With Universal Credit due to be implemented in less than a years time can it overcome all the negative reports that it is has received in the press during the last few months?
The Joseph Rowntree Foundation is the latest organisation to cast doubt over Universal Credit. It has produced a report for The Centre for Economic and Social Inclusion (CESI) – This can be found in the useful links section of our website. JRF highlighted the following areas of risk for Universal Credit;
“Switching to monthly single payments to households is a significant challenge to low-income families.
The scope and scale of financial support and advice to help people through the transition need urgent clarification. Payments of UC need to be explained clearly and regularly, with the elements intended to support children identified separately.
Service users must be informed about how schemes are changing locally. Minimum national standards for face-to-face services and replacements for the Social Fund would help transparency and consistency.
The Government needs to review the impact of localisation on UC’s key aims. If evidence suggests that the main benefits of reform have not been realised, localisation would need reconsidering.
There needs to be a more visible ombudsman for the benefit and employment services system.”
Can Universal Credit create a better welfare reform system for the UK? Or have negative press reports together with seemingly poor planning from the DWP derailed the UC train before it has left the station?