Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Iain Duncan Smith: Universal Credit, Nothing Succeeds like Failure.

with 60 comments

Iain Duncan Smith is a limpet.

Surrounded by advisers from limpet-land.

He is still there in the DWP, clinging on.

Limpets are not known for writing masterpieces, rivaling the cast of the Big Bang Theory, or indeed any thinking whatsoever.

So it’s no surprise that a few weeks of power finds IDS in trouble again.

To repeat……..

Over the years, Iain Duncan Smith’s reputation for administrative competence has been shredded, as delays and logistical problems have dogged his schemes. Only last Friday, a court ruled that shambolic new payments for disabled people had led to unlawful delays. His role as the face of harsh welfare cuts has also eroded his once-bold claims to be a champion of the poor. But despite all the wear and tear, his single biggest reform – the universal credit – is something which all the parties and pundits continue to buy into in principle. Much of the media continues to swallow, entirely uncritically, Mr Duncan Smith’s claims that this one bold move can, once and for all, make work pay for everybody.

On Monday, the Resolution Foundation publishes an analysis of the Duncan Smith architecture which – while sympathetic to the basic aim of merging numerous benefits – offers a refreshingly clear-headed recognition that benefit policy is always going to involve striking difficult balances. The report shows meticulous respect for scarce public funds and also casts its eyes up from the immediate practical problems dogging the implementation, concentrating instead on asking whether or not the Duncan Smith plans have got those tricky balances right.

In several respects, the answer is no. Most particularly, there is a worrying tendency for the planned reforms to operate to the disadvantage of working women. Universal credit expends considerable resources on allowing the main earner in couples – still most often the man – to keep more of what they earn, even though these are people who will often work full time irrespective of benefit rules. By contrast, a family’s second earner – still typically the woman – will often gain less than now from entering work at all, and then again for putting in an extra hour. Further special problems will dog single parents, which overwhelmingly means single mothers of course, with rent to pay. Families with large childcare bills are another problem. The Resolution Foundation invokes a non-exotic example case in which a tangle of tax, universal credit and nursery bills would reduce the effective minimum wage rate for an hour to just 20p.


Today we find that the  Resolution Foundation says this,

The improvements necessary to enable UC to, at a minimum, make work pay and smooth the transition into work must be made before millions of families are moved onto the new system. The start of the new parliament provides a natural opportunity to review the potential impact of UC and set out plans for its near- and medium-term development. Our proposals span two phases:

  • The first phase – covering the period when UC is fully rolled out, largely over this parliament –  seeks to focus incentives to work on the groups most likely to respond, in order to maximise its potential impact. Our recommendations in this phase are cost-neutral, recognising a backdrop of ongoing fiscal constraint.
  • The second phase – in the next parliament, following UC’s full roll-out – incorporates ambitious proposals designed to ensure UC is fit for purpose over the next decade and maximises its impact on employment. Our recommendations here are no longer bound by our short-term cost-neutral constraint but continue to fit within official projections of the expected long-term level of spending on working-age benefits.
  • Through analysing the evidence, it became apparent to us that the policy focus in UC must shift from reducing worklessness to encouraging and supporting all members of a household into decent, sustainable work. Simply being in work is not enough; the objective must be to tackle endemic low pay. To do so, we make recommendations that would improve incentives and provide effective practical support to help people progress. It is our hope that this approach will improve the living standards of millions of low to middle income families, helping them find a better balance between work and other commitments.
  • UC must learn the lessons of the current tax credits regime, particularly in relation to simplicity. The existing system successfully supports many people into work. However, its highly complicated structures and interactions can mean those who could stand to benefit most do not do so. The withdrawal of multiple benefits at the same time (and at varying rates) fails to provide workers with a clear incentive to progress and increase their earnings. A better-integrated and simpler-to-navigate working-age benefit system – which we have made suggestions to develop – can help to achieve these aims.
  • Simplifying the system will not be enough on its own however. To reach the targets set for UC, it is imperative that incentives to enter work are rebalanced. Those most in need of support to start working – single parents, second earners with children and the disabled – should have their incentives strengthened. Those with fewer barriers to work – people without dependent children – must not have their work choices distorted. Government must improve incentives to progress in work. People will feel little impetus to do so if 76 pence of every additional pound earned is lost through reduced benefits and payment of income tax and NI. Along with getting the financial incentives to progress right, effective practical support can help people improve their earnings via the route most appropriate for them.
  • With significant numbers of families set to start claiming UC next year – many of whom will have more complicated circumstances than those who are already receiving it – the start of the new parliament provides a perfect opportunity to reflect on the current design of UC. We hope that the new government finds our review to be a constructive and practical guide as it decides how to proceed. The warning our report makes is that a failure to revisit and revise policies now, and overlooking the changes needed to make UC a success, would represent a missed window of opportunity that may not present itself again once the system becomes fully bedded in.

Welfare Weekly summarises the report in more direct language,

Iain Duncan Smith’s flagship Universal Credit programme could turn low-income working families into ‘second class savers’, a think tank has warned.

The report ‘Making It Work‘, by the independent think tank Resolution Foundation, is largely supportive of the government’s attempt to simplify the benefits system.

However, the report warns that flaws in the Universal Credit system need to be addressed before millions of savers are moved onto the new benefit.

In the current tax credit system, income other than earnings are treated depending on a persons employment status, resulting in non-working people being treated more harshly than those in employment.

Under Universal Credit, working families savings will be treated just as harshly as for those people who are not in work. For every £250 in savings over a £6,000 threshold, working families will lose £4.35 a month in Universal Credit payments – creating a disincentive to put money aside.

Those with over £16,000 in savings will get nothing at all.

Income from sources such as occupational pensions, maternity allowance and maintenance payments will result in a ‘pound-for-pound deduction’ in a families benefit entitlement.

The Resolution Foundation says this will deter families from putting any money aside in savings and has branded Universal Credit as being ‘particularly unfair’ for working people. Especially considering the government’s recent £1bn move to provide increased flexibility for ISA savers.

The think tank has called on the government to exclude ISAs from Universal Credit calculations, which they claim will benefit around 200,000 working people. Universal Credit should also treat income from sources such as pensions and maternity allowance in the same way as earnings.

In other words putting some money aside will be punished under the new system.

Which is logical in a sense.

As the article notes anybody on JSA can be penalised for having some (pretty meagre in IDS terms) savings.

You might get the impression that the government prefers us to get into debt,

You would be right.

Iain Duncan Smith – the (legal) loan-sharks’ best mate.



Written by Andrew Coates

June 8, 2015 at 11:18 am

60 Responses

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  1. According to the Daily Mail, the poverty lobby has been “vanquished” under Universal Credit:


    Meanwhile 3.2 million families in Britain are on in-work benefits.


    June 8, 2015 at 12:36 pm

  2. Spine-tingling stuff from the Daily Mail:

    “The Prime Minister must now ensure IDS has room to finish the job of reform and be allowed to decide for himself where future welfare cuts should fall”.

    God help the poor!


    June 8, 2015 at 12:39 pm

  3. I for one cant wait until this in work conditionality roll out as I cant see how it can be done without bias.

    I particularly like the way they choose to use the word incentive without actually declaring what is meant by this in any detail.

    DWP is in no position legal or otherwise to insist a tax credit claimant gives up one form of employment for another, sure they can ask for extra hours but none the least cant dictate how a claimant goes about this.

    You cant tell a person they cant give up a place of employment and risk 13 weeks with no benefit assistance and then later say if you don’t give up that place of employment, we will reduce and or stop your tax credits.

    I seriously believe DWP tory ministers haven’t given this proposal much consideration and at best are yet again relying on ignorance to fix its massive holes.

    Currently unemployed people must except any offer of work yet if DWP then sanction someone for not giving up previous employment for tax credits, then it gives good grounds for an unemployed person to say no to particular jobs that meant there still reliant on benefits and this is just one example proving they clearly haven’t thought in work conditionality through properly.

    On the other side of the coin, this gives tax credit claimants the power to look only for work to cover the hours DWP state they need to make up meaning looking for work of only an 1 or 2 or possibly 5. We know such hours of employment don’t exist by far and large so unless DWP intend to get such claimants to give up there previous place of employment I fail to see how they can prevent this.

    As for people working less than 30 hours a week, it has yet to be explained besides housing what benefits they will be entitled to as current JSA rules state unemployment benefit stops after a claimant works 16 hours or more. Even if they do intend to raise the hour mark to 29 hours 59 mins and 59 seconds, they still wouldn’t be in any legal position to have separate rules to that of 30 plus hours claimants claiming tax credits.

    What needs to be nailed about this UC is whether or not a claimant of any of its benefits will have there housing benefit subject to sanctions. If this was prised out of DWP I reckon a public uproar will ensue if the case as It would be impossible for DWP to explain how this doesn’t reduce a persons chances of gaining and or keeping a place of employment, especially when you consider once sanctioned, no address is paid until the sanction has expired.

    I also suspect if such things are there plans that they will use recoverable hardship payments as a source to get the working public in debt despite them already being below the bread line and thus claiming benefits. I also suspect if the case, there use the total of what all claimants owe who take one as part of the 12 billion saving.


    June 8, 2015 at 1:04 pm

    • Incase no one knows, hardship payments are subject to the following,

      “You’ll only be able to receive a hardship payment if your claim hasn’t been closed and you’re doing all you can to find work”.

      So basically if you don’t comply again with your claimant commitment, not only can they sanction you but can also effectively prevent you from claiming hardship payments.

      This is of course in total conflict with the premise for hardship payments in the first place.

      “If your benefit payment is stopped, and you don’t have enough money to live on, you may be able to get a hardship payment”.

      Both sentences were taken directly from gov.co.uk, one from the page I will supply a link to, the other is contained in the PDF document attached to said webpage.



      June 8, 2015 at 1:30 pm

    • As we all know the jobcentre and their third-party collaborators in the private sector would have no compunction about throwing a claimant onto the street even if it meant that they would starve and freeze to death. You could get away with picking off the odd claimant here and there for eviction. But could you evict whole housing estate wholesale – seriously. There must come a point when peeps grow a backbone and say: “Fuck this shit”. It is not so long ago when we had ‘no go’ housing estates in the UK where the council, bailiffs and coppers feared to enter. Rent was never collected and they even burned their internal doors to keep warm. And they wouldn’t dare try in on in Ireland because the bastards know for a fact that they would get knee-capped if they were lucky – shot if they were unlucky……

      Cities On Fire

      June 8, 2015 at 2:48 pm

    • Gaia

      I know someone who has just got a job at 28 hours per week, he was told that his pay will be £800 per month, he was then told to close his claim for JSA and HB.


      June 8, 2015 at 3:21 pm

      • enigma

        I hope you told him to send by registered post a letter [a nd hand deliver a copy as well – copying in the senior officer of whatever particular office he signs on at] requesting clarification? And asking for the names of the civil servants ordering this and the chain of command that was backing this to the partacular DWPs senior officr. With requests for quotes of the relevant sections of the legilsation that backs such a move…


        June 8, 2015 at 4:19 pm

      • Gazza

        It’s even worse.

        I did tell him to get it in writing,- the hours and wage, because when he first told me about the job he got, he first didn’t know what the wage was, – why would anyone apply for a job where you don’t know the wage, after the interview he told me the wage was as above, but I later found that he did not apply for it, his adviser did, I doubt that the wage will be what was told to him.


        June 8, 2015 at 6:11 pm

      • So DWP applied for a job, got this claimant an interview but the claimant sat the interview ?

        Unless you can give me more, it sounds like this claimants got themselves a job.


        June 8, 2015 at 9:04 pm

      • He uses UJM and knowing him he has given the DWP access to his account, tonight I learn that they know his password, so his adviser applied for him, the amount of times I have tried to tell him the do’s and don’ts.


        June 8, 2015 at 10:01 pm

      • I wondered why anyone would apply for a job not knowing what the wage is.


        June 8, 2015 at 10:11 pm

      • God help him. This sounds like a zero hours job to me.


        June 9, 2015 at 12:31 am

      • Well it sounds like this claimant is the maker of his own doing in this instance then enigma.

        What is the job anyway and will they be earning more than they get in benefits currently ?

        Lastly my advice to this person is register as a sole trader with HMRC. Give then a trade he’s good at, HMRC don’t care if there’s qualified, competent and stuff so its quite simple.

        Then declare extra hours like 2 and put in a claim for tax credits as your still drumming up business so no paid work yet.

        I would also at the council declare low earner and reapply for housing benefit and see what gives.


        June 9, 2015 at 8:15 am

      • He doesn’t know what is happening, what we know, his job is as a cleaner, he will be coming to the food bank to let us know how things are going.


        June 9, 2015 at 8:42 am

    • “to ensure UC is fit for purpose over the next decade and maximises its impact on employment”

      So wait it out while up until then many people on UC will suffer.


      June 8, 2015 at 7:35 pm

      • Is it even legal for advisor to apply for jobs on the claimant behalf like this?? Did the advisor pretend to be your friend?? Isn’t that fraud or impersonation or something?? Sounds bonkers to me!!!!!

        kat rehman

        June 9, 2015 at 9:07 am

      • The truth is Kat, this person does everything he is told by the advisers, we know there are many like this, I’ve shown him docs which we have only he doesn’t seem interested in reading any.


        June 9, 2015 at 11:06 am

  4. Work, proper paid work, is what will make work pay!


    June 8, 2015 at 1:15 pm

    • What part will Universal Credit play in job creation?


      June 8, 2015 at 1:34 pm

    • Even that’s not enough in todays climate as what good is 7.80 an hour if the work isn’t sustainable. What good is any work in the long run when exports remains stagnant.

      At present its the public shopping and being in debt that’s keeping us afloat so without export will see the eventual decay of UK money as government and investor maintain there taking of the slice. Money in the UK will whittle away slowly but surely and even that is assuming investors don’t sell there shares and move on to ventures abroad meaning even less money for businesses who depend on investment if they do.

      Then theres this attitude the tory has with immigration not to mention there open hatred for all that is eastern. Lets not also forget we may end up leaving Europe. So to say this wont effect trade is simply ridiculous to say the least.

      David Cameron needs to get off his high horse as the further he goes, the more he seems to enrage people both here, abroad and even those in his own party who only today he threatened to sack which is laughable when you consider what on earth does solidarity have to do with work contracts. Can you imagine yourself being sacked all because you didn’t mentally agree with your manager, can you imagine any employer winning on that very premise at a employment tribunal ?

      I will give the Tories points for a slow decent unlike the fallout during the great depression but none the less its still a decent with the known outlook (currently its only ever projections) still looking as mysterious as it was back in 2007/8.


      June 8, 2015 at 2:00 pm

    • IBS keeps claiming that UC has helped millions into work, which is odd because there’s only about 0.7% on it.

      Another Fine Mess

      June 8, 2015 at 9:32 pm

  5. I had my ‘annual verification’ form from the DWP today.

    It is a bit – intentionally – confusing.

    Essentially you have to wade through it to find the box to tick “no change in my circumstances”.

    I suspect – indeed am sure – that it’s another trap for claimants so that some thief can get a bonus for reducing the number of claimants.

    Andrew Coates

    June 8, 2015 at 2:39 pm

    • What happens if you don’t fill-in the “annual verification” form and return it?


      June 8, 2015 at 3:02 pm

      • Your money will stop, no doubt…


        June 8, 2015 at 3:10 pm

      • But that would be madness!!!

        Ah, I see, that’s the point of it all!!!!!!


        June 8, 2015 at 3:27 pm

      • I thought unemployed people continually verify their claim every two weeks when they sign-on at the Jobcentre.


        June 8, 2015 at 3:30 pm

      • In fact though it’s presented as something matter of course I can’t actually remember filling in one before.

        Andrew Coates

        June 8, 2015 at 4:05 pm

      • Never had one – but have on file instructions that any out of the ordinary forms/meetings to send me mobile text and call me… strange that.

        Though the other trick is tell you your claim is ending… most stop signing on not realising that waht’s they want – so if instead you turnup and sign on everythings fine.


        June 8, 2015 at 4:24 pm

  6. Well this report is off to a good start – what excellent researchers did this report… err no as they missed the implementation date of 6 april 2016 of the avalanche of conditiontality coming to the same group of people they are worried about.. Women.

    Though to show that a average [and not a difficult case at that] case where the pay is reduced to 20p of minimum wage.

    Truly, this is going to be serious egg on face time for someone….


    June 8, 2015 at 4:07 pm

  7. Iain Duncan Smith is a walking shambles. Everything he touches turns to shit. Sack the useless bastard.

    not roger

    June 8, 2015 at 4:07 pm

  8. Why are some Jobcentres instructing JSA Claimants to do 35 hours weekly jobsearch when they are under no legal obligation to do so?

    not roger

    June 8, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    • “Not”

      because they can and it helps pile on the mind numbing pressure on claimants, if even one of the claimants in one office give up a week its quids in for DWP.

      Also unless you check around you’ll beieve what you’re told because you don’t know any different – think fraudsters, they take people for a ride because some people fall for thier tricks/lies and don’t think for themselves by asking the simple question does this sound right/feel/logical.


      June 8, 2015 at 4:27 pm

    • There doesn’t have to be legislation to advise a claimant to do 35 hours worth of job search.

      What laws for starters would apply ?

      My only disapproval to it is this need to introduce supervised job searches as rather than it helping those that need it and they do exist, I fear it will be used as just another punishing tool, a way to line private sector pockets that to date have failed to produce any significant outcomes and thus reducing the pledge of helping people back into work.

      At the end of the day its just the Tories working from the law of averages hymn sheet without giving any thought to whom is in a position to host many claimants 7 hours a day 5 days a week. The truth I suspect will see providers taking the reins but like the WP wont really be monitoring you physically in any meaningful way.

      I do caution though if the case that claimants establish with said provider whether or not they intend to use data stored from peoples activities online as by law (DPA) they must make clear how they process all your personal and or sensitive data and storage, retention and conveyance is all firmly under it.


      June 9, 2015 at 9:38 am

  9. Reblogged this on Britain Isn't Eating.


    June 8, 2015 at 10:03 pm

  10. People who class themselves as having poor health are far less likely to remain in work than those with good health. However, there has been very little research about the transitions people with poor health make between different employment states over time.

    This report reveals that government policies designed to simply shift people with poor health from unemployment into work are likely to be ineffective;



    June 8, 2015 at 10:48 pm

  11. DWP-backed trial to tackle universal credit rent arrears.

    A government-backed pilot scheme to test ways of making it easier for universal credit claimants to have their benefit paid to their landlord has launched.





    June 8, 2015 at 10:54 pm

  12. Universal credit could make working fewer hours more attractive – study



    June 8, 2015 at 11:00 pm

    • Universal credit is full of holes that will take many years to plug which wont even start until they can sort the I.T system out. As I believe the full rollout is now dated as 2020 with some saying even that is optimistic.

      Just like the claimant commitment, UC is highly contradictive between not working and working and claiming as a low earner. It has to rely on disincentives it labels as incentives not to mention from the get go labels every claimant as being a failure who’s so incompetent, they need to be told what to do. What makes the latter part laughable is that these work coaches are no more experienced at finding work and that’s if they can fit it in there already expanded workload, than a claimant is and so as to not look so god damn obvious rushed through an illegitimate body of professionals organisation and invented a qualification back in 2011, need I say any more ?

      The more these reforms move forward the more problems arise so it no surprize welfare costs spiralled in the last five years and the Tories failed to reduce the deficit while increasing the national debt way beyond what both labour leaders ever did when they were in office.

      Before Tony Blair, John Major left this country in ruin so it will be interesting to see what state Cameron’s office leaves it in as bottom dollar if they don’t strike gold this time, there shoe in not to be voted back a third time. Considering Cameron’s party in office is using stuff like welfare and immigration as a modern equivalent to the romans gladiator arena to channel the public distaste caused by banks and the rich (getting the public to turn on itself) im not holding out hope for a success story, especially when there fudging figures, defying courts and telling the UK everyone’s wrong but them.

      What government sends out financial aid abroad or carries out military work when there broke, when they receive less revenue than it takes to run the country, one that recognises the uncertainty after 2007 or one that clearly thinks its just a blip, that even though it happened, try to pretend differently until they reach a point they have to admit there struggling to make the countries ends meet.

      All the Tories have achieved to date is freeze time by QE and massive borrowing, a clear sign the problem is still very much alive.

      To put it short, the Tories are no more clued up to what’s going to happen next than we and the rest of the world are.


      June 9, 2015 at 8:54 am

  13. Mother of man killed in ‘disabled hate crime’ says he just wanted to make friends.

    Lee Irving, 24, was found dead on a grassed area next to a footpath popular with dog walkers and cyclists in Fawdon, Newcastle, on Saturday morning. He had died of chest injuries. Six people have been arrested on suspicion of murder and are in custody.



    June 8, 2015 at 11:18 pm

    • This is just hideous. Every year there is a slow trickle of the hate crimes against those with Learning Disabilities. Hurting the vulnerable is about as low as human being can go.

      RIP Lee Irving.


      June 10, 2015 at 12:04 pm

  14. Question of the day for IDS

    Why is inactivity figures growing as indicated by the last labour market report ?


    June 9, 2015 at 9:43 am

    • With employment at a high, one can only imagine either they came from claiming benefits or the jobs market is beginning its for every action there’s an equal and opposite reaction phase ?


      June 9, 2015 at 9:50 am

  15. Did you know 1 in every 4 private renters claim housing benefit, Making this 90% higher than 6 years ago ?


    June 9, 2015 at 10:20 am

    • Housing benefit is going to be a major target for cuts in the Budget.

      Andrew Coates

      June 9, 2015 at 3:18 pm

      • Maybe they will rename it appropriately this time as “Landlord Benefit” ?


        June 10, 2015 at 12:05 pm

  16. Currently showcasing all-over Universal Jobmatch. Another data harvester?

    Anyone heard of these mothers?

    Job Heaven

    Driver Fundraiser

    Job description
    Immediate start charity fundraisers / Sales Executives / Customer Service. We cover the cost of our fundraisers travel and accommodation. You do not need to be working as a fundraiser or within sales or customer service but this experience is an advantage. Our driver fundraisers get a guaranteed weekly pay of £380 – £480 per week whilst driving and fundraising. **************THIS IS A BASIC PAID ROLE AND BONUS************** Fantastic fundraising opportunities to progress your career further within a sales / customer service / fundraising / driving environment. Apply now for a job with an IMMEDIATE start. Join our team of driver fundraisers and help to raise funds for some of the World’s largest and most amazing charities. As a Together Driver your duties would include: · Driving teams of fundraisers to private sites across the UK · Delivering equipment · Driving fundraisers back to the accommodation · Fundraising for some of the UK’s most well-known charities For fantastic pay and progression opportunities get in touch now to make sure you have an amazing year The details: · Work around the UK · Weekly pay – NOT a commission based role · Starting rate £380 per week + bonuses · Excellent career progression opportunities · Team Leader Drivers Earn £480 per week + bonuses Successful candidates will have: · Have held a Full UK Licence for 3 years with a maximum of 3 points · Permission to work within the UK · Fully organised and able to manage own time effectively Extra Benefits · All travel and accommodation paid for by Together To apply send your CV today Please Note: You MUST be able to stay away from home for a minimum of 4 weeks at a time. Our fundraisers work patterns of 4 weeks on 1 week off. Immediate start charity fundraisers / Sales Executives / Customer Service. We cover the cost of our fundraisers travel and accommodation. You do not need to be working as a fundraiser or within sales or customer service but this experience is an advantage. Our driver fundraisers get a guaranteed weekly pay of £380 – £480 per week whilst driving and fundraising. **************THIS IS A BASIC PAID ROLE AND BONUS************** Fantastic fundraising opportunities to progress your career further within a sales / customer service / fundraising / driving environment. Apply now for a job with an IMMEDIATE start. Join our team of driver fundraisers and help to raise funds for some of the World’s largest and most amazing charities. As a Together Driver your duties would include: · Driving teams of fundraisers to private sites across the UK · Delivering equipment · Driv

    jj joop

    June 9, 2015 at 12:33 pm

    • It’s not just UJ they’re bleedin’ everywhere! I wouldn’t go near it. The employer seems to be

      http://www.wearetogether.***co.uk [remove the *** if you have to]

      Another Fine Mess

      June 9, 2015 at 8:56 pm

  17. More job losses

    HSBC to rebrand UK high street bank as global shakeup sheds 25,000 jobs

    Unions react angrily to news of 8,000 job losses in UK as they say frontline staff are being made to pay for the mistakes of others



    June 9, 2015 at 1:02 pm

  18. Universal Credit, where it exists, denies payout of Pension Credit if either of a couple are below the raised retirement age.

    So the couple lose, more likely, the wife’s state pension AND Pension Credit.

    The con that is the flat rate pension ABOLISHES Pension Credit (savings) for new pensioners with retirement date on and after 6 April 2016.

    Then the flat rate continues to wipe out the HOUSEWIFE PENSION at 60 per cent rate, if the lady wife has less than 10 years National Insurance record in her own right.

    So also Widow’s Housewife pension or divorcee state pension at same 60 per cent rate, is also lost by the flat rate law next year.

    The poorest workers are already out of the state pension system by the LOWER EARNINGS LEVEL meaning they are not getting the automatic National Insurance credits, given to those above that low threshold of pay.


    Please share widely thanks.



    June 9, 2015 at 4:20 pm

    • “Chris”

      You said already that Pension Credit Guarantee will be subject to conditionality under Universal Credit.

      Can you list what these conditions will be?


      June 9, 2015 at 4:59 pm

      • Questioner

        This might have something to do with the new regulations coming in in 6th April 2016 when a whole swathe of people are due to be shafted.. Sorry, be “Introduced to the Joys of UJM et al”

        Search back a few months here and you’ll find the info.


        June 9, 2015 at 7:05 pm

  19. “Family of nine evicted after being hit by benefits cap left relying on food banks to survi

    While being forced out of their home, their seven-year-old daughter asked then: “Where will we live?”

    A family of nine say the benefits cap has seen them evicted from their home and reliant on weekly food bank visits to survive.

    Sonny and Heidi Birdi, 40 and 37, whose seven kids are aged between two and 11, used to enjoy a £60,000 household income. They spent thousands on designer shopping trips and treated their family to holidays abroad and the latest toys. But their lives were turned upside down two years ago when Sonny was left unable to work because of a severe kidney problem.

    They were evicted from their home six weeks ago and are now living in a three-bed temporary home provided by the council.”


    Andrew Coates

    June 9, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    • No doubt there will be thousands of such happening to families due to job losses and UC.


      June 10, 2015 at 8:25 am

  20. What this shows is how politically motivated these policies are for the i am alright (for now) jacks,life can take a turn such as illness or redundancy and suddenly people find themselves at the end of this,and how ridiculous it really is becomes apparent.Many are then brought back down to earth.

    The security of a wage is equally contemptuous,a politician maybe of a privileged background that hasn’t experienced everyday life for the majority many people don’t even have that security on the now named no hour contracts rushed over at job interviews.


    June 10, 2015 at 12:57 am

  21. Government Policy Of Pushing Sick People Into Work ‘Likely To Be Ineffective’, Finds Study



    June 10, 2015 at 1:04 am

  22. There is now a significant body of evidence that the WCA is failing to assess people’s fitness for work accurately and appropriately, with people who are seriously physically and mentally ill being found fit for work and those with acute, transient episodes being assessed as lacking capacity and treated in the same way as those with a longer term prognosis



    June 10, 2015 at 8:44 am

    • Of course if you see the next post the DWP reckons all the unemployed have mental health ‘issues’ that need treating…..

      Andrew Coates

      June 10, 2015 at 3:44 pm

      • We are all as mad as a hatter 😀 😀 We just don’t know it 😀 😀

        The Unemployed Mad Hatters

        June 11, 2015 at 1:40 am

  23. As a person who works on delivering the farce that is Universal Credit, I can honestly say I have never been so ashamed to have to sit there dealing with such a morally bankrupt scheme that has us needing food banks. The so called Government should be ashamed. But they are incapable of that as it is a feeling.

    Cyril Servant

    July 6, 2015 at 10:34 pm

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