Kevin Dodd, Chief Executive of WDH will be the headline panel speaker at the North TPAS conference. Read his blog about the triple whammy of the welfare reform.
“Welfare reform has been a steep learning curve for us. Direct payments and the ‘Bedroom Tax’ has taught us much about the lives our tenants lead, and the ways we need to adapt as a business to manage in these changing times.
As one of the Direct Payments Demonstration Projects we’re already ahead of the game and have changed the way we work so that our tenants receive dedicated and often intensive support to cope with their new-found financial independence.
But combined with the triple whammy of the ‘Bedroom Tax’, Benefit Cap and changes to Council Tax Benefit, this challenge has been made even more difficult.
We calculate the cost of welfare reform to be as much as £10 million to our business plan each year, so the threat is real and is one we all must prepare for or face potentially catastrophic consequences.
Although the figures are stark, the real impact of welfare reform cannot just be measured in pounds and pence – the true picture is only borne out by the human impact of these changes and the hardship that many families and disabled people now face.
However, tenants must face up to reality. There are those that must make changes to their lifestyles, and those that won’t will need a push! So not only are we helping tenants to manage their money, but to turn their lives around by helping them find employment and improve their quality of life.
Welfare reform isn’t going away, and by sharing our experiences at TPAS North I hope we can work together to make sure tenants get the best possible support to adapt to these challenges”
For more information about the TPAS conference visit www.tpasconference.org.uk