DWP Consultation: In Work, Better Off -
The Government is proposing that lone parents on Income Support should be transferred to Jobseeker's Allowance when their youngest child is 12. This would happen from 2008. It is further proposed that this age be lowered to 7 from 2010.
What You Can Do/How to Have Your Say
Jobseeker's Allowance is a completely different type of benefit from Income Support. With JSA the claimant has to be actively seeking work and has to "sign on" every fortnight. This arrangement will be called Flexible New Deal or FND. After 6 months on JSA there will be an agreed Action Plan with the JobCentre and compliance will be mandatory. After 12 months the claimant will move to a specialist return-to-work service, at which time he/she will be required to participate in a period of full-time work experience or community work.
The Department of Work and Pensions is currently consulting on these proposals. The consultation ends on 31st October so there is still time to have your say. The address for consultation responses is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Education Otherwise has received confirmation from the Department of Work and Pensions that interested parties can have an input to this consultation in a variety of ways, and not just by responding to the 16 consultation questions.
Here are some options you might consider:
EO Campaign Website has put together a number of links to help home educators make a response to these proposals.
- Sending email/letter to the DWP consultation address setting out your views. Several of the sample responses have done just that.
- Using the questions from the Netmums Survey as the basis of your response to the Department
- Asking teens to complete the anonymous youngscot.org survey
The introduction sets out the Government's main proposals, gives shortcuts to the most relevant documents ( 35 pages and 9 pages respectively ) and gives a list of the consultation questions.
The walkthrough tells you which Government website pages you need, lists the consultation questions, points out that you don't need to answer the questions if you prefer to give free-form feedback on the issues raised, and also gives the address for you to send your responses ( via email or by post ) The walkthrough also has links to sample responses.
This page links to home educators' responses to the DWP consultation. You can reply directly to each consultation question or send feedback on any of the matters arising from the consultation proposals.
One Parent Families Response to the Freud Report
Earlier in the year, One Parent Families/Gingerbread organisation made a response to the Freud Report about welfare to work. There is some useful background material here. This is a 22 page document.
Notes to Help You Complete the DWP Consultation
For people who want to make a full response to the specific consultation questions, EO Government Policy Group has put together a Help File of notes and comments.