Lord Victor Adebowale responds to announcement of potential Universal Credit pilot sites

News item posted: 17 March 2017

Speaking today at the Local Government Association conference on the Welfare Reform Act, chief executive of Turning Point, Lord Victor Adebowale said that 'Universal Credit has great potential to make the system easier for people to navigate and access support.

'We look forward to seeing the results of the pilots and hope they will be able to identify any potential issues ahead of the national roll-out to ensure that the transition is smooth and people do not lose out.'

The importance of claimants having access to bank accounts with the facilities they need, as well as financial advice and information was also discussed.

Speaking along with Welfare Reform Minister Lord Freud at the conference, Lord Adebowale further explained:

'Welfare reform needs to be about better integration between local services, not just reducing entitlement. Health and welfare in particular are fundamentally connected, as the Marmot Review said - health inequalities result from social inequalities.

'Local government leaders are rising to the challenges they face and they should be commended.  We all need to keep focused on tackling the inverse care law which is not only immoral but also poor economics.'

Notes:

At the conference Lord Freud announced the long list of Universal Credit pilot sites after working closely with the LGA. 15 areas were put forward, with a final 12 expected to be announced soon. Full details are included in the DWP press release at: http://www.dwp.gov.uk/newsroom/press-releases/2012/jul-2012/dwp082-12.shtml