Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum
Dave Beans

Cab - Govt Should Think About "cumulative Effect" Of Changes To Housing And Council Tax Benefit

Recommended Posts

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/the-big-society-crisis-on-camerons-doorstep-2139202.html

Britain's Citizens Advice Bureaux face a funding crisis just as they are being hit with an unprecedented increase in demands on their resources, especially by people finding themselves in debt.

Some are seeing their local authority funding cut by two-thirds at a time when the number of clients seeking help with debts, benefits and homelessness has as much as doubled. The West Oxfordshire bureau, in David Cameron's constituency of Witney, is one of those badly affected.

Speaking to The Independent, Gillian Guy, the chief executive of Citizens Advice, warned that there was definitely a risk to the most vulnerable from benefit changes that were being introduced too quickly, with "unintended consequences". She also said cuts to legal aid would affect the bureaux.

She urged ministers to "pause for breath" and delay implementing some of the most controversial reforms, especially to housing benefit. Consumers also face the biggest setback to their cause in decades, she warned, as Citizens Advice was under no obligation to take on the work of Consumer Focus, the soon-to-be abolished quango, as ministers had planned.

Ms Guy's social concerns centred on the "cumulative effect" of changes to housing and council tax benefit, which will prompt many people between the ages of 25 and 35 to share homes. She urged ministers to "please be cautious and delay or phase changes, to housing benefit in particular". She said: "There isn't sufficient evidence that all the cumulative impact of the different measures have really been looked at."

Public-spending cuts could mean a family loses its main breadwinner and becomes reliant on someone working part time. That will affect the kind of benefits they would get, especially with the cap on housing benefit, Ms Guy said. "If someone finds themselves without a job because they are incapable of working due to health reasons, they'll find that after 12 months their benefits will be reduced, even though they are on jobseeker's allowance," she said. "It is those different impacts coming together that need to be analysed so there are no unintended consequences."

In the Prime Minister's West Oxfordshire constituency of Witney, Citizens Advice said that in the past year it had been made aware of an increase of almost 50 per cent in debt problems. As a volunteer-based, independent charity – albeit partly reliant on public money – Citizens Advice is just the type of Big Society institution the Prime Minister says he wants to build up.

But for consumers seeking redress against scammers, fraudsters, arrogant utilities or a confusing and bureaucratic benefits system, help may soon be harder to obtain.

In the review of quangos, ministers said they intended to abolish Consumer Focus and that its functions would be taken over by the Citizens Advice Bureau. While in favour of the move, and confident that her organisation could offer better value for money, Ms Guy was clear that there was no guarantee the organisation will take on the watchdog's work.

"We can't make offers to consumers on what we can do for them and then fail on the offer," she said. "That is worse than not doing it in the first place. There are limits." Funding was the crux. Ms Guy said some local authorities were maintaining or reducing their funding only slightly, whereas others believed it was easier to cut grants to bodies such as Citizens Advice, rather than make their own staff redundant.

Without advice on hand, small debt issues spiralled into bigger problems such as poor health and homelessness – which meant bigger bills for the state. The number of people aged 25 and under seeking debt help from the Citizen's Advice Bureau has increased by 21 per cent in the last 12 months.

Ms Guy's message to the Department of Work and Pensions, the Treasury and No 10 was clear: "We would say hold the press and think about analysing information and be clear about the consequences.

"We have also talked about the possibility of delaying some of the implementation so that we can just phase the impact a bit, so families have time to move, for example, if they can't afford the accommodation they are in. That makes the impact easier to bear. If it is sudden, then it is very difficult.

"And, of course, we ask to keep pushing resources into advice services such as CAB, because they will pick up the consequences of the measures."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The government have no money, it is all our money paid through taxes.

If the tax take is down then so is the spending pot.

Sad as it is if we havent got the money then we cant spend it. Why cant people stop whining about cuts and grasp the simple facts?

Edited by richyc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

it's a nice little cottage industry isn't it - pronouncing people too feckless to look after themselves and claiming a large taxpayer-funded salary in order to make sure they never have to look after themselves ever again

"And, of course, we ask to keep pushing resources into advice services such as CAB, because they will pick up the consequences of the measures."

of course, roughly translated, means 'don't make me redundant or you'll regret it'

Edited by Si1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have created a society in which people now refer to themselves as 'vulnerable', its going to take a generation or two to work that out of the culture. Another challenge will be to give people back the sense of dignity that would mean that would rather go hungry than refer to themselves in that way, the way my mothers generation thought about themselves.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have created a society in which people now refer to themselves as 'vulnerable', its going to take a generation or two to work that out of the culture. Another challenge will be to give people back the sense of dignity that would mean that would rather go hungry than refer to themselves in that way, the way my mothers generation thought about themselves.

The only way that is ever going to happen is if we drag your mothers generation from retirement and have them teaching our young in school. The next generation is already damaged and the young are already being brainwashed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have created a society in which people now refer to themselves as 'vulnerable', its going to take a generation or two to work that out of the culture. Another challenge will be to give people back the sense of dignity that would mean that would rather go hungry than refer to themselves in that way, the way my mothers generation thought about themselves.

Too right. I always cringed when I heard Gordon Brown talking about the need to get help to the VICTIMS (of the credit crunch). As if being refused a loan for something you want but can't afford puts you in the same category as someone maimed in a terrorist bombing. I deal with people on a daily basis, and I can vouch for the fact that people do actually see their world like this and the devastation of being stuck with a 5 year old telly can be psychologically crippling for many people (to the point where they need a sick note because they can't face work). The pyschology of victimhood is now all pervasive, and naturally there is an industry of lawyers, advocates, lobbyists and counsellors that has developed to meet the demand. It is government's job to ignore these people.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

it's a nice little cottage industry isn't it - pronouncing people too feckless to look after themselves and claiming a large taxpayer-funded salary in order to make sure they never have to look after themselves ever again

of course, roughly translated, means 'don't make me redundant or you'll regret it'

I'm lost as to what you're moaning about, but if it's the CAB, then I should point out that over 90% of the advisors are volunteers and usually the only person who gets paid in a branch is on peanuts.

It's a charity that gets a government grant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only way that is ever going to happen is if we drag your mothers generation from retirement and have them teaching our young in school. The next generation is already damaged and the young are already being brainwashed.

I wholeheartedly agree.

Girlfriend went for a job interview the other day at Bannatynes but got knocked back. The 'manager' who is a youngster (and on £45k, told us on website) couldn't even spell. They thought that 'unable' was 'un able'............

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm lost as to what you're moaning about, but if it's the CAB, then I should point out that over 90% of the advisors are volunteers and usually the only person who gets paid in a branch is on peanuts.

It's a charity that gets a government grant.

I know quite a few CAB advisers, mostly women. Have to say most are fairly useless and the biggest part of their job is advising on benefits and liaising with debt management companies. The best I've come across is a former banker who knows the mortgage market inside out and is a bear on house prices! Wouldn't you know it - he had his funding pulled a couple of months ago.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Polish workers locally regularly use the CAB when one of the local employment agencies rips them off for their holiday pay.

The advisor is on first name terms with the agencu cheese; he just says come on, you know you can't do that and it's sorted.

Personally i would prefer to see it sorted out for good with baseball bats, but it can't be denied; the CAB is providing a usefull and neccessary service.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm lost as to what you're moaning about, but if it's the CAB, then I should point out that over 90% of the advisors are volunteers and usually the only person who gets paid in a branch is on peanuts.

It's a charity that gets a government grant.

"Gillian Guy, the chief executive of Citizens Advice..."And, of course, we ask to keep pushing resources into advice services such as CAB, because they will pick up the consequences of the measures." "

comeon, she's protecting her empire - she's paid, she said the quote to which I referred, so the volunteering aspect doesn't really come into it

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wholeheartedly agree.

Girlfriend went for a job interview the other day at Bannatynes but got knocked back. The 'manager' who is a youngster (and on £45k, told us on website) couldn't even spell. They thought that 'unable' was 'un able'............

Heh maybe you should bring this up with Bannatyne himself?

In that hiswebsite is ultra idealistic, but I decided to have some fun by poking holes in his perfect idealist theories. There were a ton of posts where it was all talk. You know the kind when corporates say they respect the environment and yet dump tons of toxic waste in 3rd world countries. He started to comment back at me, then he went ad hominem against me. Then he simply put moderation on his posts censoring my points of view. I snuck under the radar again. Now you have to join up and be approved and offer pro-bannatyne points of view and adorational posts about his books before you are allowed to even post a comment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • 150 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.