State benefit card

We are continually told (all governments) that benefit cheats will be caught, that welfare benefits will be targeted to those that need it, that new immigrants will not queue jump etc etc. I think we have all now got to the point where we know that despite the cuts planned by the present coalition that it wont really change.

I think its now time for a radical rethink of how the money collected by government with the idea of redistributing back through benefits to those that need it.

My proposal is that a card, like a credit card or the current national insurance card be given to everyone in the U.K. who would be eligible. This card allows the holder to benefit from the range of government schemes including housing, pension, NHS etc. At a stroke that wipes out anyone who is here and who shouldnt be as they will not be able to claim. If they want to benefit then they join by paying taxes like the rest of us.

Why is this idea important?

We are continually told (all governments) that benefit cheats will be caught, that welfare benefits will be targeted to those that need it, that new immigrants will not queue jump etc etc. I think we have all now got to the point where we know that despite the cuts planned by the present coalition that it wont really change.

I think its now time for a radical rethink of how the money collected by government with the idea of redistributing back through benefits to those that need it.

My proposal is that a card, like a credit card or the current national insurance card be given to everyone in the U.K. who would be eligible. This card allows the holder to benefit from the range of government schemes including housing, pension, NHS etc. At a stroke that wipes out anyone who is here and who shouldnt be as they will not be able to claim. If they want to benefit then they join by paying taxes like the rest of us.

Welfare Reform. Encourage people off benefits

To help encourage people back ito work, or into work for the first time give them the following financial incentives:

  • 1st Month back at work 100% of their benefits
  • 2-3 Months back at work 50% of their benefits
  • 4-6 months back at work 25% of their benefits
  • 7-12 months back at work 10% of their benefits

Going back to work can be difficult with childcare, travel, etc…This would support and encourage people. If you slowly remove their dependancy on benefits it should be less likely they will return to the support of the welfare state.

Why is this idea important?

To help encourage people back ito work, or into work for the first time give them the following financial incentives:

  • 1st Month back at work 100% of their benefits
  • 2-3 Months back at work 50% of their benefits
  • 4-6 months back at work 25% of their benefits
  • 7-12 months back at work 10% of their benefits

Going back to work can be difficult with childcare, travel, etc…This would support and encourage people. If you slowly remove their dependancy on benefits it should be less likely they will return to the support of the welfare state.

Stop linking benefits to children

Rather than reduce child poverty this just encourages the unskilled and least able to bring up children, to have many children to garner the benefits that follow.

All the last governments efforts to reduce child poverty has actually increased child poverty.

Why is this idea important?

Rather than reduce child poverty this just encourages the unskilled and least able to bring up children, to have many children to garner the benefits that follow.

All the last governments efforts to reduce child poverty has actually increased child poverty.

Limit the length of time allowed on benefits.

Whilst it is accepted that this is an emotive subject it is surely time to limit the length of time that able bodied people can claim for being unemployed without being required to complete some form of work.  This country can no longer keep on paying this benefit at the cost of reducing so many other needs, and please let us remember that this is a benefit and not a right.

We as a nation are becoming more welfare dependant with fewer people contributing to the National purse, in some families we are now into the third generation of the same able bodied families that are receiving benefits and have never worked and this cannot be allowed to continue.

This is going to be unpopular but it is a necessary step that must be addressed and it is therefore suggested that the period that people claim job seekers allowance be limited to a maximum period of time after which the benefit ceases and cannot be reclaimed for a period of say one year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why is this idea important?

Whilst it is accepted that this is an emotive subject it is surely time to limit the length of time that able bodied people can claim for being unemployed without being required to complete some form of work.  This country can no longer keep on paying this benefit at the cost of reducing so many other needs, and please let us remember that this is a benefit and not a right.

We as a nation are becoming more welfare dependant with fewer people contributing to the National purse, in some families we are now into the third generation of the same able bodied families that are receiving benefits and have never worked and this cannot be allowed to continue.

This is going to be unpopular but it is a necessary step that must be addressed and it is therefore suggested that the period that people claim job seekers allowance be limited to a maximum period of time after which the benefit ceases and cannot be reclaimed for a period of say one year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

reforming child benefit

with the lazy spongers we unfortunately have now it is long overdue to rethink the child benefit.  2 children per family is enough to keep the population going and any more should be up to the couple to pay for.  if the parents become unemployed then that is the time for child benefit for the 3rd and any other children until work is found.

Any type of benefit should not automatically be given to those who have not paid any TAX or NI say for at least 6 to 12 months and especially for those who do not hold a UK passport.

the UK has been an easy target for too long.  We have to start saying no.

i have 4 children, work hard for a fairly comfortable life, have worked most of my adult life and paid my TAX and NI.  i would not have a problem with not receiving child benefit for my 3rd and 4th and if i was struggling, take extra care to make sure that i would not fall pregnant again.

Why is this idea important?

with the lazy spongers we unfortunately have now it is long overdue to rethink the child benefit.  2 children per family is enough to keep the population going and any more should be up to the couple to pay for.  if the parents become unemployed then that is the time for child benefit for the 3rd and any other children until work is found.

Any type of benefit should not automatically be given to those who have not paid any TAX or NI say for at least 6 to 12 months and especially for those who do not hold a UK passport.

the UK has been an easy target for too long.  We have to start saying no.

i have 4 children, work hard for a fairly comfortable life, have worked most of my adult life and paid my TAX and NI.  i would not have a problem with not receiving child benefit for my 3rd and 4th and if i was struggling, take extra care to make sure that i would not fall pregnant again.

Simplify Means Tested Benefit System

There are currentky four mainstream central governmemt benefits that are means tested Income Support, Income Based Jobseekers Allowance, Income Related Employment Support Allowance, and Pension Credit Savings and Guaratee..

These create a mass of contradictions and complex better or worse of calculations for the same claiment.

  • For example some one who is 60 who possess capital of £16001 can claim means tested Pension Credit guaratee but will be refused paymentof  Income Based Job Seekers Allowance and Employment Support Allowance.  
  • Some one who is long term sick and receives Statutary Sick Pay finds when this ends their income drops to £65.45/week.
  • Some who receives the lowest rate of Disability living allowance will receive an extra £27.50/week if single and £39.15 on Inco,e Based Jobseekers allowance or Incom,e Suppoprt than they would when they claimed Income Related Employment Support Allowance.
  • A couple both on Disability Living Allowance middle rate care could receive an additional £105.70/week via the severe disability premium. If they also claim carers allowance for each other because they care for each other 35 hoursa a week they can receive an additional £59/week  via the carers premium if they have an underlying entitlement to carers allowance. If they actually receive carers allowance not only is it taken into account as income for means tested benefits but it will lead to them being worse off as they could lose the £105.70/week SDP premium.
  • A claiment who is long term sick and works and has no other income or savings will receive £65.45 contribution based Employment Support Allowance and will have to pay all their health related expenses.. Someone who has not worled and simlarly has no income or savings will receive £65.45 income related Employment Support Allowance and will not pay health costs.
  • The Severe Disability Addition itself is paid to someone who lives alone but receives help from visiting relatives, but is removed if a none dependent moves in if they care for them or not, and if they work the none dependent cannot claim carers allowance.

 

These are a few examles of a means tested benefit system that was designed with the best intention but lets all down. It costs more to administer fotr tax payers. It befuddles the most desperate in society and they lose out. It results in a lottery of entitlement rather than a fare sysytem.

The system is in desperate need of review both in the number of benefits and the premiums themselves.

There should be one means tested benefit for carers, pensioners, sick and out of work.

Conditionality of any group can be placed to the inevitable premiums as has already been done with carers who claim Job Seekers Allowance or Employment Support Allowance.

Why is this idea important?

There are currentky four mainstream central governmemt benefits that are means tested Income Support, Income Based Jobseekers Allowance, Income Related Employment Support Allowance, and Pension Credit Savings and Guaratee..

These create a mass of contradictions and complex better or worse of calculations for the same claiment.

  • For example some one who is 60 who possess capital of £16001 can claim means tested Pension Credit guaratee but will be refused paymentof  Income Based Job Seekers Allowance and Employment Support Allowance.  
  • Some one who is long term sick and receives Statutary Sick Pay finds when this ends their income drops to £65.45/week.
  • Some who receives the lowest rate of Disability living allowance will receive an extra £27.50/week if single and £39.15 on Inco,e Based Jobseekers allowance or Incom,e Suppoprt than they would when they claimed Income Related Employment Support Allowance.
  • A couple both on Disability Living Allowance middle rate care could receive an additional £105.70/week via the severe disability premium. If they also claim carers allowance for each other because they care for each other 35 hoursa a week they can receive an additional £59/week  via the carers premium if they have an underlying entitlement to carers allowance. If they actually receive carers allowance not only is it taken into account as income for means tested benefits but it will lead to them being worse off as they could lose the £105.70/week SDP premium.
  • A claiment who is long term sick and works and has no other income or savings will receive £65.45 contribution based Employment Support Allowance and will have to pay all their health related expenses.. Someone who has not worled and simlarly has no income or savings will receive £65.45 income related Employment Support Allowance and will not pay health costs.
  • The Severe Disability Addition itself is paid to someone who lives alone but receives help from visiting relatives, but is removed if a none dependent moves in if they care for them or not, and if they work the none dependent cannot claim carers allowance.

 

These are a few examles of a means tested benefit system that was designed with the best intention but lets all down. It costs more to administer fotr tax payers. It befuddles the most desperate in society and they lose out. It results in a lottery of entitlement rather than a fare sysytem.

The system is in desperate need of review both in the number of benefits and the premiums themselves.

There should be one means tested benefit for carers, pensioners, sick and out of work.

Conditionality of any group can be placed to the inevitable premiums as has already been done with carers who claim Job Seekers Allowance or Employment Support Allowance.

Child Tax Credit Repeal/Reform

The Child Tax Credit was initiated following WWII as an incentive for families to have more children and repopulate the nation.  This is no longer a relevant issue, and the cost of providing this benefit is significant for taxpayers.  It needs to be phased out. 

If we are not willing to get rid of the "tax credit", it needs to be reformed into a true welfare benefit: Currently, eligibility for the Child Tax Credit requires that applicants disclose income from paid employment, but specifically excludes disclosure of maintenance payments and other benefits (housing, automobile, etc) that are provided by a former spouse.  As maintenance is a form of income, it needs to be considered in determining eligibility for the Child Tax Credit.

Further, if this is meant to be a "tax credit", it needs to be linked to the actual tax payer rather than the primary caregiver of children.  Maintenance payments and other benefits are typically provided on a post-tax basis, such that payments under the Child Tax Credit system are not "tax credits" but benefits.  These benefits are not need based, as previously mentioned.

Why is this idea important?

The Child Tax Credit was initiated following WWII as an incentive for families to have more children and repopulate the nation.  This is no longer a relevant issue, and the cost of providing this benefit is significant for taxpayers.  It needs to be phased out. 

If we are not willing to get rid of the "tax credit", it needs to be reformed into a true welfare benefit: Currently, eligibility for the Child Tax Credit requires that applicants disclose income from paid employment, but specifically excludes disclosure of maintenance payments and other benefits (housing, automobile, etc) that are provided by a former spouse.  As maintenance is a form of income, it needs to be considered in determining eligibility for the Child Tax Credit.

Further, if this is meant to be a "tax credit", it needs to be linked to the actual tax payer rather than the primary caregiver of children.  Maintenance payments and other benefits are typically provided on a post-tax basis, such that payments under the Child Tax Credit system are not "tax credits" but benefits.  These benefits are not need based, as previously mentioned.

Let’s reform housing benefit for people with a long term health condition!

How about reforming Housing Benefit so that people with life long health conditions can actually buy a house and pay a mortgage with the Housing Benefit money rather than stay in rented accommodation forever as the current system seems to allow!   Which is more expensive!!  I have worked it out over 20 years and the figures are shocking; the difference could purchase another small flat outright.  So once the mortgage is paid off, housing benefit stops, or an innovative scheme whereby local authorities and NHS Trust jointly buy properties by way of an arms length organisation through a PFI for long term claimants who buy the property off the arms length organisation over 20/25 years, with their Housing Benefit, once the property is paid for, the Housing Benefit stops, unless circumstances change, although they are most likely to change circumstances mid term, in which case a swap is made possible, like a single person getting married and having children and requires a larger home.

Why is this idea important?

How about reforming Housing Benefit so that people with life long health conditions can actually buy a house and pay a mortgage with the Housing Benefit money rather than stay in rented accommodation forever as the current system seems to allow!   Which is more expensive!!  I have worked it out over 20 years and the figures are shocking; the difference could purchase another small flat outright.  So once the mortgage is paid off, housing benefit stops, or an innovative scheme whereby local authorities and NHS Trust jointly buy properties by way of an arms length organisation through a PFI for long term claimants who buy the property off the arms length organisation over 20/25 years, with their Housing Benefit, once the property is paid for, the Housing Benefit stops, unless circumstances change, although they are most likely to change circumstances mid term, in which case a swap is made possible, like a single person getting married and having children and requires a larger home.

fair exchange welfare

The welfare system encourages women to have more children in order to get more allowances, and larger houses

I propose that in exchange for welfare these people have temporary birth control implants , to prevent them having more children and thus becomeing a greater burden on the state, for the duration of their welfare payments.

Why is this idea important?

The welfare system encourages women to have more children in order to get more allowances, and larger houses

I propose that in exchange for welfare these people have temporary birth control implants , to prevent them having more children and thus becomeing a greater burden on the state, for the duration of their welfare payments.

Dignity and supporting independence for disabled people who need welfare support

Disabled benefits should encourage independence and maintain dignity at all times.

The government should enter into a individually tailored contract between the disabled person and the state with asserts rights and responsibilites

The contract would give the disabled person the right of privacy and freedom from fear of having benefits summarily stopped if rules re infringed.

The contract should also require and incentivise paid or unpaid work  or learning

The outcome would be more independent and productive disabled people who may return to the labour market and give them greater security, self respect and pride in their engagement with the welfare state.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why is this idea important?

Disabled benefits should encourage independence and maintain dignity at all times.

The government should enter into a individually tailored contract between the disabled person and the state with asserts rights and responsibilites

The contract would give the disabled person the right of privacy and freedom from fear of having benefits summarily stopped if rules re infringed.

The contract should also require and incentivise paid or unpaid work  or learning

The outcome would be more independent and productive disabled people who may return to the labour market and give them greater security, self respect and pride in their engagement with the welfare state.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Workfare

Unemployment can be very depressing especially when there is a large decline in job vacancies. It must be time that unemployment benefit should only be given to those who work for their communites otherwise you don't receive anything.

Why is this idea important?

Unemployment can be very depressing especially when there is a large decline in job vacancies. It must be time that unemployment benefit should only be given to those who work for their communites otherwise you don't receive anything.

Fairness for True Claiments of DLA

Repeal this horrid forcing of the disabled to attend mandatory "medical assessments" to continue receiving DLA benefit which has already been approved by doctors.I myself disabled, and in work, receive DLA to compensate for the extra living expenses that my condiiton inflicts on me, I don't need another doctor, a stranger, a stranger paid to reduce cost, to tell me I'm disabled – I already know that ! So do my family, so do my doctors, who approved the benefit for me in the first place. So many of us disabled receiving DLA are in the same situation, and many vunerable, fearing this assessment, will be unable to cope

They may do harm to themselves, this may kill, cure nothing, help no one.

Why is this idea important?

Repeal this horrid forcing of the disabled to attend mandatory "medical assessments" to continue receiving DLA benefit which has already been approved by doctors.I myself disabled, and in work, receive DLA to compensate for the extra living expenses that my condiiton inflicts on me, I don't need another doctor, a stranger, a stranger paid to reduce cost, to tell me I'm disabled – I already know that ! So do my family, so do my doctors, who approved the benefit for me in the first place. So many of us disabled receiving DLA are in the same situation, and many vunerable, fearing this assessment, will be unable to cope

They may do harm to themselves, this may kill, cure nothing, help no one.

People on benefits earning their money (menial work for the govt)

I think people who are recieving benefits should at least be used by the government/local town. Get them to sweep the streets, clean government offices, paint the roads.

These are work that anyone can do but the government currently has to pay for someone to do it. If we get people who recieve benefits to do these menial jobs in exchange of them recieving benefits, government saves money and at the same time benefit scroungers will be put off by being forced to do menial jobs.

Why is this idea important?

I think people who are recieving benefits should at least be used by the government/local town. Get them to sweep the streets, clean government offices, paint the roads.

These are work that anyone can do but the government currently has to pay for someone to do it. If we get people who recieve benefits to do these menial jobs in exchange of them recieving benefits, government saves money and at the same time benefit scroungers will be put off by being forced to do menial jobs.

Major reform of the welfare state

This isn't an anti-welfare-state proposal. I love the welfare state, and I've seen it do a lot of good when I was growing up. It is, however, needlessly complex, expensive to administer, and open to abuse.

I'd like to see a /universal/ "citizen's allowance"-type-scheme (quite how to integrate non-British citizens into it – or whether to do so at all – is something I have no real opinion on) where every man, woman and child in the country gets an allowance based on a small number of easily-defined and hard-to-evade criteria. At it's simplest, ~4K for a child (in trust to their parents, I guess), 6K for a full-time student, ~9K per adult. This allowance would increase in line with inflation.

All other benefits, tax credits, student loans, etc. could be replaced with this extremely simple scheme. They cost around 200bn annually at the moment, I believe? A universal allowance would be more like 6-900bn with the rates mentioned above, which is significantly more, but taxes on earned income could be increased – the personal tax allowance could be abolished completely, and the lower income tax rate increased – maybe the higher income tax rate as well (it should definitely stay higher than the lower rate, of course). 

Why is this idea important?

This isn't an anti-welfare-state proposal. I love the welfare state, and I've seen it do a lot of good when I was growing up. It is, however, needlessly complex, expensive to administer, and open to abuse.

I'd like to see a /universal/ "citizen's allowance"-type-scheme (quite how to integrate non-British citizens into it – or whether to do so at all – is something I have no real opinion on) where every man, woman and child in the country gets an allowance based on a small number of easily-defined and hard-to-evade criteria. At it's simplest, ~4K for a child (in trust to their parents, I guess), 6K for a full-time student, ~9K per adult. This allowance would increase in line with inflation.

All other benefits, tax credits, student loans, etc. could be replaced with this extremely simple scheme. They cost around 200bn annually at the moment, I believe? A universal allowance would be more like 6-900bn with the rates mentioned above, which is significantly more, but taxes on earned income could be increased – the personal tax allowance could be abolished completely, and the lower income tax rate increased – maybe the higher income tax rate as well (it should definitely stay higher than the lower rate, of course). 

Child benefit act 1975

This is an outdated and unfair benefit and seen as yet another tax on the single or childless workers of the United Kingdom. I don't think any family can honestly say they couldn't live without this allowance, and its usually used by most people I know as a supplement to their own income or as some money to 'treat' their children with.

Times have change, and though I can see how this might have been invaluable money used to buy children clothes, books, shoes, food e.t.c when it was first concieved way back in 1909, or even when it was updated in 1955 or 1975, standards of living have increased since then and this is just a massive burden that costs the UK tax coffers £11 billion a year.

Means testing is just a half answer, it would be massively expensive to administer and I don't see how refusing those who put the most in to the tax pot are even more those allowed to take the least out. The only fair answer is to place responsibility back into the hands of prospective parents at this time of widespread avaialbity of contraception.

Why is this idea important?

This is an outdated and unfair benefit and seen as yet another tax on the single or childless workers of the United Kingdom. I don't think any family can honestly say they couldn't live without this allowance, and its usually used by most people I know as a supplement to their own income or as some money to 'treat' their children with.

Times have change, and though I can see how this might have been invaluable money used to buy children clothes, books, shoes, food e.t.c when it was first concieved way back in 1909, or even when it was updated in 1955 or 1975, standards of living have increased since then and this is just a massive burden that costs the UK tax coffers £11 billion a year.

Means testing is just a half answer, it would be massively expensive to administer and I don't see how refusing those who put the most in to the tax pot are even more those allowed to take the least out. The only fair answer is to place responsibility back into the hands of prospective parents at this time of widespread avaialbity of contraception.

Repeal the jobseeker’s Act 1996

Pay British Citizens, whose Means are below a certain level, Basic Subsistence as a Human Right, not dependent upon a person seeking to be economically active.  Basic Subsistence is currently called "jobseeker's allowance" even though it is in fact a Basic Subsistence Allowance, and in any case does not contain any amount for "seeking jobs".  It is too easy for the State to withdraw Basic Subsistence under the provisions of  the jsa1996, causing Social Injustice and throwing costs onto the NHS and the Criminal Justice system.

Repeal of the jobseeker's Act 1996 would save a great deal of Public money as pointless 'interviews', Government 'schemes' and ad. campaigns to slur Claimants would be unnecessary.  Basic Subsistence should also be increased to an amount it's possible to actually survive on, as a Right to Life only means anything if one has the means to purchase the necessities thereof.

Why is this idea important?

Pay British Citizens, whose Means are below a certain level, Basic Subsistence as a Human Right, not dependent upon a person seeking to be economically active.  Basic Subsistence is currently called "jobseeker's allowance" even though it is in fact a Basic Subsistence Allowance, and in any case does not contain any amount for "seeking jobs".  It is too easy for the State to withdraw Basic Subsistence under the provisions of  the jsa1996, causing Social Injustice and throwing costs onto the NHS and the Criminal Justice system.

Repeal of the jobseeker's Act 1996 would save a great deal of Public money as pointless 'interviews', Government 'schemes' and ad. campaigns to slur Claimants would be unnecessary.  Basic Subsistence should also be increased to an amount it's possible to actually survive on, as a Right to Life only means anything if one has the means to purchase the necessities thereof.

Child benefit for one child only

Families should get much more help with the first child.  They should get much less help with subsequent children.  Having a large family is a lifestyle choice and should not be subsidised by the taxpayer.  Of course this is only fair if contraception is free, and easily available.

Why is this idea important?

Families should get much more help with the first child.  They should get much less help with subsequent children.  Having a large family is a lifestyle choice and should not be subsidised by the taxpayer.  Of course this is only fair if contraception is free, and easily available.

Abolish unemployment.

Instead of requiring people who do not have a paid job to register at a Jobcentre and claim Jobseekers' Allowance, why not assign every such person to a State-sponsored job?

Where would these jobs come from? Employers, community groups, local authorities, charities, etc.

 

Too expensive, you say? Well, under the current system jobseekers are not required to do anything productive for the 'Dole.' If employed in a State-sponsored job of some kind they would be producing or contributing something – that's the point. While doing so, they would be achieving work-ready skills and experience or as some might say: 'Learning the habit of work.'

At the moment, many apparently workless people can conceal what their real economic activity is by 'signing on the dole.' For example, it's an ideal cover if you are a drug dealer, a burglar who needs to rest up during the daytime, a covert market trader, an 'on-the-side' decorator or some other trades-person and the like.

There is plenty of work to be done in the modern-day United Kingdom so let's employ the unemployed albeit at a reasonable social wage that would be well above the current Jobseekers' Allowance of £64.45 a week for those over 25 (it's £51.85 for those under 25 – a big incentive to commit crime in order to live).

 

Yes, employers won't like to lose the so-called 'reserve army of labour' that consists of the current two and a half million 'claimant count' (that's likely to increase to 5 million in the next few years). On the other hand, they would benefit (as would the country as a whole both economically and socially) by having a pool of low-cost labour to do all those menial but nonetheless essential jobs which are currently done by imported labour from the less developed economies. 

Wot'cha say, Vince, to this idea?

 

Why is this idea important?

Instead of requiring people who do not have a paid job to register at a Jobcentre and claim Jobseekers' Allowance, why not assign every such person to a State-sponsored job?

Where would these jobs come from? Employers, community groups, local authorities, charities, etc.

 

Too expensive, you say? Well, under the current system jobseekers are not required to do anything productive for the 'Dole.' If employed in a State-sponsored job of some kind they would be producing or contributing something – that's the point. While doing so, they would be achieving work-ready skills and experience or as some might say: 'Learning the habit of work.'

At the moment, many apparently workless people can conceal what their real economic activity is by 'signing on the dole.' For example, it's an ideal cover if you are a drug dealer, a burglar who needs to rest up during the daytime, a covert market trader, an 'on-the-side' decorator or some other trades-person and the like.

There is plenty of work to be done in the modern-day United Kingdom so let's employ the unemployed albeit at a reasonable social wage that would be well above the current Jobseekers' Allowance of £64.45 a week for those over 25 (it's £51.85 for those under 25 – a big incentive to commit crime in order to live).

 

Yes, employers won't like to lose the so-called 'reserve army of labour' that consists of the current two and a half million 'claimant count' (that's likely to increase to 5 million in the next few years). On the other hand, they would benefit (as would the country as a whole both economically and socially) by having a pool of low-cost labour to do all those menial but nonetheless essential jobs which are currently done by imported labour from the less developed economies. 

Wot'cha say, Vince, to this idea?

 

Welfare reform: Housing Benefit / Council Tax Benefit

Certain regulations within the current framework are completely non-sensical (if one's primary goal is to save money from the welfare budget).

 

Take for example the case of a 'non-dependent' adult residing with immediate family.

Should said family be in receipt of benefits themselves they are penalised by a sum of, if I recall correctly, not less than £10 per week, per person for a 'non-dependent' on nil income to the minimum guaranteed by JSA, and raising thereafter in line with the non-dependent's earnings (if working) (link)

Similarly, even if they would be otherwise eligble, said 'non-dependent' is treated as 'dependent' (i.e. living as part of the family) for the purposes of housing benefit, and is inelligible to receive assistance with their lodgings.

This is both blatantly unfair and, given the alternative (i.e. paying benefit to the host family and paying benefit to the 'non-dependent' in his/her own accomodation) financially unsound.

Rather than penalise parents, for example, who's adult children can't afford anything on the private market and would be inelligible for council housing (leave the parental home, you've made yourself 'deliberately homeless') I would call for the host family to be rewarded for saving the council hundreds of pounds in benefits payements every week!

For working non-dependents who would otherwise be eligible for housing benefit: remove the penalty from the host family.

For unemployed non-dependents, remove the penalty and reward them with a portion (10%?) of the applicable single room rate (or a flat amount).

Why is this idea important?

Certain regulations within the current framework are completely non-sensical (if one's primary goal is to save money from the welfare budget).

 

Take for example the case of a 'non-dependent' adult residing with immediate family.

Should said family be in receipt of benefits themselves they are penalised by a sum of, if I recall correctly, not less than £10 per week, per person for a 'non-dependent' on nil income to the minimum guaranteed by JSA, and raising thereafter in line with the non-dependent's earnings (if working) (link)

Similarly, even if they would be otherwise eligble, said 'non-dependent' is treated as 'dependent' (i.e. living as part of the family) for the purposes of housing benefit, and is inelligible to receive assistance with their lodgings.

This is both blatantly unfair and, given the alternative (i.e. paying benefit to the host family and paying benefit to the 'non-dependent' in his/her own accomodation) financially unsound.

Rather than penalise parents, for example, who's adult children can't afford anything on the private market and would be inelligible for council housing (leave the parental home, you've made yourself 'deliberately homeless') I would call for the host family to be rewarded for saving the council hundreds of pounds in benefits payements every week!

For working non-dependents who would otherwise be eligible for housing benefit: remove the penalty from the host family.

For unemployed non-dependents, remove the penalty and reward them with a portion (10%?) of the applicable single room rate (or a flat amount).