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  1. Animal welfare boosted by new law coming into force - England Only READ MORE HERE: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/animal-welfare-boosted-by-new-law-coming-into-force
  2. Charity regulator finds serious failings at unregistered organisation READ MORE HERE: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/charity-regulator-finds-serious-failings-at-unregistered-organisation
  3. All supported housing funding to be retained in welfare system - Housing Benefit READ MORE HERE: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/all-supported-housing-funding-to-be-retained-in-welfare-system
  4. Compulsory microchipping to improve horse welfare READ MORE HERE: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/compulsory-microchipping-to-improve-horse-welfare
  5. My Mum In Law is in a local care home and today I received a letter from the home asking for a copy of the Power Of Attorney for her, which we do not have. The same letter also stated that if we do not have Power Of Attorney for her, the home would look into appointing an Advocate or Welfare Deputy through the Court of Protection. Can anyone please advise what this is at all? I do not want to visit the home to talk about the letter without first being at least aware of what it all means. Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.
  6. I am having a home visit by Capita next Friday and as I am not very good at answering questions as I get a bit confused, anxious and obviously nervous even though I like think I do not suffer from mental problems. The stress of the interview is enough to upset me. My PIP is for care as I have RA and a back issue due to worn joints which causes mobility issues. Would it be best to have a welfare rights officer present? If so, how would I go about arranging for this to happen and do they do home visits even at short notice. Thanks.
  7. A guide to the Veterans Welfare Service READ MORE HERE: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-guide-to-the-veterans-welfare-service
  8. A Guide to the Veterans Welfare Service can be downloaded. READ MORE HERE: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/a-guide-to-the-veterans-welfare-service
  9. Hi, I live in central London, I've got a lovely flat I've lived in for 8 years now. I haven't had kids yet because I believe in being responsible and if I can't afford them I shouldn't have them. However, I've changed my mind today. Having been through the joke that is the work programme, I had the indignity of having to go to a benefit meeting today where I had to show my I&E to see if I was better off in work. Because I get the maximum Housing Benefit the system allows, I could never get a job that would pay enough to cover my rent. But the [edited] advisor was trying to make me take a minimum wage joke job like [edited] I'm 20yrs old! I'm in my 40's and English! I love my flat and wan't to stay here but the landlord finally put up the rent. This advisor even said, and I quote "Well, the only way you can stay on the dole and afford to stay in your flat is if you have a kid then the council will have to pay for you!" Is that what it's really come to? Are kids now a commodity for English people to get enough benefits? I understandably walked out. I'm probably sanctioned now. But what can I do when by their own calculations it shows I'm better off NOT working! Non-judgemental advice welcome please....
  10. With the new changes that MAY be coming in the very near future, what does this all mean to the claimant? For more information please see here >> http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/bills/lbill/2015-2016/0092/lbill_2015-20160092_en_2.htm#pb4-l1g14 Sorry in advance for the long read... MM
  11. I am calling for justice, not just for HMRC, but for a system that requires no accountability. HMRC and other gov support are working from narrow guidelines without thought or often, much intelligence, and make cuts that they never have to take responsibility for. I know people well who have suffered from these cuts, living in poverty with great stress. Complaints take months, even years, and tribunals find against the complainant without having all the papers even. You can complain only about handling, not the outcome, and senior staff and even independent officers won't find fault. I have found this issue with ombudsman - even the highest point, their independent assessor/adjudicator - in all areas, not just HMRC. I have even seen evidence for corruption in the legal system, conveniently closing and losing cases that challenge them. We need a system where complaints are heard, not that we're put off for the stress and poor outcome. We need to work together for a fair, accountable system which has right of redress, which has people using their heads and hearts, not following flow chart rules under the pressure of targets for political and fiscal gain. We need to support those who need it, not rule that (this is a quote) "insufficient suffering" has occurred to warrant investigation and compensation, not to say that "need is not entitlement" (another true quote). I look to CAG to take steps to make this money and outcomes obsessed system into one that works for the people, not against us, that isn't about the agenda of those who rule.
  12. Hi This is something I done a while ago when helping a veteran and have just been updating and checking all details for the past week before posting. Thought this may be of use to others it in PDF Format so you will need adobe to open:
  13. Hi My son has previously been off school for quite bad illness and we are being harassed by educational welfare stating he is having too much time off school. We have supplied evidence of illness but they are still being pains in the backside. The last letter threatened a fine. Has anyone got a letter that will put a rocket up their backside and get them to back off? I have no problems with taking things to court if they need to get messy but i think in the first instance a letter should suffice. SFUK
  14. MPs have backed government plans for £12bn in welfare cuts amid a Labour revolt over its leadership's call for its MPs not to oppose the changes. The Commons backed the Welfare Reform and Work Bill at Second Reading by 308 to 124 votes. READ MORE HERE: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-33604287
  15. "This report looks at how local welfare reform has developed over the last two years from the local authority and social housing point of view. It includes a look at some of the innovative ‘good practice’ that local authorities are using to address it. Our report is concerned with: • the impact of reform on the strategy, finances and administration of local authorities and their partners, including housing associations • the impact on welfare recipients to the extent that this has direct consequences for local authorities and housing associations • what the future might hold." This report makes for interesting reading and a worthwhile read see attachment (PDF) This information was gathered from here including the link to this report: http://localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=23008%3Acouncils-and-housing-associations-see-rent-arrears-and-evictions-rise&catid=60&Itemid=28
  16. wondering if anyone can help? i have about £3 in coppers to my name (my mum took my last £10 i had til friday) and my 3 year old has a hospital appointment tomorrow that she can't miss. ..i cant get a bus there because it drops you off about 30 mins walk, probably more with a 3 year old and i am physically unable to walk that far due to health issues, my electric is going to cut out at half 9 tomorrow morning and i have no gas. electric meter is taking between £25-£30 per week which is partly the reason im in this situation, phone them every week and have done for probably the last year and apparently there is nothing wrong. yeah right,i dont live in a castle or a mansion and everything not in use is switched off. 9/10 i can't afford gas cause im handing out near £100 or more a month just for the pleasure of electricity. anyway i am rambling i wont be eligible for the welfare fund because ive already had help 3 times this year and it usually takes hours to even get to speak to someone and the hosp appointment is at 10.30 and id have no electric so the food i do have would no doubt be ruined are there any alternate places i can turn to for help? obviously my mother has no money since she took the last of mine and i can't ask anyone else thanks for any replies
  17. Ok, i guess there are a lot of opinions on this one..., and i need to be really careful with confidentiality issues. Any advice for Iraqi interpreters who served alongside UK forces on patrol, and prisons in gulf campaigns, ? These are the guys who came to the UK as part of the gateway program at the close of the last gulf war. They are not eligible for assistance from organisations such as combat stress, military veterans association, SSAFA, or any organisations that require a service number (as these guys were employed by, rather than members of, British UK armed forces) British Legion, to their credit, are taking a discretionary case by case stance, and are providing some assistance in certain cases, but aside from the legion there is no help. Bearing in mind that these are the guys who had to wear balaclavas every day to protect their identities, and had code names such as 'Bob', or 'Dave' to prevent them meeting the same fate as other Interpreters who's dismembered bodies were very often pulled out of bins, and found in side streets around Iraq at the hands of the militia. Forbes.com reported recently that upward of 1000 interpreters were killed in the line of 'duty'. In nearly all cases i have dealt with, the regiments these guys were connected to have acknowledged that the interpreters fought shoulder to shoulder with them, and in some cases regiments have even donated individual regimental funds to their cause.... These guys were not back room admin staff, they were at the pointed end of war. So why does the apparatus set up to assist ex forces personnel in the UK deny these guys welfare/mental health/medical assistance ? Any advice anyone ?
  18. Hi Interesting but at the same time a worrying newspaper article from the Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/sep/15/welfare-bill-iain-duncan-smith?mobile-redirect=false Looks like overlapping benefit, debt and housing enquiries / issues are set to rocket over the coming months and years even. Due to the rising cost of living and travel expenses, wage freeezes, cuts and the rest disposable income is already on a China syndrome type course affecting those already in debt management arrangements, IVAs & bankruptcy orders with more now certain to follow. Universal credit on its way, what a disaster that also might turn out to be. Credit Unions maybe hoping to fill the vacuum or soften the blow in some way, the signs dont look good for them though from what I see & hear, unfortunately it looks like they (the credit unions) may well have aleady been overtaken by events. Can the fee chargers and other agencies with a financial interest in debt management arrangements hang on to what they have got or will they do the right thing, think we know the answer to that one, either way though, people are really starting to struggle, so something has to happen and they know it, get ready, it should not be too long now. Hard times ahead with people needing all the help thay can get to weather what looks set to be a very lengthy and prolonged financial storm.
  19. Surprised there's not a thread about this already. Last year, it was announced that there would be a £26k benefit cap for many people of working age. They've now gone one step further and introduced a benefit cap as a whole, which includes DLA and housing benefits. So, you're going to have 2 people with the same disabilities and care needs and due to the cap, only one will get DLA. How is that even legal? Will try to find more information this later.
  20. Hello Forum Members, I do hope you can offer me some advice on an upcoming welfare meeting. I understand the welfare meeting can result in continued support or agreement to dismissal In May last year, I collapsed at work following a heart attack (I'm only 28) and I'm unfit to work at the moment and in reciept of ESA (Support Element) as I'm undergoing extensive treatment/investigation. I'm due to have surgery and a pacemaker fitted in July and have been told I would be good to return to work by November time. However, I realise the company have been paying me sick pay, holiday pay and covering my role etc and cannpt expect to continue 'supporting' me and I need to focus on getting better/back to work I am very weak and unsteady at the moment and they have offered to do the meeting via conference call. I am wondering if I should go in person as a gesture or whether it would be silly of me to turn this down? Secondly, the Occupational Health have recommended the potential of ill health retirement which financially would be supportive but I'm concerned about the effect on me in a future career having that on my CV/reference as I don't want to be on ESA for life. Occ Health have also told the company I am covered by the DDA which I'm unsure if complicates anything? The business I'm in that I doesn't have a union relationship and I'm not in a Union myself though I am member of Mind Appreciate any view/advice
  21. Check this one out, another instance of the law of (un)intended consequences, well it makes you wonder if the government want bailiffs to make more profit, as that is the obvious result of some of their reforms of Welfare Benefits, as more use will be made of Distress to collect the resulting increase in council tax arrears. http://news.sky.com/story/1094979/bailiff-boom-as-council-tax-benefit-cuts-bite looks like Capita, Equita, and Ross 'n Robbers and their ilk will be rubbing theit hands with glee at the prospect of all those fees they will rake in from people at their wits end, with no spare cash to pay their outrageous demands.
  22. Any thought? www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-22112965
  23. Francesca Martinez, who has cerebal palsy and often describes herself as ‘wobbly’. Just a quick plug for the WoW Petition which has been submitted by actress and award winning comedian, The petition calls for a Cumulative Impact Assessment on all government cuts and changes affecting sick and disabled people and a stop to the Work Capability Assessment. It already has over 23,000 signatures. You can sign the petition here and read more about WoW here
  24. just been reading an article in guardian which some people might find interesting http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/feb/12/anti-welfare-rhetoric-families
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