UC Implementation Impact Research to be launched

Universal Credit is designed to support those on low incomes or out of work, it replaces six benefits including Job Seekers Allowance, Housing Benefit, Working Tax Credit, Child Tax Credit, Employment and Support Allowance and Income Support and will be rolled out across all job centres by the end of the financial year.

Universal Credit offers a huge challenge to social housing landlords and individual claimants alike. Learning from the Direct Payment pilots, housing providers, local authorities and wider partner agencies have reported various issues and challenges from rising rent arrears to a range of impacts on tenants’ and their ability to budget.

To better understand the issues being faced by tenants and landlord organisations in the north, the Northern Housing Consortium will undertake a longitudinal research project to collect intelligence on the on-going issues during roll out of UC. The research would include a survey to member organisations, supplemented by focus group sessions to collect more quality information and case studies with tenants to focus on the effects of the changes in the welfare system.

Members are invited to participate in this research, which would take the form of four quarterly surveys/focus groups/case study interviews. The findings of the study will be produced in a number of reports and NHC will run UC events/workshops and seminars as part of their wide events and training service.

If you would like your organisation to participate in this piece of research please contact Barry Turnbull, Policy Services Officer on (0191) 5661030 or at barry.turnbull@northern-consortium.org.uk