Labour will rethink social security policy after conference vote

This is another example of shadow Work and Pensions secretary Debbie Abrahams showing what a star she is.

Here is an MP who will stand up for jobseekers, the sick, the disabled, and anybody else in need of state financial support.

And who do we get from the Tories? David Gauke. Read This Site’s article about him and the contrast is stark.

A shadow cabinet member has supported calls by party members for Labour to come up with a stronger policy on reversing government cuts to social security spending.

Debbie Abrahams spoke out after Labour’s annual conference in Brighton voted overwhelmingly to ask the party’s policy-making machinery to reconsider its approach to reversing the government’s latest cuts to benefits.

In this year’s general election manifesto, Labour pledged to reverse some of the government’s latest cuts to social security, but there was frustration among many activists that it failed to go further.

The manifesto committed £2 billion a year towards “fixing” universal credit and other elements of social security policy, scrapping the bedroom tax and reversing the cuts of £30 a week for new claimants placed in the employment and support allowance work-related activity group.

The Labour manifesto also pledged to repeal new regulations that will make it harder for people with mental health problems to claim the mobility component of personal independence payment, and promised other measures such as scrapping the work capability and PIP assessments.

But there was no manifesto commitment to scrapping the benefit cap – although Labour has since suggested it would remove it, after a court ruled that imposing the cap on lone parents with children under two was unlawful and discriminatory – or the continuing freeze on many working-age benefits, which will take billions more out of the social security budget.

But an overwhelming vote at this week’s conference in Brighton called on the party to be more explicit in its opposition to all the cuts currently being implemented, and to promise to reverse them.

Debbie Abrahams told Disability News Service: “I welcome what conference had to say. It is up to the National Policy Forum now.

“It will be reviewed and I am sure and I hope the shadow Treasury team will be listening to what the members had to say.”

And she said she was sympathetic to what party members had called for in the vote.

She had earlier told a fringe meeting that the party would have to go through each of the government’s cuts “line by line”.

She said she would pressure Labour’s Treasury team to reverse government cuts to social security and “will keep fighting to make sure that disabled people are not in the dire circumstances that they have been]over the last seven years”.

Source: Labour conference: Vote means party must rethink approach to social security cuts

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3 thoughts on “Labour will rethink social security policy after conference vote

  1. leonc1963

    We are still waiting for that impact assessment tool that has long been called for so perhaps that can be part of a Labour Inquiry of the Tories welfare reform that will finally expose what a shame it has been and stop the attacks this group of citizens has been suffering for too long

  2. Brian

    Were the Labour party in power, they would have no option other than to scrap this system to it’s bones, otherwise they to would be the de-facto practitioners of a corrupt and condemned system inherited from the Tories. I would suspect many who know the motives behind this system would desert the Labour party should changes not transpire.

  3. Samuel Miller (@Hephaestus7)

    On August 7 2016, I asked Jeremy Corbyn if he would campaign to rescind the ESA WRAG cuts, or take legal action to possibly stop them? He failed to respond. I asked Tom Watson that same question and his office replied that the Labour party would campaign against them. Well, their campaign has largely been invisible. I’ve mentioned many times that there hasn’t been a single mainstream media article on the life-threatening ESA WRAG since they went into effect on April 3, 2017. The Guardian needs to survey these vulnerable claimants and haven’t yet done so, despite my asking their disability columnist, Dr. Francis Ryan, to do so. Frankly, it’s a dereliction of duty on the part of Labour and the Guardian.

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