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Thread: Vulnerable 'shut out of society' by spending review welfare cuts

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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    Default Vulnerable 'shut out of society' by spending review welfare cuts

    Increase in welfare cuts to 18bn condemned by charities and unions

    The disabled and other vulnerable people are being shut out by the spending review, say charities. Photograph: INSADCO Photography /Alamy
    The government was accused today of shutting vulnerable people out of society after George Osborne announced a series of reforms that will create an extra 7bn in welfare cuts.
    Charities and trade unionists lined up to condemn the chancellor who announced he will increase the 11bn in welfare cuts identified in the June budget to 18bn.
    Osborne has identified the savings, aimed at keeping departmental spending cuts over the four years from 2011 to just under 20%, though changes to disability payments, housing benefits and child tax credits. The main changes include:

    Withdrawing employment and support allowance, which will eventually replace incapacity benefit, after one year for one million claimants in the Work Related Activity Group. This is the second group for those heading back towards work. Claimants in the first group are too ill to be considered for work. This will save 2bn a year by 2014-15.

    Removing the mobility component of the disability living allowance (DLA) from residents in care homes from October 2012. This will save 135m by 2014-15.

    Freezing the basic and 30-hour element of the working tax credit for three years from April 2011 after which they will be uprated by the consumer prices index, rather than by the more generous retail prices index. This will save 625m by 2014-15.

    New rules so that couples with children must work 24 hours between them, with one partner working at least 16 hours a week, in order to claim the working tax credit. This will save 390m a year by 2014-15.

    Reducing the percentage of childcare costs parents can claim through the childcare element of the working tax credit from 80% to its previous level of 70%. This will apply from 2011-12 and will save 385m by 2014-15.

    The changes were condemned by charities. Sue Brown, head of policy at Sense, Britain's charity for deafblind people, said: "The long-term implications of this are almost incomprehensible. We have worked so hard to ensure a society where we all participate. These cuts will shut vulnerable people out of society. The government is cutting the mobility component of the disability living allowance for people who live in residential care which will impose further isolation on vulnerable people, including those with deafblindness, and will effectively cut many disabled people off from their families and communities."

    Lord (Victor) Adebowale, chief executive of Turning Point, said: "The dark shadow is the potential impact of the extra 7bn of cuts to welfare benefits. There is a danger that in removing benefits from vulnerable people, issues such as poor mental health, substance misuse and criminal activity may spiral out of control. It is our hope that the poor are not affected disproportionately."
    Brendan Barber, the general secretary of the TUC, said: "Low income families will have welcomed a 30-a-year increase in child tax credit even if it is only 60p a week. But they will be shocked to learn that buried in the small print are other tax credit cuts of up to 1,500 a year.

    "This is a classic conjuring trick distract the audience while making what they are really interested in disappear. This cut is part of a theme to single out women, children and families to bear the brunt of the cuts."
    The Centre for Social Justice, founded by the work and pensions secretary Iain Duncan Smith, welcomed the changes. Gavin Poole, the CJS executive director, said: "Broadly, this is a brave and necessary reforming agenda and one that the CSJ welcomes. We must now look at the detail, however, to see how this will be delivered. This is particularly true for family policy.
    "It remains to be seen how the government will make good the prime minister's commitment to make Britain the most family-friendly country in Europe. We support the principle that those with the broadest shoulders should bare the greater burden, but we do question the continued fairness anomaly in the government's child benefit reforms. As stands, they are unfair and we urge the chancellor to revisit his decision."

    The cuts follow a previous announcement to link annual benefit rises from next April to the lower consumer prices index (CPI) measure of inflation. September's CPI inflation figure of 3.1% will be used rather than the 4.6% retail prices index (RPI). The move away from the higher RPI figure will deny benefit claimants a rise of one and a half percentage points next year. Analysis of the difference between CPI and RPI over the previous decade shows the cut will amount to an annual 0.5 to 0.75 percentage points each year.
    Jobseekers' allowance is currently 65.45. Under RPI it would rise to 68.60 next April, but under CPI it would rise to 67.50 (difference 1.10).

    Carers' allowance is currently 53.90. Under RPI it would rise to 56.40, but under CPI it would rise to 55.50 (difference 90p).
    Bereavement allowance for 55 years old to state pension age is currently 97.65. RPI increase 102.15, CPI increase 100.70 (difference 1.45).
    The state pension will rise in line with the CPI, average earnings or 2.5%, whichever is the higher. Occupational final salary pensions, in both the private and public sector's are also affected without the "triple lock" protection afforded the basic state pension. An occupational pension of 100 a week would rise to 104.60 under RPI but would now rise to 103.10 under CPI (difference 1.50).
    By 2015/16 the Treasury predicts a 2.55 cut in JSA, a 2.60 cut in carers allowance and a 6.40 cut in bereavement benefit. These assume RPI closing the gap with CPI to below its long run average.

    Vulnerable 'shut out of society' by spending review welfare cuts | Society | guardian.co.uk

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    A*O
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    The British welfare system has been out of control for decades with people claiming benefits they shouldn't be entitled to. There is an entire underclass of permanently unemployed 2nd or 3rd generation bludgers who are perfectly healthy but have never done a day's work in their lives and have no intention of ever doing so because they can claim benefits instead, even more so if they have a tribe of kids. Now that the Govt has been forced to take firm action it's the people who DO need support who will suffer.
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    Elite Member Sojiita's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    The British welfare system has been out of control for decades with people claiming benefits they shouldn't be entitled to. There is an entire underclass of permanently unemployed 2nd or 3rd generation bludgers who are perfectly healthy but have never done a day's work in their lives and have no intention of ever doing so because they can claim benefits instead, even more so if they have a tribe of kids. Now that the Govt has been forced to take firm action it's the people who DO need support who will suffer.
    Isn't that the way it always is? The creeps and lazy will find ways to still work the system, while the truly needy and desperate will be the ones who suffer.

    God I wish I knew what the answer was.

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    Elite Member Sarzy's Avatar
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    Yup, the genuine people who need help are always the ones who lose out in the end. I don't know what the answer is either.

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    A*O
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    It would help if claimants came under much closer scrutiny about their actual circumstances. I'd be willing to bet that a huge proportion of people claiming "disability" have nothing wrong whatsoever, or at least nothing that prevents them from working. People rely on the welfare system as a first resort instead of a last resort and that, combined with the huge sense of entitlement that prevails these days, means these parasites will continue to get away with it without any accountability whatsoever. We have created a monster.
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    Elite Member msdeb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    The British welfare system has been out of control for decades with people claiming benefits they shouldn't be entitled to. There is an entire underclass of permanently unemployed 2nd or 3rd generation bludgers who are perfectly healthy but have never done a day's work in their lives and have no intention of ever doing so because they can claim benefits instead, even more so if they have a tribe of kids. Now that the Govt has been forced to take firm action it's the people who DO need support who will suffer.
    i never realized how bad it is there, until i started reading the Daily Mail. They have a shitload of articles on people that get benefits.
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    Elite Member Sarzy's Avatar
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    It's not as easy to get disability as it seems though. I'm not sure what more they could actually do to check people. You also don't want genuinely ill people to feel they are being treated like a criminal unless they prove otherwise as I know that's how some people feel. It's difficult.

    Msdeb- The Daily Mail isn't a good source to go by when it comes to how they make it seem like all benefits are super easy to get.

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    A*O
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    I would have no problem at all if I asked for benefits and had to be thoroughly assessed in order to receive tham. In fact I'd be glad that someone was bothering to check properly. I have nothing to hide.
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    Elite Member Sarzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    I would have no problem at all if I asked for benefits and had to be thoroughly assessed in order to receive tham. In fact I'd be glad that someone was bothering to check properly. I have nothing to hide.
    What would you call thoroughly assessed though? I think what they do now is pretty thorough. Yes, obviously people manage to trick them, I think that would always happen, but I'm not sure what other tests/assessments they could do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by msdeb View Post
    i never realized how bad it is there, until i started reading the Daily Mail. They have a shitload of articles on people that get benefits.
    the dodgy fail is about as reliable as faux news, maybe even less so, and has its own very loaded agenda.
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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarzy View Post
    What would you call thoroughly assessed though? I think what they do now is pretty thorough. Yes, obviously people manage to trick them, I think that would always happen, but I'm not sure what other tests/assessments they could do.
    But, Sarzy, what about the people we read about on here that do nothing but produce babies and get paid? Is that not true? Or is that trashy paper making it up? I would be relieved to know that was false.
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    Elite Member msdeb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarzy View Post

    Msdeb- The Daily Mail isn't a good source to go by when it comes to how they make it seem like all benefits are super easy to get.
    this I know... i love the DM for its shitacious stories.
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    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McJag View Post
    But, Sarzy, what about the people we read about on here that do nothing but produce babies and get paid? Is that not true? Or is that trashy paper making it up?
    They are a small minority, the people who really need help are going to suffer

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    Elite Member Sarzy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McJag View Post
    But, Sarzy, what about the people we read about on here that do nothing but produce babies and get paid? Is that not true? Or is that trashy paper making it up? I would be relieved to know that was false.
    Everybody who has a child gets child benefits, whether you are rich or poor. (that'll be changing soon tho) The ones who try and falsely get incapacity and disability too are, like Honey said,in the small minority.

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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarzy View Post
    Everybody who has a child gets child benefits, whether you are rich or poor. (that'll be changing soon tho) The ones who try and falsely get incapacity and disability too are, like Honey said,in the small minority.
    That seems like a waste, to give it to rich people who do not need it. That part seems wise. How much of a benefit are we talking about, per child? Do you mean even movie stars children got that benefit?
    How long has this been going on there? I would be very annoyed if my taxes were going to say-Suri Cruise, I can assure you.

    I am not being critical, please understand. I heard about this on the news and was curious about it all. I thought then, we can get real-people answers for our friends on GR! I appreciate you patience with my ignorance.

    I would like to hear if any of you all are going to be hurt by this big change. At least we can worry with you. This seemed so fast! We would have had much public discussion (maybe too much) and time for it to sort of sink in. This seemed like wham!
    I didn't start out to collect diamonds, but somehow they just kept piling up.-Mae West

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