A report released on 9 December by the Office of National Statistics showed that the number of working families in the UK were at their highest in 2014 since records began. This increase has largely been amongst lone parent families with dependent children. Click here to read the report in full.
George Osborne’s 2014 Autumn Statement has been criticised for failing to meet deficit targets, announcing disappointing borrowing forecasts and proposing, what the OBR has identified as, a further £14.5 bn cuts to public spending. The IFS has warned that these projections could change the role of the state ‘beyond recognition’.
Human rights lawyers have sent a pre-action letter challenging the DWP to publish information detailing the eligibility criteria for its Access to Work scheme. The law firm Leigh Day describes the lack of available information surrounding the scheme as ‘inconsistent, unlawful and opaque’, reports Welfare Weekly.
The Day One Support for Young People Trailblazer (DOSfYP) was an ESF-funded pilot scheme launched in November 2012 to provide Londoners aged 18 – 24 with work experience and jobs advice. The aim was to reduce the risk of benefit dependency and increase young people's chances of long-term employment.
This was a mandatory scheme provided through the Jobcentre for eligible new jobseekers. Referrals were made over an 8 month period and job placements offered were expected to start immediately and last 13 weeks.
Mark Harper, Minister of State for Disabled People, has been questioned by MPs over the 68 per cent of people affected by the bedroom tax who are disabled or living with someone who is disabled.
The charity Community Links have published the third report in their longitudinal study of the cumulative impact of welfare reform in the London borough of Newham.
The employment findings show that people affected by multiple cuts viewed work prospects as precarious or ‘not possible’, and those in work (often in low paid and temporary positions) reported that they were not financially better off, with many still dependent on financial assistance from the state.
The government has responded to the Committee’s report on Employment Support Allowance (ESA) and the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) which was published in July this year. The response puts forward recommendations for speeding up, redesigning and improving the ESA and WCA processes.
The government and local councils have come under criticism from the charity, Leonard Cheshire Disability following their report ‘No Place Like Home: 5 million reasons to make housing disabled-friendly’, part of their Home Truths campaign.