Why so many Universal Credit sanctions?

scottish unemployed workers' network

David Webster

Recipients of UC make up over two thirds of those sanctioned although they comprise less than a third of those on sanctionable benefits. The high number of UC sanctions is still the most striking finding of David Webster’s quarterly analysis of sanctions statistics (which go up to the end of October 2017). This high number may be partially due to the fact that a person on JSA who misses an interview will normally have their claim closed and have to reclaim, while on UC they are sanctioned. Backlogs and mass catch-ups in the system mean the figures are very up and down, but although numbers are still very high, there does at least appear to be a significant improvement since 2015. One explanation for this is the extraordinarily high proportion of referrals that are cancelled before they turn into a sanction – over half in the most recent figures. Dr…

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