By Chaminda Jayanetti
Universal Credit has become the policy by which the government will justify all others, the revolution that will make all the pain inflicted by benefit cuts somehow worthwhile. It has been sold for years as the great reform just around the corner that will leave you better off.
No other single policy has so much government credibility staked on it as the successful expansion of Universal Credit. Without it, all that remains of the government’s welfare agenda is a kind of moralising sadism, like Mary Whitehouse channelling the Marquis de Sade.
But what state is it in?
Universal Credit is designed to replace six different benefits:
- Working Tax Credit
- Child Tax Credit
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
- Income Support
- Housing Benefit
Some of these benefits are structured and calculated in a complex way – tax credits in particular. Others, such as Jobseekers Allowance, are much…
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