed following warning from Communities Minister that, if it failed to pass, power to amend EU social security co-ordination provisions could be lost

29 September, 2020

‘Flawed design choices’ in universal credit are depriving people of essential social security support

Human-centred approach to benefits automation is needed to ensure the system helps the people who need it most, says Human Rights Watch

29 September, 2020

Single parents with pre-school aged children are being ‘shoe-horned’ into job-seeking regime that does not reflect their needs

New Gingerbread report calls for all single parents with young children to be given clear information about potential easements and flexibilities before agreeing to claimant commitment

28 September, 2020 Open access

Local authorities in England to have discretion to award self-isolation payments to those who do not receive qualifying benefits

Department of Health and Social Care also advises that it is engaging with devolved administrations to explore opportunities for a UK-wide scheme