Tag Archives: survival sex

‘Survival sex’ scandal prompts call to take benefit powers away from DWP and hand them to Scottish Parliament

Esther McVey MP: She was Work and Pensions secretary when it was first suggested that benefit claimants were being forced into “survival sex”. Her response was chilling: “Other work may be on offer.”

Scottish equalities minister Christina McKelvie has called for the Scottish Parliament to have complete control of benefits north of the border, in a bid to stop claimants having to resort to “survival sex”.

It comes a month after a report on survival sex was published by the Commons Work and Pensions Committee in Westminster.

That document revealed that women were turning to prostitution in order to feed, clothe and house themselves and their children – due to cuts and delays in benefits like Universal Credit.

This site has discussed the issue several times. This article discussed how the chair of the Work and Pensions committee, Frank Field, wanted to know if advertorials on Universal Credit that the DWP ran in national newspapers explained how it forced women into prostitution.

And this article relayed the Tories’ heartless response when confronted with the facts.

Ms McKelvie said full devolution of responsibility for the benefit system would allow the Scottish government to stamp out the problems that are pushing women into that lifestyle.

Ms McKelvie said: “It’s absolutely disgraceful that women should have to resort to survival sex. Even the term makes my blood run cold.

“It’s a very complex issue, but already it’s clear that women are being affected by Universal Credit’s worst aspects such as the five-week wait, punitive sanctions and the hated two-child limit.

“We have repeatedly called on the UK Government to fix the problems with Universal Credit, to protect the most vulnerable in society and to prevent more people being pushed into poverty.”

It won’t happen, though.

Ms McKelvie is failing to understand that the Conservatives who run the DWP have no interest in the well-being of anybody claiming benefits.

They just want claimants to suffer, and to get off benefits by any means possible, so they can shut the system down.

If that means sick people go without their medicine and die, or depressed people go without therapy and die, or disabled people are left unable to pay for the things they need to survive…

… or women are forced to sleep with unpleasant men in order to provide for their families…

… it seems that’s just dandy with the Tories. And they still think you’ll vote for them in the general election.

Source: Universal Credit survival sex fury sparks call for DWP to hand full benefits powers to Scotland – Birmingham Live

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Will the DWP’s advertorials on the ‘facts’ of Universal Credit admit it forces people into ‘survival sex’?

Frank Field.

The chairman of the Commons Work and Pensions committee, Frank Field, has had his say on the Department for Work and Pensions’ plan for a series of advertorials in newspapers extolling the (imagined?) virtues of the widely-condemned Universal Credit system.

And it is damning.

If you’re not up to speed with the Department’s plan to spread pro-UC propaganda covertly via a series of wraparound adverts on the Metro newspaper – intended not to mention the fact that they are paid-for adverts rather than news stories, in contravention of Advertising Standards Authority rules – the details are here.

The DWP has already tried to soften up readers with a series of articles in local newspapers where stooges sang the praises of the terminally (literally, in the cases of some claimants) flawed so-called benefit. Read about those atrocities here.

The Department is run by Conservative minister Amber Rudd, who exists in a state of public denial of the harm she is doing to millions of people every day. You only have to read her response to the United Nations’ report on poverty in the UK to realise the truth of it.

Mr Field confined his criticism to mention of only one harmful effect of Universal Credit – but it was a doozy: So-called “survival sex” – people prostituting themselves because it is the only way they can find to make ends meet.

This is not a new phenomenon; Ken Loach referred to it in his seminal critique of the benefit system I, Daniel Blake.

Mr Field said: “If the DWP wants to understand the facts about Universal Credit, it could look to the horrific, harrowing evidence we heard. People – mostly women, single mums, students – are telling us that they are forced through sheer desperation to exchange sex for the means to feed, house and warm themselves and their children. Instead of going out to get the evidence for itself, the DWP just dismisses this testimony as anecdote and brushes it aside.

“Rather than wasting huge chunks of desperately needed resources on 10 weeks of advertorial, why won’t the Government just take a look at the terrible reality of the facts we and so many others are showing them, for free, and instead spend that money on making some of its claims about UC helping people come true?”

The answer to his question is obvious.

Because then the Tories would have to admit that the criticisms are accurate and Universal Credit is a failure. And they enjoy crushing poor people far too much to allow that to happen.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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