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View Full Version : Welfare Reform - the Biggest Changes To The Benefits System For Many Years?



Bill Fernie
30-Jan-07, 00:56
Just wondered if many people are aware of the huge changes that are moving forward in the Benefits system in this country.
See http://www.dwp.gov.uk/welfarereform/

Tomorrow in Westminster the House of Commons will debate changes to benefits for Lone Parents that may shock some people. For example the possibility that payments may beging to reduce not when achild is 16 yearsof age as at present but when they go to secondary school.

Changes to Housing Benefit to change to a Local Housing Allowance from 2008 are already well underway. This is also amajor change in that Local Housing Allowance may not cover the full amount of rent to private landlords and claimants may be expected to pay the difference from their other income. Also it may not be paid directo landlords but be paid directly to the claimant.

Other changes include attempts to make payments less thant at present to make it more attractive for people on incapacity benefit to take up employment rather than remain unemployed.

Many of tha changes will have impacts and ramifications on Local Authorities who have resposibilities for housing, homelessness and others who require to access housing and other services where ther income is part of the equation.

It would be interesting to hear views on how people see the changes impacting on them or whether people feel that there will be too many changes coming at once. The affects look as if they will be far reaching and although they have been coming for the past couple of years it is now not too long until the changes will be here - 1 april 2008.

Will people be in favour or against these changes bearing in mind that for many benefits the Uk has the highest number of claimants than any country in Europe and it is increasing especially in the area of lone parents each year.

What are your views?

cuddlepop
30-Jan-07, 14:15
Bill there's an awfull lot to discuss:eek:
I knew there were changes coming just never realised they were coming all at once.
Personaly I would have been unable to return to work if my partner wasn't willing to be responsible for my daughter while I was at work.I didn't attemp to go back until she was 15.There is still no additional needs:child:minding facilities on Skye so this would be a problem for lone parents.
Inadequate number of houses available to rent from council so people rely heavily on the private sector which currently charges 450 a month with only a winter let available.I forsee major headache here.
Incapacity benifit.
My daughter turns 16 soon and will technically be reponsible for herself so will have to find work.With that she will require an understanding employer who will accommodate her additional needs and a job coach.We're not holding our breath.
My own brother who has a mental health condition has been informed as he has now been well for a year he may have his incapacity benifit cut if he does not accept employment.His consultant is still waiting for him to receive his cognitive behaviour therapy and without it would not cope. back at work.
Do these politicians live in the real world.They should try and live in mine then perhapse they be more understandiing.
Every case would have to be looked at individually and not a blanket policy for all.:mad:

Angela
30-Jan-07, 14:43
Just wondered if many people are aware of the huge changes that are moving forward in the Benefits system in this country.
See http://www.dwp.gov.uk/welfarereform/


Changes to Housing Benefit to change to a Local Housing Allowance from 2008 are already well underway. This is also amajor change in that Local Housing Allowance may not cover the full amount of rent to private landlords and claimants may be expected to pay the difference from their other income. Also it may not be paid directo landlords but be paid directly to the claimant.

What are your views?

The Local Housing Allowance has been in place in Edinburgh for some time now. It's based on whereabouts in the city you live (Central gets a higher allowance than anywhere else to reflect the higher rents in the area), what size of house/flat you're deemed to need, and I believe it does only apply to private rentals. It isn't based on the rent you actually pay your landlord.

For example, a single person or a couple qualify for the allowance for a one-bedroom flat. If you're under 25 and live alone, you will only qualify for the allowance for a room in a shared house/flat.

If you happen to be living in a bigger house, you will still only get the allowance for what they say you need. If your rent is higher than the allowance, you have to somehow make up the deficit yourself. If your rent is lower, you get to keep the difference! :roll:

I can see that this means less work for council employees implementing the system, but it's tough on the people who won't have their full rent covered.

The idea seems to be that you can somehow "shop around" for somewhere to stay that fits your LHA, but that's much easier said than done!

As almost always, the system fails to allow for individual cases. :(

fred
30-Jan-07, 16:10
Do these politicians live in the real world.They should try and live in mine then perhapse they be more understandiing.


An M.P. earns, correction gets paid, around 1,200 a week, ministers considerably more. Then they can claim expenses worth up to 400 a week and employ their wife/husband as an assistant and pay them 500 a week.

This is nothing compared to the CEO of a multinational company, some of them are paid more in an hour than someone on minimum wage earns in a year.

At the same time as they are debating how to steal the food out of babies mouths they are also debating spending 20 billion on nuclear submarines and Trident Missiles.

On top of this they have the nerve to call it a Socialist government.