Labour to pause universal credit if elected
- 23 Jun
If Labour win the 2015 election they plan to pause the governments flagship welfare reform.
Shadow work and pensions secretary Rachel Reeves has said her party supported the universal credit policy in principle, and hoped to "rescue" it. She said the Department for Work and Pensions had been in "chaos" under her opposite number, Iain Duncan Smith.
The universal credit systems sees six benefits merging into one single payment.
In an interview with BBC One's Sunday Politics programme, Ms Reeves said: "We set up a universal credit rescue committee in the autumn of last year because we had seen, from the National Audit Office [and] from the Public Accounts Committee, report after report showing that this project is massively over budget, and it is not going to be delivered according to the government timetable. We believe in the principle of universal credit, we think it is the right thing to do."
However Ms Reeves also criticised current ministers for not being open with complications that have arisen.
"There is no transparency. It's going to cost £12.8bn to deliver and we don't know what sort of state it is in. So we have said that if we win the next election we will pause... the build of the system for three months, calling in the National Audit Office to do a warts-and-all report on it."
Mr Duncan Smith, in an earlier interview with BBC Radio 5 Live's Pienaar's Politics programme, said he had "intervened" in the implementation of the project a year ago.
"I was concerned that what was happening was that they were going to try to roll out universal credit in the same way that historically many programmes in government had been rolled out, which was kind of like a big bang, so you get everything ready and then you hit the button, and off it goes. Lots of things you discover later cause huge problems, and I didn't want to move anyone on to universal credit and then find that they suffered as a result."
On Friday, the work and pensions secretary announced universal credit would shortly be expanded from the 10 job centres where it is currently being piloted to all 90 job centres in north-west England.
At this stage, the move would apply only to single claimants, who represent the simplest cases, expanding further to encompass couples and families at a later stage.
What do you think of this? Tweet us your comments @SuppSolutions
- 03 May
MANY MAY STRUGGLE AS A RESULT OF CHANGES TO THE UNIVERSAL CREDIT SYSTEM
The study envisages the following issues from the move which is expected to save the taxman £1billion a year by 2021:Chief executive of Child Poverty Action Group, Alison Garnham said:"This cut...
- 13 Mar
CIH SCOTLAND POINTS OUT ISSUES WITH IMPLEMENTATION OF THE NEW SINGLE PAYMENT ON UNIVERSAL CREDIT
Following recent warnings from the Scottish Parliament's Social Security Committee about problems with the new Universal Credit system, CIH Scotland has pointed out some issues with the...
- 23 Nov
THE LHA CAP WILL APPLY TO ALL TENANTS THAT RECEIVE UNIVERSAL CREDIT
These details were stated by the government:Lord Freud announced in a ministerial statement that this would "ensure simplicity and a streamlined process". He also said tenants who are moved from...
- 17 Oct
UNIVERSAL CREDIT SET TO EXPAND IN AREAS SERVED BY KIRKINTILLOCH JOBCENTRE
The beneficiaries of this would have to live within one of these postcodes: G64 4, G66 1, G66 2, G66 3, G66 4, G66 5, G66 7 and G66 8.This entitlement means working age people in these postcodes...
- 25 Aug
AFTERMATH OF UNIVERSAL CREDIT DELAYS
The labour MP also said "the minimum six-week payment period faced by new Universal Credit claimants led to reliance on emergency food parcels, triggered debt and rent arrears, and caused health...
- 25 May
FIRST ERROR AND FRAUD FINDINGS FOR UNIVERSAL CREDIT
The department's findings show that underpayments due to official errors were considerably higher than for the older Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) Programme, however, the rate of overpayments was...
- 09 Sep
Universal credit targets defended by Iain Duncan Smith
When asked about the effectiveness of the roll-out of universal credit Mr Duncan Smith said: “Universal credit is now available in more than half of jobcentres across Great Britain and will be...
- 18 Aug
Scottish carers are worse off due to universal credit
Child Poverty Action Group has sent a report to Scottish and UK ministers urging them to amend the universal credit regime to pay closer heed to Scotland’s systems and use devolved power to protect...
- 13 Aug
Universal Credit claimants rise to almost 90,000
Figures by the Department for Work and Pensions have found that 89,357 people were claiming universal credit by 9th July which was a rise of 18% compared to 75,426 on 11th June, reports Inside...
- 13 Aug
Scottish government to revamp universal credit
The Scottish Government has decided it wants to give claimants the choice of having their payments made twice a month rather than just once a month on universal credit, reports Scottish Housing...
Responding to the DWP Consultation: Housing Benefit Reform - Supported Housing "Found the seminar very informative and gave an interesting and full insight into current thinking about the consultation. Michael was a very engaging and knowledgeable presenter and encouraged interaction with the audience which led to further relevant points being shared with the room. I shall certinaly look out for future events!" M.E. - Care Housing Association