NAWRA conference in Durham on 24 June 2022

We are pleased to announce that our first in-person NAWRA conference for over two years will take place soon. Join us for a variety of conference sessions and an opportunity to meet fellow welfare rights advisers.

The conference will take place in-person at Durham Town Hall on Friday 24 June from 9.30am (for a 10am start) until 4pm.

The full agenda will be sent to members on 31 May 2022.

NAWRA conferences are free to attend and open to members only.

Please contact us with any questions.

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Help to Claim service – reply from minister

NAWRA has received a letter from David Rutley, Minister for Welfare Delivery responding to our concerns about the Help to Claim service – in particular, the lack of face-to-face support in the service and the general lack of support for people needing advice given the ramping up of ‘Voluntary move to UC’.

The Minister says –

‘I thought it may be helpful to make clear Help to Claim is designed to be accessed after someone has decided to apply for Universal Credit (UC). It is not intended to help someone decide whether UC is right for them.’

He also reiterates the DWP’s assertion that jobcentre/DWP staff do not advise people to claim UC – apparently ‘independent welfare advice is available’ but the Minister has not responded to the point that funding is needed for this.

NAWRA has responded asking –

  • Does the government plan to provide funding to increase advice provision, particularly face to face? 
  • What safeguards does the DWP have in place, or will be putting in place, to ensure that no person is directed to claim universal credit without having an opportunity to receive a full benefit check and be advised of their options and the implications of those options? 
  • Can you please clarify what the Department is doing to achieve its objective ‘to ensure the right information is available to claimants in order to support them in making an informed decision about whether a voluntary move to universal credit is right for them’?

    Read our letter in full
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NAWRA conference 3 and 4 March

NAWRA members will meet on Zoom on 3 March 2022 (1.00pm-4.30pm) and 4 March 2022 (9.30am-1.00pm)

We will be hearing from a wide variety of welfare rights practitioners and academics. Dr Michael Orton (Warwick University) will lead a participatory session on the work of the Commission for Social Security and Fran Bennett (Oxford University) will present her recent paper on the policy challenges posed by the design of Universal Credit.

There will also be informative and useful sessions on Mind’s strategic litigation work, building and maintaining networks, and updater sessions on all the recent changes to the benefits system.

This meeting will also serve as NAWRA’s AGM and there will be an opportunity to hear more about our equality and diversity working group.

Join us on the evening of 3 March for an online social event and quiz.

NAWRA conferences are free to attend but open to members only.

Read the agenda

Please check your email for information on booking a place.

NAWRA conferences are open to members only. Not a member?  Find out more about joining

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