Welcome to the first in a series of Advice NI Social Policy Briefing Papers focussing on ‘Move to Universal Credit’. The aim of the series is to clarify the issues relating to Northern Ireland and above all to put benefit claimants at the heart of the process.
Advice NI believe that there are fundamental points that need to be reflected in the anti-poverty strategy in relation to independent advice. The Strategy needs to reflect fully the recommendations of the Anti-Poverty Strategy Expert Advisory Panel.
Universal Basic Income is an automatic income for every U.K. citizen. It would provide a minimum amount for every citizen, regardless of means. This paper explores what a UBI is, what it could achieve, and how the concept could be explored for a pilot in Northern Ireland
The Combined Power of the Advice Sector as an Anchor Institution – A ground-up approach to Community Wealth Building
The Standard Assurance Unit (SAU) is a section within DfC that carries out benefit reviews. These reviews are also called Home Visit to Check Your Benefit Payment1 . Reviews can be conducted face-to-face but also over the phone. Since the COVID pandemic, they have been exclusively over the phone. The purpose of the SAU review is to determine whether claimants are getting the right amount of benefit based on their circumstances. Evidence discovered during the review can be reported back to DfC if it has an impact on the amount of benefit being paid.
A Post Office card account (POca) is a special bank account you could only get from the Post Office for automated government payments such as benefits. This briefing paper explains the incoming changes for benefit claimants who currently use a Post Office card account.
Housing costs associated with taking up a new tenancy can be difficult for many people to afford. How landlords handle new tenants can make all the difference when it comes to someone being able to access accommodation or not.
Despite the recent extension to the furlough scheme, Advice NI is concerned that, sadly, many businesses may find themselves unable to continue trading, or may need to reduce their staffing levels: As a result, many employees may face a redundancy situation.
This paper explores the challenges facing vulnerable claimants; the current support provision from DfC and DWP; and recommendations to drive a more claimant-led safeguarding process, across all benefits.
In light of public health concerns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, Northern Ireland’s president of Tribunals and The Appeals Service (TAS) have suspended all in-person oral tribunal hearings until further notice. Read the briefing paper from our policy team.
The [Work & Pensions] Committee has compiled evidence that shows that ending the benefits freeze a year early, [in 2019], would lift 200,000 people out of poverty. Read the latest briefing paper on the benefit freeze from our policy team.
The Advice NI policy team has compiled a range of guidance notes and information to help you prepare your offices and centres for the safe return of staff, ensure safe workplace and working-from-home practices, and support staff after the lock down.
This paper discusses the concept of a mutual regional bank, an alternative to our current banking options which in their current form do not adequately offer the financial services that meet the needs of ordinary people or the real economy.
On 8th April 2019, Advice NI and NICVA facilitated a media morning to highlight the welfare reform mitigations cliff edge NI faces in one year
Finance Support is the unit responsible for managing the new social welfare financial support funds. Read the latest briefing paper from our policy team that covers the eligibility criteria and how to apply.
We’re heading towards a Welfare Reform Mitigations cliffedge and thousands of vulnerable people across Northern Ireland may be facing a substantial drop in income. Read the latest mitigations discussion paper by Professor Eileen Evason and our head of Policy, Kevin Higgins.