Latest Public Sector News

07.08.13

UC could limit access to free school meals

The introduction of Universal Credit could limit access to a range of other benefits, Labour has warned.

Shadow employment minister Stephen Timms said there was no clear strategy about how entitlement would be decided and paid once UC was rolled out nationally. The benefits that could be affected include free school meals, legal aid, some prescription charges, legal aid, support for utility costs and cold weather payments.

He said: “Duncan Smith has lost all control of Universal Credit, and the flagship scheme is now in real danger of becoming a car crash. The welfare secretary is now openly admitting that he hasn't got a clue how his scheme will actually work – no wonder the welfare revolution we were promised is falling apart.”

DWP secretary Iain Duncan Smith had told the work and pensions select committee: “It is up to the departments now to decide how they want to do this. It may also be an opportunity for them to do this in a different way. It is up to them; our job is to try to say, 'These are the levels at which we can give you the information', and go from there. Some have decided they want to do it in a different way, and they will be making that clear.”

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

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