In the Commons last week, Work and Pensions ministers responded to concerns about universal credit by offering to look at individual constituency cases MPs were raising, where things might not be going quite right.
This autumn the benefit cap will be cut, squeezing low-income families even further and pushing more people into poverty. The Welfare Reform & Work Act 2016 lowers the cap to £23,000 per annum for families (or £15,410 for single claimants) in London and £20,000 for families (or £13,400 for single claimants) outside of London.
If you had heard the Minister for Disabled People, Mark Harper, reassuring MP on Monday this week about future funding levels of Discretionary Housing Payments, you would be forgiven for believing that, on this issue, the Government was making adequate resources available to meet needs
Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) has strongly criticised the government’s decision, announced today, to cut local authorities’ budgets for discretionary housing payments by 24% (from £165m in 2014 -15 to £125m for 2015-16)[fn]Discretionary Financial Assistance Regulations 2001 SI No. 11167 p1599[/fn]
Cuts to benefits have left families in London struggling and unsure how they will afford to stay living in their area, according to a new CPAG report released today. Based on interviews with councils, advice services and parents as well a review of existing evidence, the report highlights that these key groups share the same fear: a housing crisis uprooting families from their homes and communities, with children’s education facing huge disruption by these forced moves.