Press, The Benefit System, Welfare to Work

– The Government considers rescinding benefits from Unrelenting Drug Users

The Home Office is considering rescinding the welfare benefits received by individuals who are dependent upon drug and alcohol if they refuse to treatment for their condition. This idea recently appeared in a consultation paper regarding the government’s drug strategy for England, Wales and Scotland.

The paper also recommends that people within this cohort should not be required to work whilst receiving treatment for their condition. However, the Social Security Advisory Committee argued that withdrawing benefits could lead addicts to engage in illegal activities, such as theft and prostitution, in order to obtain capital.

Martin Barnes, Chief Executive of DrugScope, was highly sceptical of this strategy and “seriously questioned” whether linking benefits sanctions to a mandatory requirement to undergo medical treatment was fair and effective. He contended that there was no evidence that this approach to employment would work, especially for those whore are vulnerable and marginalised.

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