Universal credit goes to work

I visited the local Job Centre on Friday to see how they are getting on with Universal Credit.

I was impressed by the office. The staff were generally positive about Universal Credit, seeing it as an improvement on the previous system. They reported a generally smooth transfer so far. That would reflect the evidence of my postbag, where there has been very little concern or complications with the transfers.

The Job Centre reports good progress in helping people into work. Local job generation remains strong, making it a bit easier for people to find suitable work.

I thanks the staff for all their efforts to carry through the changes, and to help all those in need of income top up and assistance to find work.

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3 Comments

  1. lojolondon
    Posted July 2, 2018 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    John, you should invite the BBC to join you in visiting your local office – so far they have dedicated hundreds of hours of broadcast time to complain about UC, and to allow people who are having problems to air their views.

  2. Fairweather
    Posted July 2, 2018 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    Dear John,
    It seems to me that while UC is a really good idea and should simplify the benefit system it’s been carried out in a very hierarchal and beaurocratic way
    A simple leaflet should have been sent to potential claimants to explain the issues. For example that payments would be made monthly instead of weekly and they should make preparation for this. Payments would be made into bank accounts and that people without one should set one up( this can take 3 weeks and has left some claimants without a mechanism to receive the money)
    There is a BIG story in my local paper of people going to food banks because their old benefits have been stopped and there have been complications as above in obtaining the new payment.
    Apart from help from job seekers could not the Goverment give banks an allowance to set up provision to interview claimants who need to set up a bank account?. This can be very daunting for some people.
    Some claimants don’t have Internet and the claim form again can be seen as intimidating.
    Mistakes are easily made and this again delays payment.Disabled people will find it difficult to go to job centres
    The establishment doesn’t recognise people have these difficulties
    Did a leaflet go out to claimants explaining what to do? Could a hard copy of the claim form be sent to people without Internet?
    It seems to me that the UC is a good idea but the government have made a pigs ear of rolling it out and now it is in disrepute especially in Labour areas and have given the government a stick to beat itself
    I am going to write to my MP to see if this can be brought up in Parliament

  3. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted July 4, 2018 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    The amount of money available to those on Universal Credit is too high. A claimant in London with three children can take home over £36K per year with full time minimum wage employment.

    That is the equivalent of £50K salary before tax.

    These claimants are competing with us for housing and living costs. Why should I undertake the stress and long commute to my management position when I can take home the same amount stacking shelves in my local supermarket.

    Where is the motivation? I did not realise that your party advocated to each according to his needs, from each according to his means policies or does that only apply to PAYE serfs?

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, He graduated from Magdalen College Oxford, has a DPhil and is a fellow of All Souls College. A businessman by background, he has been a director of NM Rothschild merchant bank and chairman of a quoted industrial PLC.

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