Nick Clegg has revealed that he supports the 1% cap on working age benefits being extended for a further two years until 2018, causing more hardship for sick and disabled claimants. Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrat conference has voted in favour of continuing the bedroom tax and for the introduction of a yellow card system for sanctions.{jcomments on}

Nick Clegg told the Northern Echo today that he is in favour of the 1% cap on working age benefits, which currently runs from 2013 to 2016, being extended through to 2018. This will cause more hardship and misery for many sick and disabled claimants as inflation is certain to be higher than 1%, making the cap a cut in real terms. The move is seen as a bargaining position in future coalition negotiations with the Conservatives, who have said that they want to freeze working age benefits for two years from April 2016.

Meanwhile, the Lib Dem conference voted against scrapping the bedroom tax, opting instead to provide some limited protection for disabled claimants and a new requirement that a tenant would not be hit by the tax unless they refused the offer of a smaller property.

Pensions minister Steve Webb told the conference that ‘Nick and I have been more than happy to support the principle of the universal credit’ which he described as having no more than ‘teething problems’.

The conference did vote, however, to review the slow roll out of the benefit.

The conference also voted in favour of the introduction of a yellow card system which Steve Webb had described in his speech:

“ . . . we suggest a ‘yellow card’ system whereby someone receives a clear warning in the event of a breach of benefit conditions and is told what they need to do to put things right, only being sanctioned in the event of a knowing and deliberate further breach of the rules.”


Write comments...
or post as a guest
Loading comment... The comment will be refreshed after 00:00.

Be the first to comment.

We use cookies

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.