Events Calendar

Events Calendar

What proposals should be made in the next UK White Paper on social security (welfare benefits)?
Friday 12 July 2019, 01:00am - 04:00pm

What proposals should be made in the next UK White Paper on social security (welfare benefits)?

Workshop: Friday 12 July 2019 1pm-4pm

Venue: University of Cardiff

Organisers: Michael Orton (University of Warwick) and Kate Summers (London School of Economics)


The social security/welfare benefits system is failing, with foodbanks and homelessness just two of the most visible signs of this.

But there is little agreement, even within civil society, on ways forward.

The workshop

This workshop is one of more than a dozen being held in different parts of the UK to stimulate thinking about the future of social security/welfare benefits, and provide the opportunity for discussion and collaboration among attendees.

In particular, the workshop will input to a project called the Commission on Social Security (welfare benefits), led by Experts by Experience which has issued a Call for Solutions.

The Commission is highly innovative in that all the Commissioners are people with experience of claiming benefits. The Commission’s aim is to produce a White Paper style document setting out a better system and building consensus. The Call for Solutions includes questions such as the following.

  • What steps can be taken to make Universal Credit better or if you think it should be scrapped, what would replace it?
  • How can people who are sick or disabled be better supported and how should the system work out who should get sickness or disability benefits?
  • Should there be a minimum income level below which no one can fall and if so, how could this be done?
  • How should benefit rates be worked out and how much should each benefit be? 

Workshop participants will also be welcome to identify solutions on the whole range of issues relevant to social security/welfare benefits. For example, sanctions, Child Benefit, Local Welfare Assistance Schemes, National Insurance contributory benefits, support for housing costs and council tax, individual/household assessments and payments, how increased spending on benefits can be financed, the balance between means-testing or being contributions-based and reflecting people’s particular needs or being universal? etc.

Workshop format

The workshop will have a participatory format including small group work and consensus building activities.

It will be structured around the Call for Solutions being made by the Commission on Social Security led by Experts by Experience but will also identify other possible activity.

Who should attend?

Anyone interested in a better social security/welfare benefits system! Whether you are an individual Expert by Experience, part of a user-led or community group, from a third sector organisation, academia or anywhere else, you will be made very welcome. 

Workshop organisers

Michael Orton and Kate Summers

Any queries please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.