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028 9024 5640: Housing & Debt Helpline for Northern Ireland

Welfare Reform

With Stormont back up and running, our Policy & Practice Manager, Kate McCauley has had a look at the key areas which Housing Rights hopes will be prioritised over the coming months by the new Minister and those MLAs appointed to Stormont’s Comm

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Welfare Reform, Policy, Homelessness, NI Assembly

As co-conveners of the Cliff Edge Coalition NI, Housing Rights strongly welcomes the commitment in the New Decade New Approach deal to review and extend welfare mitigations beyond March 2020 to protect low-income households from t

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Welfare Reform, Policy

From 1 January 2019 new claimants of Universal Credit will have access to a contingency fund without having to first apply for an advance payment. 

The contingency fund was set up to assist those who had moved to Universal Credit, following explicit recommendations in the Evason Report for a fund "...to make emergency payments where hardship occurs as a result difficulties which are not due to any fault on the part of the claimant." 

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Benefits, Welfare Reform

The Northern Ireland Office (NIO) released a report providing an update on the future welfare mitigation support measures that will be in place after March 2020, in line with the Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Act 2019.

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Welfare Reform

Housing Rights is one of over 100 members of the Cliff Edge NI Coalition, who have come together to highlight their shared concerns about the potential ‘cliff edge’ of the end of the welfare reform mitigations in March 2020, and their fears about a range of new welfare challenges which have emerged since the original mitigations were introduced.

The Coalition’s briefing paper outlines our key messages:

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Welfare Reform

Newly published statistics show 53% of the people who receive help with housing costs under Universal Credit rent privately. Of these, only 59% have the housing costs element paid directly to the landlord, despite the default position being that payments should be made directly to the landlord.

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Welfare Reform

Lone parents in Northern Ireland are losing around £2,250 on average a year due to tax and welfare reforms, a new report from Human Rights Commission has found.

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Benefits, Welfare Reform

The Department for Communities has released statistics covering the application of the benefit cap. Of the 1160 households subject to the benefit cap in July 2019, 530 had their benefits reduced by at least £50 a week as a result of this policy.

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Benefits, Welfare Reform
Picture of European Court of Human Rights

The European Court of Human Rights ruled in a majority verdict that the application of the bedroom tax to a woman living in a property with a sanctuary scheme constituted unlawful discrimination.

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Benefits, Welfare Reform, Case law, Legal

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