I'm sure that we will know of many people and many stories of the success or otherwise of Universal Credit, so I thought it would be worth taking a look at it from the perspective of the Joint Public Issues Team.
Poverty and Inequality, Universal Credit · 22nd May 2019
Today there is a good news story about Universal Credit on the front page of newspapers. It is called "Universal Credit Uncovered" and despite the lack of branding it is advertising payed for by the Government to "Bust Myths" about Universal Credit. If you wish to feel happy and delude yourself that all is well in the world I suggest you read it. Your taxes part paid the estimated £250,000 cost after all. But if you miss it you will get another chance as you are helping to pay for nine full front page adds over the next few months.
Prof Philip Alston the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty has published his full UK report today. It did not make the front pages. It is the most devastating analysis of the policies trapping people in poverty I have ever read. In 21 pages he covers the effects of reduced funding for local authorities, of legal aid, and of the benefits system. He notes what we have tried to articulate — that damage is being created not only by a lack of money but by a lack of respect, a devaluing of people experiencing poverty and the brutal attitude that is baked into Universal Credit.
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