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UK: Universal credit could 'steamroll vulnerable into poverty'

Discussion in 'General disability topics and advocacy' started by Andy, Feb 12, 2020.

  1. Andy

    Andy Committee Member & Outreach

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    https://www.theguardian.com/society...amroll-vulnerable-into-poverty-salvation-army
     
  2. Kitty

    Kitty Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    It's already doing so, if the TV programmes are anything to go by. I watched last night's episode, and it was heartbreaking – some lovely people, trying so hard, but just struggling along on next to nothing.
     
    JaneL, alktipping, FMMM1 and 10 others like this.
  3. InfiniteRubix

    InfiniteRubix Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    People feel immune from the changes that they vote for, as if risks will never be relevent to them or their loved ones, however comfortable they feel now. Why too many people rarely see that before their own devastation, I'll never understand.

    I believe that "othering" and the cognitive dissonance it requires, almost as if a person is of a different species and of "victims" in this case, explains many residual horrors we carry into this modern age. Carefully curated opportunistically, for the benefit of the curator.
     
  4. hellytheelephant

    hellytheelephant Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    It has already done so- witness the huge increase in demand for food bank help, child poverty and period poverty.
     
    JaneL, alktipping, Sean and 9 others like this.
  5. Sean

    Sean Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Same thing is happening here in Australia. Charities are increasingly struggling to keep up with the increasing demand.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2020
    JaneL, Invisible Woman, Trish and 4 others like this.
  6. alktipping

    alktipping Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    from 30 years of dealing with the dwp if they wish to reduce the amount of benefits paid out the first thing they do is come up with a new benefit name then change the criteria for eligibility there by reducing long term cost by denying entitlement to those in receipt of the previous benefit. appealing these decisions takes a great deal of effort and time . this has twice caused significant deterioration increasing my incapacity and perversely increased my needs for more generous benefits. I won my last appeal just last week not that I feel winning is the appropriate term .net result considerable extra cost to taxpayers and a very onerous system for claimants . but hey private parasitic companies have benefitted to the tune of two and a half billion of taxpayers money . As I have said before if that considerable sum had been spent on medical research into the most disabling diseases we would have seen some advances in medical treatments that could have the happy coincidence of reducing the overall cost of the benefits system .
     
    Sean, JaneL, NelliePledge and 5 others like this.
  7. InfiniteRubix

    InfiniteRubix Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    There is directly shared confluence of causation, but I'll leave it there, to not descend into politics or media politics.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2020
    Sean, alktipping, Andy and 1 other person like this.
  8. Subtropical Island

    Subtropical Island Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    I don’t understand. I’m not in the UK.
    Isn’t Universal Credit supposed to be an idea that you give everyone the same amount, base it on citizenship or something else that’s fairly automatic or tied to tax, and it’s supposed to be better because there’s less paperwork to pay for, less need to investigate fraud or ineligibility (because everyone should be eligible so you just need to exist), etc?

    Why call it universal if it’s not? Sounds like misleading advertising to me.

    And worse, it discredits Universal Basic Income attempts by muddying the waters.
     
    lunarainbows likes this.
  9. lunarainbows

    lunarainbows Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Yep you’re right It’s nothing like universal basic income / citizens income. Don’t know why on earth universal credit is called that.
     
    Subtropical Island likes this.
  10. Wonko

    Wonko Senior Member (Voting Rights)

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    Universal credit is a 'benefits' system that pays those deemed both eligible and 'worthy' £317 every 4 weeks (about a 5th of the UK average wage) in exchange for them spending 35 hours per week spent looking for full time work. Inability to either do this, or more importantly, prove that this has been done, results in 'sanctions' - withdrawal of a state set amount of 'benefit' for weeks to months.

    £317 is not enough for anyone in the UK to live off for 28 days - but that's apparently fine coz that will help and encourage people back into work. Not taking the first thing offered will result in UC being stopped, not continuing to look for work, or being able to prove you are, if you get a part time job will result in UC being stopped.

    People on UC have insufficient money to live in the UK, but they ares supposed to be able to maintain an internet connection, a phone, travel both to regular manitorary appointments at jobcenters and to anywhere, and everywhere, within 35 miles (I think) of their home town, to look for work, 35 hours a week.

    So having their benefit reduced by 25-100% for weeks to months, when they don't have enough to get by on to start with, and then, at least for some areas where there are literally no jobs, waste money on travel, etc. is not the most enlightened policy.

    But then it's not supposed to be.
     
    Simbindi, Amw66, Andy and 1 other person like this.

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