A common approach to Welsh benefits: Feasibility study

Poverty A picture of the report cover, a woman with a bill
ReportsResourcesApril 4th, 2023

New report looks at the feasibility of establishing a Welsh Benefits System 

The Bevan Foundation has long recognised the importance of the various grants and allowances provided by the Welsh Government and Welsh local authorities to low-income households. From the Council Tax Reduction Scheme to Free School Meals, these grants and allowances provide vital support to low-income households across Wales and sit alongside the support provided through the UK social security system.

The Bevan Foundation has long proposed that these various grants and allowances should be brought together into a single framework which we termed a Welsh Benefits System. We have called on the Welsh Government to establish such a system to improve access, increase take up and ensure efficient and consistent administration across Wales. As such, a Welsh Benefits System has real potential to lift people out of poverty.

To turn this vision into reality the Bevan Foundation has worked with several other organisations to commission external experts, Policy in Practice, to assess how to implement a common approach to Welsh benefits focusing on data requirements. 

The findings are essential reading. They demonstrate that establishing a Welsh Benefits System is feasible in terms of data and could see millions of pounds-worth of unclaimed benefits find their way to the pockets of people on low-incomes.

Creating a full Welsh Benefits System would take time. The report identifies several actions that the Welsh Government could take in the medium term to establish comprehensive arrangements. It is vital that these actions are taken forward, and to do so we recommend that the Welsh Government establish an implementation group comprising those currently delivering the grants and allowances and other experts.

But we do not need to wait – there are some immediate gains to be won. The report demonstrates that making better use of data could boost uptake of several grants and allowances, providing some relief to very hard-pressed households in a cost of living crisis. We recommend that the Welsh Government should work with its partners to act upon them as a matter of urgency.

Report format: PDF 

Language: English 

Pages: 87 

Cost: Free




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