Four practical steps the DWP can take today to improve Universal Credit

Free school meals should be for all school holidays, not just for Christmas

Our new analysis about free school meals shows how many families struggle to meet the extra costs of food in school holidays, and why. We also present strategies the government could adopt to ensure that no family is in financial crisis as a result of the school holidays, including extending free school meals to all children from households in receipt of Universal Credit.

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Using data analytics to understand child vulnerability

Haroon Chowdry, Head of Analysis, Children’s Commissioner’s Office, joined us to discuss how benefits data can help us understand child vulnerability. We shared findings from analysis we did for the CCO on the impact that welfare reforms will have.

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How benefits data can help keep children out of poverty

Early intervention is vital to keep children out of poverty and linking datasets can build a better picture of child vulnerability. Directors of Children’s Services and Heads of Revenues and Benefits can identify need, target support and track change using their linked data.

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Childcare support and Universal Credit

Childcare support is more generous under Universal Credit, but payments are claimed back like expenses, rather than paid upfront (as under Tax Credits). The government need to take on the cashflow risk.

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