Why conditionality isn’t working
October 23, 2017 Leave a Comment
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.