JRF: no amount of excuses can change the fact sanctions aren't effective
Responding to a new report from the Department of Work and Pensions into the effectiveness of benefit sanctions, Rachel Casey, JRF policy adviser, said:
“No amount of excuses can change the fact sanctions aren’t effective. The UK Government’s stubbornness in its efforts to divert and deflect from this fact is disrespectful to the people caught up in this punishing system.
“Today’s report, which the Government has resisted publishing for five years, reveals that when people are sanctioned it does have a negative financial impact – it pushes them into destitution. It takes them longer to find a job, and those who do find a job after being sanctioned earn less than those who aren’t sanctioned.
“How many more people need to wear the mental and physical damage of this policy before the Government admits it doesn’t work?
“This work was conducted before the cost of living crisis so it’s alarming to think about how grave the impact of sanctions will have become with food prices and others vastly outstripping the value of social security.
“The Government should spend less time defending the status quo and more time thinking hard about how to make the changes needed to the sanction regime alongside improving the adequacy of Universal Credit.”