Welfare & Benefits

The government claims to be simplifying the welfare system. In reality, its “reforms” have brought chaos, confusion and cuts. Some people have been left destitute; others are struggling to meet their basic needs. Others are fighting back – challenging individual decisions and campaigning against the injustice embodied in the welfare changes and the chaos and incompetence.

This section of our website looks at offering helpful information on welfare & benefits.

daily mail benefits frontpageThe current government is attacking the welfare system by cutting £18 billion from welfare, while giving away more than £25 billion in corporatetax breaks over the same period. It is emphasising the cost of fraud when £1.5 billion is lost in this way, but turning a blind eye to £120 billion of tax lost through evasion, avoidance and non-collection.
But the attacks on welfare are not just financial. Welfare is being vilified in a propaganda campaign that suggests welfare is too generous, claimants are lazy and fraudulent, and that public servants are not fit to run welfare services.

This pamphlet challenges these false allegations, busts the myths that have been created, and argues that welfare is a basic human right for any civilised society – as its founders believed.

PCS welfare alternative 2014

 

Download the PCS Union pamphlet: http://www.clydebanktuc.org/attachments/version1_files/welfare_an_alternative_vision.pdf

or from the PCS Union website: http://pcs.org.uk/download.cfm?docid=195B90B7-93BA-4319-BE10C4B8762B1670

Job Seekers Allowance/ Employment Support Allowance claimant?

ppls assemble scot book benefitsHave you been Sanctioned?

If you have been referred for a sanction by a Jobcentre adviser, your JSA benefit payment will STOP at this point. Jobcentre staff should explain at this stage that you are being referred (to a decision maker) and reasons why.

What can you do if you feel you have been wrongly sanctioned?

You should consider appealing all sanction decision as sanctions may increase each time and you could lose benefit for up to 3 years

Before appealing you must first request a review from the DWP (this is called a Mandatory Reconsideration) –you may want to speak to the advice agencies below for assistance with this.

If the reconsideration stage is unsuccessful you need to lodge an Appeal with the Tribunal Service. (you will need to send a copy of the “Mandatory Reconsideration” decision with the appeal)

Your appeal will be heard by an independent tribunal.

 

Hardship payments if you are sanctioned

If you have no money due to a sanction, Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) advise you may be able to claim a hardship payment. You need to claim this from the Jobcentre/DWP. You cannot get a payment during the first 2 weeks unless you are in a ”vulnerable group” for example, people with children, pregnant or with chronic health problems.

 

Scottish Welfare Fund Crisis Grant (SWF)

If you can’t get a hardship payment from the DWP and have no money you may be able to get a crisis grant from the SWF. To apply for a crisis grant contact the local authority. (Contact numbers below)

You may also be able to get some help from the local authority social work department. Help can be given in cash or “in kind”. They may refer you to a local food bank rather than providing any direct help.

 

Further information and advice

West Dunbartonshire Council Helpline 0800 9809070

Dumbarton Citizens Advice Bureau 01389 744695

Clydebank Independent Resource Centre 0141 951 4040

 

The People’s Assembly will support every genuine movement and action taken against any and all of the cuts. We support all current industrial actions by the unions against the cuts.

Peoples Assemblies against the cuts are being organised in towns and cities across our nations, bringing all those fighting the cuts together, trades unions and communities, into a broad democratic alliance on a local basis. 

The national and the local Assemblies, in partnership with Trades Unions, Trades Councils, campaigning and community groups, can unite our movement and strengthen our campaigns.

We will work together with leading experts and campaigners both here and abroad, and friendly think tanks, to develop rapidly key policies and an alternative programme for a new anti-austerity government. We will continue to welcome support from all who fight the cuts.

Local contact via Clydebank Trades Union Council

www.clydebanktuc.org

Telephone 07986706290