Social housing tenants are struggling with welfare reforms
A new report on welfare reform show that a third of social housing tenants in the South West are struggling to make ends meet, and many are cutting back on food and other basic necessities.
The study has been conducted by the London School of Economics and has found that whilst some social housing tenants are “coping” with welfare reforms, others are struggling with the cuts, reports the Western Morning News.
Along with struggling with the reforms, many have also found it difficult to find employment, with barriers including transport and poor health preventing them from working the hours needed to cover their living costs.
The report also found that one in three tenants had been forced to make cuts to their food and utilities in order to get by. Claimants reported being unable to save and feeling vulnerable and insecure about the future..
Paul Crawford, CEO of Devon and Cornwall Housing Group, a member of Hailo, said the study painted a “powerful and painful picture” of low income residents struggling to cope with falling incomes.
“This research looks at whether the government’s policies are delivering the expected outcomes, and what we as leading housing providers can do to support our residents. The government’s reforms were designed to increase families’ self-reliance by reducing benefit dependency and moving people into work; an objective that we, as affordable housing providers, are keen to support. Social landlords are offering more support but can’t close the [income] gap.”
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