Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum
rantnrave

BBC: Thousands on 50p-a-week housing benefit, Panorama finds

Recommended Posts

Can't see this posted anywhere?

More graphs etc at the link

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-39484897

More than 7,500 households have lost their housing benefit and instead receive a nominal 50p a week because of the welfare cap, the BBC has found.

A Panorama survey of hundreds of councils shows at least 67,600 homes in England, Scotland and Wales have lost some money due to the policy.

The cap is £23,000 in London and £20,000 in the rest of the country.

The nominal amount is paid so that those households can claim access to an emergency fund if they need to.

They have to be in receipt of some housing benefit in order to be eligible to apply for discretionary housing payments, a special government fund set up for those particularly affected by the cap.

 

The cap is part of the government's drive to get unemployed people back into employment by cutting out-of-work benefits.

The amount of money above the limit is taken from either housing benefit or Universal Credit.

Alison Garnham, chief executive of the Child Poverty Action Group, said: "Removing people's housing benefit basically means that people can't afford their home, so it puts people at risk of homelessness.

"It also means that they have to use money that's intended to buy food for their kids and for their other living expenses - this has to be used to plug the hole in their rent."

Where someone finds work - 16 hours a week for single parents, 24 hours for a couple - their benefits are reinstated, and research suggests about 5% of those affected by the cap have returned to work.

But Ms Garnham said about 80% of those affected cannot be expected to work as they are sick or have very young children.


'It costs more to send a letter out'

Kim Carmichael Image caption Kim Carmichael says the money "soon goes"

Steve and Kim Carmichael, from Huyton in Liverpool, used to get £500 a week in benefits to look after their four children but their payments were cut by £120 in November under the cap.

Their rent used to be covered by housing benefit but that has been cut to the minimum amount.

Mr Carmichael said: "Now it's only 50p per week so that's £2 a month - which they may as well keep. It costs more to send a letter out."

The family was threatened with eviction at the end of January because of their rent arrears. They got a payment from the discretionary housing payment fund but that ran out at the end of March and they will now have to apply for more money. If they do not get it, they could lose their home.

Mrs Carmichael said the family had been struggling since their benefits were capped.

"£20,000 a year does sound a lot," she said. "It's not a lot really, and by the time you've paid your gas, your electric, your rent, your council tax, your food shopping, clothes for the kids, school trips and stuff like that, it soon goes."

Neither of them have worked for almost nine years. Under the rules, the Carmichaels could get their full benefits back if they worked 24 hours a week between them.

Mr Carmichael said he was looking for work, but he has not been able to find a job in the four months since the family was capped.


Welfare delivery minister Caroline Nokes said the benefit cap was introduced to "level up the playing field between families who are in work and those who are reliant on benefits".

She said: "What we sought to do was incentivise work because we know that the outcomes for children will be better if they are in families that are working."


The 50p-a-week housing benefit

Birmingham has the highest number of households on 50p a week housing benefit - 578 out of 2,968 that are benefit-capped.

Leeds is second (223 out of 993) and Manchester is third (179 out of 833).

In North Hertfordshire, 30% of households that are benefit capped are on 50p a week housing benefit - the highest proportion in Britain.

Bolton is the second highest (29%). Sandwell is third (27%).

A total of 370 councils responded to Panorama's survey.

Source: BBC Panorama


Panorama: The Benefit Cap - Is it Working? will be shown on Wednesday 5 April at 21:00 on BBC One

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, Eddie_George said:

Still sounds like a sensible policy to me.

 

As has been pointed out £23k a year gross of tax and NI is over £30k - above the mean wage outside inner London.

The cap does not apply if you get a job.

Maybe the answer is unless you are disabled stop complaining, stop expecting to live rent free in parts of London and other expensive areas many of those in work  can't afford and perhaps just get a job! With all these EU migrants supposedly leaving we apparently have lots of vacancies even just for making coffee.

Labour politicians introduced much tougher systems in the late 1940s - Atlee and Bevan would be horrified at what we have today. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Steve and Kim Carmichael, from Huyton in Liverpool, used to get £500 a week in benefits to look after their four children

Neither of them have worked for almost nine years

Mr Carmichael said he was looking for work

So state largess encourages a couple not to work for nine years. And then they moan when its withdrawn.

It sounds like the policy is working, getting people back into work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We are debating if we can afford a second child and both work full time. On what planet is it fair that they can have 4 and not work for 9 years?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A single mum of two kids in the South East, working 16 hours in a minimum wage job, can get a sum of money equivalent to a gross salary of £52k per annum.

Plus many other perks.

Utter madness.

www.entitledto.co.uk   Try it for yourself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A good example of how Brown fcke up the concepts of tax credits.

In the US, the idea is - You wrk, We'll top up your money.

Thats works. It encourages people to stay off benefits when they have kids and rewards them.

Here, you have someone who's 'not worked for 9 years' (lookng at the ages, Id guess never worked would be more apt) and, although, theyve reduced some of the money - Gidiots wheeze of keeping tax credits but removing HB instead -  but they still could get it for doing 24h/week. Which these lazy fkcing scratters cannot be ar5ed to do FFS.

TC should be 38h/week to qualify for at 2 x NMW. Thats it. No more. This effectively guarantees one person working FT will get the spouses money.

Dont do 38h then you get offered workfare or lose it.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I Would start by cutting 20% off, with a warning letter stating timescales etc. Then after 4 weeks, another 20% would come off. After another 4 weeks I'd probably take another 20% off. Then after a shorter time I'd cut the remaining 40%. Permanently. It just gives them some time to find a job. So you can be a bit reasonable and still take all the benefits away. 

I would just draw the line and then stick to it. And hopefully in the 2 months I would give them they would manage to find work so we can avoid the homelessness and other costs.

I might also consider some kind of benefit exchange, whereby the individual concerned could exchange their benefits for payment towards sensible, approved training. That way they could actually learn something useful and the country might get something for its money (e.g. a better trained and educated populace).

Edited by Errol

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Errol said:

I Would start by cutting 20% off, with a warning letter stating timescales etc. Then after 4 weeks, another 20% would come off. After another 4 weeks I'd probably take another 20% off. Then after a shorter time I'd cut the remaining 40%. Permanently. It just gives them some time to find a job. So you can be a bit reasonable and still take all the benefits away. 

I would just draw the line and then stick to it. And hopefully in the 2 months I would give them they would manage to find work so we can avoid the homelessness and other costs.

Seriously: why?

Why does it take 2 months? Surely some will find work quicker and others won't in 2 months and will become homeless etc.?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

unbelievable money for lazy people. 9 years and no work yet a guy just off the plane from whereverstan will be working probably 2 days later. there is loads of work out there for those willing to work, the problem is these people dont want to, 9 years and no work tells anyone that this person is a lazy layabout or playing the system. its not about qualifications or anything plenty of places you would get a start by just turning up after having a shave and a bath, even that might not matter for some places. breeders are the worst. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't hate the player, hate the game.

 

Can't really blame people for acting rationally in their own self interest and playing the system, if others are dumb enough to vote for politicians who create the system and happily cough up taxes to pay for it.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Errol said:

I Would start by cutting 20% off, with a warning letter stating timescales etc. Then after 4 weeks, another 20% would come off. After another 4 weeks I'd probably take another 20% off. Then after a shorter time I'd cut the remaining 40%. Permanently. It just gives them some time to find a job. So you can be a bit reasonable and still take all the benefits away. 

I would just draw the line and then stick to it. And hopefully in the 2 months I would give them they would manage to find work so we can avoid the homelessness and other costs.

I might also consider some kind of benefit exchange, whereby the individual concerned could exchange their benefits for payment towards sensible, approved training. That way they could actually learn something useful and the country might get something for its money (e.g. a better trained and educated populace).

I hope there are lots of firms prepared to take on people who haven't worked for 9 years and that they aren't mostly NLTUIMBY. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So who would want to employ a person who does not want to work when there are plenty that do want to work to choose from........you employ a man to weed your garden and he pulls up the flowers or doesn't turn up or is paid by the hour and takes twice as long doing less than half....;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, TwoTearsInABucket said:

@doomed When I put that to people they say "Well why don't you just go on benefits?"

Hard to do if you aren't able to produce sprogs.

38 minutes ago, jimmy2x3 said:

unbelievable money for lazy people. 9 years and no work yet a guy just off the plane from whereverstan will be working probably 2 days later. there is loads of work out there for those willing to work, the problem is these people dont want to, 9 years and no work tells anyone that this person is a lazy layabout or playing the system. its not about qualifications or anything plenty of places you would get a start by just turning up after having a shave and a bath, even that might not matter for some places. breeders are the worst. 

Actually there's not.  You can get caught in the too qualified/out of work too long trap. Missus returned to work a few months ago after 18 months of unsuccessful applications, interviews and even one try out.  Entry level jobs are near impossible to get if you have any decent qualifications, history of serious illness and/or past a certain age. 

The guy from wheverstan is likely leveraging local contacts and will be employed because he will be seen as someone who can be pushed around due to ignorance of the system. Unemployment in BME is often very high so perhaps your assertion doesn't hold true. 

Edited by StainlessSteelCat

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, StainlessSteelCat said:

Hard to do if you aren't able to produce sprogs.

Actually there's not.  You can get caught in the too qualified/out of work too long trap. Missus returned to work a few months ago after 18 months of unsuccessful applications, interviews and even one try out.  Entry level jobs are near impossible to get if you have any decent qualifications, history of serious illness and/or past a certain age. 

The guy from wheverstan is likely leveraging local contacts and will be employed because he will be seen as someone who can be pushed around due to ignorance of the system. Unemployment in BME is often very high so perhaps your assertion doesn't hold true. 

i disagree. there is loads of work out there for anyone. like anything you take what you can get then build up from there. 9 fecking years without a job. i dont think so

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They live in Huyton, 3 bedroom place in Huyton is <£500pcm, which leaves £14,000/year for food etc. Or he could get a job, though without tax credits etc, he'd be unlikely to clear £20k working.

http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-to-rent/find.html?locationIdentifier=REGION^13381&maxBedrooms=3&minBedrooms=3&minPrice=350&radius=1.0&sortType=1&includeLetAgreed=true

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Errol said:

The loss of benefits should probably be phased in incrementally, as opposed to just falling off.

Removal of landlord tax perks was phased in over the best part of a decade. But then, landlords are 'people like us' rather than 'people like them'. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, spyguy said:

A good example of how Brown fcke up the concepts of tax credits.

In the US, the idea is - You wrk, We'll top up your money.

Thats works. It encourages people to stay off benefits when they have kids and rewards them.

 

Wasn't that the aim of Tax Credits?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We should apply the same principle to all government handouts. Banks to be bailed out no more than the losses covered by the NHS. MP and Lords pensions to be no more than 2x Average earnings and indexed linked to GDP.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • The Prime Minister stated that there were three Brexit options available to the UK:   100 members have voted

    1. 1. Which of the Prime Minister's options would you choose?


      • Leave with the negotiated deal
      • Remain
      • Leave with no deal

    Please sign in or register to vote in this poll. View topic


×

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.