Issue - meetings
Welfare Reform Update
Meeting: 23/10/2018 - Cabinet (Item 251)
As detailed in the recommendations.
Councillor Mullin introduced the Welfare Reform Update report which provided an update on the impacts of Universal Credit ‘Full Service’ and other welfare reforms were having on Flintshire residents and the work that was being undertaken to mitigate and support households.
The report also explored longer term impacts and some of the considerations required in order to prepare and plan a response to those impacts both now and in the future.
Full details of the services offered by the Council were outlined in the report, including the support for customers on universal support, and personal budgeting support.
On 1st October 2018 the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) published an announcement on their website of their decision that from 1st April 2019 they would no longer fund Local Authorities to provide Universal Support (Personal Budgeting and Assisted Digital support) but would instead fund Citizens Advice to deliver the service. That announcement came without any prior consultation. The implications for Flintshire were being worked through and further details would be brought to a Cabinet meeting at the earliest opportunity.
Councillor Thomas expressed her concern on Universal Credit, providing an example of a case in her ward. She hoped there would continue to be sufficient support once the service moved to Citizens Advice. Councillors Bithell and Jones concurred with the comments.
(a) That the report be supported including the ongoing work to manage the impacts that Welfare Reforms has and will continue to have upon Flintshire’s most vulnerable households; and
(b) That the changes to grant funding arrangements for Universal Support as announced by Central Government on 1st October 2018 and noted and the future risks to the Council that may come as a result of those changes be considered.