Here we have yet another example of the storm that is now beginning to break upon the low paid and most vulnerable groups in our society. Of course, the previous five years have been something less than “a picnic” for the above low paid and vulnerable; with deaths attributed to benefit sanctions now running into the thousands, Millions of people depending upon food banks, homelessness sky-rocketing, the gap between the poorest and richest expanding at a rate not seen since records began and of course, our old standby “solution to penury and misery”, suicide, also at a record high among the low paid and jobless.
As I frequently find myself saying these days, words fail …..
The Social Security Advisory Committee (SSAC) ran the consultation after the DWP warned that the seven day waiting period already introduced for current out of work sickness and unemployment benefits is being extended to Universal Credit. As the SSAC rightly point out this will leave most new claimants without any benefits at all for six weeks due to the monthly payment cycle of Universal Credit. Perhaps most shocking of all, this will include payments intended to cover rents, meaning new claimants will not just face the trauma of losing their job but immediately be plunged into huge rent arrears.
The plans have been met with outrage by charities, housing associations, local authorities and even landlords. One organisation…
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