From Revd Paul Nicolson of Taxpayers Against Poverty
Someone among the 1% of the wealthiest has commented on Taxpayers Against Poverty Facebook page
We are having an excellent debate about benefit sanctions on the TAP facebook page. This post has so far reached 42,208 people, its has been liked by 1,326 including the 181 likes in the 650 shares. There are 123 comments.
NO SANCTIONS WITH OUT A FAIR TRIAL
In letter to the Guardian in the previous post I suggest that a person accused of abuse of tax payers funding of human need should be given a fair trial because that does not happen now. In the jobcentres there is no fair trial before the imposition of a deeply serious punishment - cancellation of the means of subsistence.
- there is no independent judge as in the courts - jobcentre officials are implementing government policy
- there is no opportunity for the accused to be represented
- the housing and council tax benefits are canceled by the computer of the jobcentre which sends the cancellation signal of HB and CTRS (New CTB) to the local authority computer - making the applicant reapply for HB and CTRS - which can take weeks to reinstate.
- the DWP is content to make people hungry.
- total cancellation of the means of subsistence is a disproportionate and unjust punishment.
We so far have 11,249 TAP page likes.
All good wishes,
THIS THOUGHTFUL CONTRIBUTION IS FROM SOMEONE AMONG THE 1% OF THE WEALTHIEST BRITONS. IT IS EXTRACTED FROM TAP FACEBOOK PAGE AND HAS BEEN RE-POSTED BY TAP FOR FURTHER DISCUSSION.
THANK YOU "Peculiar Musings"
I have multiple degrees and an income that puts me in the 1%.
The basic issue is the state's "human right" guarantee than nobody in our society should be allowed to starve or go homeless.
It would be political suicide to openly revoke the underlying guarantee of the welfare state. However, austerity has been implemented as death by a thousand cuts. You can still claim benefits, but the bureaucracy will make it more hassle than its worth and deliberately introduce enough arbitrary rules that statistical reductions in payouts can be made, just by excluding people for a minor technically.
This is probably counter productive in most cases. People wanting to game the system are the ones most likely to pay attention to the technicality rules. For everybody else, the sanctions create a financial emergency that distracts from the bigger picture goal of getting their life back on track.
The alternative to sanctions is a universal citizens income. 42% of GDP already goes to the government through taxation, so we already have a significant amount of convoluted income redistribution.
Removing all conditionality means some people will chose not to work, but that already happens under our existing system. This is a cost of doing business for making a "human rights guarantee", but one in the grand scheme of things we can actually afford as a country to make.
The net result is to give people the freedom and security to focus their attention on their long term needs, rather than being constantly distracted by short term emergencies.
My belief is that both net GDP and human happiness would grow as a result.
Taxpayers Against Poverty
No British citizen without an affordable home and an adequate income in work or unemployment.
93 Campbell Road, Tottenham, London N17 0BF
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