SCOTTISH ROLLOUT OF UNIVERSAL CREDIT
SHOWS WESTMINSTER IS FAILING TO LISTEN TO THE PEOPLE OF SCOTLAND.
Scottish Rollout of Universal Credit begins at 150 jobcentres across the UK, the Westminster Government has been accused of a complete failure to listen.
Numerous welfare organisations have called for the rollout of Universal Credit and Personal Independence Payments to be halted until plans to devolve some welfare powers to Scotland are carried out.
Last month, 56 charity organisations in Scotland wrote to Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith calling for the rollout of Universal Credit to be halted until the process of legislating for new welfare powers for Scotland is completed.
Despite these calls, the rollout of Universal Credit has continued with 150 job centres moving over to the benefit from today (Monday).
Commenting, SNP Work and Pensions spokesperson Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP said:
“As the rollout of Universal Credit steps up a gear today, the Westminster Government has once again shown that it is completely incapable of listening.
“Extensive evidence has been put forward by charity organisations from across Scotland that the rollout should be stopped while powers are transferred, but Iain Duncan Smith refuses to act.
“With charity organisations on the front line of dealing with Westminster’s welfare cuts simply being ignored, it is clearer than ever that Westminster cannot be trusted to make decisions over welfare on Scotland’s behalf.
“Of course the fact is that the current proposals for welfare devolution go nowhere near far enough and leave far too much control in the hands of Westminster.
“Electing a strong team of SNP MPs in May will ensure that Scotland’s voice cannot be ignored, and use our clout in a hung parliament to gain the welfare responsibilities we need to build a fairer society.”
A letter on 11 January to Iain Duncan Smith calling for the rollout of universal credit to be halted in Scotland can be viewed at http://www.heraldscotland.com/comment/letters/pause-the-change-to-universal-credit.26228604 and was signed by the following 56 charity organisations:
Mary Taylor, Chief Executive, SFHA on behalf of my 56 co-signatories, listed below:
Age Scotland – Brian Sloan, CEO
Business for Scotland – Brandon Malone, Interim Chair
Church of Scotland – Rt Rev John Chalmers, Moderator of the General Assembly
Coalition of Care Support Providers in Scotland – Annie Gunner Logan, Director,
Common Weal – The Board
Constitutional Commission – John Drummond, Chairman
Council of Mortgage Lenders – Kennedy Foster, Policy Consultant, Scotland
Cyrenians – Ewan Aitken, CEO
Development Trusts Association – Ian Cooke, Director
East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel – Mark Ormiston, Chair Person
Edinburgh Tenants Federation – Betty Stevenson, Convenor
Engender – Emma Ritch, Executive Director
Food Train – Michelle McCrindle, CEO
Glasgow & West of Scotland Forum of Housing Associations – David Bookbinder, Director
Health & Social Care Alliance Scotland – Ian Welsh, CEO
Inclusion Scotland – Bill Scott, Director of Policy
Money Advice Scotland – Yvonne MacDermid OBE, CEO
Quarriers – Alice Drife, CEO
Scottish Association of Social Work – Trisha Hall, Country Manager
Scottish Children’s Services Coalition – Sophie Pilgrim, Member
Scottish Community Alliance – Angus Hardie, Director
Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations – Martin Sime, CEO
Scottish Out of School Care Network – Irene Audain MBE, CEO
Scottish Trade Unions Council – David Moxham, Deputy General Secretary
Scottish Women’s Aid – Lily Greenan, CEO
Sense Scotland – Andy Kerr, CEO
Social Enterprise Scotland – Fraser Kelly, CEO
Social Firms Scotland – Pauline Graham, CEO
St Martins Parish Pastoral Council, Tranent – Fr James Smith. Parish Priest
The Equality Network – Tim Hopkins, Director
The Jimmy Reid Foundation – Bob Thomson, Convener
The Poverty Alliance Peter Kelly, Director
The Wise Group – Laurie Russell, CEO
The Trussell Trust – David McAuley, CEO
Turning Point Scotland – Martin Cawley, CEO
Who Cares? Scotland – Duncan Dunlop, CEO
Voluntary Action Scotland – Calum Irving, CEO
Voluntary Health Scotland – Claire Stevens, CEO
YouthLink Scotland – Jim Sweeney, CEO
Zero Tolerance – Laura Tomson, Co-director
Signatories from Housing Assoc. due to be part of the next stage of Universal Credit roll-out:
ARK Housing Association – Jane Gray, CEO
Barony Housing Association – Rebecca Wilson, CEO
Bield Housing & Care – Brian Logan, CEO
Blackwood – Fanchea Kelly, CEO
Cairn Housing Association – Jason MacGilp, CEO
Castle Rock Edinvar Housing Association – Alister Steele, Managing Director
Dunedin Canmore Group – Ewan Fraser, CEO
Hanover (Scotland) Housing Association – Helen Murdoch, CEO
Knowes Housing Association – Pierre De Fence, Director
Lister Housing Co-operative – Alistair Cant, Director
Manor Estates Housing Association – Lynn McDonald, Director
Melville Housing Association – Andrew Noble, CEO
Prospect Community Housing – Brendan Fowler, Director
Trafalgar Housing Association – Paul McShane, Director
Trust Housing Association – Bob McDougall, CEO
West Granton Housing Co-operative – Gerry Gillies, CEO