How do we rebuild a just social security system that is compassionate and capable of taking on the challenges of the 21st Century?
Policy Commission: Work, Pensions and Equality
Policy Areas: The Work, Pensions and Equality Policy Commission is charged with developing Labour’s policy on social security, poverty and equalities.
Universal Credit, Disability Support, Food bank dependence, WASPI women
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Rebuilding a just social security system
The UK social security system has long been a source of pride. However, from record levels of food bank use to over four million children living in poverty in the UK today, the evidence has never been stronger that our social security system, once set up to support people, has lost its way.
Flawed work capability assessments are creating an environment that is causing hardship for disabled people. Those who are unemployed are subject to counterproductive conditionality, with many pushed into poverty by punitive sanctions. Meanwhile, insecure work has become the norm for far too many people as a result of the proliferation of casualised labour, zero – and short-hours contracts and abuses of self-employment status.
Universal Credit isn’t working and cannot continue in its current form. Labour will stop the roll out, and deliver a genuinely comprehensive system that supports people when they need it. In-work conditionality, built into Universal Credit, risks deepening the crisis of in-work poverty.
We need to rebuild our social security system up from the principles on which it was founded – supporting people rather than punishing them, alleviating poverty rather than driving people into it. As agreed at the 2018 Labour Party Annual Conference, we are now inviting people across the country to join us in developing proposals for a just social security system.
- How could support for disabled people’s independence be improved?
- Do you think that setting work-related or training conditions helps people get a job?
- How can we ensure that the social security we need is adequately funded?
- How can we address child poverty through the social security system?
- To what extent should social security be means-tested, contributions-based, or universal (i.e. for everyone)?
Full details: Rebuilding a just social security system
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Consultation End Date: 30th June 2019