Only 3,000 hit by benefit cap find work as IDS is exposed

Fri, 07/02/2014 - 12:59 -- nick

The government has released its latest figures on the benefit cap, the regulation which sees all British families limited to a maximum of £26,000 in welfare payments.

Over 36,000 households have been capped since it was introduced, and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is trumpeting its 'success' in this area.

While 8,000 are no longer living under the cap, only 3,250 escaped it by finding work, just 9% of the total.

The others reduced their benefit claims or had other changes in circumstances, like registering as disabled and escpaping that way.

Iain Duncan Smith claimed last year that 8,000 people found jobs as a result of being capped, earning a rap from the Office for National Statistics which said the link was not proven.

He told BBC radio 4's Today programme on 15th July 2013: "You cannot absolutely prove those two things are connected – you cannot disprove what I said. I believe this to be right. I believe we are already seeing people going back to work who were not going back to work until this group were capped."

The publicising of official DWP figures exposes Smith's 'belief' as a falsehood, despite the majority of those capped living in London, which has been creating jobs more quickly than other regions of the UK.

Jobcentre Plus previously stated that it had helped 19,000 of those who could be capped and some who had been capped into work, but this included some who would naturally have escaped it due to moving, registering disabled or finding work through their own efforts.

The latest figures relate only to those who have actually lost benefits, and 9% entering work is likely to be seen as proof that, if its aim is to force people into jobs, it has failed.

It has succeeded, however, in spreading poverty among those affected.

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