Benefit Cap For Single People Is Just A Claimant Bashing Propaganda Stunt

Iain_Duncan_Smith_pissedThe benefit cap for single people, which comes into force this week, appears to be little more than an attempt to use the law to tell lies about benefits.  The cap for those without children will not save the government a penny, and apart from gradually eating away at the income of a handful of sick or disabled claimants* – who may not even exist – it will barely affect anyone at all.

The cap overall will have a devastating impact on London poorest families with up to 40,000 people now staring homelessness in the face.  For those who are single and without children however the cap is set at £350 a week.  This is higher than anyone unemployed is currently receiving on benefits, and just 15p less than the maximum currently available for those on sickness or disability benefits.

Disabled people, which in this case means those on DLA, its replacement PIP, or those in the Support Group part of Employment Support Allowance (ESA) are exempt from the cap.  Not disabled enough people, in the Work Related Activity Group (WRAG) part of ESA, are affected, but only those living in properties which are priced at the maximum possible level which can be paid by housing benefits – £250 a week for a single person.  This handful of people in high rent central London boroughs, will lose 15p a week, although that will become worse over time as rents and prices rise and benefit levels stays the same.

Most single claimants in London are not eligible for anything like £250 a week in Housing Benefits, which are also capped at the bottom 30% of rents in the local housing market.  Even if 500 people in the high rent London boroughs are currently claiming the full rate of Housing Benefit – and are in the ESA WRAG group –  then the single person’s benefit cap will save less than £100 a week in total.  This is considerably less than it will cost to administer and inform everybody about the cap.

Claimants on Job Seeker’s Allowance can currently also claim a maximum of £250 in Housing Benefit, but again this is restricted to those living in the central London boroughs.  Job Seeker’s Allowance is currently £71.70, meaning nobody on the dole will be affected by the benefit cap for single people of £350 a week.

Iain Duncan Smith’s seemed to love his benefit cap so much that he did it twice.  The first time, when he capped Housing Benefits, it genuinely hurt, with every measure of homelessness –  including the number of people sleeping on the streets – rising as vast swathes of London became unaffordable overnight to the poorest.

The second time it also hurt, but only for those with children who are now being socially cleansed from most of London.  For single people however it seems to have been little more than a crass PR exercise designed to give the impression that many claimants were receiving far higher benefits than is legally possible.  The only reason for this can be an attempt at entrenching Tory benefit bullshitting in legislation.  Not content with the endless abuse aimed at claimants from the right wing press, the DWP have introduced a pointless law simply to mislead people into believing that everyone on benefits was receiving a small fortune.

*It is technically possible that should there exist a non-resident carer, who happens to be paying the full rent of £250 a week and is on income based Employment Support Allowance in the WRAG group, then they may see their income affected by the cap.  If such a person exists they must feel very special that Iain Duncan Smith has invented a whole new law just for them.

Follow me on twitter @johnnyvoid

48 responses to “Benefit Cap For Single People Is Just A Claimant Bashing Propaganda Stunt

  1. Landless Peasant

    Every single thing that IDS says or does is complete and utter bullshit. He is clearly incompetent and must go. Resign now IDS.

  2. Single people may not have been hit by the housing benefit cap but they sure as hell have been hit by the bedroom tax. Couples who have are required to share a bedroom at least can divide any extra between their two benefits, singles cannot. My heart goes out to the poorest living in London amongst Britain’s greedy, gerry mandering capitalists.

    • The problem is that we should have done this a long time ago – because it simply is stupid for individuals to be funded to live in family houses at our expense. Unfortunately, because it wasn’t tackled earlier, the result is that there are far too many people who will be affected and far too few smaller houses for them to move to. OK, many council houses could be split into a couple of flats … but somehow I think it will suit many labour councils to do nothing to sort it out because it will stoke up the resentment of the Tories by giving

      • If Thatcher at the time had not introduced the right to buy policy,this current problem could not exist,and if the money generated from the sale of these properties had been used to build new ones,this current problem could not exist.

      • It’s a bit late in the day now to even state that fact. It was a mistake even if today people will say that being able to buy their rented council house on the cheap made them…I grew up in a working class family in London and I have memories of my parents working hard for their wages yet we could never have been able to take that offer up and I knew at the time many others could not do it. Unless you were retired on a good pension with some savings or had a job with great wages it was just an empty offer.

        Most people I remember never had that kind of money sloshing around as a disposable income in order to make it happen, most parents worked to maintain a happy and manageable family home and many people rented and never owned their homes but rent in those days was cheap. Thatcher never wanted to rebuild new homes to replace the mass selling off, and today under this tory government they are still selling them off and not rebuilding… I think it had far less to do with Thatcher being kind to give people a lift but more to lift people into a working middle class status who would ultimately end up voting Conservative.

        Politics can be a fickle friend indeed, it can be divisive, it can end friendships and it can destroy communities, but no more has that ever been the case than when we endure conservatism, they can barely relate to the working middle classes who fawn over them so they are very unlikely to be in touch with anybody else except their own so-called class which exists to consume far more than somebody who may require welfare for the purpose it was designed to serve.

        Both my parents served for their country, my father in the Army and my mother in the air force, after marrying and starting the family my father was a gifted builder but never managed to build his own home.. he fell ill and was too proud to claim benefits, so he decided to become a mobile mechanic but the stress and worry killed him at the age of 45, that was in 79 and my mother worked all her life from the age of 15 to 70 and never had much to show for it but the pride that she had done so.

        I would guess anyone in their late 40’s may have such memories.. maybe without the loss but it just proves how futile all this foolish pride can be when it’s used by the Tories about work ethics and dancing to the beat of their agenda.. one they clearly do not adopt in their own lives as they live off the toil and sweat of other peoples pain, worry and agony, and how they abuse that position in spending money on a pageant for a PM who was no doubt only loved by 40% of the country and the only redeeming curiosity was that she happened to be female yet did little to promote women in elevated positions of employment that were often thought as men only positions… it was a lost opportunity for Thatcher to have really created a legacy.. but she was a Tory and that was the unfortunate fact that history will never be merciful towards her.

        • @Johnny Void looked at UKIP link you posted..they cite Lord ” i’m a loon” Monkton as an expert on AGW him being the overpaid mouthpiece of koch industries? and the expect ppl to vote for these clowns?

    • What some people forget is that for many this bedroom tax under another name has existed for those forced to rent in the private sector long before the Tories came into power, nobody gave a shit then about those people who tried to get social housing and were told they never had enough points and so they have been at the mercy of greedy private landlords for years. It’s only now it’s come into effect across social housing it’s getting press attention but let us not forget many people even if they appear to be classed as vulnerable never get high enough on the list.. it’s a con… and what they offer people if you should get high enough.. you would not want to allow a pet dog to stay there.. some festering urine stinking cesspool full of social outcasts who have been forgotten by the government and society.

      We shall see ghetto’s once more and in those places there will be men and women and kids who are drunks and druggies who don’t care where they wake up each morning, tearing themselves apart.. stealing and god knows what else just to get a fix or booze.. maybe even food if they still retain any degree of hopeful human decency in the face of their tragedies. It goes without saying.. it was there under Labour before the Tories came into power and only goes to prove that in many cases the Tories just picked up the ball and ran with it. It only proves the Tories are incapable of making solid but fair policy that is considerate across the entire class spectrum and only serves to bolster their own, in many cases they don’t even test the impact of the policies they impose.

      I was pleased to see there was no violence at Thatcher’s funeral because that would have gone against the protester, that never prevented this hideous event being a sickening fawning vision staged by the Tories at taxpayers expense… and it will cost far more than has been mentioned.. much more. One of the banners said “Respect is earned in Life, not Death”, and who the hell are those happy happy people waving union jack flags?.. all Tories?, I don’t think so, it’s not about paying common respect and not knowing why. The type of people who never state opinions and never state views, after all they can’t be sure that what they say is true. The type of people who might go to the opening of an envelope with their flags only to find the contents is a policy to cut their income by 40% in tax to cover the costs of the event… and counter it with a 1% increase for a working man.

  3. Does IDS ever say anything other then 100%. He and his boyfriends have attack every poor person. They hate the poor almost all the time but love them closer to voting day. The poor are rats in there eyes but just before voting day they act like the poor are gods in there eyes what a bunch of two faced cu-ks this government is. Mind you if they ever knock on my door I stand by my door and I have trained my dog to shit on there feet.

  4. Obi Wan Kenobi

    IDS and the DWP are alway’s right and everyone else’s opinion is wrong.

  5. @JV and 900,000 genuine incapacity benefit claimants were made to disappear to reduce the unemployment figures..which stand at 3.4 million or more..this appears in docs govt uses to rewrite or ignore..

    they make this crap up..

  6. oh btw i just remembered what was it IDS said about the £53 pw petition? he called it a ‘publicity stunt’..irony abounds…

  7. The sad thing is that a great deal of the population believe the tory propaganda,but they will come to realise their mistake,when they ever have need to rely on the WELFARE state!!!

    DLA / PIP CONSULTATION DOCS (in zip format)

  9. Hi, I’ve recently joined the UKIP and was interested to learn more about their policies and came across their one on welfare. (so I’ll admit all I know is what I read there), but it sounds as if UKIP’s idea of simplifying the welfare system … is just what I’ve been advocating for a long time. For me, the key to a welfare system is that doing any kind of work … pays much better than not doing the work, and that doing even more work pays even more, etc.

    So, to get that incentive you need to get much more money on even the lowest paid jobs that on welfare. Or to put it another way, family should be entirely reliant on welfare and every family should have a wage earner.

    I would even go so far as to say that unlike the present system where you only get paid if you aren’t working I suggest we turn it all around so that people should only get welfare if THEY PROVE THEY HAVE WORKED. (unless it is physically impossible).

    So, I would suggest a system where if you go out and earn £50 cleaning windows … when low earning, the state gives you another £50 which you would not otherwise get.

    That all works well in theory … but in practise paying low-paid people bonuses to give them much more than welfare would bankrupt us.

    Which leaves only one solution … cut the level of welfare to the absolute bare minimum … and just hope people have the sense to get some money to boost their income to the minimum wage (helped by the state).

    • Just to make it clear … I found the discussion on UKIP welfare on this blog.

    • Yosserian Hughes

      Dear God :s

      You support UKIP do ya?. This the same UKIP as what are on record as saying: “IDS knows his brief”?

      Does he now?

      £7.5 BILLION spunked on the work programme – but they’ll save a paltry few hundred million nicker on the bedroom tax (HA! So they think)

      The persecution of the disabled that has seen as much wasted on appeals & legal fees as has been saved?

      The withdrawal of back-to-work benefits such as the Job Grant and Housing Benefit follow-on?

      “Knows his brief” MY ARSE. ‘Nutcase’ nuttall was on radio murkeyside a few weeks back – he made NO mention of what he’d do to get BRITISH benefit claimants back into work; other than to make people work for their dole in poundland. NO difference whatsoever to the tories – except they’d go further by leaving the EU & imposin’ even more draconian measures on the unemployed & disabled than this shower of shite’s doin’ right now, while helpin’ themselves to the money saved by the EU contributions.

      UKIP aren’t even stupid enough to be clowns.

      • If they were they might be funny.

      • i listened to the show when paul nutthall was being interviewed by Roger phillips, i sent this email in for nuttall to respond to “”do ukip agree with the governments welfare cuts””
        yosserian as you stated, the idiot just gave it loads of bullShit.

        • Yosserian Hughes

          Ah Pat – Yes I remember it too. IIRC yours was the one where he made a snortin’ noise and tried to veer off at a tangent about ‘bedroom tax’ & how it wasn’t a tax (Usual bollocks) then went on about immigration?

          And was it you what phoned him as well about the email? I think someone phoned not long after an email was read out along those lines; someone who’d wrote the actual email because they were incensed (Rightfully so) with the answer he’d given

          Don’t know if you’ll remember mine gettin read out – with the headline: “IDS knows his brief – Six words that have destroyed any semblance of credibilty ‘nutcase’ might’ve had left ?” Roger called it: ‘A bit personal’ after he read it out?!

          Nutcase said bugger-all about the waste of money from ATOS & WP and just said about how it’s right that people ought to work for their dole etc. the complete planet.

          Wish I’d have (Bunked in) to that function what ukip were holdin’ in New Brighton the next day. Those two ‘brown-envelope acceptors’ AKA the hamiltons were there, so could’ve ‘killed’ three tw*ts with one baseball bat (Or whatever the sayin’ is 😀 )

    • What an idiot! The level of welfare is already well below the minimum. Others have pointed out that, if unemployment benefit, (Jobseekers’ Allowance in neo-speak) had kept with inflation since 1979 it would now stand at about £130 a week. Unemployment benefit was hardly riches way back then, but it did cover living costs properly for the most part.

      There is much talk these days of paying a ‘Living Wage’ (as opposed to a Minimum Wage, which almost any idiot knows isn’t enough) and as far as it goes, it’s great that there are those employers that are committing to that. But the devil is in the detail. If you are on part-time hours, or a zero hour contract it will make little difference what the pay rate is, unless you get the hours, and though many part-time workers could possibly be better off, in reality most employers will pay a living wage, but then recoup by cutting hours.

      Sadly, the once powerful unions that looked out for the interests of those working in the public sector doing the vital, but usually abysmally badly paid jobs are a shadow of their former selves, and more often than not a part of the problem, rather than a solution. We need another ‘Winter of Discontent’ involving as many low paid but vital workers as possible, including shop workers. That’s unlikely to happen any time soon, (sadly in my opinion) but I could be wrong. Many low paid people are reliant on benefits to make ends meet, and the fact that those benefits are now endangered, or may well be removed anyway will create a situation where those people feel they have nothing to lose.

      These idiots in government and their crypto-fascsist hangers-on, like UKIP don’t realise what they are doing. Blair and NuLabour made the mistake of treating the electorate with contempt, and that is why we now have a government no-one elected.

      In 1997 Blair was elected by optimistic voters who believed that Labour would reverse many of the abominations imposed by 18 years of Thatcherite policies, however, it remains a sad fact that instead of abolition, NuLabour not only embraced Thatcherite ideas and policies, but accelerated them.

      Many of us do need work, proper work with and agreed number of hours paid at a decent rate, (£7.45 an hour is suggested as a Living Wage amount, my figure for a decent rate, for say, a cleaner, would be no less than £10 an hour, (equates to £19,500 pa on a 37 hour week basis, hardly a fortune). As Frank Begbie says, we do need 5 million new jobs.

      Instead what do we get but slave-labour schemes where people are forced to work for their subsistence. As some of the historical European precursors to UKIP and much of the present day Tory party found out in the 1940s, slave labour isn’t very efficient, was riven with sabotage (see Schindler’s List for details) and is, well, just plainly unethical.

      My grandfather (a small business man for much of his life) never a wealthy man always maintained that no one could get rich honestly, and he would have known as one of his brothers was a millionaire. The only way the rich get or got rich was from theft. For the upper classes it was initially the theft of land, for the industrial owner classes it’s the theft of the monetary difference between what a worker earns for the employer and what that worker is then paid.

  10. It’s amazing how 10% of those claiming more than £500 a week in benefits under the old scheme have now magically found a job. Perhaps they couldn’t be bothered in the past? As someone said today at Lady Thatcher’s funeral:
    “My father was a union man, I understand unionism but I didn’t find socialism the answer. If you go out and work, you can contribute to your family.”

  11. Where have all of these trolls and trollops come from? Did you invite them jv.?

    • nope, they probably all took the day off to watch thatcher’s funeral and are now bored and pissed

      • @Johnny Void i hope geoff reynolds on black triangle doesnt mind me posting his stuff,,here goes:

        The DWP are now stealing Industrial Injury Benefit from claimants who have been awarded lifetime awards.

        Anyone injured in an industrial accident was awarded a pension in the form of a benefit dependent on the severity of an injury. The award was based on the percentage of disability as judged by specialist doctors who sat on an adjudication panel…….

        Claimants of the benefit are being summoned for a medical to be assessed by no other than the discredited ATOS.
        Apparently they deem that the original accident has now, no bearing on the condition of the claimant and the payments are withdrawn………

        The spiral of deception then takes over as appeals are drawn out as long as possible to wreak havoc on the health and pocket of the injured, whilst trying to force submission of the claimant.

        Strange how a nurse with a certificate, can now, in tandem with DWP “decision makers” , override the opinions of specialists and doctors to effectively put you on the scrap heap.

        ATOS is a killer, yet DWP supply the weapons

  12. As you cannot believe anything that you read, I would take most of what the government and it’s lackeys say with a pinch of salt.

  13. that photo of IDS in front of microphone , is IDS doing a karaoke? ‘singalongacunt…” all together now ..Lets get them to the DOUBLE U SEEE AAAY……village people? village idiot more like…

  14. He’s doing his “Dong Dong” impression.

  15. You need to think again on the £350pw single cap and who it will or potentially will affect. The original 56.000 households affected says 10% of this number, ie 5600, singles will be affected.

    For example this may be single woman in a refuge of a single person in a homeless hostel – both of which establishments may NOT meet the existing definition of exempt accommodation that would exclude them from the cap.

    The above two ‘groups’ are just some of these single people that LHA or HB restrictions on rents ordinarily do not affect

  16. I think that 5,600 was before supported housing was exempted – although you make a good point about how exactly what is supported housing will be determined. It’s possible that some people in temporary non-supportive accommodation/B&Bs etc may be affected, although temp accommodation was due to be brought under the HB caps anyway (plus £40 from what I remember). Not sure how far they’ve got with that, will have a look

  17. Pingback: Low Paid Workers Will Pay The Price of the Benefit Cap | the void

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