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Parkhead Housing Association offers a comprehensive Welfare Rights Service to all of our tenants, their families and waiting list applicants.

Our Welfare Rights Officer is based at the office 5 days a week and provide advice and guidance on a wide range of issues. There is a drop in session all day every Monday and Ruth is also available via appointment or a home visit for those unable to attend our office. Ruth can be contacted directly on 0141 551 5142 or by emailing ruth.matheson@parkheadha.org.uk. Please visit this area of the website regularly to read updates on the benefits system (see below).


Welfare Reform is happening across the social security system, with significant changes planned to how benefits are paid and the rules on how you qualify for certain entitlements.

  • The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is gradually rolling out the delivery of Universal Credit across the UK (including Glasgow), which will eventually move all working age claimants of Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA), Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), Income Support, Tax Credits and Housing Benefit into one single monthly payment.  For most claimants who currently receive Housing Benefit but have paid direct to the Association, this will mean you will be responsible for making the payment for rent as awarded by the DWP.  Contact your Housing Officer for further information on your rent payments if you are claiming or in receipt of Universal Credit.
  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is being replaced by Personal Independence Payments (PIP) for claimants who are of working age.  All existing working age DLA claimants will be invited to claim and be assessed for PIP; please get in touch with the Welfare Rights Officer for assistance if you require it.
  • Working age, non-disability benefits such as JSA and ESA have had their payment rates frozen until 2019/2020.  This also includes payments made for private rented tenants (Local Housing Allowance/LHA) and the amount of Housing Benefit/Universal Credit Housing Costs Element has been capped at LHA levels following the most recent Budget.  For most people, this will not affect the amount they receive but it is anticipated that a few tenants may eventually be affected and have a shortfall between their benefit award and their rent charge which they shall have to pay.
  • The under-occupancy deduction to Housing Benefit (“bedroom tax”) is still being applied to all working age Housing Benefit claims (with some exceptions), although in Scotland this shortfall has been mitigated by Discretionary Housing Payments covering the reduction in benefit by all who apply.  Please contact your Housing Officer if you believe you are affected by this reduction in benefit.

 

This is just a brief summary of high profile changes and other reforms are taking place and will affect people according to their own individual circumstances; if you require assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact the Welfare Rights Officer on 0141 551 5142 for further advice and information.