Bury gets new benefits system

Bury gets new benefits system

Bury gets new benefits system

First published in News This Is Lancashire: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A NEW system has been introduced in Bury with the aim of making the process of claiming benefits more simple.

People used to claim one or more of six benefits but the government’s view was that this was “problematic and confusing”.

Now, the six have been replaced with one, called the Universal Credit.

A Department of Work and Pensions spokesman said: “This has made the system easier to understand and administer, and ensures people are better off if they work than they would be on welfare.

“And because it allows job centres to access real-time earnings data, it means that exactly the right level of support is in place to help people on their journey into work.”

Minister for Welfare Reform, David Freud, said: “I am delighted that Universal Credit has gone live in Bury as we continue to extend this ground-breaking reform in a careful and controlled way across the country.

“With record numbers of people in work, Universal Credit is destined to play a huge part in helping to build a stronger and more resilient economy for the future as part of our long-term economic plan.”

He added: “Claimants can now rest assured that when they increase their hours they will be better off financially, rather than fearing their benefits will be cut as a consequence of taking on more work.”

The government has employed “job coaches”, to offer a wide range of help to people seeking work and Job Centre computer systems have been improved so people can search for more positions.

Steve Johnson, Job Centre district manager covering Prestwich, said: “We have the latest technology in place and staff have been fully trained to give claimants the best support available to help them move off benefits and into work.

“Under Universal Credit, claimants will benefit from far better work incentives and will be able to increase their hours more easily than the previous system allowed.

“This is an exciting time for local people and we are very much looking forward to developing our role as coaches and mentors as we help claimants to find and keep work.”

Comments (2)

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10:44pm Thu 7 Aug 14

Bill Kruse says...

This from Freud is nonsense; “Claimants can now rest assured that when they increase their hours they will be better off financially, rather than fearing their benefits will be cut as a consequence of taking on more work.” as UC doesn't include Council Tax and, indeed, behaves as if there were no such tax. So, your work hours can go up and your earnings increase and you suddenly find yourself a great deal worse off as you lose the CT subsidy granted to low earners. So, many claimants will find their benefits will indeed be cut when they start earning more and they'll lose out financially too, this in direct contrast to Freud's empty assurances. None of this is a secret and it's not helpful to the people of Bury that local papers like this one appear to do no more than reprint DWP press releases.
This from Freud is nonsense; “Claimants can now rest assured that when they increase their hours they will be better off financially, rather than fearing their benefits will be cut as a consequence of taking on more work.” as UC doesn't include Council Tax and, indeed, behaves as if there were no such tax. So, your work hours can go up and your earnings increase and you suddenly find yourself a great deal worse off as you lose the CT subsidy granted to low earners. So, many claimants will find their benefits will indeed be cut when they start earning more and they'll lose out financially too, this in direct contrast to Freud's empty assurances. None of this is a secret and it's not helpful to the people of Bury that local papers like this one appear to do no more than reprint DWP press releases. Bill Kruse
  • Score: 23

11:53pm Thu 7 Aug 14

rattybaggy says...

No mention in your article about the benefit cap that comes in with UC which will see many people worse off as their housing benefit is cut. Nor the change of rules about zero hour contracts and the ability now granted to the job centre advisers to prevent people taking paid work and send them on workfare instead.

Call yourself a journalist - even the most junior numpty could do better than simply repeat the self-congratulatory and highly misleading DWP drivel.
No mention in your article about the benefit cap that comes in with UC which will see many people worse off as their housing benefit is cut. Nor the change of rules about zero hour contracts and the ability now granted to the job centre advisers to prevent people taking paid work and send them on workfare instead. Call yourself a journalist - even the most junior numpty could do better than simply repeat the self-congratulatory and highly misleading DWP drivel. rattybaggy
  • Score: 18

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