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Millions of benefits claimants who get jobs are back on dole in six months

Four out of ten unemployment benefit claimants who get jobs are back on the dole within six months, a scathing report from MPs reveals today. The findings will fuel concern that the Government's flagship back-to-work programmes have become little more than an expensive "revolving door", with hundreds of thousands going straight back on to benefits.

An essential piece of kit

Community Care Magazine

Written and updated each year by Judy Stenger - Welfare Rights Worker with the Neath Mind Income Project since 1997.

250+ illustrated A4 pages of user-friendly information, examples, hints, tips, tactics, sample forms etc. - aimed at people with mental health problems and those who help with benefits applications, challenging decisions etc.

NEW FOR 2007/8:

  • The new DLA forms! Tactics, tips and templates
  • The DLA ‘hobbies and interests’ pages (expanded)
  • DLA and Bi Polar Disorder/ Manic Depression
  • Self harm and suicide - bad DLA decisions
  • Goodbye Incapacity hello Employment and Support Allowance — the shape of tests to come
  • Tax Credit Overpayment changes - Benefit Linking Rules changes

Plus Contents: Barriers to Benefit, Jobcentre Plus and the DWP, Steps to Maximum Entitlement,

The Sickness Route to Benefits (including example form/ support letters),

DLA and Incapacity Medicals, Benefits for Carers, Income Support, Pension Credit,

Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit, Community Care Grants,

DLA and AA (including example forms/ support letters), Options for Work, Permitted Work Rules,

Benefits in Hospital, Revisions, Supersessions and Appeals (including example submission)


“An essential piece of kit for all community mental health teams, community psychiatric nurses, approved social workers and voluntary groups as well as general benefit advisers... If you have a mental health problem and are trying to cope with the benefit system or if you are a professional who wants to give good solid advice there is no better guide that you can buy...” Community Care Magazine

“The book puts into words my own experiences, feelings and thoughts...” service user

“The DLA form took half the time and was more detailed than it would have been” Social Worker

“This substantial but tremendously accessible handbook could well be one of the most useful guides around ...” Health and

“These books have been a goldmine for my Community Support Team and Housing Support Staff “

“Absolutely superb - extremely impressive” Director - Local Mind Association

“ Far exceeded our expectations both in term of content and presentation” - LMA

Orders: Judy Stenger - Neath Mind, 32 Victoria Gardens,

Neath SA11 3BH Tel. 01639-643905

Cheques payable to ‘Neath Mind Association - Income Project’

0800 numbers for those claiming benefits

New 0800 numbers for people claiming working age benefits is one of a number of improvements to people’s first contact with Jobcentre Plus, announced today by Employment and Welfare Reform Minister, Jim Murphy MP.

The 0800 numbers will be made available to customers across the country over several months. In the majority of cases customers will only need to make a single call to a contact centre to get their claim for benefits such as Jobseekers’ Allowance, Incapacity Benefit and Income Support processed. The change will affect all customers claiming benefits.

Speaking at the welfare reform conference in Edinburgh Jim Murphy said:

“Many of our customers are among the poorest in society and we can do more to support them. We have to make sure that those who need help can make a claim quickly and easily and without being hit in the pocket. We have been piloting the 0800 number along with a range of other measures and I’m pleased that they have improved the service for our customers – now we’re beginning to roll them out across the country.

“Getting welfare reform right is all about striking a balance between providing the opportunities for those who can to find work and ensuring the safety net is in place for those who cannot. A fast, efficient and free claims process is essential to the next phase in making that happen.” 

The 0800 number is part of a package of measures designed to make the system easier to use and more efficient. Other measures include: 

  • a single call to the contact centre for the majority of customers, with flexibility to revert to calling the customer back during busy periods;
  • improved information for customers to help them access the service they need;
  • fast-track procedures for people making repeat claims and for people who do not require an immediate work focused interview;
  • streamlined arrangements for collecting information to support claims; and
  • faster access to information and advice.

The measures have been piloted in North Lincolnshire and also the Central London district to test the new model in a demanding inner city area. Ultimately the aim is for anyone wishing to claim benefit to be able to make one call to an 0800 number to make their claim. 

Textphone 020 7238 0788

Public Enquiries 020 7712 2171


Respect sanctions plans under fire

Government plans to impose benefits sanctions on antisocial families have been criticised by an influential advisory group.

Posted: 02 November 2006 | Full Article

Up to £8bn in means tested benefits is not being collected by those who are entitled to it according to Department for Work and Pensions figures published yesterday.

Posted: 27 October 2006 | Full Article

THE BENEFITS VIEW The single room rent restriction is leading to homelessness for young claimants, writes Gary Vaux

Posted: 26 October 2006 | Full Article

Hutton urged ‘close benefits loophole’

Work and pensions secretary John Hutton has been urged to close a benefits loophole that has left 50 people with learning difficulties “in imminent danger of losing their homes”.

Posted: 26 October 2006 | Full Article

Here for the work

Scares about recent EU migrants claiming benefits have proven to be false, writes Gary Vaux

Posted: 19 October 2006 | Full Article

Click on the above headline for more social care stories from the national newspapers today.

Posted: 13 October 2006 | Full Article

Changes to mental capability check

The assessment for incapacity benefit will be radically reformed to take more account of mental health, learning difficulties and autistic spectrum disorder.

Posted: 12 October 2006 | Full Article

100,000 drug addicts and alcoholics on benefits

Click on the above headline for more social care articles from the national newspapers today.

Posted: 12 October 2006 | Full Article

Jobcentres: a source of misinformation?

In one city, the Jobcentre Plus system is causing clients much trouble and distress, writes Gary Vaux

Posted: 05 October 2006 | Full Article

More means less

Anabel Unity Sale reports on how the system of child benefits and tax credits can penalise 

families with more children

Posted: 05 October 2006 | Full Article

No extra cash for training offenders

There will be no new money behind government plans to boost training and employment for offenders, a senior Department for Work and Pensions official admitted last week.

Posted: 28 September 2006 | Full Article

Child Trust Fund bonuses on the cards for children in care

The green paper on looked-after children will propose topping up Child Trust Funds for children in care, the children’s minister and economic secretary have revealed.

Posted: 22 September 2006 | Full Article

Landmark ruling could lead to housing benefit gap for tenants

A landmark ruling has provoked questions over the high rents charged by some providers, reports Simeon Brody

Posted: 14 September 2006 | Full Article

Maternity and Paternity benefits and good news for carers in employment

Gary Vaux examines new maternity and paternity benefits plus flexible working rights for carers

Posted: 14 September 2006 | Full Article

Effect of Turnbull judgement on adults with learning difficulties - special report

The decision by a local authority to make drastic cuts to the housing benefit of 19 people with learning difficulties looks to be the first knock-on effect of a social security judgment made earlier in the summer. East Riding of Yorkshire Council has decided to restrict payment of the benefit to market rent levels, while it considers the implications of the judgment made by social security commissioner Charles Turnbull in June.

Posted: 08 September 2006 | Full Article

Tax up and benefits down for poor

The poorest households are paying a higher share of taxes and receiving a lower share of benefits than in 1997, a right-wing think-tank says today.

Posted: 04 September 2006 | Full Article