Lord Freud has recently spoken out about his eagerness to get the details of the Welfare Reform Act “absolutely right”. The completed definitions behind the new welfare system, Universal Credit, are due to be put to Parliament this August.
Details of Universal Credit, as currently planned and published on the 15th of June, are presently being scrutinised by the Social Security Advisory Committee (SSAC); the main UK advisory body on social security matters.
In his role as Minister for Welfare Reform, Lord Freud is working with the SSAC to ensure the safe passage of the necessary regulations required to implement the new system. The government’s plan to transform the current system, Lord Freud said, is with the intention to “make work pay” and simplify benefits.
Some of the significant changes planned include:
• More in-work support for under 25’s.
• Childcare costs paid regardless of hours worked.
• Support for carers to combine paid work with their caring role.
• A strengthened sanction regime.
The Social Security Advisory Committee is now seeking comments from public organisations and individuals regarding any perceived “gaps” or “unintended consequences” of the changes. The deadline for comments to be received by is the 27th of July.
The SSAC is required to submit their report to the Secretary of State by mid-August.
Written by Kerry Barr