Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Universal Credit and In-Work Poverty in East Anglia.

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“In-Work Poverty” Keeps People in this Spider’s Web.

Many, many, indeed, many, if not many,  local papers have reported on massive problems created by and increased by  the introduction of Universal Credit.

Well, the East Anglian Daily Times and the Ipswich Star have now got round to the issue.

Their angle is about people in work claiming the benefit – nothing about the bungling system itself, or the bungling it’s caused around the country..

‘In work poverty’ is a big, serious problem.

But a walk around Ipswich would reveal – as no doubt a keen newshound could find if it’s not too much trouble to do more than phone round various local charities and Food Banks –  that people are begging on the streets.

One of the principal reasons is that they do not get benefit at all.

Thanks to the compliance criteria, and sanctions.

There is also the fact that Universal Credit benefit rates are frozen.

A real newshawk might take the difficult step of going to the supermarkets, glancing at a few bills, and looking at the rising cost of living.

Low wages mean hundreds more workers are claiming Universal Credit.

Ipswich Star.

Michael Steward

Hundreds of workers across Suffolk and Essex are claiming Universal Credit as their low wages are not enough to live on.

Charities say that the “shocking” number of in-work applicants is due to low wages and housing costs.

In some areas, workers claiming the payment represented nearly half of the total people on Universal Credit, according to latest figures from the Department of Work and Pensions.

Universal Credit is a new benefit, slowly being rolled out by the Government, which replaces six legacy benefits and merges them into one payment.

It includes income support, jobseeker’s allowance, employment and support allowance, housing benefit, child tax credits, and working tax credits.

Here the journalist give some figures,

In Colchester, there were 240 employed claimants on Universal Credit in July 2018, equating to 47% of the 516 people receiving the payment.

This was 93 more people than the previous month and one of the highest percentages of employed claimants in Britain.

In St Edmundsbury, the number of in-work claimants for July was 943, 142 more than the previous month and around 43% of the total.

In Suffolk Coastal, 169 people out of 413 claiming Universal Credit in July were employed (41%) and in Mid Suffolk, 259 people out of 648 were in-work (40%).

The figures for Babergh showed that 451 employed people were claiming Universal Credit – 39% of the total – and 63 people out of 172 claimants in Forest Heath (37%) were in-work in July.

Overall, there were 1,824 people on Universal Credit in Ipswich, 395 more than in the previous month, with 644 in-work – which is around 35% of the total.

There were 305 employed claimants in Tendring on Universal Credit in July – about 34% of the total – 25 fewer than the previous month.

Here the journalist phones around a few people.

Maureen Reynel, MBE, of foodbank FIND, which helps people in Ipswich and the surrounding areas who are experiencing poverty, said the charity has seen a increase in demand from a wide variety of people.

“It has been very noticeable for some months now,” she said.

“It isn’t just food, but also household items, which people aren’t able to replace.

“Everyone thinks of families, but it’s also the single people, males and females, who are really struggling.

“Some people have received Universal Credit but are finding huge deductions and have nothing to fall back on.

“It’s definitely had an impact.

“Many people who are working also have childcare costs or work part-time because of childcare and part-time jobs are very often low paid.”

Pritie Billimoria, from Turn2us, a charity which helps people who are struggling financially, said it was “shocking” that such a high number of workers earn so little that they are forced to rely on benefits.

“Every day we hear from working people who are living hand to mouth and facing impossible decisions about whether to buy food or pay their rent.

“We know that the rise of in-work poverty and in-work claimants is complicated. Households are dealing with low pay, the rising cost of living and changes to welfare support, which are all having a compounding effect on the daily lives of families across the UK.

“Work needs to be a route out of poverty so people are not left dealing with the intolerable stress and anxiety that their wages don’t cover their basic costs of living.”

Note: It would have been helpful for the ace reporters of the Star to mention that, “Turn2us”  links to this centre which helps rough sleepers and people who are homeless or socially excluded.

Ipswich Housing Action Group – Chapman Centre
Chapman Centre
1 Black Horse Lane

Public phone: 01473 232 426 / 01473 213102

Email: admin@ihagcc.co.uk

Website URL: http://www.ihag.co.uk

Service offered: The Chapman Centre provides advice and support to marginalised and vulnerable people over 18, including homeless people and rough sleepers, on issues such as housing, welfare benefits, money advice and health issues. The Centre also provides access to computers, shower facilities, use of phones, post collection, lunches, clothing and food parcels; and offers meaningful activities to enable and encourage individuals back to sustainable independence by supporting in their journey back into social inclusion – through structured training sessions and self-confidence boosting activities.

Target group: Rough sleepers and people who are homeless or socially excluded.

This Blog is very very far from convinced that, “a national charity helping people when times get tough. We provide financial support to help people get back on track” is in any sense whatsoever the real long-term way to deal with poverty and homelessness.

Written by Andrew Coates

August 20, 2018 at 4:02 pm

27 Responses

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  1. […] via Universal Credit and In-Work Poverty in East Anglia. — Ipswich Unemployed Action. […]

  2. Reblogged this on Britain Isn't Eating.


    August 20, 2018 at 5:04 pm

  3. “shocking” number of in-work applicants is due to low wages and housing costs.

    Its the dire state of the UK service economy thats fuled this crisis.Economic uncertanty hits this sector hard as people rein in spending.The Tories have failed and failed miserably.Rising cost declining living standards.”Never had it so good” looks a far distant claim.


    August 20, 2018 at 5:20 pm

  4. If a nurse or police officer is using a food bank it is no fault but their own. They are not poorly paid. Likewise with a number of other people when you take into consideration their tax credits. The only people who have an excuse are young single (childless) males and females who get a particularly bad deal.


    August 21, 2018 at 8:53 am

    • Paysheet

      While i totally get where you are coming from lets take stock of some facts. Not so long ago and rather quietly, government raised the amount to have to start paying back their 30/40’000+ pounds loans which if memory serves me well was another 3000. We haven’t or i haven’t heard any recent banter of nurses in the queue. As for police, no one walks in at 40’000 a year. i posted quite a while back the wage structure and the different types of police in operation pro rata. What im saying is its really on a case by case basis of circumstance as to that outcome and i would have thought the police awarding themselves vouchers when unwarranted would have been something the media would have dived at if the case.

      As for tax credits i don’t get your point, perhaps you could explain further as what your leveling is at around a third of the working population, most of which isn’t the young. The idea and working practice of the credit is to subsidize the shortfall between business wages and the cost of living and it is means tested.
      Your absolutely right about young employees, its a travesty the wages employers pay and how government can just sit there idle like its ok. I don’t see anywhere that our young employees are treated differently to adult workers. They are expected to meet the same quota, come under the same sacking policy or being let go. Even the so called apprenticeship scheme is nothing more than cheap labour.


      August 21, 2018 at 11:39 am

  5. Government spent 200 million believed more contesting appeals for Personal Independence Payments (PIP) and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) over five years.



    August 22, 2018 at 12:54 pm

    • I have met people who’ve done this.

      The anxiety between, “The first stage, internal reviews called Mandatory Reconsiderations, cost the DWP an estimated £50.7m for ESA and £43.4m for PIP over five years.”

      and “The second stage, external appeal tribunals, cost the DWP an estimated £58.7m for ESA and £46.2m for PIP.” not to mention the wait, can be enormous in itself.

      Andrew Coates

      August 22, 2018 at 3:08 pm

  6. Andrew Coates

    August 23, 2018 at 9:49 am

  7. “It wisnae me. A didnae dae it.”

    Alex Salmond reported to cops over allegations of sexual assault

    Alex Salmond has been reported to police over allegations he sexually assaulted two staff members whilst First Minister.

    The former SNP leader has been accused of carrying out the attacks in the First Minister’s official Edinburgh residence in December 2013.

    The allegations – which will send reverberations through the political world – were passed to the police by Scottish Government officials after an internal probe.

    The Scottish Government last night said they could not comment on the allegations.

    A spokeswoman said: “For legal reasons, we are currently unable to comment.”

    A Police Scotland spokesman added: “Police Scotland is not going to comment on whether an inquiry is ongoing.”


    SNP News Network

    August 23, 2018 at 9:37 pm

    • “You’ve not seen the last of my bonnets and me”

      Alex’s time on Kremlin-based Russian propaganda channel certainly hasn’t done his credibility any good.

      Bill, Polly and Oksana

      August 23, 2018 at 10:12 pm

    • The BBC are spinning this as a challenge to a complaints procedure. It is a patent irrelevance which the BBC knows full well. This is now a POLICE matter. They will investigate the complaints and file a report with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal service who will decide if and what any charges are to be laid against Mr Salmond. If action is taken against Mr Salmond he will be indicted to appear at the High Court for trial.

      The BBC are also spinning these allegations as “dating back to 2013”. As if that is way to long to bring a case to trial. Day in, day out people are being convicted of historical sexual offences dating back to more than 40 years ago. Historical sexual offences are too be treated as a priority for the High Courts as ordained by Salmond’s successor Nicola Sturgeon. You couldn’t make it up.

      If Salmond does end up facing trying for rape this will be one big fish to fry.

      The Canary

      August 23, 2018 at 10:27 pm

    • What is Salmond’s problem, has he forgotten the default SNP defence, whatever it is, it is Westminster’s fault?

      There has been a cover up of this matter in play. Salmond has not been Scotland’s First Minister since late 2014. These allegations predate 2014 and have been covered up by the Scottish administration at Holyrood, so, who knew, when did they know?

      Maybe, the truth about Salmond’s relationship with Tasmina Ahmed Sheikh (TASh) will now come out and doubts about Sturgeon’s sexuality will be dispelled too. The Scottish electorate are not as stupid as Salmond and Sturgeon believe.


      August 23, 2018 at 10:45 pm

    • Rhroda Grant (Labour): “These are deeply disturbing allegations which will shock the people of Scotland.
      This is an incredibly serious set of allegations which raises difficult questions of people in positions of power. The people of Scotland will expect full transparency.”


      August 24, 2018 at 12:05 am

    • Alex Salmond – a man so vain he drinks his own bath water.


      August 24, 2018 at 12:08 am

    • Thought this was a joke until I read the link lol

      doug's old nan

      August 24, 2018 at 12:12 am

    • We hope this doesn’t turn into another Hilsborough where the lying coppers got let off the hook. If Alex Salmond is indeed guilty of serious sex offences he should face the same justice his fellow Scotchmen would. It seems that there is one law for them and one law for the rest of them. It is no wonder that Britain is a lawless state.

      Justice for Hilsborough

      August 24, 2018 at 5:15 am

    • The legal system is wholly corrupt.

      Take the Count Dankula case (as it was highlighted) where someone was found guilty based on the judge’s interpretation of what the accused was thinking. The UK’s entire justice system was happy to look the other way for thirty years while 100,000 children were gang-raped then they arrest, charge and sentence a man reporting from outside to thirteen months (without him given the chance to plead) which caused the highest judge in the country to step in and right the debacle.

      The standard is worse in Scotland where there is no accountability and that man would have been left to rot.

      There are thousands of others in Scotland alone with terrible tales of how their lives were destroyed by greedy, lying and deceitful lawyers. It all starts from the top down with the Master Policy Insurance scam which England opted out of years ago.

      Victoria L

      August 24, 2018 at 6:48 am

    • People viewing on this site this morning, country of Origin:

      USA: 148
      China, Hong Kong SA. 60.


      Andrew Coates

      August 24, 2018 at 9:35 am

      • Probably because Salmond makes Trump look like a saint.


        August 24, 2018 at 1:09 pm

  8. We hope this doesn’t turn into another Hilsborough where the lying coppers got let off the hook. If Alex Salmond is indeed guilty of serious sex offences he should face the same justice his fellow Scotchmen would. It seems that there is one law for them and one law for the rest of us. It is no wonder that Britain is a lawless state.

    Justice for Hilsborough

    August 24, 2018 at 5:16 am

  9. McVey finally says something true.


    “No-one should be better off on benefits, and that is why this Government has changed the benefit system to make work pay.

    Oops, you mean after all this time, the whole premise for the multi billion pounds reform was because certain Tories thought people on benefits were better off. I take it McVey wont be supporting a trial of basic income. So we are perfectly clear here if we exclude pensioners, the largest majority of benefit receivers who are the largest financial cost of welfare, this leaves us with parents (third majority), disabled/ill (second largest majority)and fit and unemployed (tiniest group by a massive amount). People without kids or disabilities/illness get a fraction of the other two groups who easily head towards the £20’000 a year bracket.

    So the sole purpose of the reform was to dis entitle anyone with kids and or disabilities/illnesses via assessments DWP set the criteria for, via reductions, via pressure for two groups who are often easily in the fire line of the famed sanction trap.

    So its nice she admits its about targeted targets crudely hidden to the trained eye as applying to all.

    “Getting a job means securing an income and the chance to build a career. That’s why up and down the country we are doing all we can to help people into work.”

    CHANCE is the operative here. Well unless your taking an apprenticeship that equals a reasonably sizable debt for anyone on a low wage/irregular hours. As for apprenticeships, the massive reduction in pay an adult gets in the first year racks up around £8’000 so effectively your not only paying for the course through wages but also the interest as government stump up subsidies. As for school leavers, your being absolutely abused by government and business alike.

    I have to thank McVey, the mouth that just cant say the right things has actually done all a favor and exposed the con trick these Tory snake oil salesmen have been and are pushing.


    August 24, 2018 at 12:10 pm

    • If McVey scrapped ALL unemployment benefits TOMORROW: “That’s it. No more JSA. On your bike!” it would barely make a dent in the ‘Welfare Budget’. And why do those in the high income groups you mention doug receive all sort of other benefits such as heating allowances yet the unemployed have to pay their fare out of their benefits just to sign on?. The logic seems to be that if you receive some premium you are entitled to yet another premium – yeah, that makes sense. Talk about money sticking to money.


      August 24, 2018 at 1:08 pm

    • Nobody should, so we’ll make absolutely sure benefits are so low that this will be true!

      Andrew Coates

      August 24, 2018 at 5:27 pm

  10. Tory scumbag Jacob Rees Mogg moves into new £5 million five story mansion next to Parliament (the ruling tory mafia reside over the impoverished peasants and an age old ruse used by the twisted British establishment)



    August 24, 2018 at 12:42 pm

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