Latest Public Sector News

16.07.13

Lowering the benefit cap to £20,000 ‘an option’

The benefit cap could be lowered even further, to £20,000 a year, Treasury sources have indicated.

The cap currently limits the amount of benefits a family can receive at £26,000, and is set lower for single people. It is set to reflect the average working household income and the DWP estimates around 40,000 households will be affected.

A senior aide to the Chancellor said: “We've had representations. We want to see how the policy beds in, but clearly over time lowering the cap is an option.”

The Government hopes the cap will save about £110m in the first year, and £300m over the next two years.

Conservative party chairman Grant Shapps told the Daily Mail that housing benefit for unemployed under-25s should be scrapped as they can continue living with their parents.

He said: “Welfare should not be a way of life. If you are a working family and you have another child, you know it's going to mean quite a severe impact on your living costs. Yet in the welfare system, it's almost turned on its head, so additional children are actually recognised, with no limit.

“A young person who's out of work is given an advantage over a young person who's in work when it comes to moving away from their parents because of housing benefit.

“So there's a bizarre incentive which means if you're not in work you can more easily move out and get your own place. That is a matter of basic fairness.”

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@publicsectorexecutive.com

Comments

Gotheteeshirt   16/07/2013 at 16:03

In the 70s after the disastrous break-up of my marriage I turned to gambling and drinking and lost my job. Starting a new relationship and having a child we were given a social house. I rented an allotment and spent hours growing food. A used freezer at £15 stored the surplus. We had a second child. The children had the best education in the world. Two parents who loved them talked and read books, showed by example that if you sowed and cared you ate. The level of benefit in real terms I estimate at about a third of today's. Money was extremely tight. We each kept £2 per week for spends and that included clothes. They were and are today the happiest of our lives. Expectations were zero. Families disowned us. We brewed the surplus produce and still have a precious bottle stored as an heirloom. I said that if it were guaranteed that the money would come forever, I would never work again. I did not keep the promise. After 6 years I sought work. My partner was heartbroken at the thought of our Shangri La ending. I started work but when genuinely ill after a short time suffered the torment of having the support pulled from under me. Eventually all is well. Work and a pension and two sons in good jobs made things right. But if the support had been two or three pounds more and the Dole had not pushed and prodded or if I had had a thicker skin, I would still be digging my allotment.

Add your comment

 

related

public sector executive tv

more videos >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the open more > more last word articles >

public sector focus

View all News

comment

Helping reduce energy costs

16/08/2017Helping reduce energy costs

Joseph Ernst-Herman, director of utilities and fuels at the Crown Commercia... more >
Leading in the challenging times ahead

16/08/2017Leading in the challenging times ahead

Following the Brexit vote, Cllr Philip Atkins OBE, County Councils Network ... more >

interviews

‘The HSCN is the realisation of industry best practice’

30/06/2017‘The HSCN is the realisation of industry best practice’

Keith Smith, public sector business development manager at Virgin Media Bus... more >

most read

the raven's daily blog

Delivering social value in public sector procurement

07/08/2017Delivering social value in public sector procurement

Theresa Grant, CEO of Trafford Council, explains how local authorities in the Greater Manchester area are making every penny of public spend provide that little bit more value f... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

editor's comment

14/08/2017Time for reflection

A lot has happened since the last edition of PSE was published. In particular, the snap general election delivered an astounding result that many of the pollsters and political experts could not have predicted when Theresa May initially called for it back in April. Chris Painter, Professor Emeritus at Birmingham City University, provides a fascinating analysis of the campaign, and assesses the aftermath of the election on pages 26-28. It is a must-read article.  During the... read more >