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Welfare conditionality, sanctions and homelessness: meanings made by homeless support workers.

Veasey, K. and Parker, J., 2022. Welfare conditionality, sanctions and homelessness: meanings made by homeless support workers. Journal of Humanities and Applied Social Sciences, 4 (4), 275-291.

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DOI: 10.1108/JHASS-12-2020-0213


Purpose This study explores homeless-support workers’ perceptions of homeless welfare recipients and their experiences of navigating new conditions placed upon them by UK welfare reform. It examines support workers’ views of the most punitive feature of the welfare system, sanctions, on those recipients. In 2012, the Conservative and Liberal Democrat Coalition Government introduced the largest and most radical overhaul of the UK benefit system, significantly increasing the level of conditionality and sanctions for non-compliance, part of a shift in welfare, suggesting that rights must be balanced by responsibility and the ‘culture of worklessness’ and ‘benefit dependency’ should be addressed. Design/methodology/approach Welfare reforms in the UK and the increased use of sanctions as part of welfare conditionality are reviewed. Data are collected from eight semi-structured interviews taking place in five housing support groups in the South East and South West of England in 2019-20. The interviews followed an approach from interpretive phenomenological analysis (IPA). Findings Findings from this study indicate that the Government’s reforms serve as a disciplinary measure for the poor, reinforcing inequality and social marginalisation. To mitigate the effects would require a comprehensive review of Universal Credit prior to its full rollout to claimants. Data are analysed thematically. Originality Welfare conditionality and welfare reform is well researched in the UK. There is also a significant volume of research concerning homelessness. This paper, however, fills a gap in research concerning the experiences of those working in housing support agencies working with homeless people in the UK.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Universal Credit ; Welfare conditionality ; Homelessness
Group:Faculty of Health & Social Sciences
ID Code:35089
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:22 Jan 2021 12:05
Last Modified:25 Jan 2023 11:49


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