Support for Housing Costs in the Reformed Welfare System - HC 720

Support for Housing Costs in the Reformed Welfare System - HC 720

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Reforms to the support provided for housing costs - including the Social Sector Size Criteria (SSSC) (also known as the qBedroom Taxq and the qSpare Room Subsidyq) and the household Benefit Cap are causing financial hardship to vulnerable people who were not the intended targets of the reforms and are unlikely to be able to change their circumstances in response. The SSSC is having a particular impact on people with disabilities who have adapted homes or need a room to hold medical equipment or to accommodate a carer. Anybody living in a home that has been significantly adapted for them should be exempt from the SSSC and all recipients of Carers Allowance where the carer lives with the disabled person should be exempt from the Benefit Cap. The Report further urges the Government to exempt all households that contain a person in receipt of higher level disability benefits (DLA or PIP) from the SSSC. Discretionary Housing Payments (DHPs) are only temporary, and whether or not a claimant is awarded DHP is heavily dependent on where they live because different local authorities apply different eligibility rules. Local authorities often have no option other than to place homeless households in expensive temporary accommodation and claimants can then fall within the scope of the Benefit Cap. Local authorities then often have to pay the shortfall for those affected by the Cap so there is no overall saving to public funds. All households in temporary accommodation should therefore also be exempt from the Benefit Cap.Under Universal Credit, Housing Benefit will cease to be a separate benefit and will be incorporated into the single ... has made an exception from direct payments for a€œvulnerable claimantsa€, whereby alternative payment arrangements can beanbsp;...

Title:Support for Housing Costs in the Reformed Welfare System - HC 720
Author:Great Britain: Parliament: House of Commons: Work and Pensions Committee, Anne Dame Begg
Publisher:The Stationery Office - 2014-04-02


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