Welfare Reforms

 The Prime Minister wanted people to engage in the Big Society - something for something. 

 

I understand that it is possible to do permitted earnings whilst still claiming welfare benefits which is approximately £100 per week.  I would like to see people who do something for something being provided an increase in their benefits to £100, ie a potential extra £400 per month. For this they should be doing at least 4, 8, 12 hours or 16 hours plus voluntary work a month, paid at £25, £50, £75 or £100 - the maximum being £100 per week. It is the Prime Minister and Iain Duncan Smith who wanted "something for something" and to engage with the Third Sector as the Big Society. The Big Society is for corporate volunteering days, but people are paid.  The issue I am seeking to remedy is that people are volunteering and are not receiving anything whilst engaged in the welfare reforms agenda.  I am aware that if you volunteer this is recorded with DWP, so you know who people are and are gathering data already. It is quite wrong of the Prime Minister to lump people who do volunteering and engage with the Big Society with benefits and scroungers and people living off the system.  Giving folks something for volunteering by way of “increased benefit” would encourage others who are struggling on welfare to engage in society.  You could have a “basic benefit” plus the opportunity to earn an “increased benefit” or “replacement benefit” where you have recovered or recovering but are not quite job ready.  Also, some people have engaged in volunteering for many years, have really good CV/resume and cannot get paid employment meaning meaning they are "volunteer trapped".  They may have lost Disability living allowance and severe disability living allowance so need to replace these benefits whilst still claiming long term out of work benefits.  Doing something for nothing is a lacuna in the current welfare reforms that needs to be plugged.  You either get DLA/SDA or you are recovered sufficiently to do some form of volunteering or you get JSA and an opportunity to increase your benefit.  This would assist people who want to work the ability to earn their benefits to keep them out of relative poverty or absolute poverty.  Freedom of choice would mean that people who don’t want to work and just claim a basic benefit can do so too.  It would also assist people who work in rural communities and may also assist carers as they could increase their benefits as part of their caring role as volunteers for a cared for person for 16 plus hours they already do and currently receive nothing.

Why the contribution is important

Social justice utilising the third sector = balanced welfare reforrms - wealth creating not a residium

by Lesley on October 10, 2018 at 08:48PM

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  • Posted by GordonSharp November 02, 2018 at 00:08

    Don't understand the reason for this post?
    Welfare cuts are dis empowering and disadvantaging many people. They seem a deliberate attempt to save money and penalize people, based on a complete lack of trust and understanding. It is very difficult to such decisions to be influenced by local communities due to the fact that they are universal. Having said that, it must be easier for feedback to be properly obtained from those in receipt of benefits by the DWP, so that they have to respond and change. For instance, the numbers of decisions that are won on appeal shows that the decisions are wrong. Listening is the most effective way of communicating, the DWP really need to listen.
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