Category: Welfare State

Policy challenges around welfare reform

[This is the text to accompany my presentation to open the South West Observatory seminar “Welfare reform: challenges, impacts and evidence”, 13/11/12] Where to start? Politicians are prone to hyperbole. The most minor modification to a relatively peripheral policy is portrayed as a groundbreaking initiative. However, in the […]

Beds, sheds, and regs

She is looking forward to returning to Hyderbad, where the living conditions will be much better. Amelia Gentleman, Guardian, 10/05/12 This is the payoff line for an extended article about poor housing in the private rented sector in Newham. The aim is to provoke a reaction.  Conditions are […]

Risking increased injustice

Just over a year ago the Public Administration Select Committee (PASC) produced a scathing report on the Coalition Government’s approach to creating a “bonfire of the quangos”. It suggested that the whole process was fundamentally inept, as I discussed here. The Coalition nonetheless moved forward with the Public […]

“Fit to work” ergo a scrounger

Quite a few media outlets (for example, here and here) are this morning reporting figures produced by the Department for Work and Pensions that show four out of ten applicants for Employment and Support Allowance failed to qualify for assistance and, hence, are ‘fit to work’. This is […]