The Welfare Conditionality Project gave evidence to a session of the National Assembly for Wales’ Equality, Local Government and Communities committee, held in Cardiff. The committee is inquiring into ‘Poverty in Wales: making the economy work for people on low incomes’, and wanted to hear more about welfare benefits, sanctions and Universal Credit. The project’s Dr Lisa Scullion from the University of Salford, and Dr Sharon Wright, from the University of Glasgow, gave evidence in person. Watch the televised session. Our written evidence was also submitted.
Our research has been cited in the House of Lords and the Guardian recently.
The House of Lords resumed its debate on the Housing and Planning Bill on 18 April. The government’s proposal to introduce fixed-term tenancies was the subject of a series of amendments. Read More
A learned journal paper on Universal Credit by our team members has proved so popular that the publishers are offering it free for a month. ‘Universal Credit, ubiquitous conditionality and its implications for social citizenship’, written by Prof Peter Dwyer and Dr Sharon Wright, considers the punitive system of tiered sanctions and fines within Universal Credit. They argue UC represents a major expansion and intensification of personalised behavioural conditionality, and indicates the ubiquity of conditionality at the heart of twenty-first century UK social citizenship.
The paper was one of the most downloaded from the Journal of Poverty & Social Justice in 2015. In celebration, the journal is making it free to download this month. Get your copy here.
Prof Dwyer is based at the University of York and Dr Wright at the University of Glasgow.
Scotland’s Sunday Herald newspaper has featured early findings from our research in a major story on Universal Credit. The newspaper explored the issue of welfare sanctions and support for people who are already working. The issue is the topic of a Commons select committee inquiry to which our project has submitted evidence. Our full ‘first wave’ findings will be published later in the Spring. Read the Herald story. Our evidence submission
Our project has given evidence to the Commons Work and Pensions Committee’s inquiry into ‘in-work progression’ within Universal Credit. We argue that for those in work, UC is intended to increase labour market attachment. However, our research has found that in practice, conditionality can be counterproductive. We recommend more emphasis on support and incentives, and removal of unworkable rigidities in the system to take account of contemporary workplace practices. Read the full submission
Read the Sunday Herald’s story on in-work conditionality featuring early findings from our research
Our Director Professor Peter Dwyer presented early data from our research at an international conference in Australia last week. He outlined early experiences and expectations of Universal Credit claimants in the UK. The event, focused on welfare reform, was hosted by the Australian National University. See his presentation slides here.