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Category Archives: Benefits

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CAB News 16 April 2021

Friday 16 April 2021

Our comments on social housing conditions and the reduction in payments to Universal Credit claimants have made it into the national news.

National

Housing

Investigation launched into ‘disgusting’ damp and mouldy council housing after ITV News report

ITV News, 14/04/2021, Daniel Hewitt

The Housing Ombudsman has launched an investigation into “disgusting” social housing conditions after reports revealed damp and mould was widespread throughout the UK. Our Director of External Affairs, Katie Martin, was interviewed for the report. Katie said: “The problem in the private rented sector is there’s a real imbalance of power between the renter and the landlord.”

Universal Credit

Half a million on Universal Credit have had benefits cut by surprise tax bill

The Sun, 14/04/2021, Sara Benwell (also covered by the Mirror and the Express)

Thousands of Universal Credit claimants have had their payments reduced in a tax raid by HMRC linked to historical working tax credits.

Alistair Cromwell said: “Deductions, particularly if they come out of the blue, can make it really hard for people on Universal Credit to manage their money. A more flexible approach is needed so that deductions don’t leave people unable to cover their essential bills. If you’ve been affected by a benefits overpayment and are struggling, your local Citizens Advice can help with free financial advice.”

Regional

Universal Credit

Interview with Fiona Derbyshire, Citizens Advice York and District

TFM Teeside, 12/04/2021, (listen from 2hrs and 2 mins in)

There are concerns for people’s futures when support systems put in place for the pandemic end this year, including the £20 uplift in Universal Credit. Chief Officer for Citizens Advice York and District, Fiona Derbyshire, said: “We’ve got a fairly short extension of the Universal Credit £20 uplift, that ends in September. So I think we’re looking at a pretty bleak time for people, as many of those support systems end.”

Trade

Employment

What You Need To Know About Your Furlough & Redundancy Rights

Sheerluxe, 12/04/2021, Harriet Russell

We offer our advice on furlough and redundancy rights in this consumer piece, including what to expect from your employer, how furlough pay is calculated and what to do if you are not being paid properly.

Energy

How can public electric vehicle charging be improved?

Which?, 09/04/2021, Dhara Vyas

Our Head of Future Energy Services, Dhara Vyas, wrote a piece for consumer title Which? about the future of electric cars. The article outlines four key challenges the government needs to address to build public confidence in electric vehicles and make charging the vehicles easier.