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Welfare rights

26 March, 2024

DWP is building a digital solution to ‘strengthen and improve’ its appointee system

However, giving evidence to Work and Pensions Committee, Minister expresses surprise that advisers do not feel they have a way to escalate issues for vulnerable claimants

26 March, 2024

DWP says it needs more time to respond to recommendations and findings from Parliamentary Ombudsman’s report on inadequate communication of increases in women’s pension age

Work and Pensions Secretary updates Parliament saying it is only right that the Department takes time to fully and properly consider the Ombudsman's findings, and that he will report back to the House 'without undue delay'

26 March, 2024

DWP confirms it is testing the sharing of health assessment reports with PIP claimants by default before a decision is made

Minister says evaluation of testing will provide insight into whether sharing of assessments enables claimants to clarify evidence at an early stage and improves trust and transparency in decision making

26 March, 2024

DWP issues guidance on valuation of capital assets for housing benefit purposes

New HB circular

25 March, 2024

Jobcentres should not be ‘places of fear’, says Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary

Calling for an end to the 'tick-box approach' where work coaches spend all their time assessing and monitoring claimants, Liz Kendall says there should be a joined up approach involving both the NHS and employment support

25 March, 2024

Disability Poverty Campaign Group calls on government to extend Household Support Fund for full year

Highlighting that millions of disabled people have had their lives 'decimated by the cost of living crisis', letter to Work and Pensions Secretary warns that closing the fund prior to winter takes away the only remaining source of financial help for those in crisis

25 March, 2024

While claimants are open to engaging with the DWP digitally for straightforward interactions, they prefer the telephone for more complex queries

However, new research shows that digital literacy varies considerably across benefits with around a third of pension credit and attendance allowance claimants having never used the internet

25 March, 2024

Continuation of provisions that enable the use of audio and video live links in courts and tribunals in Northern Ireland until September 2024

New statutory rule

25 March, 2024

Ensuring that social security benefits uprating provisions in Northern Ireland for 2023/2024 continue in force

New statutory rules revoke and re-enact provisions that would otherwise cease to have effect

22 March, 2024

Labelling ‘normal ups and downs’ as medical conditions holds people back and drives up benefits bill, says Work and Pensions Secretary

However, warning that comments risk increasing stigma around mental health, Mind Chief Executive says that politicians need to 'consider the impact of their words'

22 March, 2024

Shelter calls for DWP to pause migration of housing benefit-only claimants to universal credit to avoid increased risk of rent arrears and homelessness

Insights from DWP's 'Discovery' work on early migration, that includes finding that housing benefit claimants in particular struggled to engage with the process, should be used to work out how best to support them

22 March, 2024

Unpaid carers forced to reduce working hours to remain eligible for carer’s allowance for fifth consecutive year

Carer Poverty Coalition calls for carer's allowance earnings limit to be increased to the level of 21 hours per week at the national minimum wage

22 March, 2024

Ensuring that increase in benefit cap levels in Northern Ireland from April 2023 continues in force

New statutory rule revokes and re-enact provisions that would otherwise cease to have effect

21 March, 2024

MPs call for ‘uprating guarantee’ for working-age benefits and local housing allowance

In addition, highlighting the 'fundamental inadequacy' of social security support, Select Committee recommends developing a framework of principles for setting benefit levels that links to living costs as well as work incentives

21 March, 2024

Parliamentary Ombudsman recommends that DWP compensates women affected by its failure to adequately communicate changes to state pension age, and asks Parliament to intervene to hold it to account

'Unacceptable' that the Department has clearly indicated that it will refuse to do the right thing, Ombudsman says, calling for Parliament to act swiftly in making sure a compensation scheme is established

21 March, 2024

DWP administrative exercise has identified almost 100,000 cases of underpaid state pension

Progress report on LEAP initiative confirms that more than £570m has been paid out to correct the errors

21 March, 2024

New poverty and low income statistics suggest that this parliament is on course to be the worst on record for living standards

Institute for Fiscal Studies also highlights that 'absolute poverty' has now reverted to around its pre-pandemic level of 18 per cent, or 12 million people, as have poverty rates for groups including children, workers, pensioners and private renters

19 March, 2024

Government has failed to create any transformative change in progressing disabled people’s rights, says Disability Rights UK

Reporting on evidence provided to the UN Committee for the Rights of Disabled People, charity says government's failure to properly engage with the process is an 'insult to all disabled people'

19 March, 2024

3.3 million claimants were entitled to PIP in England and Wales in January 2024

New DWP statistics also show that more than a third of claimants receive the highest level of award