Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Housing Benefit Removal: Young People Face Uncertain Futures.

with 65 comments

Government Set to Swell Young Rough Sleeper Numbers.

YMCA report predicts more homeless young with housing benefit cuts.

‘Uncertain Futures’ is a new report that seeks to challenge some of the assumptions underpinning the argument that many young people are choosing a life on benefits and draw out the types of young people who may be adversely affected by these reforms when they are introduced in April 2017.
By removing automatic entitlement to Housing Benefit for 18 to 21-year-olds, the Government could be in danger of inadvertently taking away support from the young people who need it the most, and in doing so, exposing many more vulnerable people to the risk of becoming homeless and therefore damaging their prospects of finding work in the future.
YMCA agrees that action is needed to address youth unemployment but, without protections, thousands of vulnerable, young people will face uncertain futures, not knowing if they will have anywhere they can call home and leaving them less able to find work.
In changing entitlement to Housing Benefit for 18 to 21-year-olds, YMCA believes that detailed measures should be put in place to ensure the most vulnerable young people in the country continue to receive protection and support during their time of need.
As such, as a minimum, protection should be put in place for young people who are:

  • Pregnant or have dependent children
  • Care leavers or former children in need
  • Homeless or have a history of homelessness
  • Estranged from their parents.

Amongst other points Uncertain Futures notes:

Many of the young people claiming are doing so because they have no other option 2,100 18 to 21 year olds claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance and Housing Benefit have at least one dependent  child to look after.

7,200 young care leavers between 19 and 21 years old in England are currently out of work and would  potentially be eligible to claim Jobseeker’s Allowance and Housing Benefit.

Between 5,800 and 6,400 18 to 21 year olds were identified as homeless and in priority need last year.

Nearly 1,400 18 to 21 year olds currently living in YMCA supported accommodation claim Jobseeker’s  Allowance and Housing Benefit.

For the young people claiming benefits, it is far from an attractive lifestyle choice.

Most young people are entitled to £57.90 a week in Jobseeker’s Allowance.

44% of 18 to 21 year olds claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance and Housing Benefit get less than £75 a week in help towards their housing costs.

It states,

” this report demonstrates, to believe that removing entitlement to Housing Benefit will drive all young people to ‘earn or learn’ is to misunderstand many of those that rely upon this part of the social security system.

It is also to underestimate how important having a stable and safe home is in enabling these vulnerable young  people to find training and employment.

By removing automatic entitlement to Housing Benefit for 18 to 21 year olds the Government could be in  danger of inadvertently taking away support from the young people who need it most, and in doing so, exposing many more vulnerable young people to the risk of becoming homeless and therefore damaging their prospects of finding work in the future.

Action is needed to address youth unemployment, but without protections thousands of vulnerable young  people will face uncertain futures, not knowing if they will have anywhere they can call home and leaving them less able to find work.

The Guardian writes,

A spokesman for the Department for Work and Pensions said: “This report is deliberately misleading since we have been very clear that vulnerable young people including care-leavers and people with children will be exempt from this policy.

“We want to make sure young people get the support they need to move into work and do not slip straight into a life on benefits.”

The government is likely to exempt care-leavers, those with dependent children, disabled youngsters who are unable to work, and young people who have been working for six months before claiming.

YMCA says that before exemptions 19,000 young people currently claim job seeker’s allowance (JSA) and housing benefit, equivalent to less than 1% of all housing benefit claimants.

It rejects the idea that this group is pursuing a “lifestyle choice”, pointing out that nearly three-quarters of this cohort claim for less than six months, suggesting it is a short-term safety net. JSA is £57.90 a week, while average housing benefit payments are less than £75.

The charity points out out that the numbers of 18- to 21-year-olds claiming both entitlements has halved in the last two years and is falling faster than any other age group. Over two-thirds of 18-21-year-olds live at home with parents, a proportion that has risen over the past decade.


Written by Andrew Coates

August 4, 2015 at 3:12 pm

65 Responses

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  1. A National Education Service will give working age people access throughout their lives to learn new skills or to re-train. It should also work with Jobcentre Plus to offer claimants opportunities to improve their skills, rather than face the carousel of workfare placements, sanctions and despair. We need a return to ambitious joined-up government.



    August 4, 2015 at 4:15 pm

    • Indeed – the article is by Jeremy Corbyn..

      Which reminds me of just how far Corbymania’s grown…..

      Andrew Coates

      August 4, 2015 at 4:43 pm

      • I’ve been caught red pawed!!

        kat rehman

        August 4, 2015 at 10:31 pm

      • The epitome of separatism is to be zealous in any belief.

        I do not wish to be heard, nor do I wish you to listen, exist without thought and we are already one.

        If you have to understand this, then you have failed as i have imparting with you.

        For I am the sacrifice so you don’t have to be.


        August 5, 2015 at 8:55 am

  2. All very well, but if memory serves didn’t the YMCA have their snouts in the New Deal / FND trough? Maybe the WP as well for all I know.


    August 5, 2015 at 9:26 am

    • That may well be so but the YMCA has done more for our young than any government ever has, hell even more than these kids parents have.

      I would rather see government cash and schemes awarded to time honoured charities than I ever would these only been here two seconds unscrupulous privateer for profit counterparts who are nothing more than mammon’s serf.


      August 5, 2015 at 11:05 am

    • Absolutely Dan, and it was protests against the YMCA run ‘scheme’ in Ipswich led to this Blog being set up.

      But, to their credit, they withdrew when the turn to Workfare Mandatory Work Activity and the rest of the Work Programme came up.

      Andrew Coates

      August 5, 2015 at 11:26 am

      • With all dew respect Mr Coates if it was not for the YMCA, many more kids would be homeless and abused on the streets which according to current figures sees already around half of the homeless being under 25.

        Also the principle to assist people back into work is not the fundamental flaw as to why it doesn’t work not to mention years before even flexi new deal, YMCA had already been setting up placements for kids in various trades throughout the UK.

        I know this not as someone who has read an article but as someone who has personally devoted his previous time free of charge to assisting the YMCA in there endeavours to assist the young into achieving a good quality of life which pre 2007 was a whole lot more achievable what with not having our now government yanking the funding away so as to pour it into the pockets of the likes of A4E and Ingeus to name but a few who only exist to profit from it.

        I have the upmost respect for you, I truly do and have been a loyal supporter to your aims for many a moon now but as I feel I already have an unhelpful government, simply fear i couldn’t stomach anymore objective members of the public who like the fore mentioned party do in no discernible way make any roads what so ever to conquering this current plight we all find ourselves in.

        Its one thing to say we are all in it together, its quite another to actually see it in practice which ever side of the fence we find ourselves on.

        So to that end inline with my continued stance as a massive believer in freedom of speech, do wish not to stifle your voice and genuine effort to keep the poor and infirm informed however informed that may well be, will in future abstain from commenting on your site.

        I’m still in the fight rest assured but will just be taking a different approach and hope where ever we find ourselves, we both succeed in our aim.


        August 5, 2015 at 12:35 pm

      • So are the YMCA clean now? They’re not conniving with the DWP to get anyone’s benefit sanctioned? That would be good.

        These days I think of ALL charities as guilty of supporting claimant harassment and slve labour puishment schemes until proven otherwise, and that being the case they can all whistle for my support.


        August 6, 2015 at 3:44 pm

      • We live in hope Dan.

        Not in certainty……

        Andrew Coates

        August 6, 2015 at 4:24 pm

      • I suspected as much, leopards/spots, tigers/stripes etc…


        August 7, 2015 at 12:51 pm

  3. Kat, never heard of “microcytic anaemia” until now, now though I will look it up, thanks for letting me know.


    August 5, 2015 at 11:28 am

    • No worries enigma! Let’s hope it never happens to you!! I feel like I been hit by a truck!! Off to discuss treatment ect tomorrow

      kat rehman

      August 5, 2015 at 5:47 pm

      • “Lack of Iron” I wonder why no doc has told me I suffer from it!


        August 5, 2015 at 9:07 pm

  4. “vulnerable young people including care-leavers and people with children will be exempt from this policy” meanwhile we know the truth.


    August 5, 2015 at 11:37 am



    I said it myself On Mr Andrew Coates previous thread (Even Iain Duncan Smith’s Advisers Call for Review of Benefit Sanctions) and low and behold its true and to think I didn’t even need to ring DWP to know that.

    Equally as funny this article isn’t quite correct as it first broke in the Croydon Advertiser who has now despite still not replying to my complaint, removed it.


    Although I chose to see the funny side of this in my rendition I most certainly didn’t when complaining to the Croydon advertiser and had they had the stones to print it would have outlined how I thought and made mention that this was a direct conservative supporting media biased attack after the recent revelation of one lord Sewell not to mention a double whammy to launch yet another attack on the unemployed so as to stoke more unwarranted hatred towards us.

    (Brought to you by, “THATS A FACT JACK”).


    August 5, 2015 at 11:39 am

    • With all due respect gaia, I will offer you a spelling and grammar lesson here. I’ve noticed you frequently make spelling and grammatical errors with the word “dew”, and you often confuse “there” and “their”. You also err with the expression “Low and behold”.

      “Dew” is condensation found on the grass early in the morning; the word you’re after is “due” – as in “with all due respect”!

      “There”, means “over there”, and NOT “their” which means belong to others. Nor does the term “theirs” (which you use at times) mean “there is”!

      “You’re”, means “you are”, and it’s incorrect to use the word “your” in that case.

      The word “Lo” as in “Lo and behold” is a contraction of “look”, and the expression as a whole means “look and see”.


      August 5, 2015 at 12:58 pm

      • Thanks for that Spellcheck, I thought it was just me. Gaia’s spelling and grammar has been doin’ r fuckin’ heads in for far too long now. innit.

        Dictionary Corner

        August 5, 2015 at 2:23 pm

      • Leave her alone!! Gaia posts valuable stuff and she puts a lot of work and effort in!!

        kat rehman

        August 5, 2015 at 5:49 pm

      • kat reham – If you look at a comment about the YMCA by “gaia” today at 12.35, you will find that “gaia” is a he!!

        “gaia” uses the expression:

        “…I know this not as someone who has read an article but as someone who has personally devoted HIS previous time…”


        August 5, 2015 at 7:16 pm

      • Is Gaia talking about.

        Jason Stacey, Director of Policy, Research and Communications at YMCA England, discusses the impact of removing automatic entitlement to Housing Benefit for 18 to 21-year-olds


        August 5, 2015 at 8:23 pm

      • Don’t we all make spelling mistakes, we even see them in many news articles and a lot more, at least we understand what the person is saying.


        August 5, 2015 at 9:30 pm

      • The idea that he could afford more than a few litres of strong white cider and a box of tissues is pushing it a bit!

        Andrew Coates

        August 6, 2015 at 4:27 pm

    • Coincidentally enough (or perhaps not so coincidentally) there was a very similar story on the front page of the Daily Star on Tuesday. Another man who apparently spends all his vast amount of JSA money on prostitutes, only this time, he used to work in a bookies rather than as a builder. What price this is a pile of bollocks as well?


      August 5, 2015 at 11:07 pm

    • gaia (or Gaia for those of us who can afford fancy keyboards) has shared a prison cell with Charles Bronson – Britain’s Most Violent Prisoner!

      (Brought to you by, “THATS A FACT JACK”).

      Fact Jack

      August 6, 2015 at 3:04 pm

  6. Reblogged this on Britain Isn't Eating.


    August 5, 2015 at 7:52 pm

    • I stand corrected spell checker and can I also point out my name is rehman not reham..

      kat rehman

      August 5, 2015 at 8:49 pm

      • kat rehman – sorry for the typo! We can all make mistakes!!

        Presumably, though, your name should be written “Kat Rehman” (note the capitals)!!!

        Same goes for “gaia” – it’s always in the lower case!!!!


        August 6, 2015 at 7:39 am

      • not everyone can afford one of ’em all-singing, all-dancing, state-of-the-art ‘qwerty’ keyboards with a ‘shift’ key. we are not all made of money, you know.


        August 6, 2015 at 2:58 pm



        August 7, 2015 at 6:51 am

  7. A disabled couple and their four year-old daughter are stranded in a motorway service station hotel because a council cannot find another home for them.

    Janet Paddison, 23, and her partner and young girl were made homeless when their landlord decided to sell their rented property.

    They looked for homes in the private sector but said no one was prepared to accept her assistance dog or housing benefit supplements.



    August 5, 2015 at 8:47 pm

    • Lol spell checker I really do stand corrected, Kat Rehman!

      kat rehman

      August 10, 2015 at 4:46 pm

  8. Health budget must rise, or patient fees increase and services diminish, public finance institute warns ministers in bleak assessment of ‘short-term’ pledges..

    Ministers will have to consider charging patients for seeing a GP, attending A&E, and using the food, power and water of hospitals, unless better long-term solutions for funding the NHS can be found, public finance experts have warned.



    August 5, 2015 at 8:51 pm

    • Ah,

      The long Awaited Privitisation by the Backdoor…

      Welcome, syep right in… Rich, middle class welcome.

      Poor? Piss of.


      August 5, 2015 at 9:38 pm

      • Yes, never mind the words “paid for by tax payers” printed on our meds, we’ll soon have to pay fo them too.


        August 5, 2015 at 9:51 pm

  9. Another attack on the Unions.

    Nurses, teachers and civil servants are to be barred from automatically paying trade union subscriptions from their wages, the Government has announced.

    In a fresh assault on the unions, ministers will abolish the practice under which nearly four million public sector workers have their fees taken directly from their pay every month.

    Workers will instead have to arrange to make the payments themselves, a move which is likely to lead to a significant decline in funding for Britain’s biggest trade unions.



    August 6, 2015 at 7:53 am

    • I’m confused here! Available council employee and unite member, but I pay my union dues through direct debit and was told it was so that some people have bad employers who hated unions, if everyone paid by direct debit through their own bank the employer wouldn’t know their employees were in the union?? Even though every worker has the right to be in a union!

      kat rehman

      August 10, 2015 at 4:52 pm

      • Should be I’m in a union and I’m council employee not available!!

        kat rehman

        August 10, 2015 at 4:53 pm

      • I’m available! – that isn’t a mistake!


        August 10, 2015 at 11:26 pm

  10. Understated – “Because we don’t wan’t the truth to be known.

    The government has significantly understated the impact of its benefit sanctions regime, according to Guardian research” that shows one in six of all jobseekers have their payments stopped each year.

    The figures contradict official claims that only a small minority of jobseekers have been affected by the government’s increasingly severe welfare policies.

    The Guardian’s analysis shows that of those unemployed for 12 months up to April 2014, 16.7% faced a financial penalty. The figure for the previous year was 14.8%.



    August 6, 2015 at 1:36 pm

    • Enigma… YOU may be available… I’m not!! I’m not awake long enough to do much of anything!! Meooowww, Kat x

      kat rehman

      August 11, 2015 at 5:28 pm

  11. To help with your spelling and keyboard errors on this and other websites, if you “right click” your mouse on a blank space in the box where you type your reply, you should see some option about languages. Click on that and you get a further option to “add dictionaries”.

    Make sure you select “English British”. After that, any errors you make are highlighted as you go along. Simply “right click” the highlighted error and you will be presented with a list of alternative words at the top. If it’s a place name or a Proper name which you have spelled correctly, it will still show up as an error. In that case you can simply choose “add to dictionary”.



    August 6, 2015 at 5:48 pm

  12. Sanctioned Jobseekers With Mental Health Problems Are Not ‘Vulnerable’, Says DWP


    More DWP policy shifting how they see things.


    August 6, 2015 at 8:25 pm

  13. Boris Johnson will come out with some nonsense on Friday when he says that the Conservatives are the party of the “working poor”.


    August 6, 2015 at 10:25 pm

  14. Today in the JC, the first day I have seen single parents in there, and many of them there were, they were and are being sent a letter from the DWP teling them they must go to the JC for an appointment which has been aranged, while there they are given an apt form, – wanting thier personal info, inc phone number, and email add, I didn’t see any of them sat infont of any advisers, the app forms were given to them while sat in the waiting area. once they handed the form over to an adviser they then left. it’s going to get very busy in JC’s and food banks, lets not forget most if not all will be sanctioned, – UC in this town next month.

    Meanwhile I will be printing many more docs.


    August 7, 2015 at 11:35 am

    • My JC was like a monkey enclosure this week.

      Another Fine Mess

      August 7, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    • I read this and my bloods cold with fear, I’m so grateful I,parent an older child and when I went through signing on the regime wasn’t as tyrannical as it is now. I think I’d have been on a permanent sanctions if it was!

      kat rehman

      August 11, 2015 at 5:33 pm

      • I forgot to add Kat, when those single mothers were filling in their personal info, some of which they shouldn’t have as we know, it was all fun and games between the adviser who handed out the forms and the single mothers, all laughing and joking, those single mothers don’t yet know what’s ahead.


        August 11, 2015 at 5:41 pm

  15. Gazza

    Windows/internet exploer – mobile broadband – 2GB per month lasts the month no problem,

    Linux mint/ fiefox, this 2GB gone in 6 days, what’s going on in the background.

    i have now went bank to windows, untill I figure out why, (on another pc).

    Firefox did take a lot longer to open, and the addons? – I’m a new user on linux 🙂

    Then there is auto updates, which I turn off in windows when at home.


    August 8, 2015 at 2:43 pm

    • If you are on benefits you can get 10GB usage allowance through a land-line connection for £9.95 per month*.

      * line rental included


      August 8, 2015 at 2:55 pm

      • BT – £15.30 every three months – line rental, 10 GB usage – £4.85/mth


        – DWP!


        August 8, 2015 at 7:51 pm

      • Yeah, BT check with the DWP that you are on benefits in the same way the power companies check for your eligibility for Warm Home Discount. I wouldn’t worry about it regarding the jobcentre though – it is probably just an automated check like the ‘view driving licence details on line’ where they request your NI number. You can still tell your work roach that you don’t have a ‘phone number or internet access at home 😉

        Anyway, it is not like BT heavily advertise this scheme (BT Basic + Broadband) anyway; there are only TWO mentions of it on the web – the most BT Basic leaflet and a mention on a web forum. BT don’t even inform their existing BT Basic customers that they can get broadband for a ‘bargain’ price – neither do their ‘advisers’ mention this scheme – BT will happily charge BT Basic customers top dollar for internet access; so expensive that it negates most of the benefit of being on BT Basic. This scheme is only available on BT; basically it is something that BT don’t want to provide but has been forced on them by OFCOM or some other entity.

        Standard line rental is ~ £16.99 a month regardless of which ISP you are with. This would be an ‘unbeatable’ deal if it was ‘unlimited’ usage but If 10GB a month usage allowance is sufficient for your needs (and you qualify) this is probably the cheapest (fixed line) internet access deal in town.

        Bird on the Wire

        August 9, 2015 at 6:44 am

      • **** the most BT recent Basic leaflet

        Bird on the Wire

        August 9, 2015 at 6:45 am

      • Also worth noting that if you go over your 10GB monthly allowance you will be charged £5.60 for each each additional 5GB or part thereof you exceed your allowance (same as the regular BT Option 1 tariff which this is). But 10GB is OK for basic web-browsing. This tariff is unsuitable if you have a ‘flat-screen’ ‘smart’ TV and want to stream TV programmes; watch much video content online; download lots of movies etc.

        Bird on the Wire

        August 9, 2015 at 6:57 am

    • enigma,

      all i can think of is that there was a shed load of updates going on in he background – I trust the organizations putting out their own distributions of linux a lot lot more than I would M$.

      Will have a look and report what I find – I’m on virgin which doesn’t help track down what happened to you but will look as its something to know anyway so no one else gets caught out.

      Apologies for wasting your money/time.

      Please Could you post up exactly which version you installed?


      August 9, 2015 at 2:40 pm

      • Oh,

        And was this LiveCD/or full install?


        August 9, 2015 at 2:40 pm

      • Full install of Linux mint 17.2, DVD, no apologies needed Gazza because I’m happy about the info you provided when you did regarding Linux mint 17.2. because I have enough of windows, going the way it is, I just don’t know enough about Linux mint, I do read the info on the website of Linux mint though, which is what I done when first using windows, it will take me a while to learn this new op system!


        August 9, 2015 at 7:01 pm

      • The user guide, for anyone else who is new to Linux mint 17.2.


        No rush getting back to me on the problems I have Gazza, I’ll figure it out after more reading.


        August 10, 2015 at 9:34 am

      • Update Manager>Edit>Preference>Auto-Refresh – set min, hours & day to “0”. means that update manager will not look for updates (i.e. not use bandwidth).

        You could also set it to 7 days for example, so it checks at least once a week, Or you can remove it from startup applications, so it only runs when you start it from the menu.


        August 10, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    • Enigma as I said, I feel so sorry for them! Being a single mum is hard enough anyway without DWP tyranny!

      kat rehman

      August 11, 2015 at 8:37 pm

      • I also do Kat, which is why I have printed a lot more docs which we have, to give them to those single parents, part time workers etc, because I as we all know they will eventually be sanctioned, they will be all lied to, many of them if not all will suffer, and of course I know many of them will appear in the food bank at some point. I do try and help as many people as I can.


        August 11, 2015 at 8:50 pm

      • Enigma, it’s a long time ago now but I remember when I first started signing on I was working 1 hours a day as dinner lady (well still am) and guy signing me told me I had a back to work interview next signing day at 12.20. Politely I asked him to move it as I’d be at work. They knew I had the job and I’d have thought the job title midday supervisor said it all however he threatened me with a sanctions because I was refusing to come in!! Fine I said but can you call your supervisor first so we can run it by them? Supervisor comes over and luckily had a brain she moved the time and seemed bemused by the guys actions. They wanted you to “fail” back then and it must be so much worse now…

        kat rehman

        August 12, 2015 at 11:41 am

      • And the scary thing is if today I’d asked them to re schedule appointment so I could go to work they probably would have sanctioned me!

        kat rehman

        August 12, 2015 at 11:57 am

      • The DWP will try that with everyone who has a job yes, any excuse to save money.


        August 12, 2015 at 12:12 pm

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