Benefit Sanctions Handed Out To Thousands Of People ‘Unlawful’ — Same Difference

Sanctions imposed on thousands of benefit claimants for not taking part in the DWP’s so-called “back-to-work” schemes are unlawful, a court has ruled. Three Court of Appeal judges upheld an earlier decision by the High Court, potentially paving the way for millions in refunds to people who had their incomes cut while they were unemployed. After […]

via Benefit Sanctions Handed Out To Thousands Of People ‘Unlawful’ — Same Difference

Forced to choose between a home and a job

Sentinel News

By Kate Belgrave

Homeless women with children end up in impossible situations when dumped in temporary housing miles from their jobs.

In this story, homeless mother of two Alicia Phillips explains how the housing crisis and an expensive commute from Boundary House – an isolated temporary accommodation hostel in Welwyn Garden City – are destroying her work and training options.

Alicia says that Waltham Forest Council told her she’d have to give up her job as a nursery nurse in London if the commute from Boundary House was too expensive and difficult.

This is how single mothers are punished in austerity. They’re put in single rooms in isolated temporary housing that is miles from any realistic sort of opportunity. They’re actively relegated to a poverty trap. So much for Stephen Crabb’s fantasies about the government’s commitment to getting women out of that trap.

Alicia, who has a daughter aged two…

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Five Hundred People A Day Contacting CAB Over PIP

Same Difference

With many thanks to Welfare Weekly.

Tens of thousands of sick and disabled people are struggling to cope with changes to disability benefits, with more than 125,000 people turning to the charity Citizens Advice for help and advice in the past 12 months alone.

New figures published by Citizens Advice reveal that 500 people a day have turned to the charity for help with Personal Independence Payments (PIP) since the start of 2016, up 36% on the previous year.

Around 13% of these are people who are in work, as Citizens Advice warns that many sick and disabled people rely on disability benefits to be able to retain employment.

Since the introduction of PIP in April 2013, over 630,000 vulnerable people have turned to Citizens Advice with enquiries about PIP, and it’s is quickly becoming one of the most common issues people need support with.

Last month, the Public Accounts…

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Ministers don’t know what effect their cuts are having on people with mental health problems

Ministers have been unable to provide answers to key questions

There are large gaps in the Government’s understanding of the effect its cuts are having on people with mental health problems, a worrying new investigation has shown.

Ministers have admitted they do not have a full record of which specialist mental health services have closed under their watch – and that they are unsure of the effect of key social security cuts on people with mental health problems.

The holes in the Government’s knowledge came to light after an investigation by Labour’s shadow mental health minister Luciana Berger, who submitted a series of parliamentary questions on the topic.

She was stunned when ministers were unable to provide basic data about the effects on their policies.

The Government was unable to say how many people with mental health problems had lost out from the closure of the Independent Living Fund last year, which helped disabled and sick people to live more independent lives.

DWP minister Justin Tomlinson said the information requested was “not held by the Department for Work and Pensions and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost”.

Ministers at relevant government departments were also unable to say how many specialist inpatient services for older adult mental health patients had closed since David Cameron came to power, and how many consultant psychiatrist posts were vacant in the NHS.

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