Results 101–120 of 12314 for speaker:David Gauke

Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions: Topical Questions (18 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: Since automatic enrolment was introduced in 2012, 9 million people have been enrolled in a workplace pension by over 900,000 employers. Today, I can announce the Government’s ambition to extend automatic enrolment to support more people to achieve greater financial security in later life. The Government’s 2017 review of automatic enrolment, published today, sets out the next steps...

Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions: Topical Questions (18 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: Any changes that might be made to this scheme are a matter for the scheme’s joint negotiation committee, not for the Government. The independent Pensions Regulator remains in ongoing discussion with the USS’s stakeholders. Nothing has been brought to the DWP’s attention that we consider to be of concern. It would be improper for the Government to tell the joint negotiation...

Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions: Topical Questions (18 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: As I think my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said, “Don’t believe everything you read in the newspapers.” The Government are committed to protecting employment rights.

Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions: Topical Questions (18 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: I can certainly assure my hon. Friend that we will continue to listen to constructive critics and those who want to make sure that universal credit works. In doing so, I thank him for his positive and constructive engagement. It is very clear that Conservative Members are united in ensuring that we deliver universal credit successfully.

Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions: Topical Questions (18 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: What I would say to anyone—Members of Parliament, newspapers, advisory bodies and food banks—is that we need to make sure that the facts are set out to new claimants: if they need to get access to support, they can get it quickly; they need to get in contact with their jobcentre; and they are able to access an advance, and they can get that money before Christmas.

Oral Answers to Questions — Work and Pensions: Topical Questions (18 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: My hon. Friend makes a very good point. One of the areas of good news about universal credit is the fact that it will enable us to reduce fraud by over £1 billion. That in itself is an important step, and there are of course many other very positive reasons why universal credit is a good thing.

Written Ministerial Statements — Department for Work and Pensions: Employment and Support Allowance (14 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) was introduced in 2008. In 2011 the Department began reassessing people claiming pre-existing incapacity benefits to see whether they were eligible for ESA. The previous benefits included Incapacity Benefit, Severe Disablement Allowance and Income Support. In 2013, the Department was made aware of individual cases which were transferred in error to...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: You have done my job for me, Mr Speaker. It is correct that, as I said in my opening remarks, we will provide this information before the House rises for Christmas 2017. On the question raised by the right hon. Member for Birkenhead (Frank Field), we will of course want to go through the documentation to take out, for example, the names of junior officials and any commercially sensitive...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: Let me deal first with the motion. The challenge for any Government—and, one would think, for any aspiring Government—is to strike the right balance between transparency, and encouraging candid evaluation and debate. There is a reason why project assessment reports commissioned by the Infrastructure and Projects Authority, and formerly the Major Projects Authority, have not been...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: I very much agree about the importance of a culture in which problems can be identified and passed up the command chain, with that system understood across the board. Clearly, when that does not happen, something needs to be addressed. When I entered this House in 2005—the right hon. Gentleman was a Minister at the time—we were wrestling with the problems of the tax credit fiasco,...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: The right hon. Gentleman is absolutely right. I can only assume that those who tabled the motion worded it carefully. They chose its wording on the basis that it was about providing information to the Work and Pensions Committee. As I have said, I do believe that, in these circumstances and for the reasons that I have set out, the Select Committee will treat this matter confidentially, but he...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: My hon. Friend hits the nail on the head. That is exactly how we are rolling out universal credit, which is why we are able to make changes and why the process is being done gradually. As my hon. Friend the Member for South Cambridgeshire pointed out, these reports go back some years, since when there have been a number of changes. At one level, I would love to be able to publish the most...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: Let me turn to the substance of universal credit then. Universal credit is the biggest modernisation of the welfare state in a generation. The old system traps people in a cycle of benefits dependency, incentivising working only 16 hours or fewer a week and preventing people from reaching their potential. Universal credit frees people from those hours limits and lets them keep more of what...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: My hon. Friend is absolutely right. One problem with the legacy system is that it does not cope with those people whose hours might fluctuate below and above 16 hours. The difficulties of moving from one regime to another can discourage people from taking extra hours. That is why it is so disappointing that we do not have cross-party support for these reforms. The Labour party has...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: What we have released is analytically robust. It enables us to compare with a matched sample, which becomes harder to do as there are fewer single people on jobseeker’s allowance. The reality is that the evidence points to universal credit getting people back into work quicker and ensuring that people are more likely to progress in work.

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: Before any of the policies we announced at the Budget, universal credit was a better system than the legacy system. I am delighted that we are going even further to ensure that universal credit becomes a better system, and we will continue to do so.

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: My hon. Friend is exactly right. He highlights just one of the examples of what we have heard from the shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions. She said in The Times on 28 November that new claimants would not receive any money before Christmas, and that anyone claiming universal credit in 2018 would “wait five weeks for any support”. That is simply not accurate. Under...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: We will continue with due process on that. I have said today that I will comply with the motion, which requires us not to publish the reports, but to provide them to the Work and Pensions Committee. Let me give another example of scaremongering. On Friday, The Daily Mirror ran a piece about a woman who had been scared by all the media and political attacks on universal credit. She was so...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: I will come to that one. The shadow Secretary of State has promoted the BBC “Money Box” piece that suggested that 100,000 people would lose their benefits over Christmas. The BBC subsequently apologised for the story and admitted that it was misleading. Will the hon. Lady do the same? I am happy to give way to her if she wants me to. She also suggested in The Times that only...

Universal Credit Project Assessment Reviews (5 Dec 2017)

David Gauke: I am grateful to my hon. Friend for highlighting the experience in her constituency. Members of Parliament have a role in ensuring that people are aware of the advances system and the support that is available. That is the responsible role for us to play, instead of trying to scare people with concerns that do not necessarily materialise.


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