The Valentine’s Day campaign from the DWP should remind us how hard love actually is on benefits [Image: Prospect composite].

Happy Valentine’s Day! In case you missed it, yesterday the Department of Work and Pensions marked the occasion by tweeting out a reminder to let them know when you fall in love, lest they lock you up.

Over the years I have had to advise countless people that the DWP considers their personal lives its business.

One woman said a compliance officer told her that “You’re not allowed a boyfriend if you’re on benefits.” My first instinct was disbelief: surely he didn’t come right out and say that?

But, of course, he did. Benefit payments come with a whole list of things you’re not allowed to have. Like a spare bedroom, a third child, a real work experience placement, or enough money to cover private rented housing.

Time at home while your kids are small? That’s not for you, you need to get a job. Get any job. Spend 35 hours a week looking for a job. Not that job, a job with more hours. Now that’s too many hours, so you’re not entitled to any help.

Source: Their “cute” ad is the tip of the iceberg—this is how the DWP damages real relationships | Prospect Magazine

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