Mental health nurses join Gordon Brown in calling for an end to universal credit

Mental health nurses join Gordon Brown in calling for an end to universal credit

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

The Mental Health Nurses branch of Unite has written to Work and Pensions secretary Esther McVey urging her to scrap Universal Credit.

In a letter posted on Twitter on Tuesday, the day before World Mental Health Day on October 10, the Mental Health Nurses Association posted a copy of the letter on Twitter.

“To coincide with tomorrow’s #WorldMentalHealthDay we‘ve written to @EstherMcVey1 to ask that @Conservatives #StopAndScrap Universal Credit & punitive ‘welfare conditionality’ that is doing so much damage to lives of people living with mental illness,” they wrote.

In the letter, they claimed that benefit sanctions “do little to facilitate those on incapacity benefits into paid work”, the work capability assessment “regularly leads to inappropriate outcomes” and that “job search support available to disabled people is poor quality and largely ineffective”.

The rollout of Universal Credit, they say, “will make matters much worse, especially for those living with mental ill health”.

Labour MP Luciana Berger, who is president of Labour Mental Health, retweeted the letter. talkRADIO has approached her for comment.

 

'Chaos not seen since the days of poll tax'

Gordon Brown also warned on Tuesday that the UK could face “chaos not seen since the days of the hated poll tax” if the rollout continued.

“Call a halt to this experiment - cruel and vindictive far beyond austerity - that is pushing child poverty among millions of hard-working British families to record levels,” he wrote in the Mirror.

“From next July when three million more families begin to be herded on to universal credit, our country will face the kind of chaos we have not seen since the days of the hated poll tax.

“With the convulsions of Brexit in March and the universal credit four months later we face a summer of division and despair.”

Universal Credit, a single benefit that replaces child tax credits, housing benefit, income support, jobseeker’s allowance and working tax credits, is being introduced area by area in the UK.

talkRADIO has contacted Esther McVey for comment.

Read the full letter from the Mental Health Nurses Association below.

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