To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will take steps to ensure that universal credit claimants participating in the Innovation in Democracy Programme do not receive deductions to their universal credit as a result of that participation.
The Innovation in Democracy Programme supported three local authorities to trial innovative models of deliberative democracy to involve citizens in local decision-making through the use of citizens’ assemblies. The programme ran from November 2018 to March 2020. The citizens’ assemblies took place between September and December 2019.
All participants were offered £300 for the 4 days of the citizens assembly. In addition, participants were reimbursed for costs of travel, childcare and other caring costs.
With regards to people on Universal Credit or other means-tested benefits, we advised all prospective assembly members to speak to a trusted source of welfare benefits advice.