The first report of NHC’s research into Universal Credit has been published and can be downloaded from our website here. The research investigates how the implementation and continuing rollout of Universal Credit is affecting housing organisations in the north and some of the headlines from round 1 are:
- 5% of respondent organisations have intervened in some way to help tenants with the cost of living
- Average level of rent arrears of Universal Credit claimants in participating organisations has risen by 41.1% since roll out
- More than three-quarters say staff spend more time supporting tenants through Universal Credit that through Housing Benefit claims
It is important that we get a picture of how UC is impacting member organisations over time to take robust evidence to our discussions with DWP and the second survey is now available to be completed here. We would really appreciate it if you could complete the survey by the 29th July deadline. Thereafter, the data analysis will take place with the second report being published in early August. As was the case in the first round, there will also be a focus group to collect more qualitative information next month.
There will then be two final rounds of research and reports. The next questionnaire will be published in November, while the final round will begin in February with the final report being published in March 2017. As well as gathering information from the surveys and focus groups we’d be very interested in hearing from members that have case studies to share to provide real life examples to our discussions with DWP. If you could share any such information, please contact Barry Turnbull at the email address below.