Way back In 2013 I raised a letter signed by many leading campaigners and claimants against the proposal of the introduction of a prepaid benefit card proposed by IDS under a Coalition Government . Well just when they think you’re not looking it came to my attention its back on the agenda .
Well it been used for a long time to administer help to asylum seekers, social care to enable carers to help the person they are caring for and is used now to help in welfare assistance cases. Well I have found research from 2016 where DWP are still talking about it and another link to show it could be planned for Universal Credit which I assume will come into Personal Budgeting Support or as many have seen in my previous blogs Universal Support with a list of target groups.
So are we going to stand for this hell no. This will dictate choice and restrict what claimants can spend their money on. Previously we have had letters with signatures sent via a change petition yet they still pursue this ideological state control of those who are least able to fightback.
After a tip off I found out that, the government behind the scenes and Financial Sector are pushing this idea out yet again. They seriously have not grasped the nettle that removing a claimant’s choice of how they manage their finances is potentially illegal and contravenes their human rights. Way back In 2013 I raised a letter signed by many leading campaigners and claimants against the proposal of the introduction of a prepaid benefit card proposed by IDS under a Coalition Government.
Some Claimants due to their disabilities cannot manage their money and appoint a responsible person to manage them for the disabled person. Some care services have been paid this way for a while, which enables the carer to support the disabled person and allowed the cared for to limit what can be spent in the shops when they are unable to go themselves, without risking giving out passwords to a disabled persons bank accounts. They are also rolled out for asylum seekers.
Well I have found research from 2016 where DWP are still talking about it and another link to show it could be planned for Universal Credit, which I assume, will come into Personal Budgeting Support.
The UK makes an estimated £3 billion of transfers each year, with political rather than practical issues being the cause of the slow uptake to date – the UK government also stands to make sizeable savings by adopting the new method at a time of tight public spending.
Currently 200 public sector programmes across local authorities, National Health Service organisations, housing associations, social enterprises and charities are using prepaid cards to distribute payments such as central welfare disbursements.
“Prepaid products are issued for many different purposes so there may be some exceptions such as when products have been designed to address certain consumer or business needs. This means that some prepaid products may have specific inbuilt controls limiting where they can be used.”
Kevin McAdam, Director of Prepaid at allpay comments: “We’re seeing much greater acceptance from the Department of Work and Pensions for the benefits prepaid cards bring to schemes such as the distribution of Universal Credit. At the same time, local authorities and housing associations are increasingly switching to prepaid to help fulfil their social care obligations.
“As a result of this growing appetite we’ve recently established a number of similar schemes to that in Edinburgh across the UK and have more lined up to begin soon. It’s conceivable that over the next decade virtually all of the UK’s £3 billion of cash payments could have been replaced by prepaid.”
However, the push for prepaid is not solely to bring costs down and increase security. The wider goal of increasing social inclusion and preventing people from being excluded from the modern digital economy is also leading to calls for the switch from cash.
People who receive government benefits in cash, who may not have access to a full current account or credit card, can often find the cost of living increased. Research shows those who are financially excluded pay a ‘Poverty Premium’ as they are unable to shop online or benefit from Direct Debit discounts. This cannot be allowed where a section of society is treated differently to everyone else, just because they are unfortunate to be needing state support. This is highlighting the ‘Nanny State’ mentality of a government out of control.
Well I have organised another petition which I need 150,00 signatures or more to get this debated in HOC. We shouldn’t be complacent and underestimate the problems of state control this will cause. So please support this! I will add this later when it gets approved. I will also share on Social Media