Our next conference will take place from 10am-4pm (registration from 9.30am) on Friday 7 September 2018 at the Renfield St Stephen’s Centre, 260 Bath St, Glasgow G2 4JP. Many thanks to Glasgow City Council for hosting us.
We are pleased to announce that our guest speakers will be the newly appointed Cabinet Secretary for Social Security and Older People, Shirley-Anne Somerville and the chief executive of the Social Security Agency, David Wallace.
Also speaking is Dr Sharon Wright of Glasgow University, co-author of ‘A hand up or a slap down? Criminalising benefit claimants in Britain via strategies of surveillance, sanctions and deterrence’
There will be two workshops on universal credit (one on deductions and the other on pitfalls and processes) as well as a workshop on practical equality rights in welfare benefits advice and another on ESA Reg 35.
Download the agenda
NAWRA meetings are only open to members. Find out more about joining NAWRA.
The Social Security Advisory Committee recently ran a consultation on government proposals for moving claimants to universal credit from other working age benefits, known as ‘managed migration’.
Thanks to all the NAWRA members who contributed to our survey of members views and to Daphne for drafting our submission.
NAWRA has been invited to a DWP meeting about managed migration in October 2018 where we will have another opportunity to make members voices heard.
The Work and Pensions Committee is holding an inquiry into universal credit.
On 4 July 2018, NAWRA’s vice chair Daphne Hall gave oral evidence to the Committee on the problems with the rollout of universal credit, particularly for disabled people.
NAWRA has followed this up with further written observations and recommendations on disability and universal credit for the Committee.
NAWRA has sent an email to the Director General for the Universal Credit Programme, Neil Couling, to highlight the concerns reported by NAWRA members in universal credit full service areas.
In particular, we have raised the problems experienced by claimants applying for new-style ESA in a full service universal credit area and also the ongoing errors in the natural migration from ESA to universal credit.
Update 6 Aug 2018: We’ve received a reply from Neil Couling. He asks for details of any cases where there are problems claiming new style ESA. Please send specific case examples to firstname.lastname@example.org
NAWRA has written to the chair of the Public Accounts Committee Meg Hillier MP to draw her attention to our correspondence earlier this year with Neil Couling, Director General for the Universal Credit Programme.
We wrote to Neil Couling about specific major problems within the operation of universal credit. His response did not engage with our concerns and refused to address circumstances where UC is not operating as it should.
In the Public Accounts Committee evidence session on 9 July 2018, Neil Couling repeated the view that lobbying from some stakeholders was about policy rather than the implementation of universal credit. NAWRA disputes that this is the case and plans to write again to Mr Couling on problems claimants are experiencing migrating from ESA to universal credit and the regulations not being followed correctly. We hope that following his assurances to the Public Accounts Committee he will be more receptive.