Our six-university project launched its final research findings at Westminster on 22 May. A packed audience of parliamentarians and their researchers, representatives from leading campaign organisations and policy influencers heard the project’s verdict that conditionality in the welfare system is largely ineffective in getting people into the paid labour market. The event was hosted by York Central MP Rachael Maskell (pictured right) who promised to use the findings in parliament.
The findings and calls for a rebalancing of sanctions and support, review of the system and ending of benefit sanctions for disabled and vulnerable people were well received on the day and subsequently. Read More
We are delighted to invite you to our next event to discuss the project’s final findings, on Wednesday 18 July.
This free event will provide a unique opportunity to debate the research findings, and how they can feed into the work and welfare agenda across Greater Manchester.
The event includes a research presentation from Professor Peter Dwyer (University of York), Dr Lisa Scullion and Dr Katy Jones (University of Salford), followed by a panel response including Matthew Ainsworth, Assistant Director – Employment (Policy, Strategy & Delivery), Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Catherine Connors, Skills and Work Board Manager, Salford City Council.
The event will be held on Wednesday 18 July, 1.00–4.00pm at the Old Fire Station, University of Salford, M5 4WT.
Places are limited so please register your attendance via this link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/welfare-conditionality-sanctions-support-and-behaviour-change-final-findings-launch-tickets-46525243255
We look forward to seeing you at the event.
Delegates to our international conference next year can get a bargain by booking early. The early bird rate will now be available until Wednesday 7 February, giving plenty of time to send in abstracts for papers first. The conference runs from 26 to 28 June 2018 and delegates attending the full three days can save more than £30 with an early bird booking. Read More
Dr Jens Foell is a GP and teaches at Imperial College London. In a new guest blog for us, he reflects on encounters with patients needing Personal Independence Payment reports.
‘I need a report stating exactly what’s wrong with me,’ is her opening statement. It is the beginning of my afternoon surgery and I have seen her plenty of times, but never had the opportunity for a thorough and meaningful encounter. I am aware of the long back story including various mental health diagnoses and encounters with all sorts of state organisations. I am also aware of the various interlinked conditions … read the blog
Our project gave evidence the the Commons Work and Pensions Committee’s inquiry into the rollout of Universal Credit. We told the committee of reports from our interviewees including: frequent financial hardship both in and out of work, poverty, unmanageable debt, rent arrears and eviction. We found that the long waiting period for an initial payment to be processed (5-6 weeks) in combination with payment delays meant many claimants did not have sufficient income for basic necessities.
Our recommendations include: Read More
In a topical blog on the welfare benefit system, researcher Ruth Patrick examines the flawed assumptions behind policies intended to incentivise benefit recipients to take up paid work. She offers five ways in which the current system either does not help or is actively counterproductive – and calls for a rethink. Read her blog
Researcher Ruth Patrick examines the flawed assumptions behind policies intended to incentivise benefit recipients to take up paid work – and calls for a rethink
In a brief radio appearance recently, I was involved in a discussion about the role of welfare conditionality in today’s welfare state. One of the participants defended conditionality’s role, citing what he described as a wealth of evidence that suggests that conditionality does work in supporting transitions from ‘welfare’ into ‘work’. I responded emphasising the punitive edge that conditionality brings to encounters at the Job Centre or in employment ‘support’ provision, and how this can harm relationships between claimants and their advisers. But that was all I had time to say.
An international conference at the University of York, UK, aims to bring together people working on welfare conditionality from across the globe. Delegates will have the opportunity to discuss the final findings from the ESRC-funded Welfare conditionality: sanctions, support and behaviour change project and present and debate their own research on welfare conditionality and allied debates.
Further details and call for papers
We welcome proposals for papers from those working within and beyond the social sciences on any aspects of welfare conditionality and associated debates
Tom Boland and Ray Griffin from Waterford Institute of Technology have conducted interviews before, during and after the roll-out of activation policies in Ireland. Their study reveals how policy works out in practice, beyond what is measurable statistically. Read their blog