Universal Credit

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2011 Local Government Service Group Conference
23 February 2011
Carried as Amended

Conference recognises the threat to thousands of local authority workers’ jobs who currently administer Housing Benefit due to the Westmister Government’s decision to replace in and out of work benefits and Housing Benefits with a ‘Universal Credit’.

UNISON will need to respond robustly to defend members jobs and to retain a locally accessible provision for service users.

Conference therefore calls on the Service Group Executive to:

1)Develop a bargaining strategy to protect our members jobs, terms & conditions and pensions;

2)Promote awareness of the effects of these proposals on our members and on service users;

3)Co-ordinate a recruitment and organisation drive in councils’ housing and council tax benefit departments;

4)Develop a national campaign with other trade unions and organisations that work with benefit claimants;

5)Liaise with other service groups in UNISON: such as the Community and Voluntary Service Group, many whose social housing providers have service level agreements with local authorities to collect bvenefit information;

6)Liaise with private landlord oganisations to research the potential loss of housing and the potential misuse of the rental element of the universal credit;

7)To lobby the Westmister and devolved governments on the issue of local accessibility if the ‘Universal Credit’ system is introduced.