James Purnell on today radio 4 8:15 this morning

Currently, there are 0 users and 1 guest visiting this topic.
Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 19 total)
  • Author
  • #21530

    James Purnell was interviewed this morning talking about his welfare reform green paper.

    Scrapping IB & reforming IS (so more changes for us….)

    Interesting that researchers had been to the US to see schemes over there (Daily Mail stuff like litter picking & re painting graffiti for long term unemployed)

    The link to listen is here but I don’t think it is live yet


    Julian Hobson

    Follow the link:


    And there is the Green paper. You can’t search within this PDF

    Check out para 6.6. Is this the end of HB and CTB as we know it ?


    I couldn’t download the green paper, it took too long to open. What does para 6.6 say?

    Ozzies Mate

    Chris, how come you couldn’t down load it? Julian’s link took me to it straight away.

    Ah! Are you lacking Adobe?


    Para 6.6 talks about working towards a single benefit.
    However, when you read the whole doc, my take on it is that it refers more to a single replacement for JSA / IS / ESA / Incapacity Ben (i.e. a single Benefit for all working age claimants)……..there again I have been known to be wrong! 8)


    It’s our firewall (took too long to open so timed out). I just wondered what was in it because I heard Paul Howarth recently revive the dreaded phrase “Housing Tax Credit”


    (it’s 9 a meg file)

    “One benefit” & “bringing together” & everything sounds a bit like rolling out the tax/pension credit model where in the long term people get what they are due over a period of time.

    Soon it really will be only HB/CTB who is concerned about weekly entitlements & balancing back to pounds, shilling & pence.

    The american model gives out “food stamps” to people instead of $$’s.

    James Purnell indicated that his suggestions would make use of the hardship system & that child ben, tax credits etc wouldn’t change…

    Julian Hobson

    Of course I don’t the extent to which a single working age benefit includes HB/CTB but I do know that the paper draws on the research by Freud, which is here:


    See page 105 and the whole of section 7 on The Role of JCP.

    If you find this in anyway worrying or a welcome opportunity of some sort then be aware of the caveat on page 115. It could take 10 years from the point at which the Government decided to do anything at all and of course direction will change in that 10 years anyway.


    Is Freud a civil servant? He seems to have swallowed hook, line and sinker the party line about the success of Jobcentreplus (which is not my experience, I have to say)


    [quote:6f25a7fb6a=”Chris Dring”]Is Freud a civil servant? He seems to have swallowed hook, line and sinker the party line about the success of Jobcentreplus (which is not my experience, I have to say)[/quote:6f25a7fb6a]

    He is a city banker and grandson of sigmund Freud so he has all the right qualifications for a welfare advisor



    Freud is the man who thinks it’s terrible that “people’s GPs determine their eligibility for Incapacity Benefit” – yes, his ‘research’ really has led him to believe this to be the case.

    And he has the ear of government!


    I’ve now read the Executive Summary of Freud’s report and it looks typical of this Government in general – all spin and no substance. Plenty of lofty outcomes but significantly short on the “how”. He doesn’t explain how private contractors getting fat on government contracts will be able to place the intractably long term unemployed into work when the existing regime can’t. There’s nothing to stop people applying for jobs now, either at JC+ offices or through their own efforts scouring the papers, notice boards in newsagents etc. Why should the tax payer have to pay the private sector to enforce what JC+ should be doing already? He also gives far too much credit to the Government for getting people into work when surely the main driver has been the cost of living (particularly in families with children where it is now essential in most cases for both parents to work). I would also question the desirability of forcing lone parents of young children into work. The social cost to society of dysfunctional children is already too high.

    Rant over – I’d better get back to work now!


    Many governments have suggested this idea of “forced” work for benefits. This Green Paper is more than just the usual talk though. Will it come to anything? Maybe but if it does it will take up a lot of time and resources and other changes will be pushed back.

    Spent a few days in Amsterdam last weekend where they point out rather proudly work and projects completed by the unemployed.

    John Boxall

    If we stick to a strictly ‘benefits’ issue; does it address the question of making work pay?

    I am sure we are all aware of how many of our working claimants are little or no better off than when unemployed.

    As an example there was a report a few years ago which recomended cutting all Social Housing rents in London by £10 per week. The net effect would be limited as most were paid by HB anyway, but it would float a lot of working claimants off HB and get them out of the poverty trap.

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield


    John Boxall wrote[quote:3f64a6861e]If we stick to a strictly ‘benefits’ issue; does it address the question of making work pay?[/quote:3f64a6861e]

    I have felt for a long time that the high levels of taper (85p in the pound if someone gets HB and CTB) is a huge disincentive to work, unless you can get a job that takes you off benefits altogether. I can fully understand someone feeling that they are worse off working when they have to pay for travel to work, and other incidental costs. Until this issue is tackled and the taper lowered then, for the majority of people that this addresses, who are going to find work on or just above min wage levels, the incentive is minimal.
    However, decreasing the taper would cost, and in the present economic climate, there is always going to be a higher priority on the agenda.
    As for the green paper, which as Peter says, is some years down the road, there are some good ideas, and some half-baked ones. Remember this is a consultation document. If you feel strongly, you are able to write in and give your opinion. 8)

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 19 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.